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  CHRIS DALE'S METAL MELTDOWN
SCREAM FOR ME SARAJEVO PART 1
A Mission To Play Heavy Metal In The Bosnian War, December 1994
1st June 2012


chris dale

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Chris Dale is a Heavy Metal bassist. He is currently the bass player in TANK whose recent live DVD, 'WAR MACHINE' is out now. He has previously played with lots of Metal bands and projects, most notably a two year stint in Bruce Dickinson's solo band.

Chris fronts the pop-group Sack Trick, DJs occasionally on Bloodstock Radio and in his spare time works on tour as a roady for anyone going to a hot climate...

***********************************

Back when I was in Bruce Dickinson's band, I woke up way too early one day with the phone ringing. It was Bruce.

"Morning!" he said chirpily. I looked through the curtains. He was right.

"Yeah, morning!" I agreed.

"We've got another gig come in," he said.

"Great news," I replied. I love doing gigs.

"It's Sarajevo," he said. This was back in 1994 and even in my blurred mind alarms bells started ringing.

"Aren't they having a war?" I asked.

"Yeah, sort of... but it's all good. We're under UN protection and we might get a go in a tank!" he enthused. "Are you up for it?"

"Errr.... OK then," I tailed off. It was like interrogation under sleep depravation. I'd have said anything to go back to bed right then and besides, I had always wanted a go in a tank.

bruce dickinson sarajevo
Yours truly at Split Airport

When I woke up properly a bit later I thought about the strange conversation. Apparently it wasn't a dream. We were going to do a gig in war-torn Bosnia.

But it hadn't been in the news for a while and surely Bruce wouldn't be going anywhere properly dangerous. He's far from stupid. Most likely the war must have quietened down since the UN peacekeeping force had arrived... or so I thought.

As a bit of background, in the early 1990s the former Serb dominated Yugoslavia slipped into a series of vicious civil wars. Firstly Slovenia broke away from the republic, then a short war with Serbia ensued before Croatia also broke away. Croatia was the second largest (next to Serbia) of the nations of the former Yugoslavia and with a hastily formed army they put up a fierce defence of their new freedom from Serb domination.

Next Bosnia declared independence. Bosnia was in a more difficult position with Serb minorities in the North and East and Croat minorities in the West. The Bosnian Muslims lived mostly in the centre but the divisions between the communities were not clearly defined by borders. All three nationalities lived next door to each other in many towns and all three now turned on each other.

These were especially ruthless wars. No quarter was given to men, women or children. Mass murder, mutilation, torture and organised rape were common. All sides were guilty of atrocities but the Serbs were the perpetrators of some of the worst and on by far the largest scale.

Finally the UN sent in a peacekeeping force to untangle the three warring factions and impose a truce. A no fly zone was enforced, Sarajevo was still under siege but things seemed to have calmed down, at least on the news... or maybe the continued slaughter was simply no longer newsworthy?

So a couple of weeks after the initial call, we're getting ready to fly to Sarajevo. There were no direct flights (that should have rung more alarm bells), so we were flying to Split in Croatia from Birmingham International. Regular flight from a regular airport, it's all fine so far...

Just when we got on the plane it occurred to us, perhaps for the first time, that this might not really be alright. The plane was full of British soldiers, there were no holiday makers there. We were the only long haired civilians on board. Everyone else on this plane was going to a war. Oooops!

When we landed at Split airport we were met by Colonel Stuart Green, a British Army officer who was very friendly, full of smiles and lots of hand shaking.

bruce dickinson sarajevo
Alex Dickson, Bruce Dickinson and myself at Split Airport

"Thank you so much for coming out here, really so jolly good of you," he gushed. "But you've had a wasted journey, I'm very sorry to say. The show's off, it's all gone a bit hairy out there. We can't guarantee you safe passage into Sarajevo anymore so I'll get you on the next flight back. But really thank you so much for coming this far".

Several of us perked up at this news. Oh, well, nice day out, let's have a sandwich and pop home. But not Bruce. He wanted to know more. How bad was it? Could the mission be rescued? Was there another way we could get through?

I should probably at this point tell you who "we" were. There were eight of us.

bruce dickinson sarajevo
Our gang from left to right: Jed front of house engineer, Andy Veasey bass and drum tech, Alex "Sponder" Elena on drums, Bruce Dickinson- you know him already, Bob Edwards guitar tech, Alex Dickson guitarist and Roland Hyams, press agent.

Bruce, he's the lead singer of Iron Maiden. We're in the middle of touring his 'Balls To Picasso' solo album. He's also the instigator of this whole scenario and his enthusiasm for it knows no bounds.

*****************

balls to picasso   'BALLS TO PICASSO'
"It's not before time. There's so much stuff on it that people will be unaware of..."
Bruce Dickinson
balls to picasso
CLICK HERE FOR MORE ON 'BALLS TO PICASSO'balls to picasso

*****************

Alex Dickson, he's our guitar hero. He generally prefers guitars to wars.

Alex Elena, we called him Sponder to avoid/create confusion. He's the drummer and he plays very loud. He's also Italian I should warn you, and like most of his countrymen (and sensible people all around the world) believes good food should have priority over bloodshed.

bruce dickinson sarajevo
Sponder and me at Split Airport

I'm going to be expected to play bass at some point.

Roland Hyams was our press agent and he was coming along to report on events, liaise with folk and handily keep a diary (to which I've frequently referred in telling this tale). We absolutely relied on him to keep our spirits up on several occasions.

We had a small road crew with us. Irish Jed was going to be doing our front of house sound (that is if they had a sound system at the gig, we still didn't know for sure what was going to happen at the venue).

Bob Edwards was Alex's guitar technician. Bob had put himself firmly in the pacifist camp when on tour one day he had failed to fix the screaming feedback in Alex's amp but instead had concentrated on building an impressive floral display on stage left.

Andy Veasey was our super-tech looking after Sponder's drums and my bass. Me and Andy were mates from back in Wales, a top bloke. He was the one person in this scenario that I looked to for common sense on all occasions.

"We should take their advice and go home," he said solemnly.

But as luck would have it, Bruce had met some folk from a charity group called The Serious Road Trip. They did amazing work. They were mostly foreigners (Brits, Aussies and Kiwis) and they drove truck loads of supplies into worn torn areas then performed circus routines for the local children.

They painted all their trucks in bright yellow with cartoon characters on the sides at a time when every other vehicle on the road was in dark green camouflage. They were doing such a saintly task but worryingly for me, they were all quite clearly insane. They'd take us through, they said.

bruce dickinson sarajevo
Me with some Serious Road Trip crew at Split Airport

We arranged to go for dinner with the British Army then meet up later with the ironically named Serious Road Trip.

Dinner was in the UN Other Ranks canteen in Split. It was over-cooked roast beef and veg, just like school dinners but bigger portions. It was great.

bruce dickinson sarajevo
A misunderstanding in translation at the UN base in Split

After dinner we had a briefing from Squadron Leader Dave Tisdale, an RAF officer. He took us to a lecture room on camp with a big map of Bosnia on the wall. It had brightly coloured star stickers all over parts of it.

He gave us a background as to the war, showed us the route we'd be taking and told us that until recently they'd contained most of the small in-fighting. Did we have any questions?

I had quite a few actually.

"What are the stars for?" I asked innocently.

"Yes, I thought someone might ask that. As I said until recently we were getting a bit quieter. The stars are fire fights we've had reported today. There's been a quite a few as you can see..." He looked at the very starry map. So did we.

Then we went over to the Serious Road Trip centre. It was a hippy camp in the hills. They were very hospitable and plied us with beer and more food. They were very dedicated to their work in bringing a glimmer of light and fun to Bosnia's suffering children.

bruce dickinson sarajevo
Bruce and our Serious Road Trip Driver at Split Airport

They showed us video footage of them juggling in clown make up for shell-shocked kids. They took orphans for a day at the beach. We were humbled.

The video showed their trucks driving through villages shattered by artillery barrages. One video showed a truck driving along before a shell struck just in front on it. The truck swerved and avoided the falling debris. We were shocked.

Now it was dark we could hear occasional small arms fire in the distance. This was the best time to set off they reckoned. We'd be less visible, that's what they said.

I don't think it was only me among us now that was doubting the wisdom of their bright yellow colour scheme. Our truck had Road Runner painted on it too.

Perhaps the beers we'd consumed made us temporarily think this was all going to be fine still, so we got in the ex-military truck. The night was freezing cold.

Most, including Bruce, were in the back. There were no seats so everyone just sat on bits of supplies with a case of beer between them. I volunteered with Bob Edwards to sit up front for the first shift with Dave, the driver.

He was a young New Zealander, very keen, very alert. He crashed the gears, made the most of momentum and never slowed down. The scenery was pitch black except for the dimmed headlights. There were very few street lights; even most towns we passed were in ominous darkness.

Sometimes we drove down proper roads, sometimes roughly hewn tracks on the side of mountains with a cliff drop on one side. At all times we drove full pelt.

Dave told us its best not to go slow as we'd be more likely to be ambushed. As well as three warring armies, bandits would also stop vehicles for their contents. Everyone in the country was armed and hungry.

We stopped once to re-fuel and for a pee. When we jumped down most of us instinctively went to the side of the road to relieve ourselves but Dave called us gently back to the middle of the road.

"Don't go in the hedges, they're sometimes mined. The one lot drop a shell on the road, the other lot jump into the hedge for cover and find the landmines. Besides you don't know who's in the hedge".

From then on we just peed out the back of the moving truck or in an empty bottle if needed. Nobody asked for another stop.

We did however stop a couple of times for passport checks at UN checkpoints, one manned by Spanish soldiers, one by Slovaks.

"Hola," I said to the Spanish soldiers. They ignored me and we drove off.

"Do you speak any Serbo-Croat?" Dave asked me.

"Da, ja govorim malo srpsko-hrvatski," I said slowly, pleased with my homework.

"When we stop at the local army checkpoints later, don't speak any Serbo-Croat to them. Ever. No eye contact. You don't want to get into conversation with them, you don't need to make friends. Most of them are constantly drunk too, on Slivovic. We just keep quiet and speak when we're spoken to."

He looked a little nervous. I took his advice quite seriously now. This wasn't a game, was it?

We drove on through the night and just as day was breaking and I'd nodded off a little for the first time, we pulled up on the side of Mount Igman and saw Sarajevo lying in the valley below us. But the scene wasn't as beautiful as we'd hoped...

Part 2 follows next month...

Read more about the Serious Road Trip's work at http://www.theseriousroadtrip.org/history/

Click here for Part 2...
Click here for Part 3...





MORE CHRIS DALE'S METAL MELTDOWN COLUMNS HERE...

April 2013: The Future Of Classic Bands
March 2013: Smashing Pumpkins Video Shoot
February 2013: Ten Years On Total Rock
January 2013: Kiss Follow Up To Monster 2013
December 2012: Kiss Reformation Magick
November 2012: Exclusive Interview With Geoff Tate
November 2012: Morally Worrying Session
October 2012: Kiss 'Monster' Review
October 2012: The Best Invention Of All Time
September 2012: A Conversation With Rudy Sarzo
August 2012: Scream For Me Sarajevo Part 3
July 2012: Scream For Me Sarajevo Part 2
June 2012: Scream For Me Sarajevo Part 1
May 2012: Managers v Producers
April 2012: Kiss 'Monster' Album Preview
March 2012: London Venue's Nazi Past?
February 2012: How Not to Join the Ozzy Osbourne Band
January 2012: Metal Evilution
December 2011: Take Your Pick Competition
November 2011: The Pandora's Box Of Pop
October 2011: Tank Tour Diary 2011
September 2011: Festival Stage Collapses
August 2011: Bruce Air, The Early Days
July 2011: European Festival Round-Up
June 2011: Bernie Torme Proud To Be Part Of MT Ozzy Article
June 2011: Who's Your Favourite Ozzy Guitarist?
May 2011: Japanese Tsunami Disaster
April 2011: 10,000 Tank Albums!
March 2011: Death Metal Session!
6th February 2011: Gary Moore (4th April 1952 - 6th February 2011)
February 2011: Recording Bass at Steve Harris'
January 2011: A Column About Columns


Radio Sarajevo translated the article into Bosnian and here is their version...

Click here for the Radio Sarajevo article...

Chris Dale je heavy metalac, basist grupe Tank, koji su nedavno izdali svoj novi album War Machine. Do sada je svirao u mnogim bendovima, frontmen je i pop grupe Sack Trick, radi i na TotalRock radiju, a ostatak vremena radi kao vozač na turnejama "svima onima koji putuju u toplije krajeve".

U Bosni i Hercegovini, naročito u Sarajevu, pamte ga, pored drugih, po koncertu iz 1994. u ratnom Sarajevu, na kojem je nastupao zajedno sa velikim Bruceom Dickinsonom, liderom Iron Maidena. Na stranici Metaltalk.net objavio je svoju priču o putu u Sarajevu i koncertu. Donosimo prvi dio, a drugi dio će biti objavljen u narednim sedmicama.

Pa zar tamo nije rat?!

U vrijeme kada sam svirao u bendu Brucea Dickinsona, jedno jutro probudio me je telefon: bio je to Bruce. "Jutro"... zacrvkutao je na telefon... Pogledao sam kroz prozor.... bio je u pravu.

"Da, jutro... slažem se." - "Imamo uskoro još jednu svirku", rekao je. - "Odlična vijest, volim svirke..."

"Ali sviramo u Sarajevu!" Bilo je to 1994. godine, i u mojoj smušenoj glavi upalila se lampica... Upitao sam: "Zar tamo trenutno nije rat?"

"Pa... tako nešto... Ali sve je OK, pod zaštitom smo UN-a. Kad budemo tamo, morat ćemo se kretati u tenku. Šta misliš o tome?" pitao me. "Hm... Uredu, onda", kazao sam u tom bunilu bilo šta samo da se vratim u krevet... Uostalom, oduvijek sam želio da se vozim u tenku.. [...]

Jedino smo mi imali duge kose

Nekoliko sedmica kasnije bili smo spremni letimo za Sarajevo. Nije postojao direktan let do tamo, što me dodatno zbunilo, pa smo letili sa aerodroma u Birminghamu do Splita. Još uvijek je sve izgledalo normalno...

Tek kad smo poletjeli, sinulo nam je po prvi put da se stvari mogu zakomplikovati. Avion je bio pun britanskih vojnika. Situacija se činila ozbiljnom. Jedino smo mi imali duge kose, a svi ostali u avionu su ustvari išli u rat...

Kada smo sletjeli u Split, dočekao nas je britanski oficir Stuart Green. Bio je nasmijan i raspoložen.

"Hvala vam mnogo što ste došli ovdje, baš lijepo od vas", rekao je. - " Džaba ste putovali ovamo, ništa od nastupa, stvari su se zakomplikovale... Više vam ne možemo garantovati siguran put do Sarajeva, tako da ću vas poslati avionom nazad... Ali stvarno, hvala vam što ste prevalili toliki put..."

Vijest nas je zatekla, ali OK, lijep je dan, pojedimo sendvič i nazad kući. Ali Brucea je zanimalo da li postoji neki drugi način da uradimo ono zbog čega smo došli. Možda postoji neki drugi put do tamo.

U ovom momentu bih vjerovatno trebao objasniti ko smo to "mi". Bilo nas je sedmero.

Bruceov bezgranični entuzijazam

Bruce je lider Iron Maidena [koji u to vrijeme, kratkoročno, nije bio član Maidena]. Bili smo u sred turneje Balls to Picasso, i on je svakako inicijator čitave ove ideje, a njegov entuzijazam ne poznaje granice.

Alex Dickson je bio naš guitar hero. On je uglavnom preferira gitare u ratovima. Alex Elena, zvani Sponder, bubnjar i svira veoma glasno. Talijan je i voli svoje zemljake (voli također i sve osjećajne ljude na svijetu) i vjeruje da umjesto što ratujemo, trebamo cijeniti dobru hranu.

Roland Hyams je novinar koji nas prati, i njegov zadatak je da izvještava o nastupima. Pisao je dnevnik (koji mi je mnogo pomogao da ispričam ovu priču). Bio nam je moralni oslonac u nekoliko navrata.

Bob Edwards je bio Alexov tehničar za gitaru, a Andey Veasey Sponderov tehničar za bubnjeve i bas.

Andy je razuman čovjek i na njega sam se mogao osloniti. U jednom momentu je rekao: "Poslušajmo njihov savjet i krenimo kući".

Hipi humanitarci u kamionima

Ne znam jeli nas sreća poslužila ili nije, ali Bruce je upoznao neke ljude iz dobrotvorne organizacije zvane "The Serious Road Trip". Napravili su odličan posao. Bili su uglavnom stranci, i vozili su kamione sa zalihama hrane u zaraćena područja, a kasnije bi priredili cirkus za lokalne klince.

Ofarbali su sve kamione u svijetlu žutu boju, i na njima naslikali likove iz crtića, u vrijeme kada je svaki drugi kamion bio maskirno zeleni. Činili su svetački posao, ali su ujedno bili dovoljno "ludi" da bi bili u stanju obavljati taj posao. Rekli su da nas mogu odvesti tamo.

Dogovorili smo da odemo na večeru sa britanskim vojnicima, a kasnije smo se ponovo našli sa ekipom ironičnog naziva Serious Road Trip.

Večera je bila sa oficirima visokih činova u Splitu. Za večeru smo imali pečenu govedinu i povrće. Bilo je odlično.

Nakon večere smo imali informativni razgovor sa Daveom Tisdaleom, oficirom RAF-a, britanskih zračnih snaga. Pokazao nam je veliku kartu Bosne i uputio nas u situaciju.

[...]

Nakon toga smo otišli do centra Seriuos Road Trip. Bio je to hipi kamp u brdima. Bili su veoma gostoljubivi i ponudili su nas pivom i hranom. Bili su veoma posvećeni svom poslu, pružali su tračak nade i malo zabave napaćenoj bosanskoj djeci. Pokazali su nam snimke na kojima klauni žongliraju ispred djece. Taj dan su neke od te djece poveli na plažu da se kupaju. Bili smo zapanjeni.

Na snimku se vide njihovi kamioni koji prolaze kroz razrušena naselja. Na jednom snimku se čak vidi kamion u momentu dok granata pada ispred njega. Bili smo u šoku.

Većina gradova bila je u mraku

Već je pala noć, a u daljini su se mogle čuti povremene detonacije od granatiranja. "Bilo bi najbolje da isključimo svu opremu, da što manje privlačimo pozornost...", rekli su nam.

Mislim da nisam bio jedini koji je počeo sumnjati u "mudrost" žuto ofarbanih kamiona... Naš kamion je na sebi imao naslikanu Pticu Trkačicu.

Vjerovatno su pive koje smo popili učinile to da još uvijek mislim kako će sve biti uredu, pa smo ušli u jedan od vojnih kamiona. Noć je bila hladna. Većina je, uključujući Brucea, sjedila pozadi. Pošto nije bilo sjedišta, svi smo sjedili na kutijama od namirnica, sa kartonom pive između. Bob Edwards i ja smo se dobrovoljno javili da sjedimo naprijed.

Dave je bio vozač. Mladić sa Novog Zelanda, veoma oprezan i napet. Bio je potpuni mrak i nismo nikako stali. Samo ponegdje je bilo ulične rasvjete. Većina gradova kroz koje smo prošli je bila u mraku.

Ponekad smo se vozili pravim cestama, a ponekad grubo isklesanim stazama po planinama, gdje su visoke litice uvijek bile sa jedne strane. Išli smo punom paprom.

Svi su naoružani i gladni

Dave nam je rekao kako je najbolje da idemo brzo, u protivnom ćemo naletjeti na zasjedu. Pored tri zaraćene armije, vrlo često se dešava da kamione zaustavljaju lokane bande radi pljačke. Svi su u ovoj zemlji ili naoružani ili gladni.

Stali smo jednom da napunimo gorivo i obavimo nuždu. Kada izlaziš iz kamiona, instinktivno staneš uz cestu da se "olakšaš", ali Dave nas je polako zovnuo i rekao da ne obavljamo nuždu na terenu pored ceste, jer on vrlo lako može biti miniran. Od tada smo svi obavljali nuždu sa zadnjeg dijela kamiona u pokretu, ili u staklene boce, ako je za to bilo potrebe. Niko više nije tražio da stanemo.

Nekoliko puta i kada jesmo stali, bilo je zbog kontrole pasoša. Bila su dva UN-ova punkta, jedan španski, drugi slovački.

Uglavnom su na šljivovici

"Hola", rekao sam jednom španskom vojniku koji potpuno izignorisao... Nastavili smo dalje.

"Priča li ko od vas imalo srpsko-hrvatskog jezika?" pitao nas je Dave. - "Da, ja govorim malo..." zadovoljno mu odgovorih...

"Kada budemo stali na jednom od lokalnih stajališta, nemoj im se uopće obraćati na srpsko-hrvatskom jeziku. Nipošto. Ni kontakt očima. Vjeruj mi da ne želiš ni pokušati razgovarati s njima, niti da se sprijateljiš s njima. Većina njih je konstantno pijana, i to na šljivovici".

Od tog momenta smo šutili i pričali samo onda kad nam se neko obrati. Dave je izgledao nervozno. Shvatili smo ga ozbiljno. Ovo više nije igra, zar ne?

Vozili smo se dugo u noć, i taman nekad pred zoru, uspio sam zaspat. Stali smo na planini Igman i tu sam prvi put vidio Sarajevo kako se dolinom pruža ispred nas. Ali prizor nije bio tako prijatan kako smo se nadali...

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The hillbilly cover artists will bring their own versions of classic rock tracks to the BBC 2 New Years Eve celebrations...

scott stapp CREED'S SCOTT STAPP CLAIMS HE IS ON A MISSION TO ASSASSINATE PRESIDENT OBAMA
A tape of a 911 call from relatives has emerged, detailing another extraordinary happening in the continued downward spiral of Creed's Scott Stapp...

saxon SAXON DRUMMER NIGEL GLOCKLER UNDERGOES SURGERY FOR BRAIN ANEURYSM
Saxon had to postpone all their remaining tour dates earlier this week after drummer Nigel Glockler was rushed to hospital...

ac dc AC/DC ANNOUNCE UK AND IRELAND STADIUM DATES
The 2015 AC/DC world tour is coming and they could contain the band's last ever dates...

kk downing KK DOWNING LAUNCHES WORLD'S FIRST EVER HEAVY METAL FRAGRANCES
"I think I just woke up one morning and thought of the word 'Metal'..."

hellfest HELLFEST ANNOUNCE ANOTHER WAVE OF BANDS PLUS WEEKEND TICKETS NOW SOLD OUT
The second wave of bands have been confirmed for Hellfest in Clisson, France...

jack black JACK BLACK GUESTS IN NEW OFF! VIDEO 'OVER OUR HEADS' AS A SKY DIVING COACH ON AN LSD TRIP
Check out the first chapter of an epic two part video right here...

ginger wildheart NEW POWERWOLF ALBUM COMING IN 2015
"There's songs to go wild to, there's epic and atmospheric stuff - and a lot of wolfish Metal madness in between..."

ginger wildheart GINGER WILDHEART OFFERS A CHRISTMAS PRESENT IN EXCHANGE FOR THE WORST CHRISTMAS GIFT
Send in the most awful Xmas gift you have ever received for the chance to have a specially written song - the most personal and precious item Ginger can offer to his fans...

steve hackett STEVE HACKETT ANNOUNCES NEW SOLO STUDIO ALBUM 'WOLFLIGHT'
The album will be released on 30th March, followed by tour dates in October...

saxon BREAKING NEWS: SAXON FORCED TO POSTPONE REMAINING UK TOUR DATES
"Devastating news that our friend and drummer Nigel has been taken ill..."

john otway JOHN OTWAY RELEASES VIDEO FOR CHRISTMAS HIT 'OK FATHER CHRISTMAS'
The official video to the John Otway Christmas hit 'OK Father Christmas' has now been released...

bob daisley BOB DAISLEY SAYS CLASSIC ROCK SHOULD BE "ASHAMED" AFTER GIVING SECRET AWARD TO RANDY RHOADS
"I co-wrote the music with Randy, I wrote more than 90% of the lyrics..."

europe EUROPE TO RELEASE 'WAR OF KINGS' ON UDR RECORDS IN MARCH 2015
Swedish rock legends Europe will also embark on a UK tour with Black Star Riders to celebrate their 10th studio album...

christmas number one JOHN OTWAY AND IRON MAIDEN IN TOP FOUR PLACES FOR CHRISTMAS NUMBER ONE BETTING
"Rock And Roll's Greatest Failure" truly believes in what he's doing and his Christmas single is no exception...

bloodstock BLOODSTOCK REVEALS FINAL HEADLINER TRIVIUM, PLUS SABATON AND AGALLOCH FOR 2015
Bloodstock HQ have got your back, with three more crackin' bands announced before the holidays, including the final headliner...

blind guardian BLIND GUARDIAN NEW TRACK 'TWILIGHT OF THE GODS' NOW ONLINE - LISTEN HERE
"It is impossible for us to choose a song that represents the whole album..."

venom_cover VENOM REVEAL STUNNING ARTWORK FOR 'FROM THE VERY DEPTHS'
The album will be released on January 26th and promises to be every bit as striking as the artwork...

pretty reckless THE PRETTY RECKLESS END UK TOUR WITH INTIMATE ACOUSTIC SET
Gossip Girl Taylor Momsen and guitarist Ben Phillips played a short acoustic set for 100 lucky fans...

gammaray GAMMARAY RELEASE 'THE BEST OF' AND OTHER CATALOGUE RE-RELEASES
A chance to own a superb collection from one of the most solid flagships in classic and power Heavy Metal...

finsterforst FINSTERFORST RELEASE BRAND NEW MUSIC VIDEO FOR TITLE TRACK
'Mach Dich Frei', the new epic album, is released on February 2nd, followed by a European tour...

eric martin mr big ERIC MARTIN FORCED TO POSTPONE UK SOLO TOUR
"It has not been made clear to SD Entertainment nor Eric and his management of what specifically is required more so than usual..."

behemoth BEHEMOTH REVEAL FIRST EVER OFFICIAL LIVE VIDEO
Watch the striking video for 'Ora Pro Nobis Lucifer' here. The band head out on a UK tour next week...

aquostic STATUS QUO ANNOUNCE 'AQUOSTIC' UK TOUR
The 'Aquostic' album takes twenty five songs from Status Quo's back catalogue and makes them shine in a stripped down format with a fully acoustic reworking...

napalm death NAPALM DEATH UNVEIL THE ALBUM ARTWORK AND TRACKLISTING FOR 'APEX PREDATOR - EASY MEAT'
"There are many meanings that you could grab from the new album artwork, but one is the representation of how our natural and most basic needs for happiness and communication are being stripped away by materialism and pre-packaged garbage..."

grand magus GRAND MAGUS REVEAL VIDEO FOR 'STEEL VERSUS STEEL' AHEAD OF UK TOUR DATES
Catch the Swedish riff lords supporting Behemoth in December...

neal morse THE NEAL MORSE BAND ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM 'THE GRAND EXPERIMENT' TO BE RELEASED IN FEBRUARY 2015
The band have also confirmed European tour dates with Beardfish...

nickelback NICKELBACK ANNOUNCE SHOW AT THE SSE ARENA, WEMBLEY FOR NOVEMBER 24TH 2015
Nickelback's tenth world tour will end on a high with a spectacular show in London...

korpiklaani KORPIKLAANI PLAY THE O2 ACADEMY ISLINGTON, LONDON THIS THURSDAY 4th DECEMBER
Both bands are currently supporting Sabaton on their UK tour this month, which coincides with this special show date...

atreyu ATREYU ANNOUNCE HEADLINE SHOW AT CAMDEN UNDERWORLD, LONDON
The intimate headline show takes place on April 29th. A new album, their first since 2009, is also due in 2015...

robin trower ROBIN TROWER CONFIRMS NEW ALBUM AND SPECIAL GUEST JOANNE SHAW TAYLOR ON UK TOUR
'Somethings About To Change' is the stunning new release from the distinguished guitarist...

hornet HORNET RELEASE VIDEO FOR 'CRY WOLF'
The track is taken from Hornet's new EP which will be released in 2015...

fm FM ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM AND TOUR
Following the epic 30 year anniversary celebrations, FM launch 'Heroes And Villains' for 2015...

blind guardian BLIND GUARDIAN POST FIRST ALBUM TRAILER FOR 'BEYOND THE RED MIRROR' ON YOUTUBE
Take a glimpse into the spell binding new opus from Metal's most epic storytellers...

dave mustaine MEGADETH'S DAVE MUSTAINE'S MOTHER-IN-LAW FOUND DEAD
In a tragic week for the Megadeth frontman, the body of Sally Estabrook, Mustaine's mother-in-law is found after a six week search...

soto SOTO TO RELEASE 'INSIDE THE VERTIGO' ON 2ND FEB 2015
Jeff Scott Soto returns to his heavy roots. "The past 5 or more years have propelled me a plethora of anger and frustration, I'm actually quite pissed off about a lot of things, Soto is my outlet to release some of this pent up emotion..."

one way mirror FRENCH ROCKERS ONE WAY MIRROR RELEASE TRAILER FOR UPCOMING ALBUM 'CAPTURE'
The album will be released in January 2015 and live dates will be announced shortly...

papa roach PAPA ROACH ANNOUNCE HEADLINE TOUR FOR MARCH 2015
"We are super stoked to get back to do a headlining show for the fans in the UK and we've got tricks up our sleeve for this tour so be ready, it's gonna be off the chain!"...

venom VENOM TO PERFORM ENTIRE NEW ALBUM ON BOARD 70000 TONS OF METAL
Catch the world premiere of the band's 14th studio album on the world's biggest and best Heavy Metal cruise...

attica rage ATTICA RAGE TO SUPPORT GRAHAM BONNET IN GLASGOW
Get a special discounted ticket price for the gig on December 4th when you buy direct from the band...

fish FISH EMBARKS ON DECEMBER UK TOUR
The Moveable Feast tour contains the dates originally scheduled for May 2014 in support of the album 'A Feast Of Consequences'...

lord impaler LORD IMPALER CELEBRATE 16-YEAR ANNIVERSARY WITH NEW EP
The Melodic Black Metallers from Greece revive their demo era in advance of new studio album...

megadeth BREAKING NEWS: MEGADETH FALL APART AS BRODERICK AND DROVER QUIT THE BAND
There has been no comment from Megadeth at all and the split leaves Dave Mustaine and co-founding bassist David Ellefson as the only current members of the band...

michael schenker METALLICA TO PLAY READING AND LEEDS FESTIVALS 2015
It will be Metallica's fourth appearance at Reading having first played there in 1997 and again in 2003 and 2008...

michael schenker MICHAEL SCHENKER ANNOUNCES SPECIAL GUESTS ON UK DECEMBER TOUR
Michael Schenker embarks on a nationwide UK tour at Newcastle O2 Academy on Wednesday 10th December...

sick of it all SICK OF IT ALL ANNOUNCE UK HEADLINE TOUR
Catch the acclaimed band touring in support of the 'Last Act Of Defiance' album...

german panzer THE GERMAN PANZER GIVE FANS A SNEAK PEEK AT NEW VIDEO FOR 'DEATH KNELL'
Not long to wait now until the debut album 'Send Them All to Hell'. Check out the preview and first track here...

the skull THE SKULL ANNOUNCE DECEMBER U.S. TOUR DATES
There will be nine dates to promote the debut album 'For Those Which Are Asleep'...

foreigner FOREIGNER RELEASE INSTANT DOWNLOAD OF 'NIGHT LIFE' FROM 'THE BEST OF 4 & MORE'
The full homage to Foreigner's most successful album ever will be released on December 8th in the UK ...

patrick kistler PATRICK KISTLER ISSUES STATEMENT ON DEPARTING ELUVEITIE
"In the end the majority but not all of the band decided to expel me from the Eluveitie hood by a democratic vote, we're still very Swiss..."

sanctuary SANCTUARY ANNOUNCE EUROPEAN TOUR
The tour starts next March with a very special show in London before they join the mighty Overkill for a run of mainland shows...

metal all stars METAL ALL STARS POSTPONE EUROPEAN DATES
All November and December dates, including Brixton Academy, will now be rescheduled to Spring 2015...

ac/dc AC/DC: 'ROCK OR BUST' STREAMING NOW ON iTUNES
AC/DC may be going through it, but it sounds like it's all worth the wait. 'Rock Or Bust' is streaming now for free on iTunes...

absolva CHRIS APPLETON OF ABSOLVA RELEASES FREE SONG FROM FORTHCOMING SOLO ACOUSTIC ALBUM - LISTEN HERE
Absolva frontman Chris Appleton is to release a solo acoustic album, 'Restless', on 2nd February 2015...

arthur brown ARTHUR BROWN ANNOUNCES DATES FOR 2015
The Showman Of The Year will be telling his story in his own unique style and also performing shows with The Crazy World Of Arthur Brown...

system of a down SYSTEM OF A DOWN ANNOUNCE A ONE-OFF SHOW AT THE SSE ARENA WEMBLEY
April 10th 2015 sees System Of A Down play their first UK indoor show in ten years...

krushfest KRUSHFEST TO TAKE PLACE IN OCTOBER 2015
Classic Rock Tours honour the icon and legend Krusher Joule with his own festival...

eluveitie ELUVEITIE PARTS WAYS WITH PATRICK KISTLER
"After six years and four albums, he leaves big shoes to fill..."

heat H.E.A.T ANNOUNCE 'LIVE IN LONDON' ALBUM
The powerful performance of the Swedish rock sensations is captured here, from their date at The Garage in May 2014...

revolution saints REVOLUTION SAINTS TO RELEASE EPONYMOUS DEBUT ALBUM
Put three rock titans together - Deen Castronovo, Jack Blades and Doug Aldrich - and you have the new exciting supergroup of melodic rock...

ufo UFO ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM DETAILS AND 2015 TOUR DATES
"A Conspiracy Of Stars is another successful combination of those typical UFO elements with fresh, contemporary ideas..."

battle beast BATTLE BEAST RELEASE NEW TRACK 'TOUCH IN THE NIGHT' - LISTEN HERE
"'Touch In The Night' is probably the farthest away from typical Battle Beast sound we've ever gone..."

sebastien SEBASTIEN RELEASE NEW LIVE VIDEO FROM MASTERS OF ROCK FESTIVAL
The track is a version of Black Sabbath's 'Headless Cross', recorded earlier this year...

napalm death NAPALM DEATH DEBUT FIRST SONG FROM 'APEX PREDATOR - EASY MEAT' ALBUM
A first online teaser from the new album is now available. Napalm Death are currently on tour in Europe...

audrey horne AUDREY HORNE ARE NOW ON TOUR
'Pure Heavy' comes to Europe with an extensive run of dates..."

peckham cowboys THE PECKHAM COWBOYS UNWRAP VIDEO FOR 'BROMLEY GIRLS'
The song is a tale of "a young aristocratic lady of high breeding, led astray by a terrible man. Only the names have been changed, because we forgot them..."

abgott ABGOTT PLAY ONLY UK SHOW OF 2014 IN DECEMBER
The Black Metal heroes will play the Boston Music Rooms on December 5th...

fear factory FEAR FACTORY CANCEL EUROPEAN TOUR
Fear Factory will be concentrating on finishing their new studio album and will return in the Summer of 2015...

download KISS AND MUSE ANNOUNCED AS DOWNLOAD 2015 HEADLINERS
British rock trio Muse will headline the Saturday night of next year's event, which runs between June 12th and 14th...

magnum MAGNUM RELEASE NEW SINGLE 'ON CHRISTMAS DAY' ON DECEMBER 1ST
The poignant song is based on a true life incident in the WW1 trenches...

sonata arctica SONATA ARCTICA DANCE ACROSS NORTH AMERICA IN HILARIOUS NEW VIDEO FOR GENESIS COVER 'I CAN'T DANCE'
"The experience ranged from no one even paid too much attention to us to people looking a little scared..."

manowar MANOWAR ANNOUNCE GERMAN DATES FOR 2016 WORLD TOUR
The German dates are just the first of many live appearances, with plenty more to be announced. "And for 2016, we will have more surprises and an even bigger production..."

ensiferum ENSIFERUM ANNOUNCE ALBUM TITLE AND RELEASE DATE FOR 2015
"Kippo kicked our asses to make us do the very best, and you can hear that in this album. It's a killer album with killer sound. I'm very proud to a part of this masterpiece..."

hellfest BREAKING NEWS: HELLFEST ANNOUNCE MOTORHEAD, SCORPIONS, ALESTORM, SLASH, ZZ TOP, VENOM AND MANY, MANY MORE FOR 2015
Hellfest have announced a stellar line-up for the 2015 edition of the festival which will take place at on June 19th to 21st 2015...

download BREAKING NEWS: JUDAS PRIEST, SLIPKNOT AND MORE ANNOUNCED FOR DOWNLOAD 2015
Slipknot will play the main stage at Donington on Friday June 12th, following Judas Priest...

chris appleton CHRIS APPLETON ANNOUNCES ACOUSTIC ALBUM & TOUR
In the downtime between Absolva projects, Chris Appleton applies his skills to solo album 'Restless'...

out and loud NAPALM RECORDS ANNOUNCE LABEL NIGHT AT OUT & LOUD FESTIVAL 2015
The German festival gets off to a quality start with the warm up night on July 3rd featuring a fine cross-section of the label repertoire...

jeff loomis ARCH ENEMY WELCOME JEFF LOOMIS AS NEW GUITARIST
The ex-Nevermore guitarist will debut for Arch Enemy on the European tour starting November 26th as Nick Cordle's replacement...

wildfire WILDFIRE FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES 2014 CHRISTMAS SHOWCASE
The two day showcase promises to give Glasgow a Rock and Metal party to remember...

periphery PERIPHERY ANNOUNCE DUAL ALBUMS FOR 2015
There will also be plenty of touring in next year, including a stint on the road with Devin Townsend Project...

anathema ANATHEMA ANNOUNCE 'RESONANCE' SHOW AT SHEPHERDS BUSH EMPIRE IN APRIL 2015
This special show will be a celebration of the entire history of Anathema music...

cradle of filth CRADLE OF FILTH SIGN WORLDWIDE DEAL WITH NUCLEAR BLAST
"For the full frontal assault we have planned for the awesome new album, Nuclear Blast are the perfect war stallion to carry us screaming into the heart of the next chapter of COF's dark, enigmatic history..."

yardbirds THE YARDBIRDS RETURN TO LONDON WITH SPECIAL GUESTS SOME VELVET MORNING
The Yardbirds will play Bush Hall on November 21st, fifty years after the release of the seminal 'Five Live Yardbirds'...

marilyn manson NEW MARILYN MANSON ALBUM 'THE PALE EMPEROR' COMING JANUARY 19th
The album is available for pre-orders now...

udo UDO, ONE OF GERMAN CLASSIC ROCK'S GREATEST, ANNOUNCES NEW ALBUM
'Decadent' is mastered and due for release in January 2015...

fozzy FOZZY LAUNCH VIDEO CLIP FOR 'DO YOU WANNA START A WAR'
"Fog, slow motion camera shots, and chicks in military uniforms. Touchdown!..."

phil rudd 'PROCURE TO KILL' CHARGE AGAINST AC/DC DRUMMER PHIL RUDD DROPPED BUT OTHER CHARGES REMAIN
Rudd is on bail and is scheduled to reappear in court on November 27th and still faces one charge of threatening to kill...

blind guardian BLIND GUARDIAN TO RELEASE 'BEYOND THE RED MIRROR' IN FEBRUARY 2015
"A story between science fiction and fantasy. While there used to be several passages between the worlds, there is only one gate left now: The Red Mirror. It has to be found at any cost..."

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