World-renowned guitar legend Bernie Tormé has passed away aged 66, on 17th March. Bernie‘s family made the announcement on his personal Facebook page, posting a photo of Bernie, with the heading “Bernie Tormey 18.3.1952 – 17.3.2019”.
Bernie had been battling double pneumonia for a while. He would have had his 67th birthday today.
Guitar legend, blues rock psychedelic shredmeister, glam punk sleaze rock frontman: Bernie Tormé enjoyed a long and remarkable career. Hit records, world tours and international acclaim came as lead guitarist in GILLAN. After which, Bernie stepped in for Ozzy Osbourne in the aftermath of guitar legend Randy Rhoads’ tragic death before going on to front ELECTRIC GYPSIES and Tormé. Teaming up with TWISTED SISTER frontman Dee Snider and IRON MAIDEN’s drummer Clive Burr, Bernie put together DESPERADO and later reunited with ex-GILLAN colleague, John McCoy and drummer Robin Guy in GMT.
Returning to the stage in 2013, Bernie also began working in his favoured trio format once again, releasing three critically-acclaimed albums; “Flowers & Dirt” (2014), “Blackheart” (2015), the 3CD “Dublin Cowboy” (2017) package (comprising a live, an acoustic, and a new electric studio album) and “Shadowland” (2018). All were crowdfunded, connecting Bernie directly with his fans. Bernie stated: “In the past you were pretty distant and separated from your fans with a record label in between. Making these albums with pledge campaigns has been a great experience. I like having the connection with fans and getting the feedback direct on making an album.”
Three years have passed since the last album “Braindead” was released by Finnish thrashers LOST SOCIETY, but during that time the band have not stopped, unleashing their energetic onslaught of live performances to the masses!
LOST SOCIETY have just completed a very successful first ever headline ten date UK and Ireland tour and MSF Senior Manager Alison Booth caught up with charismatic front man Samy Elbanna before their performance in Sheffield. (Also for her Blackdiamond’s Metal Mayhem radio show, check the page for more news!) Samy had lots to say on what’s happening with the band and much more – check out some excerpts from the chat below and listen to the full interview on the audio player:
Discussing touring, Samy stated:
“It’s been pretty crazy because most bands usually go in cycles, they first tour then they go to the studio, then the tour and so forth. But for us it’s been a bit different – we’ve been kinda doing everything mixed up. So while we’ve been touring all the time, we’ve also been writing a lot of songs and hit the studio many times. So actually, last year’s autumn went pretty much in the studio and I can tell you that once we get back to Finland, there should be something new for everyone to listen to. And this year there will definitely be a lot of Lost Society coming out for everyone to hear and we’ll be touring a lot. And probably going to the studio again ’cause it’s been almost three years since the last release and I think it’s really amazing in the sense that we can still tour off of those three records and that really says something to us, like more than anything.
So it’s gonna be more of like a massive thank you to all of our fans when we release our next release. So stay tuned everybody, something’s happening!”
When asked about when the band will release a new album, Samy revealed:
“I can’t tell you any details but we’re gonna put out something for everyone to hear within the next month and then after that, we’ll see how the schedule happens. The first three (albums) were released via Nuclear Blast and the next one, that’s one of the things I can’t talk about. Our website will get all the information first, probably before me! (laughs)”
With Samy Elbanna Sheffield 2019
Reflecting on the band’s journey so far:
“I mean first of all, goddamn! I hadn’t even thought about that, it is almost a decade, holy shit! I think the most important thing is that it really doesn’t feel like it’s that long and I think it’s really impressive, let’s say with what’s happening nowadays. I don’t think there’s a lot of bands that stay with the same members from the beginning till this day. I mean one of the biggest and the most important things is the chemistry within the band. We have this, me and these three guys who are best friends, we’ve known each other for ages and we practice on a daily basis. So, I mean it’s impossible to have problems with these guys. It’s like we’re brothers and I would say it’s been a really crazy journey.
And I think at this point already in 2019 we have achieved more than any of us thought could be possible by playing this kinda music. And I mean of course a part of it is like the thank you to our guys. Of course we have some unbelievably awesome people behind us – you know, all the labels, the managements, everything. Without them we couldn’t do this, I’m humbled by all of it and I’m really looking forward to what’s gonna happen in the future. But one thing’s for sure, we’re not stopping any time soon!”
Discussing the band name and today’s society:
“I was twelve when I came up with Lost Society. I’ll tell you one thing, it’s changed a lot from that day when I thought ‘Hey Lost Society, that sounds pretty cool!’ Well you know, we’re pretty lost in this society.
We’ve all had in the band this kind of policy that we don’t like to talk about politics or anything about this, or be really judgemental about anything, but holy fucking shit! I mean, when you look all around us now, it’s a mess. For us, we’re lucky we’re able to tour, we all have a house and stuff like that, but there’s a lot of shit happening all around us and I think the band name is more relevant than ever.
Also, I think once we put out new music I think a lot of people will notice that there’s a lot more lyrical themes that kinda are more
relevant with this whole lost society thing. Because I think for the first two records, lyrical themes on the songs were like pretty thrashy, all kindsa stuff mixed together. But once I kinda realised at some point, and yeah I’m pretty slow (laughs), so I realised after that you can really make a difference with your art. Because you know for me, I’ve always been a guitarist, I haven’t considered myself a singer, at least in the beginning of the band. So once I realised that I also have the power to write whatever the fuck I want, I think that was the turning point for me, because I want to help fans in the way that these massive bands have made an impact on me. We’re trying to make the world at least a little better place with our music and hopefully that’s what’s happening.”
On future tour dates, Samy explained:
“When we get back home from this tour, we’re gonna be doing a few shows, just a few one-offs in Finland and through that we’re gonna start our festival season. We’ll have some shows, but we’re gonna save some time also because we’re gonna be doing some additional recording in the summer. As I said, we have a lot of material that we wanna record and release as soon as possible, so it’s gonna be cool.
And I think this whole thing that we tour and record at the same time, it’s kinda good for us because we love playing live and I think we do that enough and then you go to the studio, you just have a completely different mindset to recording, because you listen to everything. Not only you listen to, ‘is this a good song’, but you also listen to ‘how could we make it better so it works live’ even better. So it works for us and we love it!”
Well known for his time with MEGADETH, KING DIAMOND and his own power metal band EIDOLON plus more besides, Canadian guitarist Glen Drover is back with a brand new project – WALLS OF BLOOD. The album, titled “Imperium” featuring an esteemed assortment of metal vocalists such as Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens (JUDAS PRIEST, ICED EARTH), Chuck Billy (TESTAMENT), Todd La Torre (QUEENSRŸCHE) and Henning Basse (METALLIUM, FIREWIND), is set for release on 22nd February via Metalville.
MSF Senior ManagerAlison Booth recently caught up with Glen to chat about the album in more detail, as well as various other subjects, including the story of a career highlight at the UK’s Download Festival. You can read a few excerpts from the conversation below and the full interview is on the audio player:
Discussing “Imperium”, Glen stated:
“I think it’s the strongest album I’ve ever done, period. This album for me, you know I worked on it sporadically over six years and I’m just really proud, I love the whole album. I couldn’t be happier right now.
It was all people that I really wanted to work with and some, in fact most of them, were singers I might not have worked with before, but wanted to.
And then there were situations where I would approach somebody that I wanted to have on the album and then I would write a song around his type of style – something I knew he would probably be comfortable with and be able to deliver.”
On Matt Cuthbertson, who provides vocals on the track ‘Walls Of Blood’:
“Yeah he did a really good job. The band Untimely Demise, they’re from Canada and I really liked his, he’s got the raspy, growly voice like a lot of bands do – but he has more of an identity I think. I find, with all due respect to the bands that do sound similar in the vocal department, sometimes I can’t tell them apart. But there are some that have an identity, ‘oh yeah, that’s him or that’s her’ or whatever, you know. And he’s one of those guys and I just thought he’ll do really well on the song. Shawn wrote the lyrics and away we went.”
Talking about what’s next for WALLS OF BLOOD and if there’s any possibility of touring, Glen revealed:
“I’m gonna wait to see how it’s received and how I feel about it down the road. One thing I can say is that I probably wouldn’t do another album with multiple vocalists, because I’ve already done that now and it’s a little bit harder. I’m very, very happy that I did it and I’m extremely proud of the album like I mentioned, but I don’t think I would do that again. I would do an album with one singer.
As far as touring, no not at this point because of everything I just said, but is it possible that I could streamline it where it’s one line-up of say four guys, yeah and play shows, absolutely possible. If I’m gonna do it, I’m gonna know when the time comes and it would be very easy to do that. I have a couple of vocalists in mind, one in particular, I’m not gonna mention his name, that I know would be able to do all the different material that’s on the album.”
Reflecting on highlights from his career, Glen reminisced about a MEGADETH performance:
“Highlights, there’s a few. And you know, speaking of the UK, I gotta say, that’s probably if I had to pick one particular event it would’ve been the first time we played Download. We played there twice, but you know you can’t forget that.
We played on the main stage. I remember we were back waiting as the into was about to be rolled. And I was looking out in the field on the main stage at Download and there was a lot of holes. I went ‘oh shit, I was hoping it was going to be full!’ And then just before the intro, I looked my other way and in droves there’s all these people coming down the pathway ’cause one band just finished on another stage. By the time we got on stage there was not a piece of grass you could see, it was just so electric. As far as you could see, everybody was going nuts, you could feel it – it was so heavy with electricity. We played for fifty minutes and it felt like five minutes, literally. That has to be the pinnacle for me.”
“Imperium” Track Listing:
01. Leave This World Behind (feat. Nils K. Rue)
02. Discordia (feat. Todd La Torre)
03. Waiting To Die (feat. Chuck Billy)
04. Blood Sacrifice Ritual (feat. Henning Basse)
05. Tarnished Dream (feat. Tim Owens)
06. Walls Of Blood (feat. Matt Cuthbertson)
07. The Fault Of Man (feat. Henning Basse)
08. Dark Lords Of Sleep (feat. Dan Cleary)
09. Junkhead (ALICE IN CHAINS cover) (feat. Lance Harvill)
10. Seven Spirits (feat. Henning Basse)
Old-school death metal band MEMORIAMis currently working on the follow up to their highly acclaimed 2018 album “The Silent Vigil”. The band recently ensconced themselves at Parlour Studios in Kettering (UK)to kick off the recordings with renowned producer, Russ Russell (NAPALM DEATH, DIMMU BORGIR, AT THE GATES, AMORPHIS etc).
The band states: “So here we are on our second week of recording our third album at Parlour Studios with the infamous Russ Russell at the desk. Personally we think this is the album people wanted to hear from us when we set out with Memoriam, a big gritty production, aggressive vocals and music and a few curveballs thrown in to keep the grey matter active! In hindsight it feels like the previous two albums were a preparation for this one. Our most satisfying work personally to date. We hope you feel the same once you get to hear it. Anyway, onwards with the recording”
“I am not a quitter and I like to finish what I start, nevertheless, the doctors made it clear to me and my bandmates that I had no choice but to stop performing on stage for the remaining shows and possibly beyond,” Johnson explained, calling the day he received the diagnosis, “the darkest day of my professional life.”
Johnson maintained that he is not retiring from music. “My doctors have told me that I can continue to record in studios and I intend to do that,” he said. However, “for the moment, my entire focus is to continue medical treatment to improve my hearing. I am hoping that in time my hearing will improve and allow me to return to live concert performances. While the outcome is uncertain, my attitude is optimistic. Only time will tell.”
Just two days ahead of OZZY OSBOURNE‘s ‘No More Tours 2’ which was due to start in the UK and Ireland, it has been announced via the official JUDAS PRIESTFacebook page that the first four shows have been postponed due to illness. The statement reads as follows:
“It is with great regret we have to announce that the first four UK shows on the Ozzy Osbourne/Judas Priest tour have been postponed due to Ozzy having a very bad case of flu – therefore Dublin, Nottingham, Manchester and Newcastle will be rescheduled at a later date – details to follow once finalised – we are very sorry that this has happened and to disappoint so many fans – we wish Ozzy well and look forward to the Glasgow, Birmingham and London shows together – and to the rescheduled ones in the future.
JUDAS PRIEST – 28th January 2019”
The tour, which should have been starting in Dublin on 30th January, will then move onto Europe with special guests JUDAS PRIEST, before moving onto Australia and New Zealand in March.