Release Date For TESTAMENT ‘The Brotherhood Of The Snake’ Album

San Francisco Bay Area metal veterans TESTAMENT have set an October 28 release date for their new album, “The Brotherhood Of The Snake”. Guitarist Eric Peterson told Metal Maniac about the new disc (see video below): “It’s finished — recorded, done — and it’s now on its way to [British producer] Andy Sneap to get mixed.

“It came out really, really good,” he added. “I’m really happy with it. It’s very diverse, but it’s very epic. There’s nothing on there that breeds commercial. And I think for thirty years of recording music and trying different formulas and stuff, I think we’ve found a formula that is very metal. I think for the metal fan that is looking for something for the nook and crannies… not just your normal, ‘Oh, it’s got a thrash beat and a riff.’ There’s a lot going on here. And just the title: ‘The Brotherhood Of The Snake’. You’re gonna expect something more in-depth. It’s not, like, ‘Satan’s Death’ or ‘Kill ‘Em All’. Well, no, ‘Kill ‘Em All’ is killer. Sorry. But you know what I mean. I mean, it’s more in-depth sounding.”

Peterson also talked about TESTAMENT‘s decision to promote “The Brotherhood Of The Snake” with an eight-week European tour this fall as the support act for AMON AMARTH. He said: “A lot of bands wouldn’t do this — a band like TESTAMENT opening for AMON AMARTH. A lot of people are, like, ‘Huh?’ But at the same time, when you think about it, AMON AMARTH is doing great right now, and they’re a new band. They’re drawing a lot of people, and that’s good for TESTAMENT. And they’re not so bad; they’re fucking pretty good. I like AMON AMARTH, you know. I think they’re pretty good. Their new record’s pretty good. Not pretty good; it’s really good. And if there’s a lot of people and they’re good venues, why not?”

Peterson previously told Metal Forces about the musical direction of “The Brotherhood Of The Snake”: “It’s different. This one is more thrash. I mean, this has got some of the fastest stuff that we have ever played. Usually, we have one or two thrash songs, and then we have some mid-tempo, and then we have a slow, heavy one, and then up-tempo kind of stuff. Half of the new record is thrash, which we’ve never done before. Even with our first record [‘The Legacy’, 1987] , there’s ‘Over The Wall’ and ‘First Strike Is Deadly’, but then there’s stuff that’s back and forth from mid-tempo to thrash like ‘Do Or Die’ or ‘Apocalyptic City’. Full-on thrash though, like six or seven songs, has never been done by us. It’s kind of a trip to hear it.”

He continued: “It’s kind of like ‘Demonic’ and ‘The Gathering’, but a little bit wiser, I think. Chuck‘s [Billy] not singing so death. I mean, he does some death stuff but he’s singing more like he did on the last record and then with the craziness of ‘The Gathering’ or even heavy stuff like ‘Demonic’.”

Billy echoed Peterson‘s sentiments, saying “The Brotherhood Of The Snake” “is definitely gonna be geared up to a little more faster than ‘Dark Roots Of Earth’ record, definitely a little more aggressive musically, for sure, probably vocally as well. I think I’ll probably attack with a little more heavier voice on this one. I’ll kind of feel my way through the song, which voice to use. But there’s definitely gonna be some ‘Demonic’ [-type] stuff, but again like ‘The Gathering’, ’cause I think I did a little bit of everything on that record, which that’s what we’d like to accomplish.”

Chuck also talked about the lyrical themes covered on “The Brotherhood Of The Snake”. He explained: “[The title track is] basically about a lot of the early secret societies that started taking over power, trying to control the society and spawned off into illuminatis and stuff like that so it’s kind of going back to a lot of that — a lot of human control and religions and the similarities between religions and alien beings and stuff like that. I’ve been fascinated a lot by a lot of programs that show a lot of different religions and all the writings or hieroglyphics on the walls always have the same type beings with all of these religions. And it makes you think, wow, so long ago, these people didn’t know people on the other side of the ocean, but yet they have these common sightings within their religions that they talk about and reference. And it just really was interesting to me, opening my eyes a little more to religion. I was raised Catholic, but growing up and just seeing these connections just really makes me think about all the religions, you know? And the connection between the human race and aliens, it’s just really fascinating to me. So we started spotting a lot of ideas for songs off of that.”

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Classic DOKKEN Lineup To Reunite For 6 Shows In Japan

Don Dokken has confirmed that the classic lineup of DOKKEN will reunite for a series of concerts in Japan, with no plans to take the reunion to the rest of the world.

The six shows will take place this October, and will include an appearance at the Loud Park festival, which last year celebrated its tenth anniversary.

During an appearance on last night’s (Saturday, June 25) installment of “The Classic Metal Show”, Don explained how the long-rumored DOKKEN reunion finally came to fruition.

“Years and years ago, I made a comment offhandedly, like, ‘You wanna do a reunion tour? I’ll do it for this amount of money,” Don said. “It was like a one and a lot of zeros. And that was my price, and everybody said, ‘You’re crazy.’ And I said, ‘Well, that’s my price, and I’m not gonna do it [for anything less].’ And now, fifteen years later, somebody came up with that price. So I approached George [Lynch, former DOKKEN guitarist] and Jeff [Pilson, former DOKKEN bassist], and I said, ‘You guys wanna make a shitload of money for about one week of work?’ And I told them the price, and I told them how much I wanted and how much they’d make, and, basically, they could make more money in one week than they’d probably make in several years. And so everybody said, ‘Okay.’ So I said, ‘Well, I’ll do it on the condition that I don’t wanna do it in America or Europe or anywhere else. Just six shows in Japan.’ ‘Cause we were very big in Japan, and it’s just a… It’s a reunion tour. So they agreed, and we’re gonna do six shows in Japan. We’re gonna be playing Loud Park, headlining with the SCORPIONS. The two headliners are us and SCORPIONS. We’re playing the same night — back to back on two different stages. And then we’re gonna buzz off and do five more shows. And it’s very temporary.”

Despite the fact that there is plenty of interest from promoters in other parts of the world to book the DOKKEN reunion, Don claims that the Japanese dates are the only shows the group is committed to doing.

“Of course, everybody came out of the woodwork, and they want us to do Sweden Rock, Wacken festivals, M3… People are throwing money at us to do a DOKKEN reunion in the States and Europe, and my answer to everybody is, ‘No. It’s not gonna happen,'” he said.

“I feel bad for my agents, ’cause they’re getting bombarded from these offers for us to play these big festivals all over the world as a reunion, but I’m just not interested; I’m sorry, I’m just not,” he continued. “Jeff‘s busy. He plays like crazy in FOREIGNER. He’s on the road. George is out, you know, playing the bars with LYNCH MOB, so everybody’s busy. So I don’t see any reason… I can’t say, ‘We can make all this tons of money…’ And we’re doing this tour for a lot of money, but I’m doing it to put an exclamation point on a very temporary reunion.”

According to Don, part of the reason there are no plans for the reunited DOKKEN to play any other shows after the Japanese run is the fact that the current lineup of DOKKEN — which includes fellow member of the band’s classic lineup, drummer Mick Brown, alongside longtime guitarist Jon Levin and bassist Chris McCarvil — is still very much an active entity, with a steady schedule of live shows throughout the year.

“I’m so happy with Jon Levin and Chris,” he explained. “I mean, we get along so, so good. We’re happy. We get on a plane, we fly to a venue, we hang out together and we go to dinner and we do the show and we hang out in the dressing room. It’s very easy; you know, there’s no drama. And at my age now, the last thing I need in my life is drama. So I am hopeful everything goes smoothly in Japan [with the reunion shows], but I am ready [laughs] for something to… There was always drama in DOKKEN, so I don’t expect anything to change. I’m just gonna kind of keep myself removed from it all. All I’m gonna do is go up there and sing my butt off and play two or three songs on guitar and just make it a fun thing for [the fans].”

Don also admonished the other members of DOKKEN‘s classic lineup for leaking details of the band’s reunion before it was made official. “Mick said we were doing it a month ago, George has been saying it, and Jeff was saying it,” he said. “Which I have to laugh, because I said, ‘Please don’t anybody talk about it until the contracts are signed,’ and I hadn’t signed the contracts until a couple of days ago.”

He continued: “Doing a tour like this is not easy; there’s a lot of logistics, money, accountants, taxes, overhead, equipment, video. It’s a lot of logistics to put together, and it’s taken a long, long time to put this Japanese tour together. But we did it, and we’re gonna do six shows.

“Everybody was talking like it was a done deal, which is a very bad thing to do. You should never announce a tour before it’s announced, because then the promoters think we’re gonna do it no matter what, and it kind of hurts my negotiating skills. If we say we’re gonna do this, and we’re kind of bartering about how much money, and they feel we’re gonna do it no matter what — if it’s a half a million or million dollars — I said, ‘Please don’t say we’re doing it, because it hurts my negotiating position. So I’ve said nothing until tonight.”

For DOKKEN fans in other parts of the world who are hoping to catch a glimpse of the reunited band, Don says that there is a small silver lining in all of this. “I’m hoping that, in rehearsals” — which will take place at the Badlands Pawn in Sioux Falls, South Dakota — “we feel that we’re tight enough on the final day that we actually do a show and we’re gonna film the whole thing,” he said. “And hopefully it comes out good and we’ll edit it and put out a live DVD.”

Serious discussions about a reunion of DOKKEN‘s classic lineup have been held, on and off, for at least the past half decade. Back in may 2010, Dokken and Lynch appeared on VH1 Classic‘s “That Metal Show” together in hopes that a reunion would follow. Despite their efforts, it never happened and Don went forward with DOKKEN‘s current lineup.

All the members of DOKKEN‘s classic 1980s lineup reunited on stage for the first time in more than a decade on November 29, 2009 during an encore at a DOKKEN show at the House of Blues in Anaheim, California.

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MEGADETH To Tour U.S. With METAL CHURCH

MEGADETH To Tour U.S. With AMON AMARTH, METAL CHURCH, HAVOK

MEGADETH will team up with AMON AMARTH, METAL CHURCH and HAVOK for a U.S. tour in the fall. The trek, which is expected to include an as-yet-undisclosed fifth band, will last for five weeks.

MEGADETH‘s last full U.S. tour took place earlier in the year and featured support from SUICIDAL TENDENCIES, CHILDREN OF BODOM and HAVOK.

MEGADETH is continuing to tour in support of its fifteenth album, “Dystopia”, which shifted 49,000 equivalent album units in the U.S. in the week ending January 28. In terms of pure album sales, it opened with 48,000 copies, marking MEGADETH‘s highest-charting album since 1992’s “Countdown To Extinction” debuted and peaked at No. 2 on the chart dated August 1 of that year. “Dystopia” also logged the group’s best sales week since 2007, when “United Abominations” landed at No. 8 with first-week sales of 54,000.

MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine recently spoke to Kerrang! Radio about the band’s drummer situation after recently recruiting Dirk Verbeuren (SOILWORK) to play drums for the group while Chris Adler is busy touring with LAMB OF GOD.

“We’ll see what happens for the future as we grow closer as a band,” he said. “We’re still trying to figure out what we’re gonna do with our drum position. It’s great having Dirk here. He’s been really wonderful to play with also. So there’s not a shortage of great players out there, and we’re gonna make our decision real soon.”

Adler played drums on “Dystopia” and has taken part in most of the band’s live shows in support of the CD so far. On some of the shows where Adler was unable to play with MEGADETH, he was temporarily replaced by Tony Laureano (ex-DIMMU BORGIR, NILE, ANGELCORPSE), the veteran extreme-metal skinsman who has worked as MEGADETH‘s drum tech since 2011.

Verbeuren was recommended for the MEGADETH job by Adler, who called Dirk “probably [one of the] top three drummers in the world.”

TESLA To Release ‘Mechanical Resonance Live!’ In August

On August 26, California rockers TESLA will release “Mechanical Resonance Live!”, a live recording of their classic album, celebrating the original multi-platinum record’s 30th birthday in style. With a few surprises up their sleeve, including the single “Save That Goodness” written and produced by Phil Collen of DEF LEPPARD, the effort will be made available via Tesla Electric Company Recordings/Mailboat. The record is being released in conjunction with TESLA‘s summer tour opening up for DEF LEPPARD, where they will perform in front of over half a million fans.

Said TESLA guitarist Frank Hannon: “30 years later and the songs on our first album still rock! Making this new live album of ‘Mechanical Resonance’ was a reminder of the innocence and creative beginnings of TESLA.”

Added TESLA bassist Brian Wheat: “It was a lot of fun to re-visit some of the songs we hadn’t played in decades and had a great time recording it. ”

Over the course of their thirty-year career, which started in 1986, the iconic Sacramento melodic hard rock quintet — Frank Hannon [guitar], Brian Wheat [bass], Jeff Keith [lead vocals], Troy Luccketta [drums], and Dave Rude [guitar] — has sold more than 25 million albums worldwide and played to sold-out crowds across the globe.

The 21st century has become something of a renaissance for TESLA. Most recently, 2014’s “Simplicity” bowed at #14 on The Billboard 200. The group ignited ABC‘s “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” in addition to scorching stages at festivals such as Rocklahoma, Graspop Metal Meeting and Sweden Rock Festival as well as the cruise Monsters Of Rock. As they prepare to cut their ninth full-length album with Phil Collen in the producer’s chair, TESLA takes another monumental leap forward as they glance back on “Mechanical Resonance Live!”

“Mechanical Resonance Live!” track listing:

01. Rock Me to the Top (live)
02. Ez Come Ez Go (live)
03. Gettin’ Better (live)
04. Comin’ Atcha Live (live)
05. Changes (live)
06. Before My Eyes (live)
07. 2 Late 4 Love (live)
08. We’re No Good Together (live)
09. Love Me (live)
10. Cover Queen (live)
11. Lil’ Suzie (live)
12. Modern Day Cowboy (live)
13. Save That Goodness (bonus studio track) (written/produced by Phil Collen)

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HALESTORM Preparing To Record 3rd Covers EP

HALESTORM Preparing To Record Third Covers EP

FaceCulture conducted an interview with HALESTORM frontwoman Lzzy Hale and drummer Arejay Hale at this year’s Pinkpop festival, which was held June 10-12 in Landgraaf, The Netherlands.

Asked if HALESTORM has already commenced the songwriting process for the follow-up to 2015’s “Into The Wild Life” album, Arejay said: “We really haven’t stopped since we released the last record. But the last time we went into the studio, we were just kind of, like, ‘Oh, boy. What are we doing?’ It was crunch time. We were kind of stressed out about it. This time, we’re trying to be a little bit more prepared, so when we go in, we have a little bit more of songs to choose from. But, yeah, we’re all individually writing, we’re writing together. We’re trying to just get an idea of where we wanna go, what direction we wanna go.”

Added Lzzy: “We’re literally writing every day.”

Regarding the musical direction of the new HALESTORM material, Lzzy said: “We’re starting to get a clearer idea [of where it is going]. A couple of months ago, I had no idea what we wanted to do next, and so just kind of writing to write — write everything.”

Added Arejay: “We’re about to go in the studio and record another cover EP, and every time we go to do that, we get inspired heavily by the songs that we learn and that we work up. It’s a great way to get an idea of different ways of songwriting. So I think after we do that, I think we’ll have a whole new batch of inspiration. So it’ll be cool.”

Lzzy previously confirmed plans for HALESTORM to release a third covers EP to follow 2011’s “ReAniMate” and 2013’s “ReAniMate 2.0” during an interview with Shaw TV. She said: “There’s always plans for those things. We’ve been using them, actually, to experiment with where we’re gonna go next on records. It didn’t start out that way, but the first one that we did, we experimented with a few different tempos of songs. Like, for instance, there’s ‘Slave To The Grind’ [SKID ROW] and ‘Out Ta Get Me’ [GUNS N’ ROSES], and we had never really experimented with that type of rockiness before. And we all turned to each other, like, ‘We need something that sounds like that.’ Out of that came ‘Love Bites’. And then we did [‘Gold Dust Woman’ from] FLEETWOOD MAC on this last one, and out of that came ‘New Modern Love’ for [‘Into The Wild Life’]. So it’s kind of a safe way to be, like, ‘Okay, let’s cover a song that’s already proven, but really try to discover something new about ourselves and what we enjoy.’ Experiment with different genres — just to throw something weird into the mix and challenge ourselves.”

HALESTORM‘s first two albums, 2009’s “Halestorm” and 2012’s “The Strange Case Of…” were both officially certified gold in March by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) for sales of more than 500,000 copies. The certifications came after RIAA started including on-demand audio and video streams and a track sale equivalent in gold and platinum album award.

“Into The Wild Life” debuted at No. 5 on the Billboard 200 album chart, selling 56,000 copies in its first week of release — more than double the first-week haul of their second CD — but has not reached gold yet.

AIRBOURNE To Release ‘Breakin’ Outta Hell’ Album In The Fall

Australian hard rockers AIRBOURNE will release their fourth studio album, “Breakin’ Outta Hell”, this fall via Spinefarm. The disc’s title track will also serve as the first single and video.

“Breakin’ Outta Hell” was produced by Bob Marlette, who helmed AIRBOURNE‘s “Runnin’ Wild” debut in 2007, and was engineered and mixed by Mike Fraser, who has previously worked with AEROSMITH, VAN HALEN, METALLICA and more.

In other news, AIRBOURNE has announced a headline tour of North America for September and October. The trek kicks off in San Diego on September 12 and concludes in Baltimore on October 14, taking in 21 shows along the way.

Driven by a formidable work hard, play hard ethic, the Australian outfit (led into action by brothers Joel and Ryan O’Keeffe, vocalist/lead guitarist and drummer, respectively; guitarist David Roads and bassist Justin Street complete the lineup) has spent the past ten years establishing itself as a true force of nature: living on the road, selling out major venues and appearing on bills with some of rock’s most legendary names, and this latest North American run will only add to their reputation for incendiary live performances — maximum energy, maximum entertainment.

The full list of North American headline shows is as follows.

Sep. 12 – San Diego, CA – House of Blues
Sep. 13 – West Hollywood, CA – Roxy Theatre
Sep. 14 – San Francisco, CA – Independent
Sep. 16 – Seattle, WA – Tractor
Sep. 17 – Vancouver, BC – Commodore
Sep. 20 – Victoria, BC – Sugar
Sep. 22 – Kamloops, BC – Cactus Jacks
Sep. 23 – Calgary, AB – Gateway
Sep. 24 – Edmonton, AB – Union Hall
Sep. 25 – Saskatoon, SK – Saskatoon Events Center
Sep. 28 – Winnipeg, MB – Pyramid
Sep. 29 – Minneapolis, MN – Triple Rock
Sep. 30 – Chicago, IL – Bottom Lounge
Oct. 01 – Detroit, MI – Smalls
Oct. 04 – Waterloo, ON – Maxwell’s
Oct. 05 – London, ON – London Music Hall
Oct. 07 – Toronto, ON – Opera House
Oct. 08 – Montreal, QC – Corona Theatre
Oct. 11 – Boston, MA – The Middle East
Oct. 12 – New York, NY – Gramercy
Oct. 14 – Baltimore, MD – Soundstage

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QUEENSRŸCHE Announces Fall U.S. Tour With ARMORED SAINT

QUEENSRŸCHE Announces Fall U.S. Tour With ARMORED SAINT

Progressive metal veterans QUEENSRŸCHE have announced their next headlining tour throughout the United States. The month-long trek will take place this fall, starting on November 15 in Seattle, Washington and concluding on December 15 in Colorado Springs, Colorado. QUEENSRŸCHE will be joined by ARMORED SAINT as direct support, along with MIDNIGHT ETERNAL on all dates for the upcoming tour.

Speaking about the upcoming U.S. tour and playing with ARMORED SAINT, QUEENSRŸCHE vocalist Todd La Torre comments: “We are pleased to announce that we will be hitting the road this November with the one and only ARMORED SAINT and MIDNIGHT ETERNAL. We’re looking forward to seeing all of you for this great billing of musical diversity and high energy performances! Come join the ‘RŸCHE this November – December!”

QUEENSRŸCHE lead guitarist and founding member Michael Wilton also gave his thoughts on the band’s fall dates, saying: “QUEENSRŸCHE is proud to be embarking on our fall 2016 ‘Condition Hüman’ U.S. tour with special guests ARMORED SAINT and MIDNIGHT ETERNAL! We encourage our fans to come out for this one and prepare yourselves for some high-energy rock shows!”

The dates are as follows:

Nov. 15 – Seattle, WA @ The Showbox
Nov. 16 – Sacramento, CA @ Ace of Spades
Nov. 18 – San Diego, CA @ House of Blues
Nov. 22 – San Antonio, TX @ Alamo City Music Hall
Nov. 23 – Houston, TX @ Scout Bar
Nov. 25 – Tyler, TX @ Clicks
Nov. 26 – Dallas, TX @ Trees
Nov. 29 – Jacksonville, FL @ Mavericks at The Landing
Nov. 30 – Ft. Lauderdale, FL @ Culture Room
Dec. 01 – Tampa, FL @ The Cuban Club
Dec. 02 – Charleston, SC @ The Music Farm
Dec. 03 – Baltimore, MD @ Baltimore Soundstage
Dec. 04 – Lancaster, PA @ Chameleon Club
Dec. 06 – New York, NY @ Irving Plaza
Dec. 07 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Rex Theatre
Dec. 08 – Chesterfield, MI @ Diesel Lounge
Dec. 10 – Sioux City, IA @ Anthem at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
Dec. 11 – Peoria, IL @ Limelight
Dec. 13 – Omaha, NE @ The Waiting Room
Dec. 14 – Overland Park, KS @ Kanza Hall
Dec. 15 – Colorado Springs, CO @ The Black Sheep

QUEENSRŸCHE hired Todd La Torre to replace Geoff Tate in 2012 and has released two albums with the ex-CRIMSON GLORY frontman: 2013’s “Queensrÿche” and the aforementioned “Condition Hüman”.

“Condition Hüman” debuted at No. 27 on The Billboard 200 chart, having shifted 14,000 equivalent album units in the week ending October 8, 2015.