Gear Gods — the only online destination for musicians in the heavy music community — live-streamed the fifth annual “Metal Masters” clinic last night (Wednesday, January 22) from the Anaheim, California House Of Blues.
The “Metal Masters 5″ lineup was loaded with a star-studded cast of metal musicians. As in years past, the show started with a brief clinic offering some tips and tricks, and ended with an all-star jam session of metal cover songs.
* Kerry King (SLAYER)
* Charlie Benante (ANTHRAX)
* Frank Bello (ANTHRAX)
* Scott Ian (ANTHRAX)
* David Ellefson (MEGADETH)
* Billy Sheehan (MR. BIG)
* Mike Portnoy (DREAM THEATER, THE WINERY DOGS)
* Gary Holt (EXODUS, SLAYER)
* Chris Broderick (MEGADETH)
* Philip Anselmo (PANTERA, DOWN)
* Rex Brown (KILL DEVIL HILL, PANTERA, DOWN)
* Chuck Billy (TESTAMENT)
* Steve Vai
The following songs were performed, among others:
* “Wrathchild” (IRON MAIDEN)
* “Killers” (IRON MAIDEN)
* “God Of Thunder” (KISS)
* “Sargent D And The S.O.D.” (STORMTROOPERS OF DEATH)
* “Freddy Krueger” (STORMTROOPERS OF DEATH)
* “Strength Beyond Strength” (PANTERA)
* “I’m Broken” (PANTERA)
* “Postmortem” (SLAYER)
* “Raining Blood” (SLAYER)
* “Mouth For War” (PANTERA)
* “Mandatory Suicide” (SLAYER)
* “Five Minutes Alone” (PANTERA)
* “South Of Heaven” (SLAYER)
* “Angel Of Death” (SLAYER)
* “Fucking Hostile” (PANTERA)
“‘Metal Masters’ started out as two bassists teaching a clinic and has gone on to become a spectacle that includes some of the greatest musicians that defined a genre,” says Samson‘s director of marketing and “Metal Masters” founder, Mark Menghi. “What better way to learn, than seeing these amazing performers up close and personal teaching their own personal techniques of the trade. ‘Metal Masters’ has always been about doing something special for the fans and that will never go away.”
King previously stated about his motivation for taking part in “Metal Masters”: “The reason I still do it to this day is to get Phil involved, because I think the world misses him. He’s good at what he does and I’m one of the few guys he looks up to to the point where he’d come out and do it. And I’m not blowing sunshine up my ass; it’s just a fact. And everybody wants to see Phil. Everybody loves Phil. When I come out, it’s a huge applause. When Phil comes out, it’s like somebody came back from the dead; they’re not expecting it. And it’s cool.”
In a recent interview with Full Metal Jackie, Anselmo stated about performing PANTERA songs at “Metal Masters”: “I’m up there with guys that I’ve known since the ’80s who have a good five, six years on me of playing music and being successful, people that I looked up to and still look up to… The thing is just being up there with those guys is overwhelming enough, but then playing the PANTERA songs, don’t get me wrong, it feels great, it feels fantastic, and it does bring me back to a very powerful place, a very unique place in history. I guess, growing up and cuttin’ my chops and growing up with the guys in PANTERA, we always played with a chip on our shoulder and you get that rush of memory when you’re up there doing it, but it’s a lot of emotions balled up into one, but they’re all pretty damn good. For me, the most fun thing about it of all is just seeing the fan reaction. I’ve always said that PANTERA fans were the best in the world, and I truly meant that and I still mean it. That’s why ‘Metal Masters’ keeps the pulse of the whole thing going.”
Speaking to Artisan News prior to the “Metal Masters 4″ event in September 2012, Sheehan and the other musicians spoke about what it was like for Billy to come in and play heavier stuff than he is used to.
“I’ve been prepped,” said Sheehan. “And it’s great. I actually love it. It’s like being on another planet. It’s like an adventure into another land, and it’s really cool. It’s challenging to play this stuff.”
Added Bello: “It’s great seeing [Billy] come into this world, and step up as he did. I mean, Billy Sheehan is playing [chuckles] he’s playing SLAYER and EXODUS tonight — without a pick. Just think about those lines right there. He totally kicks ass in it, too. The guy stepped up to it, and you can’t ask for more than that. So for these kids, seeing a treat like that, man, it’s a good time.”
Said Holt: “[If you had told me that] this guy here [pointing at Billy], who is one of the greatest musicians in rock history, would be standing there watching my fingers as I’m playing [EXODUS's song] ‘Piranha’, I would havee called you a stone-faced liar and said, ‘Get outta here!'”
TESTAMENT guitarist Alex Skolnick has checked in with the following update:
“Holed up in Bay Area motel with Eric P, our guitars and mini-amps, writing tunes (great ideas so far)! It all starts here:”
Testament recently released the following update:
“It is with much respect that we announce our mutual parting with bassist Greg Christian. Metal fretless bass pioneer Steve DiGiorgio will be returning to Testament.
Steve previously was a member of Testament on The Gathering (1999) as well as First Strike Still Deadly (2001). He will be joining Testament on their upcoming shows in Australia on the Soundwave Festival, Japan and Mexico City. Steve will also be taking part in the new Testament album.
We are looking forward to continuing the momentum you, the fans, have made possible.”
Find Testament’s live itinerary here.
Legendary Bay Area thrashers TESTAMENT have released the following statement:
“It is with much respect that we announce our mutual parting with bassist Greg Christian. Metal fretless bass pioneer Steve Di Giorgio will be returning to TESTAMENT. Steve previously was a member of TESTAMENT on The Gathering (1999) as well as First Strike Still Deadly (2001). He will be joining TESTAMENT on their upcoming shows in Australia on the Soundwave Festival, Japan and Mexico City. Steve will also be taking part in the new TESTAMENT album. We are looking forward to continuing the momentum you, the fans, have made possible.”
According to Nuclear Blast Records, Members of MACHINE HEAD, METALLICA, SLAYER, TESTAMENT, EXODUS, SUICIDE SILENCE, DEATH ANGEL, FORBIDDEN, SPIRALARMS and RUBBLE will perform classic songs by BLACK SABBATH as part of an all-star tribute band that will headline the “Robb Flynn & Friends” benefit concert on Friday, January 17 at the Oakland
Metro Operahouse in Oakland, California.
FORBIDDEN and SPIRALARMS guitarist Craig Locicero, who organized and will also take part in the event, had the following to say about how the idea for the benefit concert came about: “A good friend of ours and all around great person, Nikki Davis, was in a motorcycle accident with her husband Jeff. Sadly, Jeff died at the scene. Fortunately, Nikki survived but she was unconscious for a few days. She awoke to the daunting reality that her husband, soulmate and best friend had passed away. It was heartbreaking to all of us in the Bay Area scene.
“Robb Flynn and I have known Nikki for at least 25 years and she is a huge supporter of the Bay Area’s metal and punk scene.
“I wanted to help Nikki out a year ago, but most every band was busy on tour and unavailable. A few weeks ago, I had approached Robb about doing a benefit for Nikki and he thought it was a great idea.
“Robb has gone above and beyond to help bring together something very special and memorable to help Nikki on January 17th. He’s been the catalyst for getting this thing off the ground so quickly and Nikki is very thankful.
“We hope to raise enough money to help Nikki continue to get back on her feet because the healing is not finished. She still has medical bills to pay and we want to do anything we can to help our old friend.”
For those who can’t attend the concert, donations can be made to Nikki’s PayPal account at email@example.com.