Posts Tagged “Camaraderie”

As we speak, our brave Editor Alexander Milas is bombing it across the UK on a bicycle alongside the Heavy Metal Truants on the 2013 Charity Bike Ride To Download. We got him to call in and let us know how it’s all going…

And so, with all the fanfare anyone can muster so early in the morning, the bleary-eyed Heavy Metal Truants began their 161-mile trek from Alexandra Palace to Download to raise money for kids in need.

When you put it that way it seems so simple, but with nearly 40 riders, that many bikes to sort out, equipment, food, water, routing, traffic, and the very real threat of predicted showers throughout the day promising to dampen spirits and arses, it’s hard to describe the feeling of actually setting off. It’s excitement, moderate fear, and the searing after-effects of hearing Prog editor Jerry Ewing talk in detail about anti-chafing products for those intimate areas.

Jerry Ewing and Classic Rock Editor-In-Chief, Scott Rowley

As it stands, the man talks sense. With 106 miles to go we’re already aching, and rides of this length have a way of causing pain in parts you didn’t know you had. As I write this it’s just past midnight and our alarms are set for 5:30am for breakfast and a very tight schedule. With 82 miles and the rumour of gales and showers, we’ll need to haul ass.

After a day like today though, an early night requires zero encouragement – undulations, a technical term our guide uses to describe big goddamn fucking hills that ceaselessly hammered us like a gigantic, hydraulic testicle-crushing machine made today a life-affirming experience. The camaraderie pulls you through though, and Ben Joliffe, James Monteith, Nick Holmes, and Paolo Gregoletto, and Perry all cut some impressive figures across the landscape.

They seem to be very good at this. In fact everyone does. Best finish the beer and hit the sack. Follow us @hmtruants, honk if you’re driving up and see one of us on the road, and please spread the word – every donation helps. And wish us luck for today. We’re gonna need it.

Stay metal.

The HMT gang are riding 161 miles from London’s Alexandra Palace all the way to Donington Park for Download 2013, pulling into the festival around lunchtime on June 14, just in time to see the likes of Slipknot, Bullet For My Valentine and Korn.

All proceeds from the ride will go to three charities: Nordoff Robbins, Teenage Cancer Trust and Childline.

“Metal fans are concerned about stuff like this – we’re an active crowd,” notes Rod. “Metal fans get off their asses and do things. It’s communal, a fraternity, and I hope this opportunity will be appealing to them.”

Heavy Metal Truants have received a groundswell of support from the industry, bands, and fans alike, and sponsored riders have signed up from Parlophone, Sony Music , Universal/EMI, BMG Rights, 5B Artist Management, Raw Power, Phantom, The Agency and a host of other industry heavyweights.

For a £250 entry fee that will cover the cost of hiring a bike plus hotels and food for all three days, you can join in the fun, getting to ride alongside awesome bands and industry heavyweights, all while raising a nice bit of money for charity. DONATE NOW AT

Head to for more info and to find out how YOU can join the ride. As an added bonus, everyone who joins us will get themselves a pair of tickets to this year’s Golden Gods! On yer bikes!

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Long overdue, the return of The Metal Minute’s Take 5 interview section, kicking off with our bud Jason Myers of Icarus Witch…

The Metal Minute:  Icarus Witch did some road dogging lately in support of Rise.  Give me a recap of the tour, what you felt was the best gig on this round and where you found the most hospitality.

Jason Myers:  We did a brief tour of North America focussing on the east coast of the U.S. and Canada with White Wizzard and Widow. The best gigs, in my opinion were New York City, Toronto, Raleigh and Atlanta. To be honest, the most amazing part of the tour was the fantastic hospitality we received in almost every city!  

This tour was scaled back and when you’re on the road at this level, the difference between a decent experience and an amazing one is often the time you spend before and after the show.  We were so fortunate to have friends, relatives and in some cases generous strangers open their homes and (bravely) their bathrooms to us.  Many times bands are forced to choose between the uncomfort of sleeping in the van or digging into merch money to get an occasional hotel.  On our summer tour we stayed at actual homes every night and that is where you really create some of the most lasting memories and camaraderie.

TMM:   You had quite a bit of a roster change-up coming into the recording of Rise.  We discussed the addition of Christopher Shaner, who I likened to Jeff Scott Soto and you mentioned a number of people said the same. Certainly he’s brought a different dynamic to Icarus Witch this time. Tell me how you feel the band’s changed with Christopher and Dave Watson.

JM:  The addition of Christopher’s vocal style and writing approach broadened our base and we began noticing a lot of new support from the melodic and modern rock circles, whereas in the past our niche was a bit more relegated to the smaller trad scene.  

The addition of Dave Watson was just as significant.  While bringing the band back to a dual guitar lineup, he also added a new level of production excellence with his keyboard skills and engineering acumen. The result of both additions really pushed our sound into a more modern realm while still remaining true to our classic influences.

TMM:  I have to know where the inspiration for all of that erotic artwork on Rise’s packaging derived from.  I detect some Lovecraft, the old American International Goth flicks and love of a different nature altogether.

JM:   For that you would have to ask the photographer Sergey Bizyaev although you may want to brush up on your Russian.  His visions and art are so stunning that I knew the second I saw his work at I had to commission him for the new Icarus Witch campaign.  Rather than delve into his inspiration or creative mind I prefer to simply enjoy the results of his eye and we are quite fortunate that he agreed to work with us, as the nude Witch became as much a star of Rise as the music itself!

TMM:  You have a funny post at Facebook about the 2012 Mayan prophecy turning out to be a bust and, to paraphrase, now you’ll have to wing your future plans for 2013.  What’s on your horizon, hypothetically and realistically?

JM:  To be honest, after the drain of writing, recording, promoting and touring on Rise, I really needed to unplug and shut down to recharge.  The past few months have been a bit of psychological rehab and we are now just getting back into the mode of regrouping and plotting our next phase.

TMM:  A number of years ago I went in to the original Primanti Brothers and ordered a Killian’s with my steak sammich and fries stuffed inside.  The place went deathly quiet around me and if I hadn’t been wearing my Jerome Bettis jersey, I suspect they might’ve picked a fight with me.  I quickly changed my beer order to Iron City and everyone went right back to their business. That still cracks me up to this day.  Are you really a dead man in Steeltown if you don’t order an Iron City at the bar?

JM:  That’s hilarious and sad at the same time in that exemplifies both the charm and limitations of a city like this.  Since Primanti’s isn’t the most vegan friendly restaurant, I don’t eat there often but I would suggest ordering a Yuengling or Lion’s Head if they have it.  Both are high quality lagers and since they are Pennsylvania brewed, you can still eat in peace avoiding both Yinzer confrontation and the unpleasantries of the digestion process that may accompany Iron City consumption.


(c) 2012 The Metal Minute / Ray Van Horn, Jr.

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Noa interviews Jill from HUNTRESS. Jill talks about all the camaraderie on the tour, dealing with rowdy dudes on tour, and much more. Check out more PaganFest 2012 videos.

Added by: metalinjection

Tags: huntress
Date: 2012-04-09

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The Metal Minute: I was at the Monsters of Rock in 1988 when Kingdom Come opened the festival with Dokken, Metallica, Scorpions and Van Halen. One of my favorite concerts ever. I remember you guys having a solid set, but as the festival began in the late morning, people were still milling in as Kingdom Come was playing. As you recall that festival, what are some of your memories, good or bad? I can imagine there being great camaraderie with the Scorps, whom I thought ruled that tour.

Lenny Wolf: Sometimes or rather often it takes awhile before one realizes what a great thing just happened. That explains my situation. What a groovy experience it was being part of such a traveling fun circus. Life at its peak, coming from Europe and seeing all of the United States from the best point-of-view imaginable. Besides that great moment on stage, it was mainly all those little things on the side which still make me think back with a huge smile on my face. I remember meeting lots of great, warm-hearted and overly-nice folks throughout the tour. All the barbecuing and jet skiing with locals while the circus was traveling to the next city. Not forgetting to mention the sheriff taking us backstage with his helicopter after having had a fantastic meal with his sweet family. I don’t wanna bore you with those cliché remarks like “the babes” were fantastic, blah blah blah. Thanks God for letting me live through it. (laughs) The only “bad” thing I can think of was, having to open our set at 2 pm in the morning (for me at least). That was a real pain having to torture my vocal right after breakfast. Being the opening band, no complaint from my end, but we would have enjoyed playing longer, especially as you correctly mentioned, with the people still coming in while we were already playing. Regarding the other bands, I remember Metallica and Dokken being the more relaxed guys in terms of hanging out. Not that we did it a lot, due to the very different traveling itineries.

MM: Tell me about working with Bob Rock on Kingdom Come’s debut album. He certainly had the Midas touch in getting the band launched worldwide as he has for many breakout bands of the day, but do you feel in retrospect he helped give Kingdom Come a fighting chance in a market that chewed you guys up as much as it initially welcomed you?

LW: Funny how well you put it into words, but very true. (laughs) Bob was heaven- sent to us. He did not wanna change any of us or try to squeeze us into any particular style. He just knew how to get the most out of each player without any struggling going on. Also privately, a great guy. I will never forget him asking me “Are you sure we can go to a strip joint in the middle of the recording?” We were his first band which he “produced,” not just being the guy throwing the switches, and therefore not having to ask anybody for permission anymore. (laughs) Bob’s definitely got the Midas touch, not just for us, but as many of us know, he “made Metallica.” I do regret not having waited for Bob with the second record. He was busy doing Metallica and after all that Zep blah blah blah, we wanted to prove our point as soon as possible by making the second record fast and therefore, we settled for Keith Olson, who did a great job for Whitesnake. He did not have the Midas touch for us–or mainly my modest self.

MM: (laughs) With Rendered Waters, this is your 13th album as Kingdom Come, though most people are unaware of the fact you’ve kept plugging along over the years. In your time keeping Kingdom Come afloat, what has been your hardest and your easiest tasks in raising awareness to the band?

LW: There is only so much an artist can do. A lot has to do with timing, the right demand, being at the right place surrounded with the right people. Or maybe in a short cut, destiny. The days where a “good song” always got a fair chance are over. There are those lucky breakthroughs, which are very rare nowadays. With the new technology around–speaking of home recording–soon we have more new releases than we have citizens on this planet. That makes it harder to get noticed unless you’re already mega-big. Success to me is a relative thing to look at. I don’t think that several million dollars more would make me any happier than I am right now. Without wanting to sound too cosmic now, true happiness and experiencing fulfillment truly lies within yourself, not in your wallet! Or how do you explain so many rich people being so fucked up and miserable?

Of course from an artist’s point of view, it is always nicer to play in front of packed houses, but as my manager used to say, you gotta roll with the punches, and keep going! We were unable to build a massive following since the band just took off two years before the Seattle sound killed everything coming from the eighties or even the seventies. That did not make it any easier to continue, but who am I to complain after having achieved what I did already? Life is good. I can only continue my mission which is called Kingdom Come, or maybe other routes which I may not be aware of right now. I will hold up the flag, as long as I can get some sensible sounds out of my vocal chords. Whether it may remind people more into Zep, Madonna or Santa Claus, I’ll do my thing, minding my own business and hoping for more fans to come around the corner. Hallelujah.

MM: Right on! Rendered Waters is built upon eight re-recordings of past material and three new tracks. You especially took a heavy slice out of 1990’s Hands of Time and the lesser-known tracks from Kingdom Come instead of redoing the obvious choices such as “Get it On” and “Can You Feel It.” I think the re-recordings of “Can’t Deny,” “I’ve Been Trying,” “Seventeen” and particularly “Should I” came out great, as if you really wanted your audience to give these tunes a second chance. What was your core logic in choosing songs from your back catalog to re-interpret on Rendered Waters?

LW: This is something I have been thinking about over the last 3-4 years already. Especially since the band has played them with a different attitude throughout the years, which is something I wanted to capture. Also, the hearing habits have changed quite a lot over the last years. I wanted to give some of my favorite songs a second chance to see the light at the end of the tunnel without ruining the red threat of the old versions. I’m just carrying them into the year 2011. I purposely stayed away from our hits to avoid another blaming phase from the smart press people saying, “Now Lenny wants to cash in on his past.” I proved my point with the last 12 records, which unfortunately many of you Americans are not so well-aware of, but the days of having to justify anything are certainly over. This is my calling and not a job.

MM: The new songs on Rendered Waters give us a broader scope of what you’re up to songwriting-wise, such as the cheery swing of “It is Fair Enough,” the heavy melancholia on “Don’t Remember” and the stamping blues rawk of “Blue Trees.” For the omnipresent gauntlet of critics razzing Zeppelin over your head throughout the years, what do you want these new cuts to say about Kingdom Come’s approach in 2011? Also, why is it so many bands over the years are embraced for cloning AC/DC, yet your band was chastised over your Zep affinity? Do you feel that’s gross misconduct?

LW: Thanks for the cool descriptions of the first three songs. When I write, I don’t have any “concepts” or “master plan” in mind. During the writing and recording process I’m in a very fragile but frantic frame of mind, having a hotline to the big guy upstairs guiding me more or less through that creating process. It is a very pure and innocent phase. A CHILD AT WORK! Not more and not less.
Being compared to the almighty Zep at first was a compliment, even though I never saw such huge similarities as many have said. I’d rather be compared to them than two million bands trying to sound like Metallica or Nirvana, but hey, every artist, whether you’re a painter or a musician, has been influenced by someone in his or her early stages in life.

That’s were you (we) start off and hopefully someday being able to make progress into maturing your style and it finally having found your own sound, or at least vibe. Especially as a vocalist, I can only sound like Lenny. I hate when critics look at records like we’re running for a political party. Art should always be commented upon as: “Not my cup of tea,” not in right or wrong categories, since every human being is perceiving sounds and pictures differently than others. There are so many bands which I think should have never released a ton. That shows that whatever we think we know, may just be the opposite to others.

Copyright 2011 Ray Van Horn, Jr./The Metal Minute

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If you’ve ever been asked by someone uninitiated into the metal world about what kind of music you listen to, do you ever feel like you’re short changing your genre by simply saying, “I listen to metal”? As if that doesn’t entirely sum up your listening habits, because metal is such a wide, diverse genre that it almost feels sort of sickening to group your super kvlt bands in with bands that wear masks and get played on the radio?

I’ve felt this way, and you probably have too. What this means is that, even on this tiny scale, metal is a genre of elitism. Anyone that feels the need to differentiate their taste from that of “lesser” metal is participating in elitism, and it feels like everyone does this in varying degrees of douche baggery.

I personally am an elitist when it comes to metalcore and particularly deathcore; I want nothing to do with either and would prefer to not group that into my own impeccable musical taste. Even a more casual metal fan will try to separate their taste from that of nu metal or St. Anger or anything along those lines. It’s on a lesser scale, but it’s still elitist. Metal is the Jim Crow genre.

This isn’t exactly a bad thing. It builds camaraderie in a way — “You like this music? Nice. Oh, you hate that kind of music? Awesome!” Elitism allows metal nerds to congregate in small corners of the Internet and revel in their ultra kvltitude and overwhelming tr00ness. It builds divisiveness, and even that isn’t a bad thing.

The question is, at what point is elitism going to become a negative thing for metal? When does the insane elitism start to get in the way of the actual music?

This week, I’ve found the answer. The answer is when categorizing a band into a sub genre gets in the way of the music, and for an example of this you need to look no farther than here. I wrote that piece almost three weeks ago, but it was only after it founds its way into the Ultimate Guitar forums that the elitism began to rain down. Am I against negative comments? No. I enjoy any comments at all… any reaction is a good reaction. But this is about whether this particular point of view is good for metal, and it’s not. This level of elitism gets in the way of the actual music, and the comments speak volumes about that.

I’m not interested in defending my knowledge of metal. In all honesty, I don’t think the quality of comments really require that. I’m simply commenting on the mindset of the metal populace that genuinely allows classification to get in the way of music.

For example:

This actually was pretty humorous and certainly well worded, although I’m not really sure what a fixie bike ride is. But you can really see the disgust and the anger in the words. They must really hate the bands, right? Wrong. A later comment from the same person says

I adore Agalloch, Lantlos and Alcest, I really do…

Another later comment from another poster says

I love Agalloch to death, I love Alcest and the whole shoegaze thing they are doing.

So this is clearly not about the bands I listed. Apparently, they love over half of them. This is entirely over the classification of these bands as black metal, or that they’re breaking the stagnation that second wave black metal had fallen into. The elitists, from their point of view, are defending the honor of black metal by not allowing other bands, even bands they actually enjoy, from getting the honor of being grouped into the genre.

It’s for this reason that comments get made questioning my knowledge of metal. It’s for this reason that comments get made about how I love cardigans and rare vinyl (I promise I don’t). This completely overwhelms the point of the original piece: these bands are good, and you should listen to them.

In the end, that message gets lost when elitism starts to obscure it. Is classifying Alcest or Agalloch as something other than black metal going to change their overall sound or change what people are hearing? It’s not. I believe that these are great bands, and I believe that they are black metal. Whether these bands slide perfectly into the made up parameters of classical black metal is irrelevant and doesn’t impact the music in any way, shape, or form. It’s a fickle gripe that benefits no one except the ego of an elitist.

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SMNnews sat down with Don Jamieson of That Metal Show. Check out some excerpts below.

Which episode or guest has been your personal favorite?

Alice Cooper, for me. I have met him a few times and he’s just such a nice guy. He’s just got so many incredible stories. After all the years, I don’t think I’ve ever heard him tell the same story twice. He has a wealth of stories, that, luckily he can remember because he’s been sober for the last 25 years. He’s as funny as a stand up comic. He’s sitting there telling us these great stories and then he’ll tag a punch line at the end and I’m thinking, who’s the comic here? Me or Alice? (laughs).

Wrestler Chris Jericho has jokingly stated that it was his idea to do a TV show talking about metal and that Eddie stole his idea. Any truth to that?

Well, if Chris wants to take a beat down from me, then he can get in touch with me. (laughing). I think Jim and Eddie created the idea. Headbangers Ball was on 20 years ago. The idea to have metal on TV is not a new one, but it’s just what you do with it. And like you said, luckily, the three of us have a good camaraderie and chemistry together. We’re all legitimate metal fans. Eddie’s the straight guy, and Jim and I are sort of the goofballs, but we all share our love for metal. I always say we’re like Beavis and Butthead and Stewart with the Winger shirt on. It’s a certain chemistry that works.

Speaking of Headbangers Ball. Since its cancellation and then its rebirth, now it’s supposedly shown on MTV2 at something like 3 a.m. EST on Tuesdays. Do you guys feel that you’re kind of carrying the torch so to speak with creating a show about metal?

I think the most important thing for us, and we’ve said this from day one, which is, we have to talk on the show in an uncensored way in terms of just talking as if we would be talking backstage at a show with a musician. It’s a cliche phrase, but “keeping it real” is very important to the metal audience. They know if you’re being a phony. We’ve been critical of some artists and they haven’t come on the show, maybe because of that. But we can’t go on TV and say every band is good, every album is good and every song is good, because that’s not the reality of it. That doesn’t mean we don’t like that band any more, it just means that this wasn’t their best album, or best tour, or whatever the case may be. If you say every thing is good, then you have no credibility, so I think that’s part of the reason our audience has been real responsive is because we don’t hold back on stuff.

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The Don Jamieson ‘That Metal Show’ Interview – posted on 2011-01-05 04:35:32

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