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Day in Rock Report for 03/12/2016


Today's Top Stories


Keith Emerson Dead At 71, Police Investigating Possible Suicide

(hennemusic) Emerson, Lake And Palmer keyboardist Keith Emerson died Thursday at the age of 71. Santa Monica Police are investigating the death as a possible a suicide, as they confirm that Emerson suffered a single gunshot wound to the head, according to a Billboard report.

The band shared the news via their social media sites, writing, "We regret to announce that Keith Emerson died last night at his home in Santa Monica, Los Angeles, aged 71. We ask that the family's privacy and grief be respected."

"I am deeply saddened to learn of the passing of my good friend and brother-in-music, Keith Emerson," former bandmate Carl Palmer wrote on his Facebook page. "Keith was a gentle soul whose love for music and passion for his performance as a keyboard player will remain unmatched for many years to come. He was a pioneer and an innovator whose musical genius touched all of us in the worlds of rock, classical and jazz.

"I will always remember his warm smile, good sense of humor, compelling showmanship, and dedication to his musical craft. I am very lucky to have known him and to have made the music we did, together. Rest in peace, Keith." Read more here.

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Ozzy Was Confused By Sharon's Naked Selfie

(Radio.com) Earlier this week, Sharon Osbourne shared a naked selfie, in a show of solidarity with Kim Kardashian. What did her husband Ozzy think? Sharon filled in her co-hosts on Friday's episode of The Talk.

Sharon said of the Black Sabbath frontman's reaction, "My husband goes … 'Why are you sending me naked pictures of yourself? I know what you look like when you have no clothes on.

"We've been married a long time.'" To his credit, the couple have been married since 1982. So my response back to him was, 'You romantic fool, you!'" Check out the video here.

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Motion City Soundtrack 'Are Done' For Now

(Radio.com) Motion City Soundtrack has apparently called it quits. The band surprised fans with the bad news on Friday (Mar 11) with a somewhat cryptic letter posted to their official website.

Titled "So Long, Farewell," the Minneapolis quintet's letter states "for now we are done," although they don't spell out what they are doing next or if this is just a planned hiatus after one more tour.

They write, "It has been a quiet winter for us. We've had some time at home after a very busy 2015. With this time, we've been able to think about the past, present, and future of Motion City Soundtrack.

"All of this thinking has lead to several conversations, and these conversations have lead us to a very bittersweet realization: We have no idea what the future holds, but for now we are done.

"Needless to say, we're feeling all the feels - you may be as well. If so, or if you've ever been touched by our music, we ask you to come out and sing along with us one last time in 2016." Read more here.

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ELO's Jeff Lynne, Butch Vig Tribute George Martin

(Gibson) After Sir George Martin passed away, all ears were on what remaining Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr would say. Now, it's the turn of fellow producers.

The U.K's Guardian newspaper has a good round-up of why George Martin mattered so much to what will probably be regarded as the greatest ever band.

ELO's Jeff Lynne said "George Martin is my favorite record producer. There were millions of questions I would have liked to ask him. It's so sad that I won't get to ask them now. I only met him a few times and I was always in awe of him. His productions were brilliant. He created his own sound."

Butch Vig credits Martin's methods as helping Vig himself to persuade Kurt Cobain to branch out in the studio. "He was very fastidious about how he wanted to hear things. Because everything had a great clarity to it. I can't tell you how many bands I have worked with who would bring up Martin's production techniques."

Radiohead, Beck and Paul McCartney producer Nigel Godrich summed it up. "It's the end of an era." Read more here.

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Latest News


Dark Funeral Announce New Album 'Where Shadows Forever Reign'

(TeamRock Radio) Dark Funeral will release their album Where Shadows Forever Reign on June 3. It will be the black metal outfit's first full-length since 2010's Angelus Exuro Pro Eternus. They last released single Nail Them To The Cross on vinyl in early 2015 after adding new singer Heljarmadr and bassist Natt to their lineup.

Guitarist Lord Ahriman says: "This is by far our most professional, technical, dynamic and epic album thus far. And compared to previous albums, each new song offers a unique spirit and identity that is more profound than ever.

"And whether you like extreme black metal or not, I'm sure every fan of metal will find songs on this album that they can enjoy to its fullest."

Dark Funeral will kick off a run of European shows and festival appearances in May to support their upcoming album. See the dates along with the album art and tracklisting here.

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Mike Portnoy Doesn't Consider Himself A Great Drummer

(Classic Rock) Mike Portnoy says he doesn't consider himself to be a great drummer. The Winery Dogs sticksman is known for his range of work across all aspects of the rock genre and has picked up many awards during his career. But he says while it's nice to be recognized, he still thinks of himself as just a kid who loves to play drums.

He tells RockMap: "All the awards to me are very flattering but also intimidating because they then put this expectation on me, and I don't consider myself a great drummer - I consider myself just a music fan that's a very passionate artist and the drums just happen to be my instrument.

"But every time I win one of these awards, it's nice but I don't want people to think that I think I'm this great drummer because to me, I'm just a kid playing drums and I love music. I don't even like doing drum solos live - it doesn't really interest me."

Portnoy has a busy 2016 ahead and will split his time between The Winery Dogs, Twisted Sister, Metal Allegiance and the Neal Morse Band. But he refuses to take the credit for his success and say it's his fans who have helped shape his career. Read more and watch the full interview here.

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Ex-Nazareth's Billy Rankin Shares Funny George Martin Story

(Classic Rock) Former Nazareth guitarist Billy Rankin has recalled the first time he met Sir George Martin - but couldn't admit his true identity for fear of being hit with a massive bill.

Rankin pays tribute to the late producer known as the fifth Beatle on his TeamRock Radio show, due to be aired at 11am on Saturday (March 12). He met Martin, who died this week at the age of 90, at the producer's Air Studios in London. But it was Nazareth's antics at Martin's Montserrat studio that were playing on his mind.

Rankin says: "The main memory I've got of George Martin was the first time that I met him. I was in Nazareth at the time and I dropped in to Air Studios to meet with Chris Glen, who was with the Michael Schenker Group at the time.

"Of course Chris wasn't in as he wasn't up yet, and who wonders in to the room but Paul McCartney. He comes over to me and and he said, 'Chris will not be in for hours, do you want to pop into the studio with us.'

"McCartney was doing his solo album at the time, produced of course by George Martin. Linda made me a cup of tea, which I famously didn't drink because I hate tea, and George passed around the biscuits and I had a good blether with him.

"I couldn't tell him who I was because months before that, I was recording at Air Studios Montserrat and apparently Nazareth spilled more drink than Sheena Easton's entire entourage had drank while they were there.

"Quite rightly our record label was debating the bill, saying, 'They didn't drink that much.' We all got personal letters from George. It said, 'Dear Billy, you know you drank it. Own up and pay up.'" Read more here.

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Cannibal Corpse Doesn't Mind That Daughter Doesn't Like His Band

(TeamRock Radio) Cannibal Corpse drummer Paul Mazurkiewicz says he doesn't mind that his daughter doesn't like his band. The sticksman, who helped found the Florida band in 1988, says he wants the 10-year-old to "be her own person" - even if that means shunning his death metal career.

He tells Phoenix New Times: "I think she is still too young for her to comprehend what is going on. She knows what I do, but you can't talk to your kid in every stage of their life about everything that is going on with your life.

"When I'm home, it's completely the opposite of what I do. I'm not home blaring music - it's all separate. I believe there will come a time when she's older where she might want to understand.

"My daughter is fully aware of what I do, but she's not interested in it. In fact, she doesn't like it and that's okay. I want her to be her own person. She may get into it or she may not, and that's fine." Read more here.

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Slipknot's Jay Weinberg On His Inspiration

(TeamRock Radio) Slipknot drummer Jay Weinberg says he took inspiration by watching other sticksmen perform live. He was brought into Slipknot to replace Joey Jordison and contributed on their 2014 album .5: The Gray Chapter. And he insists there's nothing better than making his presence felt when he's playing onstage.

He says in an interview with Evans Drumheads: "Really, the school I went to was going to shows constantly and always watching the drummer, watching how the drummer interacted with the band and how it just looked so fun - and I wanted that for myself."

Weinberg reports he grew up loving punk and hardcore bands and enjoyed the thrill of playing in tiny venues. He adds: "There were kids stagediving and most often, you are right next to the drummer because the place is that small. I live for that. So that energy, if you can somehow translate it to the Slipknot audience, that's a beautiful thing.

"I pretty much like to take my ears off my head. That's important, especially for aggressive music like Slipknot - to cut through two guitar players, a bass player, a vocalist, a DJ, a sampler and two other percussionists - you're cutting through so much. So to have something that's just a crazy whip that just blows your head apart - that's what I like." Read more here.

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Black Stone Cherry Gave Up Playing The Radio Game

(Classic Rock) Black Stone Cherry drummer John Fred Young says the band are "not playing the radio game anymore." In a behind-the-scenes video from the studio where the band recorded upcoming fifth album Kentucky, Fred says that, for the first time, BSC are not chasing commercial success.

He says: "We didn't have a producer that was trying to help us formulate a sound for radio or for a specific direction that an A&R guy wanted. "I don't know how many singles we're gonna get, we're not playing the radio game anymore.

"Not because we're 'bad boys' or anything like that. I mean if radio wants to play us, God bless them. But we just got away from trying to sound how radio bands are supposed to sound." Watch the video here.

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Coheed And Cambria Star On How The Band Is Labeled

(Prog) Coheed And Cambria have discussed what being 'prog' means to them on the latest episode of FreqsTV's Into The Machine series. Drummer Josh Eppard admits he sees the term as a "badge of honor," although he doesn't actively describe the band as progressive himself.

He says: "I don't always think of us as a progressive band, but I think that kind of goes hand-in-hand with being a progressive band. I like to think we've kind of carved such an eclectic mix that we can go anywhere, which in and of itself is progressive. On the flip side, I kind of think it's a badge of honor. I feel pretty proud when people call us a progressive band."

Mainman Claudio Sanchez adds that the group's history with concept albums led to them being labeled prog. And having last year released their first ever non concept record, The Color Before The Sun, Sanchez believes he's grown as a songwriter. Read more here.

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Amon Amarth Split With Andersson Was Like A Divorce

(TeamRock Radio) Amon Amarth guitarist Olavi Mikkonen says splitting with drummer Fredrik Andersson was like going through a divorce. The sticksman split with the band after 17 years in March last year for "private reasons."

Mikkonen tells Wikimetal: "I don't really want to go into details regarding Fredrik, but basically, we just separated. It's kind of like a marriage that doesn't work, and you get divorced. And that's kind of what happened to our band.

"But we're going to take it quite easy. We've been together for so many years, and it's really difficult to find this new guy to come in and be part of the band. But, whoever it's going to be, it's going to be good. So I have no worries." Read more here.

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Kadavar Release 'Pale Blue Eyes' Video

(TeamRock Radio) Kadavar have released a new music video for Pale Blue Eyes. The track comes from the band's third album Berlin, the follow-up to 2013's Abra Kadavar.

"We wrote the song Pale Blue Eyes after visiting the Salton Sea on our first trip through the United States, playing the stage of the infamous 'Range' at the Slab City Prom 2013," says frontman Christoph "Lupus" Lindemann. "Slab City or 'The Slabs' is a snowbird campsite in the Californian Sonora Desert 156 miles northeast of San Diego, where RV-people, outlaws and squatters from across North America formed a wild and lawless 'city' from debris around the famous and colorful Salvation Mountain built by Leonard Knight in the 1980s.

"There are no rules in the slabs (besides 'Don't be an a**hole') and during one of those memorable Slab City nights, we found ourselves dancing around the fire alongside this wild desert bunch, dressed in discarded ball gowns and watching the sunrise from atop the Salvation Mountain. This song, an ode to 'a mysterious lady with pale blue eyes', is actually about cross-dressing drummer Tiger in his purple dress, looking so fine…" here.

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The Enid Release 'Someone Shall Rise' Video

(Prog) The Enid have released a video for the track Someone Shall Rise. It features on the band's upcoming album Dust, due out on April 1 - the final part of a trilogy which began with 2010's Journey's End and continued with 2012's Invicta.

Frontman Joe Payne says: "With Robert Godfrey taking a step back, this song and video represent a huge step forward for the rest of us as a band. Someone Shall Rise is a perfect example of the direction we'll be taking beyond the Godfrey years - it's very us.

"The video was filmed at the Holy Sepulchre in Northampton, UK, a symbol of rebirth which we felt to be both beautiful and controversial for a song which can be interpreted as illusively spiritual and political." Watch the video here.

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Foreigner Recruit John Parr As Special Guest For Upcoming Show

(Classic Rock) Foreigner have revealed John Parr will appear as a special guest at the band's upcoming show in London. They kick off a run of European dates at The Palladium on June 7, with Parr joining them for the London show only.

Parr is best known for his 1985 smash hit St Elmo's Fire (Man in Motion), which was the main theme for Joel Schumacher's film St Elmo's Fire. He's sold more than 10 million albums worldwide. His career has also included a string of movie soundtracks. Among the artists Parr has worked with are the Beach Boys, Heart and Meatloaf

Foreigner previously said they'll play a greatest hits set including I Want To Know What Love Is, Cold As Ice, Urgent, Waiting For A Girl Like You, Hot Blooded, Say You Will, Double Vision, Juke Box Hero and more. Read more including the tour dates here.

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Jump Release New Album 'Over The Top'

(Prog) Jump have given further details on their upcoming 13th album Over The Top. The effort be released on March 12 and follows 2013's The Black Pilgrim.

Frontman John Dexter Jones said of the record: "Our last album The Black Pilgrim was predominantly an acoustic affair. While those instruments occasionally still came to hand during these sessions, it's fair to say that the electric guitars and keyboards came in for rather more attention this time. We're very happy with the outcome."

The band have also announced that they'll support Fish at Aylesbury's Waterside Theatre on April 11. The band say: "Naturally, excitement levels in the Jump camp are running high as the band prepares to renew acquaintance with an old friend. Jump supported Fish on the UK leg of his Sunsets On Empire tour." See the artwork and track details here.

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John Carpenter Streaming New Song 'Angel's Asylum'

(Prog) Horror icon John Carpenter has released a stream of his track Angel's Asylum. It's the second song to be released from his upcoming album Lost Themes II, due out on April 15 via Sacred Bones Records. He previously made Distant Dream available to stream.

The song title references the Asylum comic book series Carpenter created with his wife and film producer Sandy King. He says: "Angel's Asylum has a driving rock sound and is more reminiscent of my later work. We initially started writing it for the comic book and we liked it so much we decided to put it on the album."

Carpenter will hit to the road in support of Lost Themes II later this year, and will take part in the ATP Halloween event Release The Bats in the UK in October. Stream the song here.

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All Hail The Yeti Release 'Before The Flames' Video

(Classic Rock) All Hail The Yeti have issued a video for their track Before The Flames. The promo acts as a prequel to their February release After The Great Fire. Both are taken from their upcoming album Screams From A Black Wilderness, due out on May 13.

The album is the follow-up to the band's 2012 self-titled debut. Vocalist Connor Garrity says: "This portion of the story is told from one child's point of view - the little girl writing the letter to her parents begging them to come save her. The idea for the story was something I came up with and immediately wanted convey visually as well as musically.

"The director Brian and I worked closely together on the concept and treatment. From the initial idea I knew I wanted it to be something that would make people feel uncomfortable, but not be too gory.

"It's more of a 'suggested' horror, to think of what these nuns are doing to these little children." Watch the video here.

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Down Drop Out Of Download Festival

(Classic Rock) Download bosses have confirmed that Down have removed themselves form the bill for this year's festival. On Thursday, French festival Hellfest announced that Phil Anselmo had informed them the band would not play any European festivals and now organisers of the Donington event have confirmed Down are off the bill for 2016.

In a statement, Download bosses say: "Down have cancelled all of their remaining European tour dates and therefore will no longer be playing Download festival 2016."

It comes after Anselmo's "white power" outburst at the Dimebash event in January. Following the incident, which was captured on film and uploaded to YouTube, Anselmo originally claimed he was making a joking reference to drinking white wine backstage, but he later offered both a video and a written apology. Read more here.

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JJ Grey & Mofro Release 'Brave Lil' Fighter' Video

(The Blues) JJ Grey & Mofro have released a video for their track Brave Lil' Fighter. It features on the blues-rock outfit's latest album Ol' Glory which was released last year via Provogue Records.

The label said of the follow-up to 2013's This River: "Ol' Glory contains 12 songs that feature the deep, soulful blend of blues, rock, folk, funk, gospel, gritty R&B and personal, Southern-inspired narratives that have become synonymous with JJ Grey & Mofro."

Grey, drummer Anthony Cole, guitarist Andrew Trube, pianist Anthony Farrell, bassist Todd Smallie, trumpeter Dennis Marion and saxophonist Jeff Dazey are currently on the road across the US. They'll return to the Europe for a run of shows in May. Watch the video here.

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