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Day in Rock Report for 02/02/2018

Today's Day in Rock Stories

KISS' Gene Simmons and Ace Frehley Do Unplugged Reunion Jam

(Radio.com) They're the turbulent duo that longtime fans wish could just KISS and make up. Original KISS members Gene Simmons and Ace Frehley have a famously volatile history, one that has been pointed to as among the reasons the band's classic lineup has rarely reconvened since the 1996 reunion tour.

As time goes by, however, the pair's public relationship has thawed considerably, most recently when Frehley joined Simmons in Miami as the bassist delivered The Vault Experience to Florida fans at Walter Grace Vintage Guitars.

Simmons and Frehley grabbed a couple of acoustic guitars and sat for the gathered fans, sharing anecdotes and songs like an old divorced couple realizing that things really weren't so bad. Read more and find a link to video of the reunion here.

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AC/DC's Brian Johnson Looks Back At His Exit From Band

(hennemusic) Former AC/DC singer Brian Johnson is recalling his 2016 departure from the band in a new interview with the UK's Sunday Times. On board for 2014's "Rock Or Bust" album, AC/DC halted the accompanying tour in early 2016 after Johnson was advised by doctors to stop performing in arenas and stadium-sized venues immediately or risk total hearing loss; Axl Rose stepped in to assist the band complete a spring run across Europe and a ten-show fall US trek.

"On stage it was getting harder and harder to hear the guitars, even hear the keys, and I was basically going on muscle memory," Johnson tells the Sunday Times. "And I'm not the kind of guy who likes to cheat. The way I look at it, I had a great run."

While the UK article spotlights Johnson's love of cars and his TV series, Cars That Rock, Johnson has previously revealed that the initial source of his hearing loss began while racing at the 2008 Watkins Glen International when he suffered a punctured left ear drum after forgetting to put his ear plugs in during the event. Read more here.

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Foo Fighters and Weezer Jam KISS Classic Down Under

(hennemusic) The Foo Fighters were joined by Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo for a performance of the 1976 KISS classic, "Detroit Rock City", during their January 30 show in Melbourne, Australia, and video from the event is streaming online.

On tour across Australia together over the past few weeks, the pairing teamed up at the city's Etihad Stadium. "We thought 'last night of the Australian tour, we'd do something special for you'," Dave Grohl told the crowd late in their headlining set, "and have Rivers come out and sing a song for you."

With Cuomo on lead vocals, the lineup delivered the legendary opening track from KISS' fourth album, "Destroyer." Coming on the heels of the success of 1975's "Alive!", the record peaked at No. 11 on the US Billboard 200 on its way to sales of 2 million copies in the country.

The Melbourne concert also saw the Foo Fighters deliver covers of classic tracks by Alice Cooper, the Ramones, Queen and AC/DC. The Foo Fighters - with guests Weezer - will wrap up their trek down under in support of "Concrete And Gold" at Mount Smart Stadium in Auckland, New Zealand on Saturday, February 3. Watch the KISS classic jam here.

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Led Zeppelin Announce 50th Anniversary Book Release

(hennemusic) Led Zeppelin will publish an official illustrated book in October as part of their 50th Anniversary celebrations. "Led Zeppelin By Led Zeppelin" is billed as the first and only official illustrated book to be produced in collaboration with the members of the band.

Featuring unseen photographs and artwork from the Led Zeppelin archives and contributions from photographers around the world, the project presents images of Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and John Bonham on and offstage, in candid moments and in the recording studio.

"Led Zeppelin By Led Zeppelin" is available for pre-order now at reelartpress.com, and fans can enter code LZ50 at checkout for free shipping on their pre-order until April 1.

Ahead of the fall launch of the band's 50th anniversary celebrations, Led Zeppelin will continue their extensive reissue campaign with the March 23 re-release of their 2003 live set, "How The West Was Won." Read more here.

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Vampire Weekend Announce Live Return At Music Festival

(Gibson) It's been five years since Vampire Weekend released any music - their last was 2013's Grammy-winning Modern Vampires of the City - and four years since they last performed as a band together. In that time, multi-instrumentalist and co-songwriter Rostam Batmanglij also left the band.

However, the period of (unofficial) inactivity might be coming to an end. Yesterday, the band was announced as one of the headliners of the upcoming End of the Road Festival in the UK this September. The festival appearance, alongside acts like St. Vincent, Feist, Yo La Tengo, Jeff Tweedy, John Cale and more, could be the first of more live dates to be announced.

Vampire Weekend have also reactivated their website. It currently contains just a landing page with the band's logo on a plain white background, though it's likely that more developments are imminent. In September last year, the band's frontman Ezra Koenig had replied to a Twitter query about the status of a new Vampire Weekend album to say, "80% done but the last 20% is always the hardest."

Later that month, in an interview with Zane Low, Ezra signalled a shift in direction. Read more here.

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Singled Out: Loyals' Hold On

Loyals released their self-titled debut album today (February 2nd) via Tooth & Nail Records and to celebrate we asked frontman to tell us the story behind the song "Hold On". Here is the story:

It was September 14th, 2016, and I was in the middle of a church sanctuary in Tennessee. The lights were off, and I was by myself trying to come to terms with the fact that I was in the middle of a heated legal battle with someone I had considered a friend for a very long time. The record was finished, but because of the dispute, we weren't able to do anything with it. Frustration, anger, hurt, sadness, and little hope-it was all flooding into my head at once in that big, dark, lonely room. Having to sit on something you've worked so hard to create-something that you feel in your bones is special-it's enough to drive you crazy.

I picked up a guitar and started singing something just to feel better. "November and I'm messed up…" The words just fell out. It was only September, but I wanted it to be November. I wanted it to be stormy and cold. I've always loved the cold. The kind of song I was about to write should take place in the cold.

When we turned the demo for "Hold On" in to Tooth & Nail, all I said in the email was, "We may need to add this to the album…". At that point, we had already had the fully mastered album for four months. I guess they thought the song was worth it because four more months later "Hold On" was mastered into the record, marking the completion date of our debut album.

I wanted to write "Hold On" as a song that can resonate with anyone who has experienced heartbreak in any scenario-love, friendship, or even family-but the themes are the same no matter the instance. Frustration, anger, hurt, sadness, and a little hope.

Hearing is believing. Now that you know the story behind the song, listen for yourself and learn more about the album right here!

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Judas Priest Release 'Firepower' Title Song

(Radio.com) Heavy metal legends Judas Priest are giving fans another taste of their forthcoming album with the release of the title track from their effort, Firepower, which is set to be released on March 9th.

The blistering new track seethes with the unbridled energy of classic Priest, featuring fiery twin guitar histrionics — courtesy of Glenn Tipton and Richie Faulkner (playing on his second Priest album) — along with the trademark double-bass drumming of Scott Travis. Singer Rob Halford also delivers an impassioned vocal performance on the muscular track.

"Firepower" follows, "Lightning Strike," which is also a conflagration of precision riffs and aggressive, melodic vocals. The band will support Firepower with a North American tour featuring NWOBHM veterans Saxon and emerging outfit Black Star Riders. The tour kicks off March 13 in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania and dates are scheduled through May 1 in San Antonio, Texas before the band head to Mexico, then Europe. Check out the song here.

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LCD Soundsystem Preview Their 'Austin City Limits' Special

(Radio.com) LCD Soundsystem is back. After ending the band's seven-year recording hiatus with last year's American Dream, the indie rock heroes snagged the Best Dance Recording GRAMMY at this year's ceremony with album track, "Tonite."

And now, James Murphy and company's comeback rolls on, as the crew heads down to Texas for an episode of Austin City Limits. The band has shared a performance of the American Dream tune, "Call the Police," from the show, which is set to air on Feb. 3.

Austin City Limits has shared the full setlist in advance of the broadcast. Check that out and the preview video of their performance of "Call The Police" here.

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Neil Young Releases 'Almost Always' Music Video

(Radio.com) Neil Young is having a natural moment. Young and the band Promise of the Real have shared a new video for the song "Almost Always."

The track is the latest taken from the recently released album, The Visitor, with the music video taking a moment to celebrate nature. As the warm, folksy tune strums by, the Darryl Hanah-directed clip highlights the wonder of the natural world, with intimate images of flora, insects and animals.

Young makes a cameo appearance towards the end of the clip, surrounded by a flurry of butterflies. Hanah's directorial skills will be on display at this year's SXSW with the premiere of her new film, Paradox. Her feature film debut stars Neil Young, Willie Nelson, Nelson's sons Micah and Lukas and members of Young's current band, Promise of the Real.

"Time is fluid in this far-fetched, whimsical western tale of music and love," explains a plot description (via Rolling Stone). "Somewhere in the future past, The Man In the Black Hat hides out between heists at an old stagecoach stop with Jail Time, the Particle Kid, and an odd band of outlaws. Mining the detritus of past civilizations, they wait' for the Silver Eagle, for the womenfolk, and for the full moon's magic to give rise to the music and make the spirits fly." Watch the video here.

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Sting And Shaggy To Make Super Bowl Tailgate Performance

(Radio.com) Sting and Shaggy will perform "Don't Make Me Wait" during the NFL's Tailgate Party on Sunday (February 4). The performance will be televised during NBC's Super Bowl LII Pregame Show.

Sting is a rock and pop icon as both a solo artist and member of the Police. Shaggy, meanwhile, is one of the biggest stars in Reggae music history. So, when we learned that this pair was going to start working together, it seemed like an unlikely collaboration.

Turns out the pairing made total sense as fans saw on Sunday night when they made their television performance debut of their new single, "Don't Make Me Wait," during the GRAMMY Awards. While on stage, there was a real energy between these two iconic performers.

We caught up with Sting and Shaggy for an exclusive interview to learn about their creative process as they prepare to release an entire album together, 44/876.

Sting revealed to us that reggae music has always been a part of his creative inspiration. "I wrote one of my biggest songs ("Every Breath You Take") on the island of Jamaica… in (Ian) Fleming's old house, where he wrote the James Bond book," Sting revealed. "It was my biggest song. So I feel like I have some kind of emotional and creative debt to the island." Read more and check out "Don't Make Me Wait" here.

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Aerosmith's Steven Tyler Featured In Two Super Bowl Commercials

(hennemusic) Steven Tyler is featured in a pair of new commercials for the Kia Stinger GT, and the ads are streaming online ahead of their broadcast on Super Bowl 52 on February 4.

As the haunting notes of Aerosmith's 1973 classic, "Dream On", play backwards, two-time Formula One and Indianapolis 500 champion Emerson Fittipaldi looks on approvingly as Tyler approaches a Kia Stinger on an abandoned racetrack. Once inside, the Stinger GT's twin-turbo, 365-horsepower engine is put to use - in reverse - sending Tyler on a transformative journey back to the seventies.

"I pushed the button on the Kia Stinger and went on an odyssey," says Tyler on his social media sites, "a voyage that defied the laws of physics…"

Designed in Frankfurt and developed on Germany's famed Nürburgring racetrack, the Stinger is unlike anything seen before from Kia. here.

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Fall Out Boy Glow in the Dark For 'The Late Show' Performance

(Radio.com) Fall Out Boy's seventh studio album MANIA topped the Billboard charts last month and to celebrate the band stopped by The Late Show to perform their hit "Hold Me Tight Or Don't."

The band played glow-in-the-dark instruments and wore ghoulish orange glow-in-the-dark face paint, continuing the Day of the Dead theme presented in the video for "Hold Me Tight or Don't."

Fall Out Boy will hit the road this fall, starting August 29 in Uniondale, New York at the Nassau Veteran's Memorial Coliseum, and wrapping up October 10 in New Orleans at the Smoothie King Center. The tour includes a massive hometown show at Chicago's Wrigley Field on September 8 --a first for the band.

In January, the band told Radio.com that the homecoming concert marks a high point in their career. The Chicago show promises musical guests Machine Gun Kelly, Rise Against and more. Watch Fall Out Boy perform on The Late Show here.

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Wilco Launching Limited Time Online Radio Station

(Gibson) After the recent reissue of the first two Wilco albums - A.M (1995) and Being There (1996) - the latest announcement from the on-a-break-from-touring band is the unveiling of a new online radio station.

Wilcoworld Radio will broadcast from 10 am, Central Time this Friday through to Sunday. The broadcast will feature "10+ hours of interviews, outtakes, live recordings, cover songs and more inspired by the recent reissues of Wilco's first two albums."

According to the statement on the band's website, "some friends were just as excited about this as we are. Hear stories and reflections from some of the earliest champions of the band and a whole lot more." Featured guests include the band's co-founders, Tweedy and bassist John Stirratt, as well as journalist David Fricke, long-time fan and supporter DJ Robert Chase, and Tweedy's son, the musician Spencer Tweedy. The content will also include a one hour-long set of covers performed by Wilco. Read more here.

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