Friday, September 16, 2011


MASTODON, THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN and RED FANG will join forces for a U.S. tour in the fall. The dates are as follows:

Oct. 25 - Austin, TX - La Zona Rosa
Oct. 27 - Houston, TX - Fitzgeralds
Nov. 01 - Los Angeles, CA - Wiltern Theatre
Nov. 02 - Sacramento, CA - Ace of Spades
Nov. 03 - San Francisco, CA - The Warfield
Nov. 05 - Portland, OR - Roseland Theatre
Nov. 06 - Seattle, WA - Showbox SODO
Nov. 07 - Boise, ID - Knitting Factory
Nov. 08 - Salt Lake City, UT - The Depot
Nov. 09 - Denver, CO - Ogden Theatre
Nov. 11 - Chicago, IL - Riviera Theatre
Nov. 12 - Milwaukee, WI - Rave Ballroom
Nov. 13 - Sauget, IL - Pop’s
Nov. 14 - Kansas City, MO - The Beaumont
Nov. 16 - Detroit, MI - The Fillmore Detroit
Nov. 17 - Indianapolis, IN - Egyptian Room
Nov. 19 - New York City, NY - Terminal 5
Nov. 20 - Philadelphia, PA - Trocadero
Nov. 21 - Boston, MA - House of Blues
Nov. 23 - Montreal, QC - Metropolis
Nov. 25 - Toronto, ON - Kool Haus
Nov. 26 - Buffalo, NY - Town Ballroom
Nov. 27 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club
Nov. 28 - Norfolk, VA - The NorVa
Nov. 29 - Asheville, NC - Orange Peel
Dec. 01 - Lake Buena Vista, FL - House of Blues
Dec. 02 – [to be announced]
In other news, MASTODON will perform the song "Curl Of The Burl" on the October 5 edition of CBS-TV's "Late Show With David Letterman" at 11:30 p.m. ET/PT. Check local listings for details.

MASTODON's new album, "The Hunter", will be released in several configurations that feature an exciting
interactive 3D experience known as Augmented Reality. The technology,
created by Los Angeles-based company Total Immersion, combines
virtual and real worlds to create a 3D one-of-a-kind interactive
experience that users can control. Just by using a camera on a computer, their own face and the cover art on "The Hunter", the user can turn themselves into "The Hunter" sculpture that is pictured on the cover.

The physical configurations for "The Hunter", which will be released by Reprise Records on September 27, are as follows:

Standard CD: Includes the album's 13 tracks, plus a basic Augmented
Reality Experience in which the users head becomes the "creature" on the
album's front cover in full 3D.

* Deluxe Physical CD/DVD: Sold
as a 13-song digipack with an alternative cover, this package includes
the standard CD, with the basic Augmented Reality Experience, plus a DVD
that includes a track-by-track, psychedelic visualizer, the "Deathbound" and "Black Tongue" videos.

Direct-To-Fan Package: This exclusive package will be comprised of the
complete 13-song digipack album. Additionally, buyers will receive two
digital bonus tracks on day of release (more on that soon). An
exclusive insert will be included which triggers an enhanced Augmented
Reality Experience and contains additional embedded content (again, more
on the subject to be revealed shortly). Also included is a 20" x 30"
lenticular poster of the standard album cover artwork.

"The Hunter" track listing:

01. Black Tongue
02. Curl Of The Burl
03. Blasteroid
04. Stargasm
05. Octopus Has No Friends
06. All The Heavy Lifting
07. The Hunter
08. Dry Bone Valley
09. Thickening
10. Creature Lives
11. Spectrelight
12. Bedazzled Fingernails
13. The Sparrow
14. The Ruiner (limited-edition bonus track)
15. Deathbound (limited-edition bonus track)

The follow-up to 2009's "Crack The Skye" will be MASTODON's third studio CD to be made available on Reprise Records in the U.S. and Canada and the band's first to be issued through Roadrunner Records outside of North America.

"The Hunter" was recorded at Doppler Studios in Atlanta with producer Mike Elizondo. Drum tracks were previously completed in Los Angeles at the legendary Sound City Studios where NIRVANA's masterwork "Nevermind" was recorded.


Drummer Mike Portnoy (ADRENALINE MOB, DREAM THEATER, AVENGED SEVENFOLD) will sit behind the kit for STONE SOUR during the band's appearance at the Rock In Rio festival on September 24 in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil..

STONE SOUR's regular drummer, Roy Mayorga, is currently home and anxiously awaiting the birth of his first daughter (due the very same day as STONE SOUR's Rio show). Roy personally asked his friend Portnoy to fill in for what is sure to be a special "once-in-a-lifetime" event for the fans in attendance.

Commented Mike: "It's my honor and pleasure to be able to help out my good friends in STONE SOUR and my brother Roy in their time of need. It's also an unexpected treat for me to get
another visit with some of the greatest fans in the world down in

Added STONE SOUR frontman Corey Taylor: "We've been waiting a long time for the opportunity to come to South America. This year's Rock In Rio should be fantastic. With Roy expecting his first child, we'll charge on without him, but having Mike fill in for this one show will be great. We can't wait to take the stage and lay it down the only way STONE SOUR knows how — full-on and in your face!"

STONE SOUR canceled a number of tour dates this past spring after Mayorga suffered a stroke following a gig in Des Moines, Iowa.

Mayorga joined STONE SOUR in 2006 after the band's previous drummer, Joel Ekman, was forced to leave the group in order to spend time with his son, who was diagnosed with brain stem cancer.

According to The Pulse Of Radio, Taylor recently did an extensive interview with HardDrive Radio in which he revealed that STONE SOUR is definitely planning to release a concert DVD and cover songs EP in one package sometime before the end of the year. Taylor went into detail about the project, saying, "We shot a concert last year on the co-headlining tour that we did with AVENGED SEVENFOLD, and we shot it in Brighton (England), and we've been trying to get it
together ever since and it's just been insane. There's been so much work and we just haven't had a chance to kind of get a handle on it. But
we've been talking about doing a covers EP forever. This is just a kind
of a cool way to put something cool out that the fans will dig."

Taylor added that each member of STONE SOUR will get to pick one song for the covers EP.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

OPETH: Australian Tour Announced -

Swedish progressive metallers OPETH have scheduled a four-date Australian headlining tour in December:

Dec. 15 - The Tivoli - Brisbane, Australia
Dec. 16 - The Enmore - Sydney, Australia
Dec. 18 - The Palace - Melbourne, Australia
Dec. 20 - Fremantle Metro - Perth, Australia

OPETH's new album, "Heritage", is available for streaming in its entirety at Due on September 20 via Roadrunner Records, the CD was produced by OPETH vocalist/guitarist Mikael Åkerfeldt and was recorded earlier this year at Atlantis studios (formerly Metronome studios) in Stockholm. Mixing duties were handled by Steven Wilson (PORCUPINE TREE) and Åkerfeldt. Longtime collaborator Travis Smith also worked with Åkerfeldt to create, design and execute the album's artwork, which can be seen below.

"Heritage" will be released in several configurations that will certainly incite the interest of OPETH's legion of fans, known for their passion for collecting and
collectibles. The album will be released as a standard version; as a
special edition loaded with extras; as a box set exclusive to the Roadrunner and the band's own official Omerch webstore; and as a double LP.

OPETH made its live debut with keyboardist Joakim Svalberg (YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, GLENN HUGHES) at the 10th annual Bonnaroo Music And Arts Festival on June 10, 2011 on a 700-acre farm in Manchester, Tennessee, 60 miles south of Nashville.

OPETH will embark on a North American headlining tour in September with support from fellow Swedes KATATONIA.

Keyboardist Per Wiberg, who joined OPETH in 2005, was relieved of his duties in April as part of a mutual decision with the remaining members of the band.

DREAM THEATER's 'A Dramatic Turn Of Events' Projected To Sell 30K-35K First Week

"A Dramatic Turn Of Events", the new studio album from progressive metal giants DREAM THEATER, is likely to sell between 30,000 and 35,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release, according to industry web site Hits Daily Double. The estimate was based on one-day sales reports compiled after the record arrived in stores on September 13 via Roadrunner Records.

DREAM THEATER's previous CD, 2009's "Black Clouds & Silver Linings", opened with 40,000 units to land at position No. 6 on The Billboard 200 chart. This was roughly in line with the first-week tally registered by its predecessor, "Systematic Chaos", which shifted 36,000 copies in 2007 to enter the chart at No. 19. 2005's "Octavarium" premiered with 27,000 copies to debut at No. 36.

The "A Dramatic Turn Of Events" deluxe collector's edition exclusive box set includes the following:

* "A Dramatic Turn Of Events" album
* Instrumentals of the entire album
* DVD of "The Spirit Carries On" – a 60-minute movie documenting DREAM THEATER's drummer auditions
* Double-LP set of "A Dramatic Turn Of Events" (180-gram vinyl in gatefold jacket)
* DREAM THEATER branded custom turntable slipmat
* Litho Print of album cover
* 50 lucky winners will find a DREAM THEATER "Ticket For Life" (randomly inserted)
* All content housed in a custom box
* Receive a digital download of the album the day before release


01. On The Backs Of Angels
02. Build Me Up, Break Me Down
03. Lost Not Forgotten
04. This Is The Life
05. Bridges In The Sky
06. Outcry
07. Far From Heaven
08. Breaking All Illusions
09. Beneath The Surface

CD 2

01. On The Backs Of Angels (instrumental)
02. Build Me Up, Break Me Down (instrumental)
03. Lost Not Forgotten (instrumental)
04. This Is The Life (instrumental)
05. Bridges In The Sky (instrumental)
06. Outcry (instrumental)
07. Far From Heaven (instrumental)
08. Breaking All Illusions (instrumental)
09. Beneath The Surface (instrumental)

"We have poured our hearts and minds into the creation of this album," keyboardist Jordan Rudess said. "All the life-changing events that surrounded us before, as well
as during the whole process, fueled our desire to dig deep within
ourselves and create the best music we possibly could."

Vocalist James LaBrie added, "In the grand scheme of DREAM THEATER's career, the last several months have been such an incredibly positive,
fulfilling and rewarding experience. The new songs and sound has never
been so spirited or rejuvenating. I cannot wait for every one of our
fans to sink their audio senses into this batch of tunes."

ANIMALS AS LEADERS: 'Weightless' Cover Art Unveiled

Progressive instrumentalists ANIMALS AS LEADERS will release their second full-length album, "Weightless", in North America on November 8, in mainland Europe on November 4 and in the U.K. on November 7 via Prosthetic Records. The CD was produced by drummer Navene Koperweis and his bandmates, and was mixed by guitarist Javier Reyes. The album marks the recording debut of Koperweis and Reyes with ANIMALS AS LEADERS.

"Weightless" track listing:

01. An Infinite Regression
02. Odessa
03. Somnarium
04. Earth Departure
05. Isolated Incidents
06. Do Not Go Gently
07. New Eden
08. Cylindrical Sea
09. Espera
10. To Lead You To An Overwhelming Question
11. Weightless
12. David

Check out the cover artwork below.

In a recent interview with "Ryan's Rock Show!", ANIMALS AS LEADERS guitarist Tosin Abasi stated about the songwriting process for the band's forthcoming CD,
"When we did the first album, it wasn't anything anyone knew about, so
there was total freedom — there was no expectation. A lot of people
really liked the first album, and it created a weird sense of obligation to continue in a direction that allowed people to like it in the first
place… But that isn't necessarily the best way to make music."

ANIMALS AS LEADERS is currently in Europe opening for BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME following a string of shows as direct support to the DEFTONES. They will kick off an extensive North American tour alongside BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME on October 27.


Monday, September 12, 2011

Did DREAM THEATER Rewrite 'Images And Words' Songs For Latest Album? MIKE PORTNOY Comments

Former DREAM THEATER drummer Mike Portnoy has commented on an article written by a longtime fan of the band which points out the
alleged musical and structural similarities between DREAM THEATER's new album and that of the group's breakthrough 1992 release, "Images And Words".

Thiago Campos, the Brazilian guitarist/producer/mixer/editor of "VRA! Split-Screen Covers", an online collaborative project where different artists record cover performances and post them on YouTube, penned his article after arriving at the "wonderfully shocking conclusion" that the entire "A Dramatic Turn Of Events", album — or "at least six songs" — was "written based off the charts of 'Images And Words' songs." He writes, "I know this might come across as an absurd
accusation to many of you, but I wouldn't be coming out in public with
this information if I hadn't done my homework, and if I wasn't confident this approach to writing the new album was a conscious/intentional
decision, maybe even humorous, by the band."

He continues, "When
I say the songs were 'written off the charts,' I mean arrangement-wise,
their structures, sometimes even orchestrations and nuances that make
the parts what they are, and their roles within the songs. This doesn't
mean they will sound alike at all, because within a given guideline for
arrangement, you could write virtually an infinite amount of different
songs, and mainstream/pop has been doing so for decades to back me up on
this statement. :)

"Some of these songs are so equal in terms
of arrangements that I'm surprised more people didn't catch on to this
nugget yet. Others just follow a rougher guideline (or so it seems to me
at this point)."

After reading Thiago's article, Portnoy took to his own forum to write, "Well done, Thiago.... Great post and spot-on! I *immediately* noticed everything you wrote
about upon my first listen... and found it all incredibly strange...
If they are indeed intentional 'nuggets,' then I guess that's a pretty
cool idea... However, if they were desperate attempts of secretly
re-writing the past... hmm, maybe not so much... I guess only they
[presumably referring to the current members of DREAM THEATER. — Ed.] will know the real reason for it..."

"A Dramatic Turn Of Events" — which marks new DREAM THEATER drummer Mike Mangini's recorded debut — will be released in North America on September 13 via Roadrunner Records.

Portnoy, who co-founded DREAM THEATER more than 20 years ago, abruptly quit the band last summer while on tour with AVENGED SEVENFOLD.