SPIRITUAL BEGGARS — the Swedish band featuring ARCH ENEMY guitarist Michael Amott and bassist Sharlee D'Angelo, along with new vocalist Apollo Papathanasio (FIREWIND) — will play two shows in Japan in March.
Commented drummer Ludwig Witt: "We had a great time in Japan performing at the two massive Loud Park '10 concerts in October alongside OZZY, MOTÖRHEAD, etc.
"Our first new album in five years has been really well received by the Japanese fans and we can't wait to go back and play the full headline set at our own, more intimate, club dates in Osaka and Tokyo in March."
The details are as follows:
March 24 – Tokyo, Japan - Club Quattro
March 25 - Osaka, Japan - Club Quattro
The new lineup of SPIRITUAL BEGGARS made its live debut on October 1, 2010 at Kyttaro club in Athens, Greece.
Fan-filmed video footage of SPIRITUAL BEGGARS' first live show in five years can be viewed at this location. One of the clips is available below.
SPIRITUAL BEGGARS's seventh studio album, "Return To Zero", was released in Japan on August 25 via Trooper Entertainment Inc. — the label founded by legendary Japanese heavy metal music industry guru Tetsu Miyamoto. The Japanese special edition comes in a glossy paper box with a poster and a sticker of the CD front cover. The Japanese edition also features a bonus track, a thunderous cover of URIAH HEEP's "Time To Live" off the legendary U.K. band's 1971 "Salisbury" record.
"Return To Zero" was released in North America on October 12 via InsideOut Music. The follow-up to 2005's "Demons" was recorded at Sweetspot Studio with producer Rickard Bengtsson.
In a recent interview with Japan's Burrn! magazine, Amott stated about the CD, "The new album has a lot of the typical SPIRITUAL BEGGARS trademarks — it's heavy rock with a '70s atmosphere — but I also hear a definite progression and a deeper sense of melody in the songwriting and performances. It's exactly the kind of record I wanted to make with SPIRITUAL BEGGARS in 2010!"
Regarding the band's latest addition, vocalist Apollo Papathanasio (FIREWIND),Amott said, "Apollo's influences are very much rooted in the classic rock and metal of the '70s and '80s. He is the same age as the rest of us in SPIRITUAL BEGGARS, so we instantly shared a lot of common ground musically, and he really connected with the songs and delivered emotional vocals that really impressed us all."
He added, "Apollo does share some similarities with our previous singers — a rough and raw style based in blues and hard rock. He also has influences from the classic metal of the Eighties.
"I was always aware of the fact that he is great singer. However, even I was surprised how well his voice fit SPIRITUAL BEGGARS, in the new and the old songs. Apollo is showing a range and depth on this album that I believe will both surprise and please the SPIRITUAL BEGGARS fans!"
SPIRITUAL BEGGARS 2011 is:
Michael Amott (ARCH ENEMY, CARCASS) - Guitar
Ludwig Witt (FIREBIRD) - Drums
Per Wiberg (OPETH) - Keyboards
Sharlee D'Angelo (ARCH ENEMY, MERCYFUL FATE) - Bass
Apollo Papathanasio (FIREWIND) - Vocals