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1-12-11 METAL MESSAGE (Gwar Tour Dates, Saigon Kick Reunites, Iggy Pop, Serj Tankian, Mike Patton Guest Vocals, Thin Lizzy Reissuses on 180 Gram Vinyl, Black Metal Beer, Vivian Campbell says Def Lep “job not terribly challenging.”

After a brief return home to their hulking Antarctic stronghold, intergalactic murder-machines GWAR are returning to the U.S. for one final spurt of touring before doing whatever the hell they are up to after that. The Lords and Masters of this world apparently tired of abusing penguins and are ready to return to the surface world and begin the homestretch towards the conclusion of their seemingly endless 25th-anniversary “Slay-a-Bration”, which has now grown to encompass their 26th year of rebirth on Earth from the icy prison that for centuries had been their fate.

When will GWAR stop celebrating their 25th anniversary? Only one warty front-thing can say for certain.

Frontman Oderus Urungus was reached for comment at his command bunker located deep beneath the GWAR Fortress, where he took a break from his undead re-creation of the Battle of Stalingrad to chime in about the campaign of continuing idiocy and destruction GWAR plans on schleping to you, the faithful human scum.

“It seems we were about 8000 zombies short of our goal, which was to fill every hull of our Skumdog War Fleet with blood-mad slavering zombie shock-soldiers,” he said. “So we decided to come back to the U.S., re-open the Bloody Pit, and mutate some more of our helpless followers. Then we shall invade the very heart of the galaxy with our infected hatred and lust for war against all things alive. That and party.”

The new GWAR dates are as follows:

Feb. 17 – Raleigh, NC @ Lincoln Theatre
Feb. 18 – Allentown PA @ Crocodile Rock
Feb. 19 – Millvale PA @ Mr. Smalls Theatre
Feb. 20 – Brooklyn, NY @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
Feb. 21 – Syracuse, NY @ Westcott Theater
Feb. 22 – Burlington, VT @ Higher Ground
Feb. 23 – Providence, RI @ Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel
Feb. 24 – Sayreville, NJ @ Starland Ballroom
Feb. 25 – Richmond, VA @ The National

In other GWAR-related news, Metal Blade Records has announced the release dates for the vinyl versions of both GWAR‘s “Lust and Space” and “Bloody Pit of Horror”.

“Lust in Space” is being released on January 18 and it is a picture disc with a gatefold sleeve.

“Bloody Pit of Horror” will be released on February 15 and it is a picture disc with a die cut gatefold sleeve.

Who would have guessed that everyone’s favorite bellicose bass player Beefcake the Mighty had a soft side? When he’s not out singing about or actually beating things to death, the rotund one has volunteered for Bloody to offer his advice to the lovelorn. Check out Beefcake‘s first column at this location.

GWAR‘s new album, “Bloody Pit Of Horror”, sold around 2,800 copies in the United States in its first week of release. The band’s previous CD, “Lust In Space”, opened with 5,000 units to debut at position No. 96 on The Billboard 200 chart.

The reunited SAIGON KICK will play its first show in 18 years tonight at Howl at the Moon at Universal CityWalk in Universal City, California. Doors open at 9:00 p.m. Also appearing on the bill is VAINS OF JENNA.     

Commented drummer Phil Varone: “We haven’t played together in 18 years and you’ll get an ear-drum tickling tonight.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

“If you don’t have my Playgirl magazine, get one tonight signed!!! Watch as the marker runs dry trying to sign my dong.”

SAIGON KICK‘s current lineup features Phil Varone, Matt Kramer (vocals), Jason Bieler (guitar) and Chris McLernon (bass).

Varone is featured on the cover of the December 2010 issue of Playgirl magazine. He was also one of eight patients featured on the “Celebrity Rehab” spin-off series “Sex Rehab With Dr. Drew”.


On February 8, the eclectic, experimental hard rock project PRAXIS will release the latest creation, a bone-crunching new album titled “Profanation: Preparation For A Coming Darkness”. The new album finds the trio once again collaborating with various musicians, this time with the spotlight clearly on lead vocalists. Among them are Iggy Pop, SYSTEM OF A DOWN‘s Serj Tankian, FAITH NO MORE‘s Mike Patton, RAMM:SLL:ZSS, Doctor Israel, WU-TANG protégé Killah Priest and Jamaica-born toaster Hawk.

The U.S. release of “Profanation” comes with two live bonus tracks not included in the rare, Japan-only import. The album is also one of the last recordings to feature the gothic futurist RAMM:SLL:ZSS, an incredibly multi-talented visual artist, hip hop icon, performance artist, and one of the most unique humans to patrol this planet.

Since 1992, the core members of PRAXISBuckethead (guitars), Bill Laswell (bass), and Brain (drums) — has churned out an eclectic series of albums rooted in aggressive avant-rock improv with slabs of hip-hop, psychedelic, funk thrown in. On top of that, a constantly morphing army of innovators including John Zorn, Bootsy Collins, Bernie Worrell, Yamantaka Eye, Grandmixer DXT, and scores more have contributed to past PRAXIS live and studio projects — each one a unique musical experiment.

Back On Black, which specializes in vinyl editions of classic metal albums and is dedicated to providing top-quality releases for record collectors and metal fans worldwide, has announced that February will see the release of the classic THIN LIZZY albums on vinyl. All albums will be 180-gram heavyweight vinyl and packaged in deluxe gatefold sleeves. The first 1,000 copies of each title will come in limited-edition colored vinyl.

The following albums will be made available next month:

* Jailbreak (1976)
* Johnny The Fox (1976)
* Bad Reputation (1977)
* Live And Dangerous (1978)
* Black Rose (1979)
* Chinatown (1980)
* Renegade (1981)
* Thunder And Lightning (1983)

Jester King Craft Brewery, the Austin, Texas-based brewery launched by former attorney Jeffrey Stuffing, has just released its first-ever seasonal beer — Black Metal Imperial Stout, a.k.a. Suds of Northern Darkness, a.k.a. Iron Sword, a.k.a. El Martillo del Muerte.

Black Metal is a cruel and punishing beer fermented by the sheer force of its awesome will. It is Jester King‘s winter seasonal release. Weighing in at about 10% ABV, it’s filled with huge flavors of roast, chocolate, burnt malt and alcohol and carries a hint of leather.

Jester King encourages Black Metal to be enjoyed from a snifter at a serving temperature between 57 and 61 degrees Fahrenheit.

Black Metal is currently available only in kegs. It will be available in 750mL bottles later this winter.

Imperial Stout OG: 1.108 ABV: ~10% IBU: 60 Malt: Maris Otter, Caramalt, Extra Dark Crystal, Brown Malt, Black Malt, Roasted Barley Hops: Magnum, East Kent Goldings

For more information, go to this location.

Rush On Rock recently conducted an interview with guitarist Vivian Campbell (DEF LEPPARD, WHITESNAKE, DIO, THIN LIZZY). A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Rush On Rock: What was the first thought that went through your head when you were approached to join THIN LIZZY?

Vivian: I remember thinking what an exciting opportunity this was for me. As a guitarist, their music has always been such a huge part of my life. I’m entirely self-taught and taught myself a lot of LIZZY songs. Marc Bolan was my first point of reference as a rock guitarist and then I discovered Rory Gallagher. From there I found LIZZY. It’s very exciting to be in this position. It’s reconnected me to the electric guitar. I’ve been in DEF LEPPARD for 20 years, and if I’m honest, it’s not a terribly challenging job for me as a guitar player. Phil Collen plays most of the widdly guitar parts and I do what I do. But this job has reignited my love for guitar playing.

Rush On Rock: Do you think the time was right for a LEPPARD hiatus regardless of your own misgivings?

Vivian: I do think it was the right time to have a break. For Joe [Elliott, vocals] in particular it was important. He was burnt out. We’d been touring for five years without a break and it was starting to take its toll. As for the rest of the guys I’m not sure. I don’t honestly know what Sav‘s [bassist Rick Savage] been doing. Rick Allen‘s [drums] been pretty busy and Phil‘s been busy with his own band. I just think Joe wanted a complete break from DEF LEPPARD rather than a break from everything. As it turns out he’s been working harder than ever with the LIZZY stuff and the DOWN ‘N OUTZ.

Rush On Rock: So what does the immediate future hold for LEPPARD?

Vivian: We’ve got a couple of new songs on the go. We have a live record coming out in 2011 and we’re looking at attaching two, three or four new songs to that album when it comes out. There are also plans for a career-encompassing box set. It will happen but we need to sort a few things out contractually. As it happens, we’re talking to our old label, Universal, about re-signing with them. That would make things a lot easier. LEPPARD will be back this summer and we’ll be touring North America and Canada.

Rush On Rock: If the chance to join LIZZY was a highlight of 2010 then was the passing of your former band mate Ronnie James Dio a low point?

Vivian: You know, I was numb to the whole thing. I hadn’t talked to Ronnie in 25 years, so it wasn’t as if we were close. My mother died nine or 10 days before him, so I was preoccupied with that. And my father died nine months before that. It was a really tough year on a personal level and I had enough to think about. The news about Ronnie James Dio just bounced off me. It was a difficult relationship on a personal level anyway. I was really proud of the music we made together but it was tough being in a band together. But he died way too young.

Read the entire interview from Rush On Rock.

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