The Prophecy 23 Announces New Band Lineup

Germany’s The Prophecy 23 has issued the following announcement about recruiting new members:

“Rearmament of THE PROPHECY 23. The new weapons: MARIO (Bass) and PHIL (Death Vocals). THE PROPHECY 23 is already presenting two new members while one or two are still speculating about the replacement of Tobias: MARIO MACARONI is following the 23rd Prophecy as their new bassist and PHIL HECKEL will unite his rough Death Vocals with the Thrash Vocals of Hannes to a powerful unit. The new guys already showed their unruly live-action during the ‘Tour The Pit 2010,’ when they already stepped in for Tobias. Now they are officially in! The last show with Tobias will take place on December 17th at X-MAS-ROCKT-Festival, Stauferhalle Bad Wimpfen. Get your presale tickets now – info@theprophecy23.de.”

Guitarist Hannes also commented: “Phil and Mario are two extraordinary action-guys! After the shock of Tobias’ quit, we immediately realized who should be the replacement. Everything blends seamlessly into one another. We are currently working very hard and we almost have finished all our songs for the next record. More on this later.”

For more on The Prophecy 23, head over to the band’s official Facebook profile at this location.

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Alcoholator Releases "The Chamber" Music Video

Alcoholator has posted a new video clip online for the “The Chamber,” which is taken off the band’s new album “Coma.” Check out the video below.

The album’s track listing is as follows:

1. Intoxication 101
2. Alcoholator
3. Catastrophic Violence
4. Abduction
5. Pounding Metal (Exciter Cover)
6. The Chamber
7. Liquid Thrash
8. Drink Beer… Or Die Trying
9. Break The Wall
10. Wasted (All The Time)

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Anthrax, Testament, Death Angel Leg 2 Tour

After a hugely successful first run, Anthrax, Testament and Death Angel have announced additional tour dates. The second leg of the tour kicks off in Las Vegas on Sunday, January 22 and includes fifteen cities over a three-week period. This trek follows the thrash titan’s five-week Fall tour that comprised cities from Philadelphia to Los Angeles. Anthrax will once again close each show, while Death Angel will open.

“The first leg of the tour with Testament and Death Angel was an amazing way to end a great year for Anthrax,” said Anthrax’s Scott Ian, “and it went above and beyond my expectations! Sold out shows, raging crowds and EPIC war dances! So we figured what better way to start 2012 than to continue this thrash-fest into the new year!!! Thank you all for giving us this privilege to come and play for you. See you soon!”

The return of Belladonna and Anthrax’s remarkable renewal began in 2009 in a Cleveland hotel bar with Anthrax’s Benante and Ian, and Metallica’s Lars Ulrich when he first brought up the idea of The Big Four – Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax, the four bands that served as the original architects for the “thrash/speed-metal” scene,” yet had never shared the same stage before. The first of (so far) fourteen Big Four events took place on June 16, 2010, culminating in what was Anthrax’s New York homecoming concert – The Big Four at Yankee Stadium on September 14, 2011, the day after Worship Music hit stores. “We came into The Big Four as the underdog,” said Benante. “We were the band that had the most to prove, and we’ve worked really, really hard to do that.”

With more dates to be added, the confirmed itinerary is as follows:

January

22 House of Blues, Las Vegas, NV

23 House of Blues, Anaheim, CA

24 Marquee Theatre, Tempe, AZ

27 Egyptian Room @ Murat Center, Indianapolis, IN

28 Piere’s Entertainment Center, Fort Wayne, IN

29 Expo Five, Louisville, KY

30 The Orange Peel, Asheville, NC

February

2 Tabernacle, Atlanta, GA

3 Promowest Pavilion, Columbus, OH

6 Crocodile Rock, Allentown, PA

7 Rams Head Live!, Baltimore, MD

8 Best Buy Theatre, New York, NY

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Mosfet Announce Details Of New LP "Deathlike Thrash ‘N’ Roll"

Austrian death/thrash act Mosfet announced that they will release the band’s sophomore LP “Deathlike Thrash ‘N’ Roll” on January 13, 2012 through Refused Records. The album follows the 2009 debut release “Sickness of Memory.” The album’s artwork and track listing can be seen below.

The track listing for “Deathlike Thrash ‘N’ Roll” is as follows:

1. Shots for Free
2. Thrash Assasination
3. Sativaville
4. A Rowdy‘s Warfare
5. Pigheaded Bitch
6. Angel‘s Piss & Devil‘s Jism
7. Interfred
8. My Puppet
9. Rockaholic
10. Tales of a Diarrhoea Werewolf
11. Black
12. Beauty and the Necrophiliac
13. Stinky Pants Blues

A video trailer for the release can be seen here:

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Sandraudiga Gearing Up To Enter The Recording Studio

Pennsylvania’s Sandraudiga has checked in with the following brief announcement about gearing up to enter the recording studio:

“We are recording our first full length album with Atrium Audio in 8 days! Check us out on the Thrash and Burn 2011 with Winds of Plague tour in Allentown, PA on the 26th of November! Get your tickets here! SUPPORT LOCAL MUSIC!”

For further details on Sandraudiga, navigate your browser over to the band’s Facebook profile at this location. Further details on the upcoming new album will be released as they are made available.

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True Finalizing New Album, No Title Announced Yet

Brazilian death/thrash band True are close to finalizing the band’s debut album, as of yet untitled, for Oversonic Music. The album was scheduled for earlier in 2011, but the band encountered some personnel changes.

Singer Marcelo Mattos had the following comments about the album an delay, “We are finalizing the compositions and October 8 we will do an audition to choose the new bassist, this lineup exchange strong delayed our plans, but ended up giving the possibility for us to change something or another in our songs.”

The band’s management, Metal Media Management, provided additional information on the band:

“Formed in 2006, the band creates a sonority that covers the Thrash to Death Metal. The themes addressed by the group walks in parallel with the chaos we live in today, talking about political, social and human issues.

“Over the years, TRUE had the honor of playing alongside big national and international names such as Korzus and Asesino (USA), W:O:A Metal Battle 2009 and was even invited as the opening act for Testament (USA) in Curitiba in 2009, concert which was canceled.

“In its discography we find a demo, an EP and a single. This latter, titled ‘Welcome To Chaos’ was released abroad by the label New Zealand Satanica Prods and the Egyptian label Set Prods. Soon the band will release more details on the debut.”

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Forbidden Seeks Replacement to Recently Departed Drummer, Mark Hernadez

Guitarist Craig Locicero of the Bay Area thrash band FORBIDDEN issued the following statement on the band’s Facebook Page:

“This has been the week of all weeks for FORBIDDEN highs and lows. It started with losing a drummer and cancelling an entire tour. Really low. But there has been a few silver linings as well.

“First good thing is Gene Hoglan (Dark Angel, Death, Strapping Young Lad) had an opening in his schedule and is playing a one-off with us at this weekend’s Alcatraz Festival in Belgium. Gene is our Bro! Because of him, we salvaged the European tour’s biggest date.

“Then, the ProgPower Festival in Atlanta, Georgia inquired about August 27th. Gene once again has an opening… so here we come Atlanta! We’ll bring our Thrash to both of these amazing festivals thanks to the Mighty Atomic Clock coming through!

“As for our long-term drummer solution, well… some other fantastic drummers with respected names have offered their sticks from all over the world. Many of our awesome friends and peers alike have made it clear they would lend us a hand or flat out want the gig! That is an honor beyond words and we thank all of you. But there is simply no way to get everyone into a room to jam and have it be practical. That would take weeks we don’t have.

“We want the right player so we’ve decided to set up a YouTube channel specifically for the truest contenders (Forbidden YouTube Channel). A place just for those serious enough to show the band and the world your skills playing FORBIDDEN songs. Send a video of yourself bashing out ‘Forsaken At The Gates,’ ‘Infinite,’ and another FORBIDDEN song of your choice. We will look at all of the videos objectively and decide who goes to the next level. At that next point, chemistry becomes everything. First we need to get past 1st base before sliding home.

“If you deserve to sit on the same throne as Paul Bostaph, Steve Jacobs, Mark Hernandez, and Gene Hoglan, you’d better get ready to bring it out in the open! As far as we’re concerned, those are 4 of the greatest drummers in Thrash Metal so give it your best shot! What are you drummers waiting for? Let’s see what you’ve got!

“Send a Dropbox, Fileblaze, or Mediablaze download link to: forbiddendrummer2011@gmail.com.

“By sending in your submission, you are granting your consent to having your video file uploaded onto the FORBIDDEN Drummer 2011 YouTube channel and other social media sites for comments. Make sure to include your name and contact information in your e-mail.”

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Forbidden Seeks Replacement to Recently Departed Drummer, Mark Hernadez

Guitarist Craig Locicero of the Bay Area thrash band FORBIDDEN issued the following statement on the band’s Facebook Page:

“This has been the week of all weeks for FORBIDDEN highs and lows. It started with losing a drummer and cancelling an entire tour. Really low. But there has been a few silver linings as well.

“First good thing is Gene Hoglan (Dark Angel, Death, Strapping Young Lad) had an opening in his schedule and is playing a one-off with us at this weekend’s Alcatraz Festival in Belgium. Gene is our Bro! Because of him, we salvaged the European tour’s biggest date.

“Then, the ProgPower Festival in Atlanta, Georgia inquired about August 27th. Gene once again has an opening… so here we come Atlanta! We’ll bring our Thrash to both of these amazing festivals thanks to the Mighty Atomic Clock coming through!

“As for our long-term drummer solution, well… some other fantastic drummers with respected names have offered their sticks from all over the world. Many of our awesome friends and peers alike have made it clear they would lend us a hand or flat out want the gig! That is an honor beyond words and we thank all of you. But there is simply no way to get everyone into a room to jam and have it be practical. That would take weeks we don’t have.

“We want the right player so we’ve decided to set up a YouTube channel specifically for the truest contenders (Forbidden YouTube Channel). A place just for those serious enough to show the band and the world your skills playing FORBIDDEN songs. Send a video of yourself bashing out ‘Forsaken At The Gates,’ ‘Infinite,’ and another FORBIDDEN song of your choice. We will look at all of the videos objectively and decide who goes to the next level. At that next point, chemistry becomes everything. First we need to get past 1st base before sliding home.

“If you deserve to sit on the same throne as Paul Bostaph, Steve Jacobs, Mark Hernandez, and Gene Hoglan, you’d better get ready to bring it out in the open! As far as we’re concerned, those are 4 of the greatest drummers in Thrash Metal so give it your best shot! What are you drummers waiting for? Let’s see what you’ve got!

“Send a Dropbox, Fileblaze, or Mediablaze download link to: forbiddendrummer2011@gmail.com.

“By sending in your submission, you are granting your consent to having your video file uploaded onto the FORBIDDEN Drummer 2011 YouTube channel and other social media sites for comments. Make sure to include your name and contact information in your e-mail.”

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Gwar Video Interview With Oderus Urungus Posted Online

A new video interview with Gwar overlord Oderus Urungus has made its way online. The entertaining interview was conducted by Thrash Hits TV during Gwar’s appearance at the 2011 Download Festival and can be viewed in the player below.

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Alex Skolnick Trio – Alex Skolnick (guitars)

When you’re as diverse of a guitar player as Alex Skolnick, you can pretty much call your own shots.

He’s played thrash metal with TESTAMENT, filled in for progressive metal band SAVATAGE, was a full time member of classical/progressive rock band TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA, and now fronts his own jazz fusion band named the ALEX SKOLNICK TRIO. This only means one thing, Skolnick is a guitarist that constantly challenges himself and this is the reason for his longevity in the music business.

Even though the ALEX SKOLNICK TRIO just released their fourth CD, Veritas, there’s still some nonbelievers in the metal world that can’t fathom that a heavy metal guy could play jazz guitar, and damn good I might add. The fact that he is this serious and this passionate about playing jazz guitar surprises a few metalheads just a bit.

The shoe is on the other foot as well. When die-hard jazzheads find out that Alex actually has played in a thrash metal band, they are surprised at first, too. Skolnick is so diverse, he adapts to different styles of music with ease. And that’s what makes a great musician.

This is your fourth AST album. What’s the meaning behind the title and what were you hoping to achieve with it?

It’s a Latin word which means truth. I wanted to do an album that I felt was definitive of me and where I’m at that adequately reflects who I am as a musician and my own listening tastes. It was also one where we threw away any preconceptions. The first trio album was my first recording as an improvisor. So that was a big step. I’m very proud of the record, but I was definitely conscience of what constituted being a jazz guitar trio. With each album there was a little more room to take chances. With this one, it was no holds barred, we removed all limitations and as a result, it’s quite the mix of styles. It’s definitely a jazz guitar album, but there’s a lot of other genres reflected in it.

Do fans of Testament and TSO like AST equally as well, considering it might be unusual for a metalhead to like heavy jazz fusion?

I think the fact that I’m involved in these really diverse projects gets people to check them out that wouldn’t ordinarily. I’ve run into fans of jazz at jazz shows, who’ve never gone to a metal show before. Even more so, I’ve run into a lot of metalheads at a jazz club. Which is an unusual site, but it’s great because they end up having this experience that they wouldn’t have seen on their own— what it’s like to hear music in a nightclub where there’s no moshpit, and they’re sitting there listening and just enjoying the experience. That’s really different from them. That dichotomy is very fulfilling.

You have such a diverse guitar style, but playing everything from TSO, to Testament to the AST, is it difficult to adapt to a certain style after playing one style for a certain amount of time, or does it just come naturally?

To me, it comes really naturally. Maybe not instantly, it usually takes a rehearsal or two before I start to feel comfortable. Even in my early days when I was only playing heavy metal professionally, that was the case. It always takes a few rehearsals to get back in the groove, but it’s not that different. It helps that I have a different rig for each project. In the case of the trio, I use very different equipment than I use in rock or metal stuff. That effects how I approach the music. It makes it easier to get into it because I’m playing on equipment that supports it. If I tried to play jazz on my metal rig, I would have a hard time! (laughs).

“Metallica’s “Fade to Black” is an interesting cover version. Did you contact any of the Metallica guys to let them know you would be covering it?

Normally when you record a cover song, you have to get what’s called a mechanical license, which is reached through the music’s publisher. I have a feeling they will be supportive because Robert Trujillo been really supportive of the trio and met up with us at Radio City Music Hall when we were on tour. Kirk gave us the thumbs up in the press for what we were doing, I’m sure he was well aware of it. I don’t anticipate Lars having any problem with it. Lets hope not! (laughs).

“Song of the Open Road” sounds very John McLaughlin/Mahavishnu Orchestra. Even Pat Metheny and Al Di Meola elements pop up on this album. Were they big influences on you?

Oh yeah, in a big way. Those guys really got me opened to jazz. But, I learned early on that in order to get a grip on what guys like that were doing, it was important to study guys earlier than that like Wes Montgomery, or early George Benson. All of that stuff was an influence. I think McLaughlin was more of an influence on the very first track of this record, “Panna,” which is very Indian flavored. It was actually McLaughlin that got me interested in Indian music. “Song of the Open Road” I was kind of thinking of the grooves of some of the Foo Fighters. I can definitely understand the Metheny influence, but I think I can’t sound too much like Metheny because he’s a guitar giant. I can definitely hear his influence in that song.

You’re touring worldwide for Veritas through most of 2011, where does that put the new Testament album?

It’s good. We’ve been working it out where it makes sense for us. When I’m not on the road I’ll go out and work with Testament for a week or so at a time. It’s coming along. If we had to go into the studio right away, we would easily have enough material. We want to write a few more songs to choose from. We’re definitely taking more chances, there’s some classic sounding stuff but there’s going to be some really interesting elements as well. It’ll work out perfect; that album will come out later in the year. It will give us time to focus on getting the trio out and promoting this album.

How did it feel recording The Formation of Damnation with the band again after 16 years? Did you have to rekindle the friendship and working relationship you had with the band in the early days?

Oh yeah. One of the great things about that record, it wasn’t even planned. When I came on board in 2005 or ’06, we just wanted to do some shows together, no pressure, just get together and have some fun. We had a good vibe, everybody was older and in a much better place. It was more positive. Everything came together naturally as we played more and more, it sounded better. We started toying with the idea of doing a new record and once we did the record, it kind of took off. Once we did do the record, it was actually a couple of years after we started playing together again. So, it wasn’t forced at all, and I think that’s a great way of doing it.

Did you leave TSO right after the 2009 Christmas tour?

I haven’t been involved since the 2009 Christmas show. TSO is the type of project where people come and go. You’re sort of always a part of it even though you’re not actively a part of it. It got to the point where I was so busy with my own career, it’s such a long period of time now. I really would have to had make a choice. It would have been great to do the tour, but so much else is going on. I would have had to put off this record coming out, I would have had to not toured last year in Europe with Rodrigo y Gabriela and other projects as well. That tour is just too big! It’s not like I haven’t done it before, it’s something i’ve done for nine years.

What’s next for AST? Tell me about your plans for the next year.

We’re getting the plans together. It’s been a bit of a challenge in the sense that I don’t think anyone thought that I was serious! (laughs). It’s taken four albums to get people to wake up, that this is real. I am doing this. Jazz is not a hobby for me. I’m very passionate about it, but it doesn’t mean I can’t do metal, too, I’m passionate about both. The point is, I’m doing it. We have a great new record label called Palmetto, but it’s distributed by Megaforce, which was Testament’s first record label. Now it’s a distribution company from everyone from Willie Nelson to Cheap Trick. They really get what we’re doing. We have management that really seems to get what we’re doing, the reaction has been amazing. The record reviews have been amazing. We’re really trying to plan and make the most of it. We’re not going to take any gig that comes along. We want to do the right gigs. We’ve had a problem in the past just when people see my name, they automatically assume metal, shred, prog metal … but it’s not. It’s an acoustic jazz project. Why they have so much trouble understanding that I don’t know. I’ve had promoters admittedly not listen to the music and put me on a bill with the local shred, prog metal guys, and it’s a disaster. So, we’re trying to do battle from the home front now. We want gigs. We want to be out there, but we want to be on the right bills and in the right venues. Even now, it’s hard to get people to accept that the guy from Testament can play jazz, for real! (laughs). So, until that starts to change, we’re mostly going to be concentrating in our home region. We have a lot of shows in New York and we want to keep that going.

By Kelley Simms
Website: www.alexskolnick.com

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