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PENTACLE - a new album early next year

Long-running Dutch death metallers PENTACLE will enter the Harrow Productions studio in Losser, the Netherlands in October to begin recording their new album, tentatively due in early 2005 through Iron Pegasus Records. "Eight tracks are going to be featured on the album, while two others are scheduled for a 7" which is going to be released some months after the album," the band write on their web site. "The vinyl version will be released with a gatefold cover." Among the cuts under consideration to appear on the album are the following:

01. Into the Fiery Jaws
02. Raise the White Ensign!
03. March of the Cambletown (instrumental)
04. A Devil's Shooting Gallery
05. The Utmost Desolation
06. (Storming through) a Hail of Steel
07. The Last Fight (ML 306's Stand)
08. Awaiting the Blast of Death
09. Blast them from the Sky


Fawkes (4-9-2004)

MOONSORROW - "it is us who decide the direction of the band, not you"

Finnish "epic heathen metallers" MOONSORROW have entered Tico Tico studio in Kemi, Finland to begin recording their new album, "Raah Raah Blaah", for an early 2005 release through the Spinefarm Records imprint Spikefarm. "This album is going to be a bit different release, as we thought not repeating ourselves musically and lyrically," stated guitarist/vocalist Henri Sorvali. "So, no more overlenghty boring songs and epic shit, but some seriously pure aggression, hate and even some politics. (!!!!) Some of you might think it?s not acceptable for taking a step forward (backward?) but might I remind you that it is us who decide the direction of the band, not you."

The complete track listing for the effort, according to the band, is as follows:

01. Kuolema Taidehomoille...Ja Muille
02. Puutarhurin Painajainen
03. Myin Lapsesi Jammu- Sed?lle
04. Vitun Runkkarit Ja Muut
05. Saatanan Lehm?
06. Homo Jeesus
07. Saatanan Saksalaiset, Teist? Ei Oo Mihink??n
08. Shitter Limited On Maailman Paras B?ndi (Feat. Vitummoista P?rin??)
09. Vapauttakaa Matti Nyk?nen
10. Matti Vanhanen On Homo Joka Ei Kest? Viinaa
11. Juutalaiskysymys?
12. Morjens!!!!
13. Anna Pillua Jonne Aaron
14. Vitun Verhoilijavitunmestari
15. Perspillu Ja Hyv?t Vitut (Puh Runku)
16. Se Hyv? Biisi
17. Kumipaskiainen
18. Hakaristi On Oikeesti Kaunis
19. Bjarne Kallis Ty?nn? Risti Vittu Perseeseen
20. Ime Meisseli? Silikoni- Janita
21. Outro: Viikset


HAMMERFALL - "Fury Of The Wild"

Swedish power metallers HAMMERFALL will enter Lundgaard Studios in Denmark with producer Charlie Bauernfeind (BLIND GUARDIAN, GAMMA RAY, RAGE) on Saturday (Sep. 4) to begin recording their new album, tentatively due on March 7, 2005 through Nuclear Blast Records. A single will precede the album on January 31. Songtitles set to appear on the follow-up to 2002's "Crimson Thunder" include "The Templar Flame", "Born to Rule" and "Fury of the Wild".


BLACKSHINE have parted ways with SPV/Steamhammer Records

Stockholm, Sweden's BLACKSHINE have parted ways with SPV/Steamhammer Records and have inked a new deal with Escapi New Media Entertainment (NME). The group have just completed work on a new studio album, "Lifeblood", due in January 2005. "Lifeblood" marks the recording debut with the group of drummer Stipen (ex-MERCILESS, DIA PSALMA/STREBERS, TRANSPORT LEAGUE), who replaced H?kan Eriksson in 2002. The follow-up to 2002's "Soulless & Proud" is said to be the band's "most interesting and catchy album" to date.


SHADOWS FALL contribute a song to computer game

SHADOWS FALL's "Destroyer of Senses" and STAMPIN' GROUND's "Don't Need A Reason to Hate" will be used in the new Eidos video game, entitled "Backyard Wrestling 2: There Goes The Neighborhood". The game will launch on October 12.


GRAVE DIGGER fight on for a new album

German power metallers GRAVE DIGGER will enter Principal studio in M?nster,Germany on Saturday (Sept. 4) to begin recording their new album, tentatively due on January 17 through Nuclear Blast Records. The follow-up to last year's "Rheingold" will feature "classical heavy metal" material "in the tradition of GRAVE DIGGER," according to a posting on the group's web site.


Victor Smolski is working on a solo album

RAGE guitarist Victor Smolski has completed work on his new solo CD, "Majesty & Passion". "It was a real challenge to get a sound after mixing [that] came close to Victor's expectation," reads a posting on Smolski's web site. "Imagine, more then 20 well known international guests were co-operating on 'Majesty & Passion'. With the professional help of Frank Itt the sound became real fat, just like Victor expected."


W.A.S.P.’s frontman proves the busiest man in hard rock status

W.A.S.P. frontman Blackie Lawless is quite possibly the busiest man in hard rock currently. Having just completed a nationwide and European tour in support of the first act of the band's 2004 two-part conceptual opus, "The Neon God", W.A.S.P. is planning yet another run around the world to support the forthcoming conclusion of said epic, entitled "The Neon God Part 2: The Demise", which is slated for release through Sanctuary/Metal-Is Records on September 28.

Blackie was ardent in his mission to make "The Neon God Part 2: The Demise" as potent and intense as its story dictates, so much so, that he was flying back & forth between venues and his Fort Apache studios in Burbank, CA during the first two weeks of the band's summer tour.


DISMEMBER - a new bassist added t othe band’s ranks

Long-running Swedish death metallers DISMEMBER have announced the addition of bassist Johan Bergeb?ck to the group's ranks. "[Former bassist] Rickard Cabeza nowadays live in Dallas, Texas which makes it too hard for him to be an active part of the band. We wish him all the best! Johan Bergeb?ck has been the session bassplayer for the last year supporting the latest release 'Where Ironcrosses Grow'. Johan has the right attitude and fits in the band both musically and personally."


The Ozzfest show has been cancelled!!!

According to local media reports and Ticketmaster.com, the September 4 Ozzfest show has been officially cancelled. The concert, which was scheduled to be held Saturday in West Palm Beach, FL, was called off because Hurricane Frances is expected to hit the area around the weekend.

Frances' center Wednesday night was about 585 miles east-southeast of West Palm Beach and was moving west-northwest at about 14 mph, according to the Casper Star Tribune. Residents of Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina watched the forecast closely in case Frances took a sharper turn to the north.

If Frances hits Florida, it could be the most potent two-hurricane combination to hit a single state in at least a century of record-keeping. Frances is as strong as Hurricane Charley — which raked Florida's western coast less than three weeks ago with 145 mph wind, causing billions of dollars in damage and killing 27 people — but forecasters said it could become a Category 5 with winds of 156 mph or higher.


EPICA - the DVD release is expected

EPICA will be releasing their first DVD, "We Will Take You With Us / 2 Meter Sessies", on September 30. This DVD will come in a limited-edition deluxe ECO-Book (containing a 40-page booklet) with an additional bonus CD containing all of the "2 Meter Sessies" recordings.


AGNOSTIC FRONT - a new platter is at the doors

New York hardcore legends AGNOSTIC FRONT have set a January 5, 2005 North American release date through Nuclear Blast Records for their new album, "Another Voice". The CD will arrive in Europe on November 22.

"Another Voice" was produced by Zeuss (HATEBREED, SHADOWS FALL) and Jamey Jasta (HATEBREED) and is said to be the group's "meanest" and "nastiest" offering to date. The enhanced CD will include a "ripping" band performance and a guest appearance by Jasta, captured by acclaimed director Dale "Rage" Resteghini (FEAR FACTORY, HATEBREED, GOD FORBID, SHADOWS FALL, CANDIRIA) Other special guest vocal appearances on "Another Voice" include Scott Vogel (TERROR) and Karl Buechner (EARTH CRISIS, FREYA).


MARILYN MANSON - a new video posted online

MARILYN MANSON's video for his cover of DEPECHE MODE's "Personal Jesus" has been posted online here'
"Personal Jesus" is the first single off Manson's upcoming "best of" collection, "Lest We Forget", due on September 28 via Interscope. The compilation will contain rare photos and artwork by Manson himself. The "deluxe edition" will feature an accompanying DVD containing "the entire video catalog," including the previously unreleased uncensored clip for "(s)AINT", directed by Italian actress Asia Argento.


OMNIUM GATHERUM - "that trendy-pop-death-metal-crap"

Finnish melo-death metallers OMNIUM GATHERUM have shot a video for the track "The Fall Went Right Through Here" with directors Lowlifemedia Productions (PRIMAL FEAR, EXODUS, ABORTED, IMMOLATION, OCCULT).

"The Fall Went Right Through Here" comes off the group's upcoming sophomore album, "Years In Waste", due on November 9 through Nuclear Blast Records.

The follow-up to last year's highly acclaimed "Spirits and August Light", "Years In Waste" was recorded at Sonic Pump studios in Helsinki, Finland with producer Nino Laurenne and engineer Teemu Aalto. The mastering sessions took place at Finnvox studios in Helsinki.

"Years In Waste" tentative track listing:

01. The Fall Went Right Through Here
02. Misanthropic (Let the Crown Fall)
03. Bereavement
04. No Moon & No Queen
05. Gravesilence
06. It's a Long Night
07. The Nolan's Fati
08. Black Seas Cry
09. More Withering
10. Auguries Gone

OMNIUM GATHERUM, who were previously signed to the Rage of Achilles label, have described the new material as "more of that old-school (melo)death — groovier and heavier — not that trendy-pop-death-metal-crap that's extruding everywhere."


Sonic Age Records - in the name of heavy metal

Sonic Age Records is the name of a new Greek heavy metal record label formed by the people behind the reissue label Cult Metal Classics.

In existence since 2001, Cult Metal Classics was launched "mostly as a reissue label, trying to bring back to light some forgotten diamonds of heavy metal music," according to a press release. "The name of the label was related to re-releases, so due to the fact that we wanted to host some new bands too, a decision was made to start a label whose name and profile matched much better with a label that will be dedicated to new releases!

"The decision was made mainly after the big success of the JACK STARR'S GUARDIANS OF THE FLAME 'Under a Savage Sky' and also Greece's premier power metal band BLOODSTAINED 'Greetings from Hell' releases.

"Cult Metal Classics will remain as a branch of Sonic Age Records and will focus on limited re-issues on vinyl and CD form.

"We have already negotiated deals with great bands like OVERLORDE (U.S.A.), VALKIJA (Italy), BLOODSTAINED (Greece), MADE OF IRON (Germany), EUROFORCE (Greece / Germany) etc. so expect a new wave of fantastic releases that will be available pretty soon!"


IMPERIOUS replaced their vocalist

Swedish brutal death metallers IMPERIOUS have replaced Emil Fredenmark (guitars, vocals) with Adam Skogvard (MYNJUN, PHANINDRA, ex-SLODUST, BOOK OF HOURS). The band have also found a new bassist in Rickard Thulin (MYNJUN, COERCION).

IMPERIOUS are currently writing material for the follow-up to 2003's "In Splendour" (Retribute Records), tentatively due in 2005. Songtitles set to appear on the band's sophomore CD include "Nothingness", "Congregate In Misery" and "Malignant Deception".



LACUNA COIL singer Cristina Scabbia has told MTV.com that the band are not expecting to record any of the songs they've written over the past 18 months until at least the end of the year. "Waiting for that to happen will just make me more excited for when we do the actual recording of the album," she said. "The new songs we have will be an evolution of 'Comalies' [2002], but not a huge change. I hate bands that are changing every album, because that's not a natural evolution. LACUNA COIL will be recognizable on the next album. This is how it has to be."

Scabbia also spoke about the endless comparisons between LACUNA COIL and EVANESCENCE — an assessment that many fans find unfair considering that LACUNA COIL has been together since 1994, four years longer than EVANESCENCE. "They're a good band and people like them, so why should I be upset [about the comparisons]?" she said. "It's funny, because in Europe we've been known for a while, so people say the opposite thing. They hear EVANESCENCE and say, 'Oh, is this the new single from LACUNA COIL?' "


ADAGIO recruit the Brazilian singer

French progressive metallers ADAGIO have announced the addition of Brazilian singer Gus Monsanto to the group's ranks. Monsanto joins the band as the replacement for David Readman (PINK CREAM 69), who was dismissed from the group in July due to professional differences.

"The 3rd studio album of ADAGIO will be released early next year."


MANOWAR have got off Nuclear Blast

MANOWAR have now confirmed that they have officially parted ways with Nuclear Blast Records. There has been no word yet as to which label the band may sign with next.

MANOWAR's last studio album, "Warriors of the World", entered the German Media Control chart at position No. 2 (right behind EMINEM) back in May 2002. It has since been certified gold in Germany for sales in excess of 150,000 copies.


DARK TRANQUILLITY - shooting a new video

Sweden's DARK TRANQUILLITY have begun work on a video clip for the song "Lost to Apathy" with director Roger Johansson. "Lost to Apathy" will be the first single off the band's upcoming studio album, tentatively due before the end of the year. "While it's too early to reveal any details, the end result promises to be a very different and unique piece of mayhem," a posting on the band's web site reads.

SONATA ARCTICA top the charts

SONATA ARCTICA's new single, "Don't Say A Word", entered the Finish single chart at position No. 1. "Don't Say A Word" comes off the Finnish melodic metallers' fourth studio album, "Reckoning Night", due on October 11 through Nuclear Blast Records.


VARATHRON are back!!!

Greek black metallers VARATHRON have signed with Black Lotus Records. The group's first full-length album since 1995 will be recorded in September for an early 2005 release.


GWAR make a war party

GWAR have set "War Party" as the title of their new album, due on October 26 through DRT Entertainment. The long-awaited follow-up to 2001's "Violence Has Arrived" was recorded at Wreckroom Studios in Richmond, Va. and was mixed at the Chop Shop in NYC. Handling the production duties was Glen Robinson, who worked with the band on their classic third album, "America Must Be Destroyed". Songtitles set to appear on the CD include "Krosstika", "Decay of Granduer" and "War Party".


DEINONYCHUS - a step short to insomnia

DEINONYCHUS, the one-man Dutch doom metal project featuring Marco Kehren (previously known as Odin), will release their sixth album, "Insomnia", in October through My Kingdom Music. The follow-up to 2002's "Mournument" was recorded at The Outer Sound studio in Rome, Italy with producer Giuseppe Orlando (NOVEMBRE). A re-release of "Mournument" is also planned, featuring a new layout and a video clip for the song "Ascencion – The 40th Day After Easter".


PANDEMIA - looking for a label

Czech Republic-based death metallers PANDEMIA are currently searching for a record label to release their upcoming third full-length album, tentatively titled "Riven". Demo versions of two new songs, "Legion Beneath" (mp3) and "Us and Them" (mp3), have been made available for free download at the band's web site www.pandemia-deathmetal.com. PANDEMIA's last studio CD, "Personal Demon", was issued in December 2002 through Lost Disciple Records.


Timo Kotipelto collaborates with orchestra

STRATOVARIUS singer Timo Kotipelto performed several classic heavy metal covers with Finland's HEAVY LILJA ORCHESTRA. "In the orchestra there were one cello, one violin, one alto violin and one flute," the posting reads. "They had three Finnish singers singing on most of the songs. The most known singer out side Finland is Timo Kotipelto of STRATOVARIUS. The other two are also very talented singers but only known in Finland — Maija Vilkkumaa (female) and Kirka."

The orchestra played the following 80-minute set:

01. Iron Man (instrumental)
02. Powerslave (instrumental)
03. Highway Star (vocals by Kotipelto)
04. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath (vocals by Vilkkumaa)
05. Gates Of Babylon (instrumental)
06. War Pigs/Kashmir (medley) (vocals by Vilkkumaa)
07. Stairway To Heaven (instrumental)
08. Born To Be Wild (vocals by Kirka)
09. Heaven And Hell (vocals by Kotipelto)
10. I Surrender (vocals by Kirka)
11. The Sentinel
12. Paranoid/Smoke On The Water (vocals by all three singers)


ANTIMATTER - side-project mania

Following the release of ANTIMATTER's as-yet-untitled third album late this year Duncan Patterson (ex-ANATHEMA) and Mick Moss will both concentrate on solo releases for 2005. Duncan's DEATHCAP project was announced in 2002, and has been described as "post-acid horror, like the darker side of ANTIMATTER, only much more extreme." The album will be released through Strangelight Records. In early 2004, Mick announced his forthcoming solo album, "The Immaculate Misconception", which can be described as "dark, soulful sometimes progressive rock reflecting a world full of disappointments."

To coincide with the release of ANTIMATTER's third album, the band will be releasing a free virtual video EP for download. Tracks featured are "Saviour", "The Last Laugh", "In Stone" and "Empty", all of which were recorded before a live audience. It is not known yet whether the format will be VCD (for use in DVD players) or simply a CD-ROM.


BOLT THROWER part ways with vocalist

British extreme metal pioneers BOLT THROWER have announced the departure of vocalist Dave Ingram. In a statement, the band said, "Dave has been suffering with health and personal problems for a while now and he has decided that it would be best if he left the band to concentrate on his recovery. We would like to thank him for the 6 years he dedicated to the band and we wish him all the very best for the future."

BOLT THROWER were due to go into the studio shortly to record their eighth album, (the follow up to 2001's "Honour, Valour, Pride" — the only BOLT THROWER release featuring Ingram on vocals), but the recording will now be delayed until a replacement is found.


USURPER unleash cryptobeast

Chicago death/thrash lords USURPER have completed work on their fifth full-length album, "Cryptobeast". Recorded at Chicago's Rax Trax Studios with producer Neil Kernon (JUDAS PRIEST, DEICIDE, CANNIBAL CORPSE), "Cryptobeast" marks the recording debut with the group of new singer Dan "Tyrantor" Lawson and the return of the band's original drummer, Joe "Apocalyptic" Warlord.

"Cryptobeast" track listing:

01. Bones of My Enemies
02. Supernatural Killing Spree
03. Kill For Metal
04. Conquest of The Grotesque
05. Return of The Werewolf
06. Reptilian
07. Cryptobeast
08. Wrath of God
09. Warriors of Iron and Rust (new version)
10. (untitled instrumental track)

"Cryptobeast" is now in the mastering stages and is slated for a March 2005 release through Earache Records.


FORCE OF EVIL record a sophomore album

FORCE OF EVIL, the new Danish band featuring guitarist Michael Denner (ex-MERCYFUL FATE), guitarist Hank Shermann (MERCYFUL FATE), bassist Hal Patino (KING DIAMOND), drummer Bjarne Holm (MERCYFUL FATE), and vocalist Martin Steene (ex-IRONFIRE), will enter Jailhouse studio in Horsens, Denmark on September 6 with producer Tommy Hansen (HELLOWEEN, PRETTY MAIDS) to begin recording their sophomore album, tentatively due in early 2005 through Escapi. 12 new songs will be recorded for the effort, which is being described by the band as "raw" and "more brutal" than the group's debut.


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