Joey Jordison has always been a monster of a drummer. His inventiveness and power have played a crucial role in making Slipknot into the unstoppable juggernaut it is. And if he was ‘only’ a drummer, his place in metal history would be assured. But Jordison isn’t tied down to one particular instrument. Murderdolls proved that he had a solid handle on rock-metal riffage. But with new band Scar The Martyr, Jordison is really free to explore his own musicality. He plays drums and bass throughout, and provides the guitar backbone for all but two of the self-titled album’s 14 tracks. As a guitarist Jordison’s style is assured, aggressive, and equal parts rhythmic and textural. As a result, Scar The Martyr [Roadrunner] is an incredibly dynamic listening experience, crammed full of brutal riffs and haunting chords, and some pretty damn chunky guitar tones too. In addition to Jordison, the album features the guitar work of Jed Simon (Strapping Young Lad), Kris Norris (Darkest Hour) and vocalist Henry Derek, as well as Nine Inch Nails’ Chris Vrenna on keys.
I don’t think there’s a single metal fan alive who hasn’t banged their head to an album released by Roadrunner Records. Sepultura, Slipknot, Type O Negative, Fear Factory, Dream Theater, Megadeth, Rush, Trivium – these are just some of the bands who have released albums on the label over the years. To celebrate three decades of brutality (and even some good old-fashioned rock), Roadrunner has compiled the ultimate four-CD box set, XXX: Three Decades Of Roadrunner Records, which looks at four particular aspects of the label’s output: the early years, the 90s, the 2000s-to-present, and the hard rock element. It also features extensive liner notes, which is always fun, at least if you’re a liner-note-nerd like me who loves that stuff. It’s out on September 27, and here’s the press release: Continue reading
There comes a point in every band’s life when they start to long for something more. For some it’s an orchestral collaboration. For others it’s an elaborate narrative stage show. Maybe a film of some kind. Something that extends the creativity of the band beyond the regular album-tour-album-tour cycle. For Stone Sour that moment has come, and it’s manifested itself in the form of House Of Gold and Bones [Roadrunner], a two-part concept album and comic book project being portioned out over an extended timeframe. Musically it’s a logical progression from 2010′s brilliant Audio Secrecy but the project finds the band exploring even heavier territory, further narrowing the gap between Stone Sour and Slipknot, the band that shares two of its members (vocalist Corey Taylor and guitarist James Root). I caught up with Taylor and guitarist Josh Rand after the band’s Soundwave festival sideshow with Linkin Park. Continue reading
Gojira release their new album L’Enfant Sauvage on June 22 via Roadrunner. It’s an utter monster of an album and I’ll publish my interview with singer, songwriter, and guitarist Joe Duplantier closer to the release date. But before then you can download a free mp3 of the track “Liquid Fire” via this Facebook link: https://www.facebook.com/GojiraMusic/app_108468622525037
Go get it! Go go go!
You’ve heard two songs from it previewed on the excellent Time Machine live album, now get ready for the real deal! Rush will release Clockwork Angels on June 8, with new single “Headlong Flight” hitting the airwaves and internets on Friday April 20. That’s next week! I can’t wait for this one, and I know a lot of I Heart Guitar readers are big Rush fans too. Fingers crossed for an Australian tour. Please?
RUSH RETURNS WITH “CLOCKWORK ANGELS”
CELEBRATED ROCK TRIO’S FIRST STUDIO ALBUM IN FIVE YEARS SET TO ARRIVE ON JUNE 8TH
Legendary rock band Rush have unveiled details of its highly anticipated, new album, “CLOCKWORK ANGELS.” This is the renowned trio’s first new collection of original material in over five years and their first studio release via Anthem/Roadrunner Records. “CLOCKWORK ANGELS,” the band’s 20thstudio album, will be released on June 8th .
The band is sharing an advanced taste of the music with a hard-riffing album trailer based on the “Clockwork” cover art on Billboard.com .
Great to hear that Stone Sour have returned to the studio to record the follow-up to Audio Secrecy. I gave that album the ‘drag it out after about a year and see if it still holds up’ test last week, in fact, and found myself drawn to it pretty strongly (read my interview with guitarist Jim Root about it here). So I can’t wait to hear what they come up with next.
Here’s the press release.
STONE SOUR ENTER THE STUDIO TO RECORD FOURTH ALBUM
BAND RECORDING WITH PRODUCER DAVID BOTTRILL IN IOWA, USA
ALBUM TO BE RELEASED LATE 2012
Stone Sour, the Gold-certified, Grammy-nominated rock band, are proud to announce that they will begin recording their fourth album in March for longtime label Roadrunner Records. With most of thenew album already written, the band will soon head into Sound Farm Studios just outside of their native Des Moines, Iowa with producer David Bottrill (Tool, Muse, Staind). The album is expected in the Australian spring of 2012, two years after the band’s most recent long player Audio Secrecy, which debuted at No. 6 on the Billboard chart, No. 1 on the U.S. iTunes Rock Album chart, and scored the highest international debuts of the band’s career including Top 5 charts in Germany, Japan and Austria, and Top 10 in the U.K. and Australia.
I recently had the chance to talk guitar backstage with Alter Bridge guitarist Mark Tremonti prior to the band’s sideshow with Steel Panther during the monstrous Soundwave festival. Alter Bridge are about to release a live DVD via Roadrunner which will hopefully keep fans sated for a while in between Tremonti’s solo album and the next Creed recording. Mark is, and I say this in the most respectful way possible, a guitar nerd just like you and me, so it’s always fun to talk shop with him. So, enjoy!
How have the Oz shows been going?
We came down here without knowing what the crowd response was going to be, and it’s just like we’ve been touring here our whole lives. It’s incredible.
It’s been great watching you guys grow and evolve as a band, and especially seeing how nuts they go for you in the UK.
Yeah! This is very reminiscent of the UK over here in Australia. It’s seeming to grow very quickly. This is the second time we’ve been here and it’s already been over the top.
Slash got up and played a song with you recently. What was that like?
Oh it was great. Slash has played with us a handful of times now, and every time the crowd just eats it up. We love it. We’re all fans and we’re just honoured to have him out there.
And you’re playing with Steel Panther on this tour.
Yeah. We’ve known them for a while. We did a few shows in the States, we’re under the same management and they had the idea of putting us together on these sidewave shows. And I’ve jammed with them before, but I probably won’t do that tonight because they’re two very different shows.
Aside from the new Van Halen, it’s got to be the most highly anticipated album of the year in my little corner of the world: Storm Corrosion, the collaboration between Steven Wilson of Porcupine Tree and Mikael Åkerfeldt of Opeth. And they’ve just signed to Roadrunner Records. Loved Wilson’s Grace For Drowning and the fusionesque Heritage by Opeth? Wilson says this album completes that trilogy. Can’t wait to hear it!
OPETH’S MIKAEL ÅKERFELDT & PORCUPINE TREE’S STEVEN WILSON TEAM UP FOR STORM CORROSION
Roadrunner Records is pleased to announce the signing of Storm Corrosion.
Storm Corrosion is the long-discussed and highly anticipated collaboration between two of the modern progressive rock scene’s most innovative and multi-talented artists: Porcupine Tree’s Steven Wilson and Mikael Åkerfeldt of Opeth. The pair will release Storm Corrosion on April 20.
Wilson and Åkerfeldt have been friends since the late ’90s, when Wilson co-produced Opeth’s reveredBlackwater Park album. Over the years, they’d often spoken of working on a project together, but it wasn’t until recently that they managed to make something happen, when Mikael flew over to visit Steven in the UK and they ended up in Wilson’s home studio throwing ideas around. That visit was the nascence of a whole self-titled album, written and produced by the pair and mixed by Wilson.
Y’know, I’m in two minds about the new Korn album. On the one hand, I really liked their last one, Korn III: Remember Who You Are. The songwriting and performances were killer and I liked the production too. But on the other hand, any time I hear ‘collaboration’ I hear that screechy record needle sound. And that’s how I felt when I heard that Korn were working with Skillrex and a few other dubstep and electronica artists on their new album The Path Of Totality. But y’know what? I quite like this and now I’m really looking forward to it. 2011 has been a freaking killer year for new albums – The Aristocrats, Dream Theater, Mastodon, Duff McKagan’s Loaded, Devin Townsend Project, Anthrax, Machine Head, Trivium, Chickenfoot (and I’ve heard the new Megadeth album because I interviewed Chris Broderick recently, and it kicks all sorts of ass) – could the new Korn be another one for the pile of great 2011 releases?
KORN TO RELEASE GROUNDBREAKING ALBUM THE PATH OF TOTALITY ON DECEMBER 2
Korn will release their tenth studio album, The Path of Totality on December 2.
But this one is unlike any Korn record. It’s even unlike any record released before.
The Path of Totality is an experimental album which finds Korn shifting gears and exploring new territory. That should hardly come as a shock to the band’s diehard fans, as Korn exploded onto the scene in the’90s and established themselves as hard rock game changers from that point on.
For The Path of Totality, the band collaborated with some of the leading dubstep and electronic producers in the world, including Skrillex, Excision, Datsik, Noisia, Kill the Noise, and 12th Planet. The result is something completely new, yet utterly and definitively Korn. Leave it to a band like Korn to continue to reinvent itself two decades deep into its career.
“The title The Path of Totality refers to the fact that in order to see the sun in a full solar eclipse, you must be in the exact right place in the exact right time,” Korn frontman Jonathan Davis explained. “That’s how this album came together. I think all the producers feel the same way. I’m not sure it could ever happen again”
The band’s recent (and much lauded) collaboration with dubstep’s hottest producer, Skrillex, titled “Get Up!,” was the surprise rock hit of the summer, the buzz of which started in Coachella’s dance tent in April 2011, when Jonathan and Munky joined Skrillex on stage for a show stealing unannounced performance of the song.
That performance generated the start of a deafening buzz. The track has sold over 150,000 downloads, while the lyric video has generated nearly two million views and counting. The song, a Top 10 rock radio hit, still continues to be one of the best testing songs on the format over 24 weeks after its release.
Adds James “Munky” Shaffer, “Get Up” started as a bit of an experiment, but we had such an amazing response from our fans and had such a great time collaborating that a full album of tracks came together in a couple of months. We couldn’t wait to get to the studio every day to finish the next song.”
Some of the song titles from The Path of Totality are: “Narcissistic Cannibal”, “Burn The Obedient.” “Illuminati,” “Kill Mercy Within,” and “Chaos Lives In Everything.”
The album will be released in two configurations: as a standard 11 song CD and a special edition CD that will include bonus tracks as well as a DVD of The Encounter, a full length video concert of Korn’s mind-blowing, once in a lifetime performance in the middle of a 900 ft long crop circle in a wheat field in Bakersfield. The complete concert, previously seen last year on TV and online in an abbreviated form, will be offered in its entirety to those who purchase the deluxe version.
The Blackening was an unstoppable juggernaut of metal power for Machine Head. Conceived in 2005 and released in 2007, it kept the band on the road for quite literally years. But all good things must come to an end. And so finally, in the year of our lord 2011, Machine Head present Unto The Locust. Produced by Robb Flynn at Green Day’s Jingletown Studios, it’s a surprisingly diverse album which tempers its thrash edge with classical influences, wild mood swings, laser-focused precision, blunt-force-trauma riffage and some of Flynn’s best ever vocal performances. It may be hard to ever forget The Blackening and the way it captured the charred hearts of both modern and old-school metal fans in equal measure, but Unto The Locust its own animal and it makes neither concessions nor apologies for its history-making predecessor. It simply gets on with it in its own kickass way.
So I guess the question everyone wants to know the answer to is, did you have The Blackening‘s success in mind when you started working on this one, or did you try to ignore it?
We definitely didn’t have The Blackening in mind at all. We lived that moment for so long. It was an amazing moment, but when it was done, we were really excited to start writing again. You’ve got to remember, when we started writing The Blackening, it was August of 2005. And we started writing for this record in June of 2010, so five years had passed. We were ready to write, and we were ready to create a new moment.
It was almost like that album wouldn’t let itself die, y’know? It just kept going and going.
Yeah! It was amazing. It was an incredible moment. The Slipknot tours, Metallica tours, Grammy nominations. It was an endless stream of good news! It was really amazing, but it just went on for a while. We were lucky enough to finish the tour in Australia. That was the last dates of the whole album cycle. The last show we played in Sydney. It was killer, a great way to end it, and we totally went triumphant into the writing sessions. We were really charged up.
I really dig the classical guitar influence on the new album. I understand you actually took classical lessons?
I did. I actually took classical guitar in high school. It was an elective I had to take and I mainly just smoked a lot of weed and played Black Sabbath songs. Haha. I got a C minus, which isn’t a very good grade. It’s below average. I guess I showed that teacher, huh? Haha. But it really got my mind into that mindset of playing it, and once I really started playing I always leaned towards classical players. Like, I always liked Richie Blackmore, and Randy Rhoads in particular was a massive influence. Randy Rhoads on the first two Ozzy albums brought a lot of classical vibes and that was a huge influence. So between that and Jimi Hendrix, Black Sabbath, those were pretty much my main masters.
The new Megadeth single “Public Enemy No. 1″ is now available on iTunes! Here’s the link. It’s a pretty rockin’ track with elements of “Hangar 18,” at least to my ears. I’m very interested to hear their new album, Th1rt3en. The album contains new studio versions of a few songs that have been released as demos before, some as long ago as about but they’re kickass songs that deserve the full production treatment.
Th1rt3en will be released by Roadrunner in November. It’s the first Megadeth album since The World Needs A Hero to feature David Ellefson on bass, and the second to feature the utterly monstrous Chris Broderick on guitar. Cool.