July 2, 2014 - (Burbank, CA) - Once More ‘Round The Sun, the sixth studio album from Mastodon, has debuted at No. 6 on the Billboard Top 200 Albums chart. This marks their highest chart debut ever.
In addition, this album released by Reprise Records on June 24th, has gone Top 10 in most European markets and top 20 in most remaining territories. Once More ‘Round The Sun has also entered the Top 10 Album Charts in the U.K. as well where it is currently the No. 1 Rock/Metal album across the nation; yet another milestone for Mastodon. Fans and critics agree, this is the best Mastodon album yet:
“The mercurial metal heads have improved on the lean hard-rock pummel of 2011′s The Hunter with lattices of ornate riffs and primal vocals… the band sounds best when taking risks.” - Rolling Stone
“Album after album, Mastodon set the pace for modern heavy metal. Their brand of aggression is brainy, technically dazzling and slightly hallucinogenic – metal for people who don’t usually listen to metal. At the same time, the band is balls-out creative. ‘Elegant’ isn’t a term usually associated with neck-tatted, acid-eating heshers but check out Bill Kelliher’s guitar riff verses Brent Hinds’ guitar solo versus Brann Dailor’s double-time drums. The union is perfectly effortless -and freight-train powerful.” -Spin.Com
“The Atlanta thrashers continue to walk a fine line between brutal hardcore, bespectacled math rock, and area-ready melody.” - Entertainment Weekly / The “MUST LIST”
Once More ‘Round The Sun was recorded in Nashville with Grammy Award-winning producer Nick Raskulinecz(Rush, Foo Fighters, Alice In Chains, Deftones). It is the follow-up to Mastodon‘s critically acclaimed album The Hunter, which also entered the Billboard Top 200 Album chart in the Top 10 upon release and found its way onto several Year End / Best Of Critics’ Lists, including those compiled by Rolling Stone, Spin, Revolver, Decibel and many more.
In addition, the band has been confirmed to appear on the outdoor stage of ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live! on September 15th, in Hollywood, CA.
Once More ‘Round The Sun is available now on CD, standard vinyl and a limited edition Deluxe Package pressed on two 180g black vinyl discs housed in a quadruple gatefold vinyl jacket featuring artwork by Skinner. The special package will also contain four exclusive lithographs derived from the album artwork plus the entire album on CD. Order it here. Check out the new Roboshobo-directed video for the song “High Road.”
Mastodon are currently on the road in Europe:
Thurs Jul 3 Main Square Festival Arras, France
Fri Jul 4 Le Zenith Paris, France
Sun Jul 6 Knebworth Park London, United Kingdom
Fri Jul 18 Malakoff Rock Festival Nordfjordeid, Norway
Sat Jul 19 Bukta Open Air Festival Tromsø, Norway
Sat Sep 6 Hopscotch Festival Raleigh, NC
Fri Sep 12 Riot Fest Chicago Chicago, IL
Sun Sep 14 Aftershock Festival Sacramento, CA
Sat Oct 4 Louder Than Life Festival Louisville, KY
June 18th, 2014 – (Burbank, CA.) – As of today, the new album from Mastodon, Once More ‘Round The Sun, is streaming, in its entirety, as an iTunes Radio First Play. Listen now at iTunesRadio.com/Mastodon. The album, Mastodon’s sixth full-length, is available for pre-order on iTunes and at Mastodonrocks.com. Those who pre-order will receive an instant download of the album tracks “Chimes at Midnight” and “High Road.” The new music video for “High Road,” directed by Roboshobo, premiered on Pitchfork this past Tuesday.
Once More ‘Round The Sun was recorded in Nashville with Grammy Award-winning producer, Nick Raskulinecz (Rush, Foo Fighters, Alice In Chains, Deftones). It is the follow-up to Mastodon‘s critically acclaimed album The Hunter, which entered the Billboard Top 200 Album chart in the Top 10 and found its way onto several Year End/Best Of critics’ lists, including those compiled by Rolling Stone, Spin, Revolver, Decibel and many more.
As previously announced, the stunning Deluxe 2-LP Vinyl Edition of Once More ‘Round The Sun will also go on sale on June 24th. This limited-edition package includes two discs pressed on 180-gram black vinyl housed in a quadruple gatefold vinyl jacket, featuring artwork by the American artist Skinner, plus a CD of the complete album.
Don’t miss Mastodon on tour this summer: Fri. Jun 20 Amnesia Rockfest Montebello, Canada Thurs. Jun 26 Hedon Zwolle, Netherlands Fri. Jun 27 Melkweg Amsterdam, Netherlands Sat. Jun 28 Graspop Dessel, Belgium Sun. Jun 29 Park Live Moscow, Russian Federation Thurs. Jul 3 Main Square Festival Arras, France Fri. Jul 4 Le Zenith Paris, France Sun. Jul 6 Knebworth Park London, United Kingdom Fri. Jul 18 Malakoff Rock Festival Nordfjordeid, Norway Sat. Jul 19 Bukta Open Air Festival Tromsø, Norway Sat. Sept 6 Hopscotch Festival Raleigh, NC Fri. Sept 12 Riot Fest Chicago Chicago, IL
Los Angeles, CA – July 15, 2013 – Avenged Sevenfoldtoday revealed “Hail To The King”, the blistering first single and title track from the band’s forthcoming sixth studio album due out on August 27th via Warner Bros. Records. Produced by Mike Elizondo, Hail To The King was recently proclaimed “the band’s crowning achievement” by Revolver Magazine.
Avenged Sevenfoldalso announced the Hail To The King Tour – a massive headlining U.S. arena tour to take place this October and the band’s first full scale American tour since 2011. The run of dates will kick off in Chicago, IL on Thursday, October 3rd and wrap up on October 26th in Las Vegas, NV. Supporting the band on all dates will be special guests Deftones and Ghost B.C.See below for a complete list of dates. Venues and on-sale information will be revealed in the coming weeks.
Additionally, starting today fans of Avenged Sevenfold can pre-order a special, limited-edition box set of Hail To The King (available on August 27th). The antique gold colored embossed foil wrapped “treasure box” will feature exclusive Hail To The King artwork and include a deluxe version of the album on CD with a download card to an extra bonus track, an exclusive Canvas Print, a 20-page photo book featuring photos of the band through out the years, a Death BatChallenge Coin, Death Bat Skeleton Key, an instant download of the new single, and a download of the album on street date. Fans that purchase the box set will also receive pre-sale access to the upcoming U.S. tour. The box is available for purchase HERE and once they sell out no more will be made.
Hail To The King is the follow up to Avenged Sevenfold’s 5th studio album, Nightmare, which earned the band it’s highest ever debut on the Billboard album chart when it took the Number One spot and spawned three Number One, hit-singles “Nightmare”, “So Far Away” and “Welcome To The Family”. “Nightmare” broke radio records and was the most played current song at Rock Radio for all of 2010. Throughout 2010 and 2011 Avenged Sevenfold toured the world nonstop. They have achieved Diamond, Platinum and Gold awards for album sales in nearly a dozen countries and have sold out arenas the world over and headlined some of the worlds biggest and most prestigious music festivals playing to over one million people. Due to an overwhelming demand from the United States troops abroad, Avenged Sevenfold embarked on a USO tour in the Middle East including stops in Kuwait and tour of Iraq performing for US soldiers stationed abroad.
Avenged Sevenfold made an unprecedented appearance as characters in the Call of Duty Black Ops 2 video game in November 2012. The game was the biggest selling video game of all time and featured the band’s performance of a song written for the game, ‘Carry On,’ which then went on to Top the Billboard Monitor chart on January 13, 2013.
On August 26th, one day before the release of Hail To The King, Avenged Sevenfoldwill play a free show for their fans at the Hollywood Palladium. The show is a special thank you to their fans and for fans to celebrate the release of the new album with the band. Stay tuned for entry details, which will be revealed in the coming weeks.
Updated band performance times have been announced for Carolina Rebellion, the Carolinas’ BIGGEST Weekend of Rock. Carolina Rebellion has grown to two full days in its third year and takes place May 4 & 5 at Rock City Campgrounds at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina, just outside of Charlotte. Carolina Rebellion 2013 features a lineup full of rock heavyweights, including: Alice In Chains, Soundgarden, Limp Bizkit, Rise Against, Bush, Deftones, and many more.
Don’t wait, get your tickets now! Weekend General Admission tickets for Carolina Rebellion are currently available for only $139 plus fees, and Single Day tickets are currently $79.50 plus fees.
At the door, Weekend GA tickets will be $149 and Single Day GA tickets will be $89. Active military with valid military ID, will receive a $20 discount off Single Day GA tickets. Military 4-Packs still available while supplies last.
A limited number of upgrades are still available at current prices! Prices will increase at the door as follows, and are only available with a Weekend GA ticket purchase:
Friday Night Party Upgrade: $30
VIP Lounge Upgrade: $125
Basic Tent Space Upgrade (Includes Friday Night Party): $135
Basic RV Upgrade (No Hookups and Includes Friday Night Party): $160
RV Full Hookup Upgrade (Includes Friday Night Party): $260
The updated band performance times are as follows (subject to change):
Friday, May 3
Friday Night Campground Party presented by Jägermeister
7:30 PM Eye Empire
8:10 PM Beware Of Darkness
9:10 PM Hells Bells
10:10 PM Night Train
Note: All who have purchased a Camping Upgrade, Camping Package, Hotel Package or Friday Night Campground Party upgrade are invited to attend.
Saturday, May 4
Monster Carolina Stage
11:35 AM Otherwise
1:20 PM In This Moment
3:15 PM Halestorm
5:25 PM Papa Roach
7:45 PM Deftones
9:45 PM Alice In Chains
Monster Rebellion Stage
11:00 AM Young Guns
12:45 PM Sick Puppies
2:30 PM Asking Alexandria
4:35 PM Bullet For My Valentine
6:50 PM Three Days Grace
8:40 PM Limp Bizkit
The band performance times for Carolina Rebellion are now available at www.CarolinaRebellion.com. The Mid-Atlantic’s biggest rock festival–which has grown to two full days in its third year–takes place May 4 & 5 at Rock City Campgrounds at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina, just outside of Charlotte.
Carolina Rebellion 2013 features a lineup full of rock heavyweights, including: Alice In Chains, Soundgarden, Limp Bizkit, Rise Against, Bush, Deftones, and many more.
Performance times are as follows (subject to change):
Friday, May 3
Friday Night Campground Party presented by Jägermeister Jägermeister Stage
7:30 PM Eye Empire
8:10 PM Beware Of Darkness
9:10 PM Hells Bells
10:10 PM Night Train
Note: All who have purchased a Camping Upgrade, Camping Package, Hotel Package or Friday Night Campground Party upgrade are invited to attend.
Saturday, May 4 Monster Carolina Stage
11:35 AM Otherwise
1:20 PM In This Moment
3:15 PM Halestorm
5:25 PM Papa Roach
7:45 PM Deftones
9:45 PM Alice In Chains
Monster Rebellion Stage
11:00 AM Young Guns
12:45 PM Sick Puppies
2:30 PM Asking Alexandria
4:35 PM Bullet For My Valentine
6:50 PM Three Days Grace 8:40 PM Limp Bizkit
Sunday, May 5 Monster Carolina Stage
1:20 PM All That Remains
3:15 PM Hollywood Undead
5:25 PM Volbeat
7:50 PM Rise Against
9:45 PM Soundgarden
Monster Rebellion Stage
12:50 PM Pop Evil
2:30 PM Steel Panther
4:35 PM Buckcherry
6:50 PM 3 Doors Down
8:45 PM Bush
12:25 PM American Fangs
1:55 PM Heaven’s Basement
4:00 PM Red Line Chemistry
6:15 PM Escape The Fate
Weekend General Admission tickets for Carolina Rebellion are available for only $119 plus fees, and Single Day tickets are now $69.50 plus fees. General admission parking is included with each paid ticket.
Beginning Monday, April 22 at 10:00 AM Eastern, some ticket prices will increase as follows:
Weekend General Admission – $139 plus fees
Military 4-Pack – $198 plus fees
Single Day General Admission – $79.50 plus fees
Military Single Day General Admission (per person) – $59.50 plus fees
A limited number of Camping, Hotel and VIP Packages and upgrades are also still available. Details for all Camping, Hotel and VIP packages can be found at www.CarolinaRebellion.com.
The Carolina Rebellion Campgrounds open on Friday, May 3 at noon and close at noon on Monday, May 6. General admission, ADA, VIP and motorcycle parking lots will open at 7:00 AM on Saturday, May 4 and at 8:00 AM on Sunday, May 5. Festival doors open at 9:00 AM on Saturday and 10:00 AM on Sunday. For full event details, go to www.carolinarebellion.com/info.
Carolina Rebellion is proud to be sponsored by Monster Energy, Jägermeister, U.S. Army and f.y.e. Carolina Rebellion is produced by Right Arm Entertainment and AEG Live, the same team that produces the highly successful Rock On The Range in Columbus, OH.
Rock City Campgrounds at Charlotte Motor Speedway is located at 7301 Bruton Smith Blvd. in Concord, NC, just outside Charlotte, and less than two hours from Raleigh/Durham, Columbia and Greensboro. Visit www.CharlotteMotorSpeedway.com for directions and additional venue information.
An expanded Carolina Rebellion returns May 4 & 5 at Rock City Campgrounds at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina, just outside of Charlotte. After uncharted success in 2012, the Mid-Atlantic’s biggest rock festival is growing to two full days in its third year and will feature more camping and VIP space at its new location.
Carolina Rebellion 2013 features a lineup full of rock heavyweights, including: Soundgarden, Alice In Chains, Limp Bizkit, Rise Against, Bush, Deftones, 3 Doors Down, Three Days Grace, Papa Roach, Bullet For My Valentine, Buckcherry, Volbeat, Halestorm, Asking Alexandria, All That Remains, Steel Panther, Device (with David Draiman), Hollywood Undead, Sick Puppies, In This Moment, Escape The Fate, Pop Evil, Nonpoint, Otherwise, Aranda, Thousand Foot Krutch, Red Line Chemistry, Young Guns, Tracer, American Fangs and Heaven’s Basement.
The bands listed above will perform on one of the three festival stages: the Monster Energy ‘Carolina Stage’, the Monster Energy ‘Rebellion Stage’ and the Jägermeister Stage. In addition, f.y.e will have a special artist tent where bands will stop by throughout the day to meet fans and sign their CDs.
“After wrapping up our last U.S. tour, we were planning on recharging our batteries for awhile, but we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to play with the mighty Soundgarden in what will be one of the only shows we’ll play in the U.S. this year,” says Tim Mcllrath of Rise Against.
Michael Poulsen of Volbeat comments, “In Europe and the U.S., we have enjoyed the experiences that come from being a part of the festival environment, just as the fans do. Looking forward to Carolina Rebellion!”
“The ‘Rebels’ spoke and we listened,” says Gary Spivack, Co-Executive Producer of the event for Right Arm Entertainment. “More days, a new venue, huge bands…It’s our mission for Rebellion to be the biggest and best rock festival in the entire Mid-Atlantic region. We have our home at the Charlotte Motor Speedway and can’t wait for May 4 and 5!”
Full Weekend General Admission tickets for Carolina Rebellion go on sale to the public Friday, February 8 at 10am EST, as do Single Day General Admission tickets, all at www.CarolinaRebellion.com. Full Weekend tickets will be available starting at $99 plus fees, and Single Day tickets will start at $59.50 plus fees. Parking is included with all tickets.
To get access to the special internet presale, which will be held from Wednesday, February 6 through Thursday, February 7, go to the Carolina Rebellion Facebook page or www.CarolinaRebellion.com and sign up to receive the Rebellion newsletter. Those who sign up can purchase the Full Weekend General Admission tickets for just $89 plus fees during the presale only.
Once again, ticket discounts will also be available for active military. For full details about military ticket discounts, go to www.CarolinaRebellion.com.
Carolina Rebellion will feature an even greater variety of Camping, Hotel and VIP Packages and upgrades. All Camping and Hotel Packages will also include access to the Friday night campground party. Details for all Camping, Hotel and VIP packages can be found at www.CarolinaRebellion.com.
“Holding Carolina Rebellion at Charlotte Motor Speedway gives us the ability to create an even better experience for our fans,” comments Joe Litvag, Co-Executive Producer of the festival for AEG Live. “We have more space to expand, easier access in and out, upgraded tent and RV camping opportunities, and lots of participating hotels to cater to our crowd. But most importantly we’re able to continue to offer incredible value by keeping our ticket prices low while the festival grows in stature each year.”
The daily band lineup for Carolina Rebellion is as follows:
Saturday, May 4 Alice In Chains, Limp Bizkit, Deftones, Three Days Grace, Papa Roach, Bullet For My Valentine, Halestorm, Asking Alexandria, Sick Puppies, In This Moment, Device (with David Draiman), Young Guns, Otherwise, Aranda, Tracer, Monstro
Sunday, May 5 Soundgarden, Rise Against, Bush, 3 Doors Down, Buckcherry, Volbeat, Hollywood Undead, All That Remains, Steel Panther, Pop Evil, Escape the Fate, Nonpoint, Thousand Foot Krutch, Red Line Chemistry, Heaven’s Basement, American Fangs
Carolina Rebellion is proud to be sponsored by Monster Energy, Jägermeister, U.S. Army and f.y.e.Carolina Rebellion is produced by Right Arm Entertainment and AEG Live, the same team that produces the highly successful Rock On The Range in Columbus, OH.
In an age where rock bands come and go with every flip of the calendar, it’s becoming extremely hard to find new bands that become mainstays in this writer’s musical rotation. Enter one of the few constants… Evans Blue. The world was first introduced to EB back in 2005, with the single “Cold (But I’m Still Here)” off of their debut album The Melody and The Energetic Nature of Volume. All they have done since then is sell over a million albums and hone themselves into staples in the active rock world. Not everything came so easy for them however, the band has endured lineup changes (including the replacement of original lead singer Kevin Matisyn), the perils of being major label artists, and personal tragedy along the way. While most bands that encounter these things get weak and dissolve, Evans Blue has not only managed to persevere, they’ve progressed with each album leading up to their strongest release to date, Graveyard of Empires. Recently, I had the chance to catch up with founding member and guitarist Parker Lauzon, on the eve of the kickoff of the Graveyard of Empires Tour, where we talked and laughed about everything from “one-man orchestras”-to- one man’s fight for his life with the Czech injustice, err I mean justice system. So sit back, relax with a cold adult beverage, and join me as we go “Beyond the Stars” with Parker Lauzon.
AWAY-TEAM: I’d first like to say congratulations on the success of Graveyard of Empires, I’ve been a fan for quite some time, and I think I can say it’s your best work to date…
PARKER LAUZON: Thanks! I appreciate it!
AWAY-TEAM: It’s well deserved! (laughs)
PARKER LAUZON: (laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: …particularly form a guitar standpoint. The album seems to be more riff-driven than those in the past, what can we attribute that to?
PARKER LAUZON: I don’t really know… I guess I’ll start off by saying that this is the album that, personally for me being in this band from the beginning, and basically the founder of the band, this album is the pinnacle of what I’ve always wanted this band to sound like. There’s very diverse taste in music throughout the band. I’ve always been since high school, a metal fan, but then theStaind’s and the Deftones came out with the metal riffs, and the melodies, and that’s what I was kinda drawn to. So that’s the sound I was always going for, but the albums always turned out a little lighter than I wanted them, and this album turned out absolutely perfect in my eyes. It is exactly how I wanted this band to sound all along, so I’m very excited about it.
AWAY-TEAM: The title of the album seems to have many meanings to it, what was it’s meaning to you guys when you picked it?
PARKER LAUZON: The title, Graveyard of Empires, was actually the working title for the song “Thank You”, that Vlad sent in. We liked it, we had a few other album title ideas, and we decided to go with it just because of the state of the world, I guess in general, but the state of the music industry in particular; ya know, all the labels crumbling. We just think it’s a really good time for the little guy, to be independent, to make their mark on the industry. So we decided to go with that, and we like it.
AWAY-TEAM: You mentioned the industry crumbling to a point, and I noticed that a lot of bands are going the independent route. For you, having been on Hollywood Records, and seeing what it was like to be a major label artist, the pros and the cons, what do you make of the whole Kickstarter campaigning that seems to be spreading throughout the music community? It seems to be a great way for independent bands to work on a major label budget, but do you think it’s something that’s gonna last? Or do you think fans are gonna start saying ‘Ya know what, I already have enough autographed paraphenalia from this band. I’m gonna keep my money’?
PARKER LAUZON: Ya know, that’s a good question. I could take it, or leave it, it seems to work for some bands, but if I were to be giving money to a band to do their album, I would probably want something in return. So I would think you would have to make the package pretty good, if you give us something we’ll give you a little something. We’re lucky to have been in the industry to the level that we have that we can do what we want, I can tell you right now, if we were on a major label right now I don’t think the album would sound the way it does, and that would really disappoint me. Without having those big heads leering over you, we have our artistic say, and that’s really important to this band. We want to not be told what to say or do in our songs, we want to write our songs, we don’t want people to write them for us. I think bands on major labels are losing that luxury these days.
AWAY-TEAM: Yeah, someone’s always pulling the strings behind the scenes.
PARKER LAUZON: Yeah, it’s really unfortunate. People are scrambling to figure out how to fix this industry, and I think that the major labels are breaking it more than they’re fixing it right now.
AWAY-TEAM: Right. Now, the title track of this album is a little bit of a break from the norm, stylistically, you eluded to it earlier that you all had different musical tastes. It’s a “piano and a one-man 14 string orchestra”…
PARKER LAUZON: Yeah (laughs) Stevie Blacke and Al Jankowski… Stevie Blacke is on the strings, he is absolutely incredible! You can go to YouTube and watch him, he sets up his studio like an orchestra was playing in there, and he plays each instrument from the seat that instrument would be sitting at.
PARKER LAUZON: It’s absolutely incredible to see! So he did the strings on our album. Al Jankowski is, our studio is up in Traverse City, MI, he owns a Marshall’s Music up there, and we had the idea to throw a little bit of piano on the album. We were looking for a piano player in Traverse City, we obviously were there getting some stuff, and our producer Trevor Kustiak knew him. So he came in, and just owned all the tracks. The track “Graveyard of Empires” wasn’t originally named “Graveyard of Empires” at first, we had the title of the album, but that part was just an extension of the song “Beyond the Stars” at that point. And then somebody, I believe it was our producer, came up with the idea to make it the title track, and we had no hands in that. We just had the idea to go into something instrumental there, with strings and a piano, but we let them have carte blanche to do what they wanted to do with the track. So it was really cool to have it come back to us and listen to it, and be like ‘Wow! That is absolutely incredible!‘
AWAY-TEAM: I was gonna ask you what that was, and I can’t believe that it really is truly a one-man orchestra! (laughs)
PARKER LAUZON: (laughs) Yeah, he does strings for everybody. He did like, Avenged Sevenfold, Coheed and Cambria, all the big metal bands. He’s on all those albums, so we’re really proud to have him on our album.
AWAY-TEAM: After the departure of your former drummer, Howard Davis, which actually delayed this album, the album was recorded entirely with session drummers. Who are you bringing out on the road with you for this tour? And what are your plans for finding Howard’s replacement?
PARKER LAUZON: We have a drummer named Dusty Saxton, from Austin, TX filling in on drums. He’s really, really good; he’s probably one of the better drummers I’ve ever drummed with. We’re not really in the market for replacing a drummer, like signing a drummer into the band per se. It’d be nice, eventually someday, but we’re gonna concentrate on the tours, and on the album. Right now Dusty’s out with us, he was actually suggested by Jason Pierce, the touring drummer for Paramore, who drummed on our album in studio. So he came with a shiny recommendation, but it was still kinda nerve-wracking, because we had a whole tour planned, and there’s alot of money that goes into planning a tour. So when we were coming into the studio and jamming with a drummer we had never met, and never jammed with… (laughs) and having the tour booked, so you can’t say ‘This isn’t working out.’ It was kinda nerve-wracking at first. (laughs) But he nailed it! In fact, he sings background vocals for us, and it adds alot to the show. So we’re happy he’s out with us.
AWAY-TEAM: With your last album, you had welcomed a new singer in Dan Chandler into the band about half way through the writing process. You hadn’t really known each other that well, even as you finished the album. This time around, after having spent countless days and nights together on the road, and sort of gelling as friends and bandmates, how has that affected the creative process this time around?
PARKER LAUZON: I think you pretty much nailed it. The first album with Dan, the music was half written before he got into the band, and anybody’s who has been in the industry knows that when it’s time for an album, it’s go-go-go, rush-rush-rush. So we were just finding melodies, writing lyrics really, really quickly. This album had time to ferment, to fit in, some of the songs on it were from just after the third album came out. We had been constantly writing since then, so we had time to sit back, listen to the demos, and be like ‘This is cool, but what can we do here…’ You know, how an album is actually supposed to be done, not ‘You guys have a few weeks, get it done.’ (laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: (laughs) Right. (laughs)
PARKER LAUZON: So we had all the time in the world to get it done, and really take our time. And Dan really just went into the depths of his past, and all the trials he’s been through in his life, and just sing from the heart, and just what he’s been through. Some of it, he’s had a hard time, and some of the best songs that are written are the most honest songs. They say ‘This is what’s happened to me. This is my life. It’s not a nice part, but people need to hear it.’ I think people can relate to it alot, nobody’s happy all the time, I mean c’mon. (laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: (laughs) I hear you!
PARKER LAUZON: And if they are they’re faking it! (laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: (laughs) Speaking of your self-titled album, “Erase My Scars” has been a vehicle to promote your band’s charity. Tell me a little bit about that charity, and what brought you guys to create it.
PARKER LAUZON: The song “Erase My Scars” was written for Dan’s nephew Chase, who unfortunately lost his battle with brain cancer at the age of eight. So that song is very, very emotional for us. I lost my mom to cancer, everybody involved with this band has been touched by cancer, (bassist Joe) Pitter lost his father, so that song is very close to our hearts. We just wanted to do something, we’re not out here making millions of dollars, but if we’re making some money, we want to give some of that money to somebody to help make their life better. Maybe not help find a cure, but if we can help them get to the hospital, or anything small like that, ya know, one more doctor’s visit or something. So we just started the Keeping Chase Foundation to put some of the percentages of our sales into helping people’s lives that have been affected by cancer, make their lives a little bit better. Just before we left for tour, there’s a friend named Chrissy in Houston, TX, who just sent us a wonderful picture saying that she is cancer free as of right now, and we were helping her out through the foundation. That was exactly our goal, and such a beautiful story, I can’t wait to get down to Houston so I can hug her. It’s such a wonderful story, and I hope we can make more of those stories. The more money that comes in, the more people we can help.
AWAY-TEAM: That is so awesome! Congrats! Back to touring, I’m sure you guys have seen your fair share of over-zealous fans, but what do you make of the whole situation with Lamb of God’sRandy Blythe? And do you think that if that were to happen in North America, it’d be treated the same way?
PARKER LAUZON: That’s a tough one. I mean, from the video you can’t really see much, and you can’t see what happens to the kid once he goes into the crowd. I don’t wanna say anything negative, I don’t think he should be in jail for it, that’s a bunch of B.S. right there. But, if it happened in North America, no. It’s obviously, blatently, not his fault. There’s no way he could control it. They’re saying that the kid kept jumping up on stage, and getting in their face, and when it comes down to it what I view it as, is ever since Dimebag was killed, that shit is just not cool! You just can’t come up on the stage, it’s not cool! He needs to get out of that jail, and I really feel sorry for the fans there because once he’s released that band’s never coming back there. It’s just a really crappy situation, it’s unfortunate, I hope for all the boys in Lamb of God, and Randy, he’s released soon. It’s a rock show! You can’t be held liable. I hate to say it, but part of me thinks it’s because he’s in another country, and because he’s American that they’re holding him. Because he’s in an American metal band, and they gotta set an example, and I think it’s a bunch of bullshit! It’s a rock show, people come to a rock show, you know you’re gonna get roughed up a little bit, there’s gonna be a mosh pit. If a band tells you to stay off the stage, don’t try to get back on the stage!
AWAY-TEAM: Absolutely! I liken it to someone running out into a gun range and getting hit by a stray bullet, the guy had no intention of killing you, you didn’t belong there. It’s not his fault, it’s yours!
PARKER LAUZON: There are son many variables that can come into play in the situation. What happened after he got into the crowd? The crowd caught him? Or the crowd caught him and he got beat up in the crowd. You can’t blame one person for that, that’s just making an example of an American lead singer of an American metal band! Because, you know, metal’s bad, and we’re related with Satan, and evil; it’s just a bunch of bullshit! It’s just stupid, just let him out and be done with it. It is good press for that city, I’ll say that. (laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: Yeah, not for the fans though! (laughs)
PARKER LAUZON: These people want attention, and it’s really dumb. He needs to be let out and come back home.
AWAY-TEAM: Amen to that! I know you’ve just released an album, but what can we expect from EB in 2013? Any kind of live album, or DVD in the works?
PARKER LAUZON: I’d love to do a DVD! 2013? We’re not that far ahead into the planning, I think we have a lot of ammunition on this album to keep us on the radio, and keep us out for quite a while. The more touring, the better for us, that’s where we want to be. In front of the fans, playing shows. You know this tour, I’m saying this as I’m looking at the stage setup, we have this enormous backdrop, we have all these light trusses, and production, we haven’t done anything like this before. It’s such an exciting time for this band, especially being independent, we’re just recycling our own money back into our tour, and I think that’s what the secret is. You stay out on the road, you play shows over and over again, you make the show better and better, because albums (in general) are selling less and less. But 2013, to answer your question at all, I’d like to see us go to the U.K., maybe Australia would be nice. Maybe some Sweden, stuff like that, we wanna get overseas because we’re growing a fan base over there, and it’s been a long time coming to get over there and play some shows.
AWAY-TEAM: Hey, do me a favor, stay the hell out of the Czech Republic! (laughs)
PARKER LAUZON: (laughs) No, no rock shows for your for a while Czech Republic! (laughs) At least not at a club that condones stage diving, I can’t do that! (laughs)
PARKER LAUZON: That’s another thing! You just brought up a good point, that’s gonna kill the national rock scene over there. Poor fans. No band’s gonna wanna go over there now! It’s so ridiculous.
AWAY-TEAM: Last but not least, you guys recently became the first rock band to have your own tattoo ink color. Tell me a little bit how that came about, and have you gotten any pieces done with that color yet?
PARKER LAUZON: I am going to soon, actually. It was just, Dan had been talking with some guys, and they had an idea to come up with some Evans Blue ink. He flew out to Oregon, where they’re based, and got some ink done, he actually got an 8 hour session with two guys, one on each arm. I’m like ‘Man, that must’ve felt really good!’ (laughs) So he went out there, they released it, and they’re actually doing really well. We’re playing a show in Hampton Beach in a couple weeks, and they’re flying out for a convention, so I’m working on getting my chest colored in by them. So Evans Blue ink will definitely be on my chest. I can’t wait, we all love tattoos. Dan and I, I’m covered in them, and he’s catching up, it took him a while but. Yeah, Evans Blue ink, it’s a no-brainer, why haven’t other bands done it before. I mean, rock n’ roll is so connected with tattoos, and all that. We just got an email, ‘Hey, we’re thinking about making an ink. How do your guys feel about it?’ And it came out the same day as the album was released, we were like let’s do it. Dan’s got it on his arm, it’s a really cool vibrant blue, and I can’t wait to get mine!
AWAY-TEAM: What are you gonna get?
PARKER LAUZON: I’m gonna get my chest colored in, but I’m not sure exactly what I’m gonna do. I have my son’s name written across my chest, so I’m gonna just get it filled in with stuff. I think it’s about time I got the butterfly logo tattooed on me somewhere. (laughs) So I think that’s what I’m gonna do.
AWAY-TEAM: Well hey Parker, thanks so much for your time. It’s been a pleasure and an honor…
PARKER LAUZON: Hey man, anytime, my pleasure. It was fun. Some of these are not so fun, they’re kinda like pulling your hair out! (laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: I hear you. Sometimes it’s like that on the other end too. (laughs)
PARKER LAUZON: (laughs) I bet dude! (laughs) I’ve met some real characters out here, so I bet. It’s on both ends for sure! (laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: Yeah. Best of luck with the tour, and the album. Hopefully if all goes well, I’ll be seeing you next month when you make your way to Florida.
PARKER LAUZON: Yeah man, definitely hit us up, come out and have a beer!
PARKER LAUZON: Alright man, good talking to you.
AWAY-TEAM: You too man, talk to you soon. Bye.
PARKER LAUZON: Bye.
For more info on Evans Blue, including Tour Dates visit the band’s official website here.
Special thanks to Parker Lauzon for so graciously giving me his time, and to Kenneth Nixon at New Ocean Media for making it all happen.
The first annual Monster Energy Aftershock Festival, presented by California’s Rock Station – 98 Rock, is set for Sunday, September 23 at Discovery Park in downtown Sacramento, CA. The initial lineup for the full-day rock festival includes Stone Temple Pilots, Deftones, Bush, Chevelle, Hollywood Undead, Theory of a Deadman, Oleander, Escape the Fate, Otherwise, Gemini Syndrome and more.
General admission tickets for Monster Energy Aftershock Festival are available for as low as $49.50 plus fees and VIP tickets can be purchased for $99.50 plus fees. VIP tickets include: VIP entrance to venue; access to VIP lounge area featuring dedicated bar, beverage and food service; viewing of main stage (seated and standing areas); seated area with shade for dining and private restroom facilities; and a VIP guest laminate. Please visit www.AftershockConcert.com for more information.
Step into an apocalyptic underworld where firebreathers, nightmarish creatures on stilts, fire and percussive light, and stunning visuals set the stage for an intoxicating and unforgettably sinister concert experience. The first-ever KNOTFEST–an extraordinary two-date metal and hard rock festival–will feature performances from SLIPKNOT, DEFTONES, LAMB OF GOD, DETHKLOK, SERJ TANKIAN, CANNIBAL CORPSE, THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN, THE URGE, PRONG, GOJIRA and more. KNOTFEST will debut in the heart of America on Friday, August 17 in Council Bluffs, IA at Mid America Motorplex and Saturday, August 18 in Somerset, WI/Minneapolis, MN at Somerset Amphitheater. A list of artists performing at each date is available online at: www.knotfest.com.
“KNOTFEST is a chance for us to bring the sensory-overload of a wild European carnival fest to the heart of America,” explains Slipknot’s M. Shawn Crahan (Clown). “We’re thrilled to delve deep into our catalogue and play a long set for fans. This festival is meant to be touched, felt, smelled and experienced by everyone on top of seeing an amazing day of rock and metal.”
Featuring two heavy-hitting stages of hard music, KNOTFEST will create an intoxicating spectacle, as fans descend into a decadent apocalyptic underworld featuring circus big-top tents, pillars of fire, and amusement park rides–including the legendary Ring of Fire carnival ride (Saturday only)–while masked performers, firebreathers and nightmarish stilt-walkers roam the festival grounds. Interactive graffiti walls and a drum circle made of junkyard cars will entertain fans and artists alike in the immersive, dark apocalyptic atmosphere. Upon entering the gates, sinister surprises including a Slipknot museum and powerful, vibrant art installations await around every corner for fans to discover and explore.
Tickets for KNOTFEST go on-sale Friday, June 8 at 10:00 AM EDT at the festival’s website, Ticketmaster and the box office. GA tickets and a limited number of VIP packages will be available with amenities ranging from early entrance, a shaded VIP bar and lounge with a main stage viewing area (21+ only), VIP catered meals, preferred parking and a meet and greet with Slipknot. To view all ticket and VIP options for both dates, visit: www.knotfest.com.
Upon first glance, Taddy Porter looks like just another young rock band ready to take on the world. While that may be true, there’s much more to this quartet from Oklahoma; I had gotten all of thirty seconds deep into Taddy Porter’sdebut offering when I realized this. In fact, I found it quite fitting that the band whose moniker is that of the “World’s Original Beer”, is about to serve the world it’s own original musical brew. Recently, I had the chance to speak with Taddy’sfront man, the aptly-named Andy Brewer, about their odyssey from college parties, to haunted hotels, to the creation of a new musical genre.
AWAY-TEAM: First off, Congratulations on your self-titled debut album which comes out on June 29th.
ANDY BREWER: Yeah. Thanks.
AWAY-TEAM: You guys formed in Stillwater, Oklahoma…
ANDY BREWER: Correct.
AWAY-TEAM: How did you all get together?
ANDY BREWER: Uh, well actually, I was attending Oklahoma State University at the time, and uh, I happened to walk into a party one night and I heard live drumming going on at this party. And I didn’t immediately walk into the room with the drums at first, but after a few drinks I gathered enough gumption to walk into the room. And uh, I had been like playing, ya know, and writing my own songs at the time, and so I just walked into this room and my drummer now pointed at me and he goes “Do you play?”, and I was like “Yes I do” and I picked up one of the guitars that had been laying around the room and started playing one of the songs that I had written. We like meshed together real well at first, went together real well, ever since then we’ve been a band ever since.
AWAY-TEAM: Awesome. So your guys’ name, I’m sure you get this a lot, but uh, the world’s first beer? Is that correct?
ANDY BREWER: That’s correct, yeah.
AWAY-TEAM: How’d you come up with that name?
ANDY BREWER: Well uh, we were looking for names, like trying to come up with cool names. None of them which went over very well, we came up with some horrible names like “Honey Drip” and umm “Red Giants” and “Scissortail” (laughing). Just many, many of these really bad names, but uh, me and Doug (drummer Doug Jones) were at a bar just kind of going over names, and I went up to the bar and looked at the import fridge and I was going through them by price, because I was broke, I’m pretty much still broke (laughs), but uh I saw one that was $8.50 a bottle and I was just blown away that one beer could cost $8.50. So I went from price, over to the name and it was Taddy Porter, and it sounded like somebody’s name to me, and how it came about was the brand name was Tadcaster and the nickname given to it wasTaddyPorter. And uh, thinking about it, it was like you know how like Lynyrd Skynyrd sounds like someone’s name, and just thinking about these bands where it’s two names that sound like a first name and a last name. And it sounded kind of like a sophisticated beer, so I was like, what we played was like kind of like a southern jam, ya know, and I don’t know I just kinda felt like it had matched what we were playing. So that’s how it happened.
AWAY-TEAM: Right. After hearing the album, it’s funny you mention Lynyrd Skynyrd because I kind of get a little bit of that sound with you, but uh, I’ve heard it and I absolutely love it. It has a pretty unique sound for a young rock band in this day and age, which in my opinion kicks ass, but… is your sound more of a product of your musical influences, or not wanting to be just another cookie-cutter rock band?
ANDY BREWER: See, it’s a mixture of those. Because, ya know growing up we uh, I had been listening to my father’s rock n’ roll music and I loved it. I knew at an early age that I could mimic older rock singers like Paul Rodgers and Lynyrd Skynyrd and stuff like that. So when it came to making our own music, that just sort of came naturally. And ya know, I mean I love all the rock bands they’re all great, but I just didn’t want to be another one of those bands where they’re like “OK, well Taddy Porter, they sound like this band…” that’s like what’s on the radio right now. I didn’t want to be one of those bands, because then you know you get like lumped into a category and that’s as far as you go. So whenever it came to us making our sound, we felt it should be an eclectic mix of modern rock and classic rock. Some bands have started doing that like Wolfmother and The Black Keys seem to be like playing an older style of music, but they’re playing it right now with their own modern spin on it, and that’s kind of like what we want to do.
AWAY-TEAM: I’m glad you said that because you’ve enlightened me a little bit, because I’ve kinda had a hard time describing your music; other than just blues mixed in with good ole’ southern rock n’ roll. For our readers out there who aren’t familiar with your music, how would you describe your music?
ANDY BREWER: Umm, I can’t say hard rock, and I can’t say classic rock, we kinda came up with a little idea, we call it “Swagger Rock”. It’s kind of like a cool, like I didn’t want to call it “Jam Rock” or like “Guitar Rock” or something like that. So I would just say it’s kinda like a southern jam rock, yeah I don’t even know how to explain it really, but “Swagger Rock” is usually the term I use when people ask.
AWAY-TEAM: Well there you go, you just coined it here…“Swagger Rock” (laughs)
ANDY BREWER: (laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: How was it working with Skidd Mills, who also produced your former tour-mates Saving Abel, how’d that work out?
ANDY BREWER: He’s great man. He uh, we have the same manager as Saving Abel, and that’s how we got hooked up with Skidd. When ever we went in there we weren’t really familiar with working with a producer and things of that nature, it’s kind of funny because the first like co-write experience we went in and we wrote “Shake Me”, that was the first song, we were in there for eight hours and we wrote and tracked all of “Shake Me”, and it was weird to me that it could happen so fast, to write that type of song so fast. But uh, Skidd is great, he’s got a great ear, he knows what he’s doing, he’s been doing it for years, and uh, he’s just a great guy.
AWAY-TEAM: Now, that single, “Shake Me” has sort of become a staple around Citifield in New York. Tell me about that.
ANDY BREWER: Yeah, it’s uh, my father is a pitching coach in the Mets organization, and like every summer when I was growing up, I would go out where my dad was and work at the stadium, just to spend a little time with my dad. It was 2006, I think, and I went down there and I got to meet Mike Pelfrey and he was making his way up through the minor league system, and I got to know him, he got to know me, and so with the big league guys pretty much everyone’s got intro music…
ANDY BREWER: …and as he was going to pick his, he was hanging around my dad, and Mike Pelfrey was trying to figure things out, and John Maine, who’s another starting pitcher for the Mets said “Well how ’bout you use Brew’s son’s music”, Brew’s what they call my dad ‘cuz his last name’s Brewer. So he listened to it and was like “Yeah, man. I want that song”, so he picked “Shake Me”. It’s crazy to think that whenever he goes out to pitch or hit, “Shake Me” gets played all throughout Citifield. I haven’t had the chance to make it out yet to hear that, but I mean, it sounds so huge in those giant baseball stadiums. I gotta make it to a game sometime when he’s pitching to hear that, it’ll probably give me goosebumps, being the singer and what-not.
AWAY-TEAM: Hell of an audience to have that played for. (laughs)
ANDY BREWER: That’s for sure!
AWAY-TEAM: You guys have got a few big shows coming up, I see you’re playing “Rock on the Range”, with alot of other great bands. Who do you most look forward to sharing the bill with there?
ANDY BREWER: Uh, man I can’t uh, Limp Bizkit probably. I just wanna see that guy play, it’s been such a while since they’ve been touring and I just want to see the production. I heard they would breakdance on stage, and I think that would just be a sight to see. But uh, Chevelle, I’d like to see Chevelle, I think they’re playing it, and the Deftones, I’ve seen them a couple times and they’ve always been amazing live. But all the bands are great.
AWAY-TEAM: You also were on the “Class of ’09″ tour with Saving Abel, Red, and Pop Evil. Any good stories from the road there?
ANDY BREWER: Man, we had a lot of good times, we had a chance to be on the road with them during Thanksgiving, and we were at, I wanna say it was, shit I don’t remember, but the hotel was supposed to be haunted and so it was funny because some of the guys in Saving Abel are superstitious, so they were like “I can’t stay here” (laughs) because they freaked out about it and I was like “C’mon guys, nothing’s gonna happen to you” But, we got to know Saving Abel and Red pretty well, and us being the opening band, they were very welcoming to us. We partied, we learned, we learned how to be professional, and how to work because ya know they had like tour managers and everything and they have a set schedule and if you’re not on that schedule you’re gonna get bitched at. So we learned that when your on a schedule, you have to be prompt, you can’t just go wander off and do whatever, you have to be ready for what’s going on. So we learned how to be professional, and it was very easy for us to have a great time because they’re all just great guys.
AWAY-TEAM: A couple of the songs on your album, weren’t originally on there. How did the addition of those come about?
ANDY BREWER: When ever we started to put together everything, we went to Nashville and we were doing some co-writes, and we were also writing more and more of our own songs. And as the time came about we started writing more with Skidd and some of these writers, and alot of the songs we did with the co-writers we didn’t even use, but some of them we did add to the album.
AWAY-TEAM: Well I’ll tell you what Andy, you guys put together a hell of an album, and I wish you the best of luck, thank you for your time; I know it’s only a matter of time before you guys are household names.
ANDY BREWER: I hope so! (laughs)
AWAY-TEAM: Keep at it man, best of luck to you, and I look forward to seeing you come to Florida sometime in the near future.
ANDY BREWER: Hell yeah, man, I’m looking forward to it too. The south is always the best.
AWAY-TEAM: Right on, man. Well hey, next time your in town, I hope to meet you and talk some more.
ANDY BREWER: Yeah man, I got your phone number I’ll give you a call.
AWAY-TEAM: Sounds good. Thanks bro. Take it easy.
ANDY BREWER: Take it easy. Bye.
Be sure to pick up Taddy Porter’s self-titled debut album, when it hits shelves June 29th (you may have to look in the new “Swagger Rock” section). This album is very highly recommended. For more info on tour dates and where to pick up the album head over to http://www.myspace.com/taddyportermusic
Special thanks to Andy Brewer for so graciously giving me his time, and to Julie Lichtenstein at SKH Music for making it all happen.