Drummer Joe Nunez is strongly rumored to have left SOULFLY after a disagreement with band manager Gloria Cavalera over the financial terms of his most recent arrangement with the group. According to a source close to Nunez, the skinsman had signed a contract with SOULFLY that had barely enabled him to survive during the “down” periods between recording sessions and tours, effectively forcing Joe to continue to cohabit with his mother in his hometown of Chicago, a situation that had grown progressively more intolerable in the recent months. After confronting Cavalera about renegotiating the terms of his contract, Nunez was reportedly told that no further negotiations would take place, leaving the drummer no choice but to quit the band. Although presently unconfirmed, sources indicate that SOULFLY are still hoping to hold on to Nunez for the imminent recording sessions for the group's third full-length effort, which will reportedly take place at Phoenix's (Brill Street) Chaton Studios with SOULFLY mainman Max Cavalera in the role of the producer and Otto D'Agnolo engineering the entire project. A relative unknown in metal circles, D'Agnolo had previously collaborated with Cavalera on the two NAILBOMB releases (Point Blank and Proud To Commit Commercial Suicide) and SOULFLY's cover of BLACK SABBATH's “Under The Sun” for the Nativity In Black II tribute CD. We will have more information on this as it becomes available.
DARK TRANQUILLITY drummer Anders Jivarp injured his wrist and unfortunately won't be able to play the group's scheduled gig in Istanbul, Turkey this Saturday, October 6th. Instead of cancellling the show, the group have recruited LEFAY skinsman Robin Engström fill in for the gig on short notice. The band are currently rehearsing heavily in order to get everything prepared “as well as possible”.
TESTAMENT/SADUS/CONTROL DENIED bassist Steve DiGiorgio has confirmed via a posting on his official web site that former TESTAMENT/DEATH/OBITUARYJames Murphy is presently recovering from a recently diagnosed brain tumor, as exclusively reported here last week. According to DiGiorgio, “I talked to [James] on the phone a couple days before he said he would be released from the hospital. He had a massive pituitary tumor removed from his head. We only talked a few minutes so the details weren't discussed at length. But they went in through his face and behind his eyeball. He seemed, under the harrowing circumstances, to be in relatively good spirits and he was totally James. By this I mean, after he was rushed into brain surgery to save his life from the tumor putting pressure on multiple points on his brain and eye and was able to talk on the phone, I mean he still has his wit and his memory. This is another good sign, and he is feeling positive as well as his tumor is benign and was told to remain hopeful for a full recovery. We're reeling a bit here from all of this. Makes us feel just a bit more mortal. But always gotta remain hopeful, stay supportive and just always be there with a positive attitude.”
Meanwhile, Steve's CONTROL DENIED bandmate ChuckSchuldiner “is showing signs of progression, but he has such a long way to go, I feel so helpless for him,” states DiGiorgio. “The money contributions and the well wishes through mail and the Internet are definitely good for his spirits, but yet he suffers. He's going through physical therapy as well as still staying on the experimental drugs for his condition. I've heard he is showing signs of progression, but it's frustrating to me the unfairness he has been dealt [Get well soon metal brother, we miss you!!!].”
As for TESTAMENT vocalist Chuck Billy, he “has done very well in his battle with his tumor. But even here weeks after the chemotherapy, he goes in for surgery tomorrow morning [October 2nd] to remove what's left. It could be scar tissue, it could be dead tissue and it could very well even be cancerous tissue — so the doctors are taking no chances and cutting that bastard out. It's major open-heart chest surgery, so we're all bearing down and hoping things will turn out fine in his long road of recovery once again. He has the most positive attitude I can ever imagine, and I don't know how he has such strength to take this head on.”
On the musical front, TESTAMENT's much-anticipated collection of re-workings of early original compositions, entitled First Strike Still Deadly, will be issued through Spitfire Records on October 23rd. According to DiGiorgio, “We just got back from [producer] Andy Sneap's place over in England from a mixing session, it came out pretty good, really heavy sound. Considering Chuck sang during the end of his chemotherapy is amazing, his voice sounds killer. We (me and [SADUS frontman] Darren [Travis]) have a tape full of tunes for Chuck when he's back in business for our side project with him, so we're taking this little window of time to work on some new SADUS tunes. We hope to get in the studio early next year and kick out our fifth studio album. But until then we have a few other things brewing. We [SADUS] are contributing to a DARK ANGEL tribute. We're releasing, through Hammerheart Records, the 1986 D.T.P. demo on vinyl and most likely on CD too. There's been talk of doing an EP before the album that will contain one new one, a couple live ones and a cover tune. So maybe this time we can expect something from SADUS once again. Also during this period of little time demands I've been working a little with the DARK HALL guys to come up with some new songs. So that's about it...Just want to thank everyone who came out to Thrash Of The Titans. It was a huge success (literally!). And the Sadudes were out in full force...thanks for the killer support everyone! It was great to be included with the Bay Area greats and have such a killer response, it got us noticed that night for sure. We had some sound problems that night, but we pumped out the old ones for the die-hards. And it got us pumped up for doing new shit...thanks once again for reminding us that we owe you another one! A votre santé.”
A download of TESTAMENT's 2001 version of “Into The Pit”, taken from the above-mentioned First Strike Still Deadly release, can be obtained via this location.
Swedish black metallers MARDUK have been forced to cancel their scheduled North American tour “due to various reasons at the US embassy, like the super-touchy situation the United States is in right now, plus the fact that several of the members has got a criminal record added up to the fact that they couldn't get any visas in time for the tour”, according to a statement at the band's official web site. “They were told that the embassy has put the processing on hold waiting for more documents from the US. A fact that seems quite peculiar and really surprising when the US immigration authority not only has approved the visa request but also sent the band a personal letter thanking them for having the guts and dedication to come over to America and play while so many others cancelled, to show that no terrorism can keep life from go on. We will get back to you with more news on what's gonna happen as soon as we know more about this.”
The Axl Rose-fronted 2001 version of GUNS N' ROSES has reportedly cancelled their end-of-year European tour (for the second time) due to the “global situation”. No announcement has yet been made regarding a possible rescheduling of the cancelled dates.
According to TYPE O NEGATIVE drummer Johnny Kelly's web journal that was posted on the www.megakungfu.com web site, TYPE O NEGATIVE have penned between 10 and 12 songs for the group's upcoming studio album, which is still going through the demo stage and is due to be released in early 2002. “It was sometime around April when [keyboardist/producer] Josh [Silver] got his studio together in his house and we started working there,” stated Kelly. “The demo recording process is also a time consuming venture. Demos for TYPE O are just as involved as making the actual record at Systems II [Studios]. A lot of time and effort go into our demos. What takes us so long to do demos is that we experiment with the songs until we feel that it's the best the song is going to get. Let me clear something up before we go further though. I am not trying to boast or anything like that. I am not a big fan of recording. I enjoy live performance a lot more than recording. I'm trying to say that there is much more work in recording the demos than it is to record the actual record. By the time the demos are finished, we pretty much know how the songs are supposed to sound and it's just a matter of trying to recreate what we did at Josh's house.
“Here we are in the middle of September already & the demos are not completed yet. We are making progress though. A few songs are completed. We're expecting to have them completed shortly but after talking to [frontman] Peter [Steele] the other night, he mentioned that he has written two more songs. He always does this to us. It's not necessarily a bad thing. He usually comes up with stronger songs around this time in the recording process. I guess he doesn't feel pressure to write & they just come out of him. Usually when this happens, the song is demoed quickly & more attention is focused when we're at Systems II. Both records that I have done with the band, he has done & the results were always good. So, I am anxious to hear them.”
OZZY OSBOURNE's 1997 collection, entitled The Ozzman Cometh, has been certified double-platinum for sales in excess of two million copies in the US.
CELTIC FROST are tentatively due to regroup and release a new studio album in late 2002.
BIOHAZARD guitarist Billy Graziadei has joined forces with vocalist Jen Bair in a brand new musical project bearing the moniker BLU. “A silently powerful, passive aggressive merger of the sinewave and the sawtooth, the organic and mechanical,” BLU has launched its official web site at this location, from which demo versions of three songs—“Remission”, “We Were Driven”, and “Remedy”—can be downloaded.
NAPALM DEATH have announced more European live dates for the end of the year. The confirmed shows are as follows:
Nov. 20 – Newcastle, UK @ University SU
Nov. 21 – Aberdeen, UK @ Lava
Nov. 22 – Dundee, UK @ Fat Sams
Nov. 23 – Manchester, UK @ Hop & Grape
Nov. 24 – Wolverhampton, UK @ Wulfrun Hall
Nov. 26 – London, UK @ Astoria
Nov. 27 – Southampton, UK @ Nexus
Nov. 28 – Cambridge, UK @ The Junction
Nov. 29 – Newport, UK @ Tjs
Dec. 03 – Nantes, FRA @ Zip france
Dec. 04 – Toulouse, FRA @ Bikini Club
Dec. 06 – Cordoba, SPA @ Africa
Dec. 08 – Oporto, POR @ Teatro Sa Da Badeiro
Dec. 09 – Lisbon, POR @ Paradise Garage
Dec. 10 – Madrid, SPA @ Arena
Dec. 11 – Barcelona, SPA @ Mephisto
Dec. 13 – Milan, ITA @ Tunnel
Dec. 14 – Florence, ITA @ Siddartha
Dec. 15 – Senigallia, ITA @ Mamamia
Dec. 16 – Wil, SWI @ Remise
Dec. 17 – Geneva, SWI @ Usine
Dec. 18 - Nancy/Strasbourg, FRA @ TBA
Dec. 19 – Paris, FRA @ TBA
Dec. 20 – Vosselaar, BEL @ Biebob
Dec. 21 – Haarlem, NETH @ Patronaat
Dec. 22 – Rotterdam, NETH @ Baroeg
Gothic metallers TO/DIE/FOR have received a gold record in their native Finland for sales in excess of 5,000 copies of their In The Heat Of The Night single (featuring a guest appearance by LULLACRY's Tanya). This marks TO/DIE/FOR's first gold album to date.
Finland's WARMEN, featuring members of CHILDREN OF BODOM, TUNNELVISION and WISARD, have just released a new single, entitled 'Alone', which features a guest appearance by SINERGY's Kimberly Goss. WARMEN's second album, Beyond Abilities, is scheduled to be released on October 15th.
THE CULT are scheduled to film a DVD at their appearance this Thursday at Southern California's Grand Olympic Auditorium.
Finland's CHARON have finished recording their as-yet-untitled third album and are currently at Finnvox Studios mixing the CD with Mikko Karmila. The tentative track listing for the album is as follows:
01. Bitter Joy
02. Erase Me
04. Little Angel
06. At The End Of Our Day
07. Desire You
08. Come Tonight
09. All I Care Is Dying
10. Sister Misery
Finland's EMBRAZE have set Katharsis as the title of their forthcoming third album, which is due to be released through Mastervox Records at the end of the year. The track listing for the CD is shaping up as follows:
01. My Star
02. Beautiful Death
03. Frozen Swan
06. Daughters Of The Moon
07. Calm And Distant
09. The Sun Loves The Moon
The previously announced Middlesbrough show by GEORDIE, vocalist Brian Johnson's pre-AC/DC band, has been pulled at the last minute for unspecified reasons. The band will still be going ahead with their performances on Wednesday, Friday and the following Monday. According to people that attended the first show, GEORDIE is performing a full set, including several surprises, such as a LED ZEPPELIN medley, covers of NAZERETH, TOTO and a host of ANIMALS tracks, plus an encore of AC/DC's “Whole Lotta Rosie”. The remaining dates are as follows:
Oct. 01 - Hebburn, UK @ Elmfield Club
Oct. 03 - Stanley, UK@ Centre Club
Oct. 05 - South Shields, UK@ Cellar Club
Oct. 08 - Newcastle, UK @ Heaton Buffs Club
Sweden's ANDROMEDA will be issuing a new version of their Extension Of The Wish CD in France in November through NTS Records, featuring newly-recorded vocals by recently-added singer David. Also included are two new tracks: “Eclipse” and “Journey Of Polyspheric Experience”. The latter song was previously a bonus track on the Korean release of the album in an instrumental demo version it has since been fully re-recorded in a proper studio with vocals added on top of it. ANDROMEDA are presently writing the material for their upcoming studio effort, which they plan to record in early 2002 for a mid-year release.
Finnish progressive metallers INSOMNIUM have completed work on their debut album, which is scheduled to be released in February/March 2002 through Candlelight Records. Recorded at Media Works Studios, Joensuu by Jone Väänänen, the album was mixed at Astia Studios by Anssi Kippo and mastered at Finnvox Studios by Mika Jussila.
BLAZE, featuring former IRON MAIDEN/WOLFSBANE frontman Blaze Bayley, will play a one-off UK show at Bedford Esquires on October 20th.
Holland's acclaimed WITHIN TEMPTATION will perform live on November 29th at Broerenkerk in Zwolle, Holland.
Death metal doomsters MY SHAMEFUL have made all the songs from their three demos available for download via their MP3.com page at this location. The group are currently working on new material that should see the light of day in December/January.
Former WHITE LION/FREAK OF NATURE vocalist Mike Tramp will release his long-awaited new solo CD, entitled Recovering The Wasted Years (the original title of Don't Take My Rock N Roll having apparently been scrapped),on January 21st, 2002. The vocalist is still in the process of finalizing record deals for various territories, with the final announcement on the labels expected to be made in the next couple of weeks.
SAXON have updated their European tour scheduled with several locations (Madrid, Toulouse, Munich, Bochum, Berlin and Leipzig) having their shows moved to different venues. Scandinavian Dates will now commence on November 22nd, and will be announced shortly. Support at most UK shows will come from AREA 54, while the group will be supported in mainland Europe in November by RAWHEAD REXX. The Dutch and Belgian dates on October 18th and 19th will have BLAZE as support. The details are as follows:
Oct. 10 - Coal Exchange, Cardiff, UK
Oct. 11 - Woughton Centre, Milton Keynes, UK
Oct. 12 - Wulfrun Hall, Wolverhampton, UK
Oct. 13 - Mean Fiddler, London, UK
Oct. 15 - The Junction, Cambridge, UK
Oct. 16 - Elysee Montmartre, Paris, FRA
Oct. 18 – 013, Tilberg, NETH
Oct. 19 - Hof Ter Lo, Antwerp, BEL
Oct. 20 - E-Werk, Cologne, GER
Oct. 23 - Hard Club, Porto, POR
Oct. 24 - Paradise Garage, Lisbon, POR
Oct. 25 - Macumba, Madrid, SPA
Oct. 26 – Republica, Valencia, SPA
Oct. 27 - Razzmatazz 2, Barcelona, SPA
Oct. 28 - Sala Jam, Bergara, SPA
Oct. 29 - Venue TBA, Toulouse, FRA
Oct. 30 – Barrumba, Turin, ITA
Nov. 1 - La Laiterie, Strasbourg, FRA
Nov. 3 – Podium, Hardenberg, NETH
Nov. 5 – Capitol, Hanover, GER
Nov. 6 – Longhorn, Stuttgart, GER
Nov. 7 – Capitol, Wurzburg, GER
Nov. 8 - Z Bau, Nurnberg, GER
Nov. 9 - Hyde Park, Osnabruck, GER
Nov. 10 – Stadhalle, Lichtenfels, GER
Nov. 11 - Z7, Pratteln, Switzerland
Nov. 13 - Planet Music, Vienna, AUS
Nov. 14 - Metropolis, Munich, GER
Nov. 15 - Matrix, Bochum, GER
Nov. 16 – Gewerkschaftshaus, Erfurt, GER
Nov. 17 – Huggenottenhalle, Neu Isenburg, GER
Nov. 18 - Berlin Music Hall, Berlin, GER
Nov. 19 - Anker, Leipzig, GER
Nov. 20 – Docks, Hamburg, GER
Nov. 22 – onwards, TBA, Scandinavia
KAMELOT are due to announce a major tour for January/February 2002 in Europe.
Acclaimed death metallers NILE are working on the material for the follow-up to Black Seeds Of Vengeance, which is expected to be recorded in early 2002 for a summer release. Tentative song titles for the upcoming CD include the following:
01. The Blessed Dead
02. Execration Text
03. Kheftiu Asar Butchiu
05. In Their Nighted Shrines
06. Invocation To Sedetious Heresy
Former DEEP PURPLE/BLACK SABBATH singer Glenn Hughes may sing a duet with ex-DEEP PURPLE/WHITESNAKE frontman David Coverdale on the latter's upcoming solo CD, which is currently being recorded for an early 2002 release. In other news, the upcoming debut album from HTP, the new project featuring Hughes and ex-RAINBOW/DEEP PURPLE singer Joe Lynn Turner, will include a guest solo appearance by ex-BLUE MURDER/THIN LIZZY guitarist John Sykes.
Finland's THE RASMUS will accompany H.I.M. on the latter band's upcoming Scandinavian tour. THE RASMUS released an album in March called Into (which also means 'enthusiasm' in Finnish),which has been highly successful in the band's native country. For more information about the band, you can visit their official site at www.therasmus.fanglobe.com/.
PHALLUCY, DEFTONES drummer Abe Cunningham's former musical project (which he briefly joined after temporarily leaving the DEFTONES in the early ྖs),will reportedly be embarking on a west coast tour with TEAM SLEEP (featuring DEFTONES frontman Chino Moreno) between December 1st and December 14th.
YNGWIE MALMSTEEN vocalist Doogie White (ex-RAINBOW) checks in from the road in South America: “Mexico City was an early show so it was still daylight when we took the stage. Now everyone has a better idea of how it will sound live and play well. We headed for the airport and flew overnight to Buenos Aires. The flight was very long as we went via Santiago Chile, but that is another story… We changed hotels and had to lug our luggage to the new one. Well the others did, as mine was lost. So I had to stomp around in my travel gear. I was lucky enough to borrow some trousers and a t-shirt for the show. I had a blast and many people who had seen me play with Ritchie came along and said hello. It was the hottest gig ever. The temp never dropped below 120 on the stage, water was running down the walls. GRRRREATTT…
'Early next day we flew to Santiago, where we were the day before. Two shows there and both different. The band is really sounding good and getting tighter as you do when you play together for long enough. The first show included [DEEP] PURPLE's 'Mistreated' I never thought I'd sing that again. Next night Yngwie started chugging away on a riff that led us into [DEEP PURPLE's] 'Highway Star'. I've only sung that once before. Fans surrounded the vans and turned up at the hotels. It's been quite a lot of fun. As I write, Yngwie is starting a clinic and I can hear the Marshalls blasting. So I must leave and see what is what. We are in Columbia. Bogota has a new Hard Rock Cafe and we may, may, just have to go there for a Long Island Ice Tea.'
New York's DOG EAT DOG have completed and submitted a new six-song demo to their management, who are presently negotiating a “major label” deal for the group.
According to MSG (MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP) vocalist Chris Logan, the band's previously scheduled Japanese tour is “in the toilet, but the U.S. end is hopefully going to be salvaged. We are currently in the process of finalizing plans, and should have some info for you all in the coming week or two.”
Former TESTAMENT guitarist Alex Skolnick will appearing with JOE DENINZON AND STRATOSPHEERIUS at the following dates/venues:
Oct. 04 – Erie, PA @ Sherlock's
Oct. 05 – Toledo, OH @ MickeyFinn's Pub
Oct. 06 – Detroit, MI @ Old Miami
Oct. 08 – Cleveland, OH @ The Grog Shop
Oct. 26 – New York, NY @ The Izzy Bar
According to the current issue of Rolling Stone magazine, Ozzy Osbourne sought solace in a Manhattan church after witnessing the September 11th attacks. Osbourne and his wife, Sharon, tearfully watched the carnage unfold from the roof of their midtown New York City hotel, and then went to a church across the road to collect their thoughts.