Uriah Heep announce a new album deal
Frontiers Records are pleased to announce the signing of Uriah Heep, the legendary British hard rock band, for the release of their 23rd studio album in April 2011.
Following the completion of their 40th Anniversary Tour, the band started the recordings in January 2010 at Liscombe Park Studios in Buckinghamshire England. The confirmed title of the album is “Into The Wild” and it will include 11 brand-new songs, including some epic additions to the band’s huge catalogue of rock classics.
Guitarist and founding member Mick Box said: “We are delighted and excited to be joining the Frontiers roster. We see it as a really fantastic move and we are now fully immersed in recording process and hope to deliver the album they want, we want and the fans want.”
The band has recorded a video recording diary and the first chapter can be seen following this link : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qcWWsBIv1wU
Forthcoming Rob Moratti album "Victory"
Escape Music is pleased to announce the forthcoming album title, “Victory”, from the much loved and talented former Saga vocalist Rob Moratti. The album is being recorded as we speak and will be mixed by Richard Chycki (Rush, Aerosmith, Gotthard) and the release date will be announced shortly!
The players on the album are:
Rob Moratti - Lead Vocals and Background Vocals
Reb Beach - Lead Guitars (Winger, Whitesnake)
Tony Franklin – Bass (Blue Murder, The Firm)
Christian Wolff – Lead Guitars, Rythm Guitars and Keyboards
Brian Doerner – Drums (Saga)
Fredrik Bergh – Keyboards
All details about Firefest 2011
Firefest and Fireworks (magazine) are pleased to announce that they’ve decided to repeat the same format as last year’s show. It will take place on October 21, 22 & 23, with three bands playing on the Friday night and seven bands each on Saturday and Sunday. Yet again we think we’ve managed to put together an event with a great deal of variety which has strength right through the line-up, with many unexpected artists pledging to make their long-awaited return to live action or making their first ever visits to the UK.
We’re also pleased to announce that we now have the full support of a new sponsor: Classic Rock’s offshoot magazine Classic Rock Presents: AOR. The great new magazine will be helping us to promote the festival. Many thanks to Geoff Barton, Chris Ingham, Dave Ling and all the staff at Future Publishing for their very welcome support.
Venue and dates
Firefest will take place on Friday 21st October 2011 at the Trent University Students Union building in Nottingham, and on Saturday and Sunday 22nd & 23rd October 2011 at our regular venue of Rock City in Nottingham.
Friday, 21st October (top to bottom)
Even though we try to vary the line-up from one year to the next, it’s become a kind of tradition to ask back immediately any artist who makes a huge impression, and last year the general consensus was that the former Survivor singer Jimi Jamison made the biggest impression of all. With a band that will hopefully be the same as last year (availability permitting), Jimi and guitarist Tommy Denander will be playing more classics from the Survivor and Jimi Jamison back catalogue.
After his amazing performance with Strangeways last year, we have great pleasure in welcoming Terry Brock back as a solo artist. With a backing band consisting of our good friends Adam Holland (guitar), Gerard Zappa (bass), Mike Morales (drums) and Craig Pullman (keys) from Valentine, Terry will be playing a set plucked from his solo career that will no doubt include a hefty slice of last year’s well-received “Diamond Blue” album. Terry will be making his first solo appearance in the UK since 2001.
With their debut album picking up many outstanding reviews from around the globe, it should come as no surprise to see young Swedish duo Houston on the bill. Proving that classic AOR can be written and played just as well by youngsters as established older artists, Hampus ‘Hank’ Erix and Freddie Allen will be bringing their touring band to kick off the party.
Saturday, 22nd October (top to bottom)
One of the most popular artists of the late 80s MTV boom, the US band have sold 10 million copies worldwide of their classic albums, including “Dirty Rotten Stinking Filthy Rich”, “Cherry Pie” and “Dog Eat Dog”. With original members Joey Allen (guitars), Jerry Dixon (bass), Steven Sweet (drums) and Erik Turner (guitars), along with ex-Lynch Mob singer Robert Mason, who’s been fronting the band since 2008, they’ll be making their first appearance on UK soil since their support slot to Dave Lee Roth in the early 90s.
The ex-Journey singer makes a welcome return to Firefest as a solo artist. Steve Augeri will have his established backing band of Adam Holland, Gerard Zappa, Mike Morales and Craig Pullman (all ex-Valentine) and will be playing plenty of Journey favourites along with a handful of songs from his soon to be released solo album. He’s sure to be a guaranteed crowd pleaser.
Another band who played last year, this time out the popular UK/US alliance Strangeways will be playing the whole of their “Walk In The Fire” album along with other songs from “Native Sons” that they didn’t play last time. Terry Brock, Ian Stewart, Jim Drummond and the guys enjoyed their time on stage so much last year that they can’t wait to come back and do it again.
The popular US singer/songwriter is making his first visit back to the UK as a solo artist since he played at the first Gods festival in 1993. He has a new album in the works with guitarist Tommy Denander and Tommy will be assembling a top-notch band to play a crosssection of his impressive back catalogue. Also, with his first two mid-80s classic AOR albums (“Race To Paradise” and “Wired Up”) due for re-issue this year, what better time is there for him to make a welcome return?
We’re delighted to announce that L.A. melodic hard rock band Silent Rage will be joining us for their first UK show in many years. Jesse Damon (guitars/vocals), Mark Hawkins (guitars/vocals), E.J. Curse (bass/vocals) and Rodney Pino (drums) will be cherry picking the best songs from their four album career, and as many of the Firefest crew have seen them before we can guarantee that they’ll be one of the best and most professional bands of the weekend.
Currently causing a stir with their amazing debut album “Kiss Of Life”, Vega were a no brainer for this year’s festival. Consisting of ex-Kick/Eden vocalist Nick Workman, drummer Dan Chantry and songwriting brothers James and Tom Martin (who’ve written songs for recent albums by House Of Lords, Khymera, From The Inside, First Signal & Issa), Vega will bring their catchy modern slant on traditional AOR to our main stage.
US band Talon should be no strangers to anyone who’s attended Firefest and Gods festivals over the years. The classy hard rock band will again grace our main stage, this time fronted by new singer Shawn Pelata (Line Of Fire), who joins Jim Kee (guitar), Phil Keller (bass), Kory Voxen (guitar) and John Parker (drums) to get things under way in Rock City.
Sunday, 23rd October (top to bottom)
It is with great pleasure that we can announce Unruly Child as our headliners on the Sunday night. The classic US band featuring Bruce Gowdy (guitars), Guy Allison (keys), Larry Antonino (bass), Jay Schellen (drums) and legendary vocalist Marcie Free, will be playing an ultra-rare show and certainly their first outside of the US. With a set that will be almost entirely taken from their legendary 1992 debut album and great 2010 comeback disc, “Worlds Collide”, this will be their only European show this year.
The inclusion of the 80s Toronto-based hard rock band Coney Hatch is one that has everyone connected with Firefest extremely excited. Playing their first ever show in the UK, the reformed original line-up of Carl Dixon (vocals/guitar), Andy Curran (vocals/bass), Steve Shelski (lead guitar) and Dave ‘Thumper’ Ketchum (drums) will be playing a long overdue set taken from their three albums “Coney Hatch”, “Outa Hand” and “Friction”.
The ever popular Nashville singer/songwriter Mitch Malloy will be making a return visit to our main stage after many requests to bring him back. The DVD of his 2008 Firefest set has proven to be one of our most popular and his regular visits to the UK over the years have kept his fan base growing. Mitch is currently recording his new album, which he says should be in the style of his classic debut, so it should be on sale at Firefest and he will be playing several songs from it as well as some from his 1992 album.
Perhaps one of our biggest surprises this time out, former Alice Cooper guitarist and renowned solo artist Kane Roberts hasn’t played live much in the last few years so we’re very honoured he agreed to do this show. With the guys from Talon as his backing band, Kane will be doing a set based mostly around songs from his popular 1991 solo album “Saints & Sinners” along with one or two surprises. Kane also hopes to have an EP of new music available on the day.
One of the leading lights of the Scandi-AOR boom of the late 80s, the Swedish band gained cult status when their 1st self-titled album was released in 1988 (a different version was released the following year for the rest of Europe/US). They continued through several line-up changes, releasing albums up to 2005, but none had the same impact as the debut. The original line-up of Jim Jidhed (vocals), Tony Borg (guitar), Ken Sandin (bass), Jimmy Wandroph (keys) and Toby Tarrach (drums) will be playing their debut album in its entirety.
Having had their self-titled debut album favourably reviewed throughout the world media, we have the great pleasure of announcing White Widdow as the first Australian band ever to play at Firefest. Comprising of Enzo Almanzi (guitar), Trent Wilson (bass), Jim Nash (drums), Xavier Millis (keys) and regular Firefest attendee Jules Millis on vocals, White Widdow will be bringing their unashamedly 80s melodic rock to our main stage.
Probably an unknown quantity to most, US melodic rockers Farcry created quite a stir when they played at Melodicrockfest in Chicago a while ago and have been the subject of a campaign by some of our UK friends who saw them at the show. Having released their well-received debut album “High Gear” in 2009, Mark Giovi (vocals), Pete Fry (guitar), John Leonardis (bass) and Chris Ryan (drums) will get things off to a great start on the Sunday.
Tickets & Prices
Ticket prices are as follows:
Friday - £25 (stand alone show limited to 600 tickets – not included in the early bird special)
Saturday - £55
Sunday - £55
Postage at £1 extra per order
Day of Show (Saturday and Sunday only!) £60
Early Bird Special
We will be selling 300 weekend tickets (Saturday and Sunday together) for £99, a saving of £11. If you're bringing a partner get in early and save £22! After the 300 tickets are gone, prices for Saturday and Sunday will revert to £55 each, £110 for both days.
Early bird tickets are available NOW from http://www.thefirefest.com
Payment : via PayPal to firstname.lastname@example.org or by Cheque/Postal Order/Bank Draft payable to Bruce Mee and sent to:
c/o Bruce Mee
10 Dunnock Close
SK2 5 XD
Tickets will be mailed out within 21 days of order
A full list of other tickets agents will be made available shortly.
Firefest is sponsored by Classic Rock Presents: AOR, Blackstar Amplification, AOR Heaven, ARFM & Rock It Magazine.
Firefest 2011 is an age 14 and over show.
A press and guest list accreditation system will be implemented soon at our website – http://www.thefirefest.com – could anyone wishing to apply please refrain from contacting any member of the Firefest team about accreditation at this time. Instructions will be given in a future update.
Check the website regularly for updates, as well as the official MySpace, Facebook and Twitter pages as well as http://www.rocktopia.co.uk . The website will also contain hotel details and directions for those travelling into Nottingham.
All that’s left to say is thank you for your continued support and we hope the line-up and ticket prices are to your liking.
See you all in October!
We got the following e-mail from Phil Ashcroft.
Hi guys and gals,
First of all, on behalf of everyone involved in Firefest, let me thank you for your continued support. It’s truly amazing the interest and belief you show in us each year. The amount of e-mails and messages we receive from people continue to prove to us that there is still a huge demand for Firefest and the melodic hard rock genre that we proudly represent. Firefest 2011 will be a three day event. Friday night will take place at Trent University, Nottingham whilst Saturday and Sunday will take place at Rock City, Nottingham. We are currently putting the finishing touches to the background work that needs to be completed, updating the website, checking and rechecking hotels, flights, venues, designing artwork, posters etc., which we will have completed by the latter end of this week. The full announcement will take place on the Steve Price show on ARFM ( http://www.arfm.co.uk ) on Sunday, January 30th between 6pm and 9pm GMT. If you are listening in from Europe, that is 7pm CET. Listeners in the USA can check here ( http://www.worldtimezone.com ) for your local time that corresponds to 6pm GMT. We're not going to give the game away just yet, but we will tell you we have 17 bands over 3 days, 13 of which will be making their first appearance at Firefest. One or two surprises, which for some reason has become the norm, and one or two nailed on favourites making a most welcome return. What we would ask of you, is that you continue to show us your support by purchasing tickets early directly from Firefest as it helps us enormously to deal with the huge costs involved in staging the show every year. We will be offering an early bird incentive to save those that purchase tickets early a nice discount on Saturday and Sunday tickets in return for your immediate support. As usual, we are devoid of any major commercial sponsors (what's new ?) and apart from a few dedicated and superbly generous individuals, once again we have to paddle our own canoe with regard to the £ 100,000 cost of staging this event. If you’re in a position to bring any type of sponsorship or finance to the table, please do not hesitate to contact any member of the team and we will be pleased to discuss any suggestions that you may have. So, there you have it folks, all will be revealed on Sunday January 30, and I know I’m not the only member of the team that is excited by the prospect of seeing the show, in fact everybody involved has deemed this line up to be right up there with the best. We look forward to seeing you all in Nottingham once again for Firefest, and please do feel free to contact us through the website or Facebook with any comments or suggestions you feel are relevant. URLs: http://www.thefirefest.com or http://www.facebook.com (Firefest Official).
New China & M.ILL.ION albums on March 23!
China - Light In The Dark (Metal Heaven)
China is a name that definitely needs to be mentioned when one talks about hard rock from Switzerland. Their first two albums, “China” and “Light In The Sky”, are still regarded as classics of the genre. During the years the band has reached the Swiss Top 10 charts and the Japanese, German and English Top 40 many times. Their new record, “Light In The Dark”, will be released on March 23 in Europe (excluding Switzerland). This fifth release of the five-piece band marks another milestone in their career. The band certainly maintains its individuality while in recent years has developed so much. This record proves that this band is still good for surprises! The two producers from L.A. who have helped to shape the new China sound are Chris Johnson (Buckcherry, Evanescence) and Michael Parnin (Steve Stevens, King's X). The limited edition contains three previously unreleased bonus tracks. URL: http://www.chinamusic.ch
M.ILL.ION - Sane And Insanity (Metal Heaven)
One of Scandinavia’s top hard rock bands, M.ILL.ION, is back with the seventh album “Sane And Insanity”. Recorded in Sweden during 2010 and mixed at the classy JM Studios where founder and bassman BJ Laneby teamed up with Martin Kronlund (Joe Lynn Turner, Phenomena, Paul Young) behind the soundboard. Introducing the new aces, Andreas Grövle on guitar and Angelo Modafferi from Australia on keyboards, M.ILL.ION has come up with a top production packed with melodic hardrock of the finest brand. M.ILL.ION’s history includes six highly acclaimed albums (“No.1”, “We, Ourselves & Us”, “Electric”, “Detonator”, “Kingsize” and “Thrill Of The Chase”), several national and international tours as headliner and as special guests and have shared stages and bills with the likes of Michael Schenker Group, Magnum, Nazareth, Halford, Status Quo, Saxon, TNT etc. Hitting the charts in Japan and having song material included on the EA Games “NHL” are other examples of M.ILL.ION’s capacity. The band has headlined one stage at the Sweden Rock Festival and broke its attendance record, played the original Firefest (UK). Lately Rock Over Munich was followed by tours and dates in Italy, Scandinavia and Switzerland. When the studio sessions for the new album were finished, the band was invited to headline the Stockholm Rock Out Festival (September 2010) joined by acts like U.D.O., Great White and John Corabi of Mötley Crüe. All five band members contributed to the songwriting of this entertaining 13-track album and a video of “Everyday Hero”, produced by René U Valdez (Hardcore Superstar), is included on the limited edition. Fans of Whitesnake,Gotthard, KISS and Deep Purple, this is for you! URL: http://www.myspace.com/millionized
Whitesnake - Forevermore
Whitesnake, the legendary rock ’n’ roll legacy founded and formed by renowned singer/songwriter David Coverdale, unleash a brand-new storming album, “Forevermore”, through Frontiers Records on March 25 in Europe and March 29 in North America.
“Forevermore”, their 11th studio album, was recorded, produced and mixed by Coverdale, guitarist Doug Aldrich and Michael McIntyre at Snakebyte Studios and Grumblenott Studios & Villas in Lake Tahoe, Nevada, with additional work at Casa Dala, Sherman Oaks, CA. Whitesnake will take to the road for a full world tour in support of the release.
Formed in 1977 and steered by the legendary Coverdale, Whitesnake carry a rightful reputation as one of the world’s leading rock ’n’ roll bands. Coverdale’s blues and soul roots, combined with a feral sense of rock and roll, have consistently shaped the Snake’s sound and add to that Coverdale’s love and appreciation of impeccable musicianship and you have a failsafe recipe for success.
Their ascent to the very top of the rock ’n’ roll tree was confirmed with 1987’s self-titled mega-platinum album, which saw two top-10 hits, two number one singles with “Here I Go Again” and “Is This Love” and a virtual 24 hour domination of MTV around the world. Such triumphs were surely foretold when as a young man from Saltburn-By-Sea, Coverdale enthusiastically answered the call to be Deep Purple’s singer. Such bombast, bravado, talent and passion have thus helped establish Whitesnake as the perennial platinum favorite they have become.
With “Forevermore”, Coverdale has reignited an explosively fruitful vein of creativity with guitarist and co-writer/producer Aldrich, Reb Beach (Winger, Alice Cooper) on guitar, Brian Tichy (Ozzy, Billy Idol, Foreigner) on drums and Michael Devin (Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Lynch Mob) on bass, and as with all Whitesnake’s albums, Coverdale aided so capably by Aldrich opens up his heart and soul to express emotions and empathy rarely heard these days in any musical genre.
More than simply their latest release, “Forevermore” represents Whitesnake’s no holds barred, most heartfelt, melodic and musically muscular excursion for many a year. The album’s release will be anticipated by the digital only release of the first single/videoclip “Love Will Set You Free” on February 21.
“Forevermore” will be specially released on a “Snake Pack” edition for the first 3 weeks in England only. This very special release – arranged in conjunction with Future Publishing and Classic Rock magazine - will come with a collector’s edition 132 pages Deluxe magazine + A1 poster & metal pin badge and shall feature an exclusive cover art and 2 bonus live tracks “Slide It In” and “Cheap An’ Nasty” which will serve as an appetizer for the forthcoming “Live @ Donington 1990” to be released in the summer 2011.
The album will be also be released on a double gatefold vinyl format, with deluxe special editions to be announced shortly.
This time Coverdale and co. have really laid it on the line for their fans, and be sure of this, the Snake’s charms are going to convert a whole new army of believers… just watch.
AOR Heaven/Metal Heaven update
Metal Heaven is pleased to announce the signing of American band ED3N. ED3N was formed by bassist Craig Gruber in January 2010. After having a successful career spanning over 25 years in Elf, Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow, Gary Moore & Black Sabbath, and selling more than 30 million albums worldwide, Craig decided to put together a great line-up of musicians to form the supergroup ED3N. ED3N consists of vocalist extraordinaire Jeff Fenholt, whose resume includes Black Sabbath’s “7th Star” sessions as well as the original vocalist in Broadway’s successful Jesus Christ Superstar show. The line-up is completed by the wonderful Vinny Appice (Black Sabbath, Dio and Heaven & Hell) on drums and Rowan Robertson (Dio) on guitars. ED3N is now preparing to launch the first CD in May 2011 through AOR Heaven in Europe with a worldwide tour following in June 2011. URLs:
http://www.myspace.com/edenbandofficial and http://www.ed3nrock.com (under construction).
Berlin based hard rock band SOUL DOCTOR has started to work on their new, sixth studio album. The recordings for the yet untitled CD will be finished during the summer and the album’s release is scheduled for the end of this year, through Metal Heaven. URL: http://www.souldoctorrocks.com
Swedish AORsters ELEVENER are currently in the studio, preparing their second album. This time around as a full band featuring Pierre Wensberg - lead vocals (ex-Prisoner & Heartbreak Radio), Magnus Lindqvist - guitar, Robert Garnold - bass (ex-Heartbreak Radio), Anton Roos - drums (Saffire), and founding member Johan Bergquist on keys. Johan says: “I met Magnus, the new guitarist, through a mutual friend and we ended up writing a bunch of new songs. They are all superb musicians and I’m proud to be recording with them and Pierre’s vocals are really something else. Can’t wait to share the new stuff, hopefully in time for the summer … and to hit the stage with these guys.” The upcoming Elevener album will be released in Europe by AOR Heaven later this year. URL: http://www.myspace.com/elevenelevenagain
Marillion – Live From Cadogan Hall
earMUSIC, the Hamburg based international pop/rock label, is proud to announce the renewal of its relationship with one of the most original and innovative names in English rock: Marillion, and their label Racket Records. Marillion, known for embracing a direct “fan business model” through their marillion.com website, years before anybody else, have maintained complete artistic control over their music, to the recognition of a continuously growing passionate fan base. Marillion/Racket and earMUSIC first joined forces in 2009 for the release of the album “Less Is More” (the first worldwide deal Marillion chose to strike after many years of total independence). The “traditional” distribution in retail stores through Edel will complement the activity Marillion are conducting through their website, offering many titles not available elsewhere. Releasing over 20 UK Top 40-hits, more than 15 studio albums and touring all over the world, Marillion have remained one of the most innovative and musically diverse bands in the UK music scene. They have maintained a constant presence for over 25 years and were recently referred to by Classic Rock magazine as ‘a national treasure’. The final night of the “Less Is More” tour (December 7, 2009) was filmed in HD by 9 cameras to capture a rarely seen intimacy of performance detail while the soundtrack was mixed in 5.1 DTS surround mix by Marillion producer Michael Hunter. These factors combine to capture the overwhelming warmth and Christmas atmosphere of the final night of this unusual tour. Soon to be available (on February 21, 2011), you can relive this experience in high definition Blu-ray Disc (the first ever for Marillion) as well as a 2-disc set (DVD and CD). The performance follows the same approach as the “Less Is More” album, in which the band completely reinvented their songs chosen from across the last 20 years, often rewriting the music entirely into alternative acoustic arrangements. This experimental approach sees the band playing dulcimer, autoharp, celeste, glockenspiel, xylophone and pipe organ revealing the musical flexibility and depth of this extraordinary rock five piece whilst giving new space and focus to Rothery’s sublime guitar playing and Hogarth’s incredible voice.
Steve Hogarth says: “It’s interesting for instance, how the alteration of melody, chords and arrangement on ‘Hard As Love’ completely changes the meaning of the song from an overall feeling of anger and menace in the original, to one of sadness and resignation now, without one word being changed. I loved this tour – it was great to have the sonic space for the subtleties in the voice to be heard and for the meaning of the words to be more exposed. It was also cool to watch the boys swapping instruments and be in amongst all those different colours. I think this movie really captures a new face of the many faces of Marillion”. On top of the full album tracklist, the band revisit 10 additional classics during the more up-tempo second set of crowd-pleasers, again with many surprises for those who have only heard the studio originals. While the band is taking it’s time (as usual!) to write and record a new studio album to follow the tradition of excellence that earned them the trust of the best fan base in the world, Marillion’s label Racket Records and earMUSIC will announce new releases in the upcoming months.
Eden’s Curse update
Multinational melodic metal band Eden’s Curse have paid tribute to the memory of vocal legend Ronnie James Dio by recording a rendition of the Dio classic “Rock ‘n’ Roll Children”, which is set to be included on all territorial releases of their third studio album, “Trinity”, due out in mid March.
As previously hinted by the band last year, they would also be recording a cover version from one of the group’s biggest influences, which has also now been identified as the Dokken classic “Unchain The Night”, which is set to be included on the Japanese release of “Trinity”, due March 16 on Spiritual Beast.
Bassist and chief song smith Paul Logue explained: “Unashamedly Dokken, along with Queensrÿche and Pink Cream 69 have been the three bands whom we built the basis of the Eden’s Curse sound around. We missed bands that created that kind of music and we tried to get as close to that sound and vibe as possible”.
When it came to providing a bonus track for the Japan release, Logue explained there was one unanimous choice. “Absolutely! It’s a song we jammed at rehearsals or sound checks and we always said: we should record this. I’m so glad we eventually did!”
Logue further went on to comment on the proposed Dokken reunion plans: “Don and George need to kiss and make up! The hard rock world is a brighter place with Dokken around”.
One minute samples of both the Dio and Dokken renditions are now streaming at the band’s official MySpace ( http://www.myspace.com/edenscurse ) and Facebook (http://facebook.dj/edenscurse) sites.
For more updates on “Trinity”, visit http://www.EdensCurse.com
Phil Kennemore (Y&T) passed away today
Y&T bassist Phil Kennemore sadly passed away this morning after battling cancer. May he rest in peace!