News update 2012 (4/24)
AOR HEAVEN will release a new album by former Craaft & Tokyo vocalist Klaus Luley, called “Today’s Tomorrow”, as well as a new album by American/German rockers Bangalore Choir, called “Metaphor”, on April 27, 2012.
For the recording of DEEEXPUS’ second studio album, “King Of Number 33”, they joined forces with no other than Marillion’s founding member and keyboarder Mark Kelly. With this album, Kelly returns to his musical roots, before returning to Marillion for their long-awaited new studio album, due in 2012. Written by Andy Ditchfield and Tony Wright, “King Of Number 33” centres around the 27 minute epic title track. This six chapter long song describes the downfall of a local eccentric from singer Tony Wright’s childhood, arising from the lunatic’s obsession with busses and past King and Queens of England. To this tale, Andy Ditchfield applies his broad musical palette. The album features a vocal guest appearance by no other than the biggest mid-80s teen idol Nik Kershaw on the song “Memo”, the closing track of “King of Number 33”.
Following three ‘masterpieces’ would prove to be very tough and it has taken DEPARTURE a decade to unleash their fourth album “Hitch A Ride” onto the eagerly awaiting melodic rock community. But boy it was worth the wait as it is a release of epic proportions. Andi Kravljaca (Silent Call) has taken the mike stand to deliver an outstanding vocal performance. The calibre of his vocals coupled with fine musicianship brings us a powerful array of tunes that stand out as Departure's most powerful outing to date. Songs like “Nowhere To Go”, “Soldier Of Fortune” and “Roses” are just simply forces to be reckoned with.
Hitting its 50th landmark issue, FIREWORKS Magazine brings you another packed edition, featuring a double page interview with the returning Evanescence. Michael Monroe tells us what it's like to be the winner of the Classic Rock Awards 'Album of The Year' and Jeff Scott Soto candidly explains his reasons regarding his much anticipated return to rock with “Damage Control”. Joe Lynn Turner talks about his third instalment of the popular Sunstorm series, while Nightwish speak about their brand-new album “Imaginerium”. On top of that, veteran rockers UFO are back with a new album, Toby Jepson speaks about Fastway and the Little Angels ... and we haven't even got to telling you about Chris Ousey, Tyketto, Diamond Head, Michael Thompson, Tony Martin ... As if 23 interviews and all the latest albums, DVDs and books reviewed weren't enough, there is also a fascinating insight into the story behind Fireworks. On top of that, we also offer you a free CD containing 19 tracks, featuring the likes of House Of Shakira, Doogie White & La Paz, Oz Knozz, Bangalore Choir and many more. What more could you want? More info on http://www.rocktopia.co.uk .
Escape Music is proud to announce the release of PHENOMENA’s “Awakening” on March 23, 2012. People should learn to expect a little awe and mystery. Phenomena take us upon a journey where there is nothing pretty about the protagonists of the story that we shall meet along the way. The subject is good against evil. “Awakening” is an album chock full of new ideas and featuring James Christian (House Of Lords), Lee Small (Shy) and Toby Hitchcock (Pride Of Lions) as well as familiar faces like Rob Moratti, Terry Brock and Mike DiMeo. Powerful songs executed by some of the finest rock musicians make this a hugely enjoyable album and it boasts a fine production from Tom Galley and Martin Kronlund. Here you will find straight ahead rockers with powerful melodies along with up-tempo ballads and beautiful choruses.
ROCK IT! # 68 (March/April 2012), the best German AOR, hard rock and metal magazine, is out since February 15, containing features and interviews with Battle Beast, Beggar’s Bride, Blind Guardian, Devil’s Train, Epica, Freedom Call, Gun Barrel, Hogarth & Barbieri, Human Temple, Kissin’ Dynamite, KLOGR, Lyriel, Maerzfeld, Michael Thompson Band, Necronomicon, Nitrogods, Picture, Powerwolf, Primal Fear, Rage, Lee Small, Sonic Station, UFO and Vengeance. As usual a free 19-track CD has been added. For more details, visit http://www.rock-it-magazine.de . The next issue is due on April 18.
SLASH, the iconic, Grammy-winning rock guitarist and songwriter, has revealed the cover artwork and album title for his second studio album, “Apocalyptic Love”. Due out May 21 (in the UK), the new album features Myles Kennedy and The Conspirators and will be released on Slash’s own label DikHayd International and distributed through Roadrunner Records in Europe, Middle East, and Africa. URL: http://www.slashonline.com
The new SONATA ARCTICA album will be called “Stones Grow Her Name” and will be released on May 18. It was recorded in several studios in Finland, mixed at Sonic Pump Studios by Mikko Karmila and mastered at Chartmakers by Svante Forsbäck. The album will be released as a limited edition digipak, in a standard jewel case, on vinyl and as download.
Frontiers Records are proud to announce the return of good-time rock ‘n’ rollers TRIXTER. The band’s first new album in 20 years, “New Audio Machine”, has been confirmed for a release date on April 20 in Europe and April 24 in North America. Featuring the band’s original line-up, the new album is produced and engineered by Chuck Alzakian (Elton John, Christina Aguilera, Tesla) and includes songwriting contributions by Skid Row’s Snake Sabo and Rachel Bolan and former Styx member Glen Burtnik. URL: http://www.trixterrocks.com
Frontiers Records are proud to announce the release of TYKETTO’s first new album in 18 years and it’s called “Dig In Deep”. It’s due out on April 20 in Europe and April 24 in North America and features the original line-up. With recent appearances at Sweden Rock, Download, Firefest, Hard Rock Hell and Hard in Rio, the band realized they still had a huge fanbase worldwide and the timing was perfect for a new album. The first single, “Faithless”, can be exclusively streamed on Frontiers Records’ web radio now following this link: http://www.frontiers.it/webradio . Tyketto will headline Firefest in the United Kingdom in October 2012.
FM "Live In Europe" DVD set for release in March
We're pleased to present our new DVD - LIVE IN EUROPE. Featuring our exploits during the summer of 2011 when we played at major festivals such as Download and Graspop Metal Meeting, the DVD includes footage from our sets at Rock The Nation, our shows with Journey and Foreigner in Ireland and our triumphant return to Portugal. With a running time of 107 minutes the DVD also features a bonus section of our January 2011 performance as Special Guests of Thin Lizzy at London's Hammersmith Apollo.
Those of you attending our March Indiscreet 25Live shows in Glasgow, Manchester and London will be able to get your hands on an advance copy from the merchandising stand at the shows. Don't worry if you are not able to come to any of the shows - exclusive signed copies of LIVE IN EUROPE will be available from our webshop at http://www.fmofficial.com/fmofficial/2_shop.html from March 12th for £7.99 with free P&P.
LIVE IN EUROPE will go on general release via Riff City Films on March 26th 2012 and will be available from that date from all the usual stockists such as Amazon and play.com.
News update 2012 (3/24)
Some more cool stuff from the AOR HEAVEN CLASSIX series has just been released. Out now are two much sought after gems: Marc Jordan’s ultimate westcoast release "A Hole In The Wall" and Cannata's hi-tech AOR mega classic "Images Of Forever". Both reissues include 2 bonus tracks each. Currently in the making are these two March releases: Airkraft’s "In The Red" (incl. 2 bonus tracks) and Bricklin’s self-titled opus (incl. 3 bonus tracks). As usual, all AOR Heaven Classix rereleases are digitally remastered by Chris Lyne and contain liner notes by Dave Reynolds. The AOR Heaven Classix releases are available via http://www.aorheaven.com , selected retailers and Cargo in the UK.
Much-beloved singer/songwriter/bass player extraordinaire JACK BLADES is slated to release his brand-new solo album, “Rock N’ Roll Ride”, on March 23 in Europe and March 27 in North America via Frontiers Records. The new album marks Blades’ second solo release for the label. Hot on the heels of Night Ranger’s celebrated 2011, “Somewhere In California”, and a massive North American tour with Night Ranger as support for Journey and Foreigner last year, Blades shows no signs of slowing down with his buoyant new album.
CLASSIC ROCK PRESENTS: AOR - Issue 6 will be the last issue of the melodic rock scene spin-off magazine, at least in its current form. KISS will feature on the cover. It might not be the definitive end of the mag as it will probably come back as a sort of yearbook or bookazine. Further news in one of my next news round-ups …
Frontiers Records are excited to announce the release date of CRAZY LIXX’s anticipated third studio album, entitled “Riot Avenue”, on April 20 in Europe and April 24 in North America. Almost an exact decade after vocalist Danny Rexon and ex-guitarist Vic Zino (now in Hardcore Superstar) started playing together under the name Crazy Lixx, the band is about to release what, without a doubt, is their strongest and most focused album. “Riot Avenue” includes 11 track hard rocking tracks that will appeal both to the old fans as well as a new crowd with its faster tempo and riff-based approach.
EÖNIAN RECORDS is back on track with 2 reissues scheduled for release on April 10, 2012. The two albums in question are “Never Was An Angel” from Murder Bay and the self-titled debut album from Rattleshake. Both bands hail(ed) from San Francisco.
FIREWORKS #49 offers 88 full colour glossy pages, including a double page interview with Black Country Communion frontman Glenn Hughes, guitar hero Richie Kotzen, the legendary pairing of Survivor's Jimi Jamison and Bobby Kimball from Toto, Ten's Gary Hughes, Reckless Love, Red White & Blues, Vain, Iced Earth, Royal Hunt and many more! As well as the usual plethora of interviews, there's a huge chunk dedicated to in depth reviews on all the latest album releases, reissues, DVDs, books and live concerts - you can't afford to miss out on finding out what's hot and what's not! If that isn't enough for you, there's a cover CD with 18 tracks on from the likes of Mitch Malloy, Red White & Blues, Paul Sabu and Legion! For more info, visit http://www.rocktopia.net
Swedish AOR band H.E.A.T are now up to date with a worldwide release of their third album, “Address The Nation” on March 23, after the renewal of their collaboration with Hamburg based label earMUSIC. The album is produced by Grammy award winning Tobias Lindell (Europe, Hardcore Superstar). H.E.A.T had a huge hit in Scandinavia with the song “1,000 Miles” in 2009. The band’s 2nd album, “Freedom Rock”, was nominated as one of the Top 50 albums in 2010 by Classic Rock Magazine UK. Since then, they have been touring all over the world, building up their reputation as the new leading band in the AOR genre. Erik Grönwall (winner of Swedish Idol 2009) joined the band in 2010 and has once again proved to be a fantastic singer on the new album. The first single from the album will be the epic song “Living On The Run”.
IT BITES’s next studio album, “Map Of The Past”, will be released by InsideOutMusic on March 26.
PAUL SABU’s eagerly awaited “Bangkok Rules” is now at the mixing stage and the music will not disappoint fans of Paul’s classic era. Ten slabs of classic Sabu that have been a long time coming! The album will be released by Z Records on April 23. Paul and his band are also preparing for a 90 minutes set at Z Rock 2012. Paul would like to know what tracks you (the fans) would like to hear at the show, so let us know by e-mailing your suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org .
WIG WAM is due to release the new single “Wall Street” on February 24 through Frontiers Records. “Wall Street” is taken from the forthcoming album with the same title, which will be released this spring. “Wall Street” is the story of a musician who trades his guitar for a company brand to make his fortune in the stock market. It’s got the recipe of a great Wig Wam smash hit and is everything you would expect from these guys! More info on http://www.wigwam.no .
News update 2012 (2/24)
German label AOR HEAVEN has signed Klaus Luley, known from Tokyo and Craaft. Expect a new album later this year. Also in the pipeline are new albums from Driver (featuring Rob Rock and Roy Z), Herman Frank and Bangalore Choir.
Late March or early April, Metal Mind Productions will release the second live DVD from BELIEVE, an outstanding artrock act formed guitarist Mirek Gil, the former leader and composer of Polish prog-rock legend Collage. The material, entitled “Seeing Is Believing”, was recorded in November 2011 at the Wyspianski Theatre in Katowice, Poland. During this unique evening Believe primarily presented material from their most recent studio album “World Is Round” (Metal Mind Productions, 2010).
On January 16 earMUSIC released “Different Devil”, a 4-track EP from CHICKENFOOT. Next to the brand-new title track, the 23:13 EP also contains three tracks ‘live from Phoenix’: “Turnin’ Left”, “My Kinda Girl” and “Learning To Fall”.
FIREFEST and Fireworks Magazine are pleased to announce the line-up for the 2012 festival. It's the usual mix of surprises, cult classics and established favourites, with four bands on the Friday evening and seven each on Saturday and Sunday. Firefest will take place on Friday 19th, Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st October 2012 at Rock City in Nottingham city centre. On Friday: Lionville, Dante Fox, Ten, Tyketto. On Saturday: Johnny Lima, Work Of Art, Robin Beck, Santers, XYZ, Mitch Malloy, Gotthard. On Sunday: Farcry, Fiona, Royal Hunt, Brighton Rock, Lillian Axe, Stage Dolls, Danger Danger. For more details, visit http://www.thefirefest.com .
The second studio album from our very own FROZEN RAIN will be released by Avenue Of Allies Music on March 9. It’s titled “Ahead Of Time”. I hope you’re as curious as I am.
Frontiers Records are excited to announce the worldwide release of FURYON’s debut album “Gravitas” on March 23 in Europe and March 27 in North America. Furyon is a new band from the UK who likes nothing more than to challenge expectations. Raised on a diet of heavy metal, prog and classic rock, Furyon mixes all these components for a truly unique and contemporary sound. Delivering huge rock radio friendly songs, with technically challenging, yet infectiously catchy musicianship. Dedicated to one sole purpose, making hard hitting songs that will stand the test of time.
Sony Music in association with Capo Records and Legacy are proud to re-issue the first six original RORY GALLAGHER albums in chronological release date order: “Rory Gallagher” (1971), “Deuce” (1971), “Live! In Europe” (1972), “Blueprint” (1973), “Tattoo” (1973) and “Irish Tour ’74” (1974). These six seminal re-issued albums celebrate 40 years since the birth of Rory’s solo career.
From TOM GALLEY, the creator of Phenomena, comes the new collaboration album “Awakening”, due out via Escape Music March 23.
LEGION’s third studio album, “Nemesis”, will be released by Z Records on February 27.
On March 30, AOR Heaven will release a new EP from Greek/American hard rockers OUTLOUD. Titled “More Catastrophe”, the 6-track EP will contain three brand-new songs, their latest Christmas single (!), a flamenco version of “Falling Rain” and a piano/vocal version of “We Run”.
Frontiers Records are pleased to celebrate PRETTY MAIDS’ 30th anniversary with the release of the band’s first ever live 2CD/DVD package, entitled “It Comes Alive (Maid In Switzerland)” on March 23 in Europe and March 27 in North America.
Mark Reale, founding member of RIOT, passed away on January 25, 2012. RIP, Mark!