Posts Tagged “Rock Journalist”

On September 24, Honduras rock journalist Alvaro Villatoro (a.k.a. Lemmy Simmons) of Hard Heavy conducted an interview with conducted an interview with QUEENSRŸCHE drummer Scott Rockenfield. You can now listen to the chat using the SoundCloud widget below. A few excerpts from the chat follow.

On the next QUEENSRŸCHE video:

Scott: “A couple of weeks ago, we finished two brand new music videos for the new record. We went down to Los Angeles and shot the next two videos.

“The next single, I believe, is going to be ‘Spore’. And then the follow-up single after that is going to be ‘A World Without’.

“So what we did is we shot a 10-minute movie of the two songs put together, and it’s really great. It’s a full scripted storyline, there were actors in the videos, and it’s very conceptual. And we do appear in the video as well. But it was really fun and really different, because it’s like a movie.”

On parting ways with original singer Geoff Tate and replacing him with Todd La Torre:

Scott: “I’ve gotta be honest. We just didn’t know what to expect when we made the decision to move on last year. And Todd has been perfect; I mean, it’s absolutely just perfect. He sings so great our old, great songs. Listen, we hadn’t done ‘Queen Of The Reich’ in years, and Todd stepped in and he just sings it — he just does it — and it’s just perfect. I can’t even tell you how excited we are about what’s going on for us right now having him in the band.”

On whether the band felt any pressure to release a new studio album as quickly as possible to compete with the Geoff Tate-fronted version of QUEENSRŸCHE:

Scott: “To be honest, we actually didn’t — we never felt any pressure to get a record out as fast as possible or to do anything to sacrifice the quality that we always had wanted to keep ourselves at. This record was a great example of that. Our focus was on just writing great songs and getting them to where we felt it was at the top of our game, so to speak, and we wanted to keep our level very high and challenge ourselves. And so we were gonna get the record done when the record was gonna be done.

“We were lucky, because the chemistry amongst the five of us now is so great that we just felt that we didn’t have any pressures — we knew we were gonna have a great record and feel really good about it. And I think the response is kind of the proof. The fans and the media have embraced the new record in such a high way; I mean, we’re getting almost 10-star reviews on this record all around the world. So for what that’s worth, I think that’s just the proof that we’ve done what our fans really had wanted us to be doing for a long time. I think they’re very happy that we’re back doing what we feel good about.

“We’ve been around for 30 years as a band, and we’ve made a lot of records, and some really great ones that I’m very proud of. I think this new record is a record that I’m proud of… It’s probably a record that I’m most proud for probably the last 20 years. So, for me, it’s really special and I feel really great about it. And we’re having a great time. We haven’t had a great time for a long time, to be honest; it hasn’t been very fun. I think this is now a turning point for us and we just feel really good. We’re energized and the fans are energized.”

On whether “Queensrÿche” signals a return to the band’s classic sound:

Scott: “I think so. I really do.

“In the last year that we started playing all these shows with Todd, our setlist is a lot of just our first five records — it’s all that great QUEENSRŸCHE classic stuff that we hadn’t played for a long time. And in doing that, I think that started to put us in kind of that mindset, that energy that we had back then, and the chemistry we had together. And so I think when we started making this new record, it was almost natural that we were kind of revisiting that feel for us. And I think this record does.

“I think, to me, if somebody asked me where I would place this record in our catalog in terms of time frame, I think this record fits right back in the days of, like, ‘Operation: Mindcrime’ and ‘Empire’ and ‘Promised Land’ — kind of like in the early Nineties when we were making those records. And I think this record feels like it’s very much a part of that era. And I’m proud of that. And a lot of our fans are telling us that as well.

“So I think that we did — we grabbed a lot of the great, old chemistry, and we made a record with that energy.”

Photos below from video shoot for “Spore” and “A World Without”.

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On September 20, Honduras rock journalist Alvaro Villatoro (a.k.a. Lemmy Simmons) of Hard Heavy conducted an interview with former MEGADETH drummer Nick Menza. You can now listen to the chat using the SoundCloud widget below.

Asked about his 2002 solo album “Life Afer Death”, Menza said: “Putting songs out with MEGADETH, it was really difficult; it was like pulling teeth to write songs in that band, because Dave [Mustaine], he’s so driven as far as having songs — he’s got many songs, so it’s hard to write a whole song by yourself. I kept bringing songs in and bringing songs in, and he was, like, ‘Nah, you just stick to playing drums and let me worry about the songwriting.’ And I was, like, ‘I’m just gonna make a solo record. So I had all these songs left over. So after I got fired, I said, ‘You know what? I’m just gonna put these out.’

“It was more of a personal thing and a project for me to do; I play everything on it. It was kind of, like, to kill some time and put out a record. Now they’re asking me to put it out again, and I’m, like, ‘Man, I already made that record.’

“I’ve got another record in the can right now that I’m ready to put out — THE ATOMIC DISINTEGRATOR, it’s called; that’s the name of my new project. And it’s very heavy. I’m very pumped. And I’m kind of looking to see to get some other players in there — whether they’re known guys or unknown guys. ‘Cause right now it’s just me doing everything and I can’t very well tour on that by myself. But I can definitely release a couple of tracks and see where it goes from there. I’m trying to do a cartoon with it for TV and a comic book. And it’s really cool. The whole concept is THE ATOMIC DISINTEGRATOR… It’s got some governmental, conspiracy, alien stuff in it. It’s mostly about current stuff that’s going on in the world. And the music is very metal, but more contemporary style — like MESHUGGAH-type, OPETH, GOJIRA. It’s heavy.”

Menza has been writing, recording and producing constantly but only releasing sporadic singles for years. That will all change when he opens the floodgates with the upcoming release of his memoir, “Nick Menza: Megalife”, by acclaimed writer J. Marshall Craig.

MEGADETH was a big part of my story,” Menza says, “but it was just one part. Jeff [Craig] has got me to talk about it all!”

Menza is currently negotiating a publishing deal for the book, which was written over the past 18 months. It features rare and never-before-seen photos of Menza with every band he’s ever been in, including, of course, MEGADETH.

“It’s a memoir of music,” writer Craig says. “But a lot more. It’s a book about chasing the ultimate gig, the ultimate drum setup, the ultimate sound and, it will come as no surprise to Nick‘s fans, the ultimate aliens, government conspiracies and anything else his muse sees fit to lay across his path.”

Menza‘s first performance was at the age of two on stage at the Montreux Jazz Festival when legendary jazz percussionist Jack DeJohnette (Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins, Joe Henderson) placed Nick on his kit. Thirty years later, he was stepping out on stage in front of thousands of screaming fans every night.

Menza, son of legendary jazz saxophonist Don Menza, was at the top of his game when MEGADETH started a world tour in support of its album, “Cryptic Writings”, but began to suffer knee problems and escalating pain. Doctors diagnosed him with a tumor. Surgery waylaid the drummer briefly, but he was relieved to learn the tumor was benign and was eager to rejoin his bandmates, who had continued their tour with a replacement drummer. But deteriorating relations within the band exploded and Menza was replaced permanently.

What does Nick have to say about it all now?

“Buy the book. It’s all in there!”

“Nick Menza: Megalife”, by J. Marshall Craig, is due in stores, in Kindle and eBook versions, in late 2013.

J. Marshall Craig is best known for his critically acclaimed work as writer for Eric Burdon‘s “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood”, THE ROLLING STONES keyboardist Chuck Leavell‘s “Between Rock And A Home Place”, West Coast hip-hop history “Guilty By Association” (Damizza and J. Marshall Craig). Author of more than a dozen books, his work has been translated and published all over the world.

Following the reissue of the entire MEGADETH catalog, Menza was invited to reunite with the band in 2004. Days after a reunion was announced, Menza was fired after rehearsals and replaced with Shawn Drover. Mustaine said that this was because Nick “just wasn’t prepared.”

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Back in May, Honduras rock journalist Alvaro Villatoro (a.k.a. Lemmy Simmons) of Hard Heavy conducted an interview with former BLACK SABBATH singer Tony Martin. You can now listen to the chat using the SoundCloud widget below.

In January 2013, Martin was signed to a new music publishing deal by Alan Bambrough of Sony/ATV Music Publishing Limited. Martin said he was “very pleased” and was “looking forward to expanding into other areas.”

Martin‘s latest release was the fourth album from GIUNTINI PROJECT, the Italian heavy metal band started in 1988 by guitarist Aldo Giuntini as a solo project. GIUNTINI “Project IV” came out on May 24 via Escape Music and features additional contributions from Ezio Secomandi (on drums), Dario Patti (on keyboards) and Fulvio Gaslini (on bass).

Martin‘s last solo album, “Scream”, was released in November 2005 via MTM Music. The CD featured legendary drummer Cozy Powell (BLACK SABBATH, RAINBOW, WHITESNAKE) on the track “Raising Hell” as well as songwriting contributions by another SABBATH member, Geoff Nicholls.

BLACK SABBATH released six albums with Tony Martin on vocals: “The Eternal Idol” (1987), “Headless Cross” (1989), “Tyr” (1990), “Cross Purposes” (1994), “Cross Purposes Live” (1995) and “Forbidden” (1995).

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On August 6, Honduras rock journalist Alvaro Villatoro (a.k.a. Lemmy Simmons) of Hard & Heavy conducted an interview with KISS drummer Eric Singer. You can now listen to the chat using the SoundCloud widget below.

KISS unveiled its brand new stage show this on June 1 at the opening concert the European leg of their “Monster” world tour in Stockholm, Sweden.

“Monster”, the 20th studio album from KISS, sold 56,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 3 on The Billboard 200 chart.

KISS‘ previous CD, “Sonic Boom”, opened with 108,000 units back in October 2009 to enter the chart at No. 2. This marked the band’s highest-charting LP ever.

KISS has notched nine Top 10 albums, according to Billboard.com. Its previous highest-charting set was 1998’s “Psycho Circus”, which debuted and peaked at No. 3 with 110,000 copies in its first week, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The group’s other high-charting sets include 1975’s “Alive!” (No. 9), 1977’s “Love Gun” (No. 4) and 1992’s “Revenge” (No. 6).

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A.L.I.V.E.!, the new band put together strictly out of a passion for ’70s-era KISS was formed by good timing and happenstance! Rex Brown (bass; PANTERA, KILL DEVIL HILL), Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal (guitar; GUNS N’ ROSES), Brian Thomas Tichy (drums; WHITESNAKE, QUEENSRŸCHE, OZZY OSBOURNE, S.U.N.) and Mark Zavon (guitar; KILL DEVIL HILL), all ended up working together on rock journalist Mitch Lafon’s KI

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Veteran British rock journalist Geoff Barton has penned a review of “13”, the first BLACK SABBATH record in 35 years to feature singer Ozzy Osbourne, guitarist Tony Iommi and bassist Geezer Butler all playing together, for the new issue of Metal Hammer magazine.

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Argentinean rock journalist Lucas H.

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Argentinean rock journalist Lucas H.

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Argentinean rock journalist Lucas H.

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Argentinean rock journalist Lucas H.

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