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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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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 2015: Undiscovered Kisstory: The Kiss Drummer Auditions Of 1980
March 2015: Matthew Trippe RIP - The strange case of the man who would be Nikki Sixx
November 2014: Kiss: 'Love Gun' Deluxe Edition
October 2014: Mr. Big – Live Review at Koko, London
September 2014: Mr. Big: 'The Stories We Could Tell' album review
September 2013: Intensive Bass Course with Billy Sheehan
August 2013: Booking Agents vs Promoters
July 2013: Rock and Metal Pub Quiz
June 2013: Communication Tips For European Festivals, Or How To Learn A Language In An Evening
May 2013: Storm Thorgerson (1944-2013) RIP
April 2013: Daily Mail Columnist Richard Littlejohn Sinks To New Low With Anti-Heavy Metal Article
April 2013: The Future Of Classic Bands
March 2013: Smashing Pumpkins Video Shoot
Febuary 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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"It was incredibly nice, the people celebrated endlessly and everyone in the hall stood up and clapped for me..."

aerosmith AEROSMITH CONSIDERING TOURING WITHOUT STEVEN TYLER: COULD AXL ROSE TAKE HIS PLACE?
It might seem like a crazy idea but so was the idea of Axl singing for AC/DC...

king diamond KING DIAMOND ANNOUNCES ANGEL WITCH AS SPECIAL GUESTS AT UPCOMING LONDON SHOW
Geoff Barton of Sounds magazine once memorably described their bludgeoning sound as: "The first Black Sabbath album played through a cement mixer."

the amity affliction THE AMITY AFFLICTION TO RELEASE NEW ALBUM 'THIS COULD BE HEARTBREAK': NEW SINGLE STREAMING HERE NOW
The Amity Affliction have established themselves as a leading force in the heavy music world...

von hertzen brothers 7PM MANAGEMENT TAKE ON WORLDWIDE MANAGEMENT OF THE VON HERTZEN BROTHERS
"I have followed the band for quite some time and am a genuine fan as they to me are everything I love about music both fusing styles and breaking rules..."

paul di anno PAUL DI'ANNO HEALTH DIAGNOSIS REVEALED BY ARCHITECTS OF CHAOZ
"We want to give you a short update about Paul's physical situation..."

motorhead RARE MOTÖRHEAD MEMORABILIA BELONGING TO THE LATE PHILTHY ANIMAL TAYLOR APPEARS IN ONLINE AUCTION
Amongst the items is the backdrop from the 1916 Motörhead world tour...

hawkwind HAWKWIND, WISHBONE ASH, JOHN LEES' BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST, PENDRAGON HEAD UP HRH PROG 5
"Having these four class acts together will be a real treat for all prog enthusiasts..."

airforce AIRFORCE, FEATURING FORMER IRON MAIDEN DRUMMER, TO RELEASE NEW ALBUM IN JULY
"He was so overwhelmed by all the response he got, he decided to get behind the drumkit again..."

soto SOTO RELEASES NEW OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO FOR 'UNBLAME'
Soto, featuring vocalist Jeff Scott Soto, have completed their second studio album, 'Divak', out now via earMUSIC...

temperance movement THE TEMPERANCE MOVEMENT RELEASE REVOLUTIONARY 'WHITE BEAR' MUSIC VIDEO
"The idea of doing the 'White Bear' video using the Revolution system was an exciting prospect and the results are stunning..."

stone broken STONE BROKEN RELEASE NEW SINGLE 'BETTER'
"It's about getting off your backside and stop procrastinating, to not wait for something to happen but actually make it happen..."

ac dc AC/DC PERFORM 'IF YOU WANT BLOOD (YOU'VE GOT IT)' LIVE FOR FIRST TIME SINCE 2003
Axl once again performed from a throne after he snapped his metatarsal bone during Guns N' Roses' Troubadour reunion show on April 1st...

iron maiden BRUCE DICKINSON THREATENS UNRULY IRON MAIDEN FAN IN ADELAIDE AFTER BREAKING CHINESE CENSORSHIP RULES
Maiden were forced to alter the lyrics to 'Powerslave' to "Tell me why I had to be a wicker man"...

motorhead MOTÖRHEAD FRONTMAN LEMMY TO APPEAR ON GERMAN STAMPS
"A great artist, a gentleman, an honest and loyal person, an icon for many and an inspiration for his fellow artists and fans."

fastway BREAKING NEWS: FASTWAY CONFIRMED FOR HRH X IN NOVEMBER
Fastway, featuring legendary Motörhead guitarist Fast Eddie Clarke, will be appearing on the same bill as Phil Campbell's All Starr Band

lita ford LITA FORD TO MAKE FIRST UK APPEARANCE FOR 28 YEARS IN JUNE
Lita Ford, the Queen of hard rock and former guitarist of the all girl band The Runaways, has announced an exclusive one off date in the UK in the rock 'n roll capital city of..... wait for it...

di anno PAUL DI'ANNO BRAZIL DATES CANCELLED AS SINGER IS REPORTEDLY HOSPITALISED
"Paul is in the hospital and we have been informed directly that his state of health at the moment is extremely delicate..."

alice cooper ALICE COOPER TO REUNITE ORIGINAL 'KILLER' BAND FOR NEW ALBUM
"You can never go back and totally recapture it, but you can certainly look at the elements that made that album work the way it did."

city rock DUTCH CITYROCK FESTIVAL BECOMES A TWO DAY EVENT
The festival is popular for it's relaxed vibe and very central location so fans can make use of the local town amenities as well as those in the festival grounds...

cats in space CATS IN SPACE RELEASE SINGLE AND PREMIERE NEW VIDEO
"At the end everyone was insisting this had to be a single. Who was I to argue? After all, it hit all the 70s iconic themes that I loved as a kid."

no sinner NO SINNER RELEASE NEW ALBUM 'OLD HABITS DIE HARD' ON 20th MAY 2016
She's barrelling down the highway, her grip on the throttle, and you better believe you're going to hear her coming from miles away...

apocalyptica APOCALYPTICA CELEBRATE 20th ANNIVERSARY OF 'PLAYS METALLICA BY FOUR CELLOS' WITH ENHANCED RE-RELEASE AND THREE UK DATES
Added to this new version will be brand new, never-before-released instrumental recordings...

kreator KREATOR ANNOUNCE TOUR WITH SEPULTURA, SOILWORK AND ABORTED
Ever since the early 2000s Kreator have taken their sound and thrash Metal in general to the next level by releasing modern classics...

epica EPICA ANNOUNCE SHEPHERD'S BUSH EMPIRE SHOW WITH POWERWOLF
"We are excited to return to gorgeous London to promote our upcoming album which will be released later this year..."

dead kennedys DEAD KENNEDYS ANNOUNCE 2016 UK TOUR DATES
Formed in 1978 the Dead Kennedys were a pioneering force in America's punk movement in the late 70s and early 80s...

blue oyster cult BLUE ÖYSTER CULT CONFIRM EXCLUSIVE UK APPEARANCE IN JULY
The Long Island rockers will be jetting in from NYC to play their 'Agents Of Fortune' album in full, plus a full set of other powerful classics...

freddie mercury FREDDIE MERCURY SCHOLARSHIP AT ACM ANNOUNCED
"Freddie's name endures in so many ways so it's therefore great to have this scholarship celebrating his musical genius!"

dream theater DREAM THEATER DEBUT OFFICIAL VIDEO FOR 'OUR NEW WORLD'
The video, which premiered in the USA with The Wall Street Journal, highlights the band's immersive and interactive live show and captures the prog-virtuosos' transcendent performances...

goo goo dolls GOO GOO DOLLS ANNOUNCE UK TOUR FOR OCTOBER 2016
The tour kicks off in Norwich on October 8th and finishes up at London Eventim Apollo on October 14th...

ace frehley kiss EXCLUSIVE: ACE FREHLEY POSSIBLY ABOUT TO MAKE SENSATIONAL KISS RETURN
Earlier this year Paul Stanley recently appeared on Ace Frehley's latest album 'Origins'...

joe bonamassa JOE BONAMASSA TO PLAY FREE SHOW AT LEGENDARY CAVERN CLUB IN LIVERPOOL
This intimate concert in front of 300 people will preview material that he will perform at five special concerts in the UK this July...

ac dc axl rose IT'S ROCK, NOT BUST AS AC/DC TRIUMPH IN LISBON - CONTAINS SPOILERS
The banter with the fans was light and extremely good natured all the way through the gig. And yes, Axl did take to the stage bang on time...

motorhead MOTÖRHEAD RELEASE SECOND VIDEO FROM 'CLEAN YOUR CLOCK': WATCH 'WHEN THE SKY COMES LOOKING FOR YOU' HERE
'When The Sky Comes Looking For You' is a standout track from Motörhead's much acclaimed final album 'Bad Magic'...

armored saint EXCLUSIVE: ARMORED SAINT'S JOEY VERA WARMS UP FOR UPCOMING TOUR BY PLAYING HULA GIG
We look forward to seeing them at the Camden Underworld on July 14th...

eluveitie BREAKING NEWS: HAVOC IN THE ELUVEITIE CAMP AS THREE MEMBERS LEAVE THE BAND
"Eluveitie was always meant to be about 'rock'n'roll', passion and also about 'carrying the torch' of the Celtic spirit..."

ac dc axl rose AC/DC DISCUSS BRIAN JOHNSON'S HEARING PROBLEMS IN NEW VIDEO INTERVIEW
The eyes of the world will be on Lisbon tomorrow night (Saturday 7th May 2016) when Axl makes his debut with the band...

sertraline SERTRALINE ANNOUNCE UK HEADLINE TOUR
Based in Stoke-on-Trent, Sertraline are undertaking their first ever headline tour of the UK this coming June/July...

ac dc axl rose AXL PAYS HUGE TRIBUTE TO BRIAN JOHNSON IN REVEALING BBC INTERVIEW WITH AC/DC
"I'm happy and excited in one sense, but I think it would be inappropriate to be celebrating, in a certain way, at someone else's expense..."

babymetal BABYMETAL ANNOUNCED FOR DOWNLOAD FESTIVAL
"We're so excited to come back to the UK next month. We will play the main stage at Download Festival. We are looking forward to seeing you all there."

ac dc axl rose AC/DC: THE VERY FIRST OFFICIAL PHOTO OF THE CURRENT LINE-UP
"Back on tour this Saturday night. First stop Lisbon - Let's do this."

hotei INTIMATE BEHIND THE SCENES VIDEO WITH HOTEI AND RAMMSTEIN'S RICHARD Z KRUSPE RELEASED
The track is taken from Hotei's debut UK release 'Strangers', which features an array of high profile guests including Iggy Pop and Matt Tuck...

motorhead FIRST OFFICIAL MOTÖRHEAD VIDEO FROM 'CLEAN YOUR CLOCK' RELEASED: WATCH 'BOMBER' HERE
Never was the spirit of Motorhead more alive than when they were on tour...

little richard UK EXCLUSIVE: LITTLE RICHARD, THE MAN RESPONSIBLE FOR MOTÖRHEAD, ANNOYED ABOUT "GRAVE HEALTH" REPORTS
'"You know, I want you to talk to the press because I'm really annoyed. This thing started on Facebook..."

desert trip BREAKING NEWS: THE ROLLING STONES, NEIL YOUNG, THE WHO, PAUL McCARTNEY, BOB DYLAN AND ROGER WATERS ALL ANNOUNCED FOR MASSIVE GIG IN OCTOBER
A once-in- a-lifetime concert when six of the world's most iconic and influential rock and roll artists come together for Desert Trip...

alexander van der bellen UK EXCLUSIVE: AC/DC SOUNDTRACK ON AUSTRIAN PRESIDENTIAL PROMO VIDEO CAUSES COPYRIGHT CONTROVERSY
Herr Van der Bellen is not known to be an AC/DC fan although he is a self confessed smoker...

france euro 2016 FRENCH UP IN ARMS OVER KISS SONG BEING CHOSEN AS EURO 2016 ANTHEM
Euro 2016 kicks off in mid-June and France have launched their official anthem which is performed in English...

robert plant LED ZEPPELIN'S ROBERT PLANT GUESTS WITH DEBORAH BONHAM AT LOCAL GIG
Plant joined Deborah Bonham to perform the Led Zeppelin classic 'When The Levee Breaks' and a cover of the Johnny Kid & The Pirates standard 'Shakin' All Over'...

status quo STATUS QUO ANNOUNCE 'DOG OF TWO HEAD' ALE AND 'DOWN DOWN' CIDER
Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt of Status Quo are delighted to announce another great double act...

sabaton SABATON TO RELEASE NEW STUDIO ALBUM 'THE LAST STAND' ON AUGUST 19th
"Did any other artist ever say 'Our new album is the best we ever made'? That's not for us to decide, that's up to our fans..."

doro DORO TO RELEASE NEW LIVE DVD/BLU-RAY 'STRONG AND PROUD - 30 YEARS OF ROCK AND METAL'
30 years of dedication, passion and love for the music and her fans all over the world...

destruction EUROPE UNDER ATTACK! DESTRUCTION, FLOTSAM AND JETSAM, NERVOSA ANNOUNCE EUROPEAN TOUR
Thrash metal icons Destruction are set to fire their new missile of heavy 'Under Attack' on May 13th via Nuclear Blast Records...

grand magus GRAND MAGUS RELEASE NEW TRACK 'FORGED IN IRON - CROWNED IN STEEL'
"Metalheads! Grand Magus are back. We are proud to unleash this iron-clad anthem, we give you... VARANGIAN!"

tyler bryant TYLER BRYANT AND THE SHAKEDOWN SPECIAL UK HEADLINE WARM-UP DATE FOR AC/DC EUROPEAN TOUR CONFIRMED
Unleashing their high-proof blend of melody, muscle and psychedelic mystique to well in excess of 600,000 riff-hungry fans across 12 different countries...

klogr MUSE, TOOL, STONE SOUR, RUSH PRODUCER FOR KLOGR'S NEXT ALBUM PLUS NEW MUSIC VIDEO PREMIERE
Italian progressive metal band unveil the final music video from 'Make Your Stand'...

rage RAGE REVEAL LYRIC VIDEO FOR NEW TRACK 'SPIRITS OF THE NIGHT' PLUS NEW ALBUM TRAILERS
Iconic German metal trio Rage are set to release their new studio album 'The Devil Strikes Again' on June 10th...

bon scott LIFE-SIZED STATUE OF AC/DC LEGEND BON SCOTT UNVEILED IN KIRRIEMUIR
The bronze statue is the result of a two-year crowdfunding campaign which was supported by AC/DC and the band's former bass player Mark Evans officially unveiled it...

mikkey dee BREAKING NEWS: SAXON WITH PHIL CAMPBELL AND MIKKEY DEE TO PAY TRIBUTE TO LEMMY AT GOLDEN GODS, HAMMERSMITH ODEON
Ticket price is a very reasonable £6.66 with all proceeds going to Nordoff Robbins, Teenage Cancer Trust, and Childline...

mikkey dee BREAKING NEWS: MOTÖRHEAD'S MIKKEY DEE ANNOUNCED AS SCORPIONS DRUMMER
"We would like to continue our Return to Forever tour with James, but we have to realize that his health is priority..."

alex dickson gun BREAKING NEWS: ALEX DICKSON REJOINS GUN
As exclusively predicted by MetalTalk last week, guitarist Alex Dickson has re-joined Scottish rockers Gun...

cockney rejects WEST HAM UNITED TRIBUTE 'GOODBYE UPTON PARK' TO BE RELEASED BY COCKNEY REJECTS
"We were all born within a mile or so from the hallowed Boleyn ground and have all stood on the terraces through snow, rain and sunshine from a very early age."

ac/dc AC/DC RELEASE TICKET REFUND DETAILS FOR MOST EUROPEAN COUNTRIES
If you don't want a refund, then we'll see you at The Olympic Stadium in London as we think we're about to witness a major piece of rock history...

deep purple IAN PAICE AND DON AIREY SCHEDULE SOLO EUROPEAN DATES AS 2016 DEEP PURPLE TOUR APPROACHES
Deep Purple are kicking off their 2016 tour next month in Japan, before heading to Israel, Russia and Europe in June and July.

steve hackett STEVE HACKETT TO RELEASE 'THE TOTAL EXPERIENCE LIVE IN LIVERPOOL', HIS ACOLYTE TO 'WOLFLIGHT' WITH GENESIS REVISITED TOUR
"Besides, it's not as if Liverpool is known for having any good music – there's never been a good band from there. Ha!"

lacuna coil LACUNA COIL LAUNCH NEW ALBUM TITLE TRACK 'DELIRIUM'
Lacuna Coil will be making their much-anticipated return to North America as part of the 'Delirium Worldwide' tour starting in San Francisco on May 7th

bibeau YOUNG, PROGRESSIVE BAND BIBEAU OFFER THEIR FIRST SINGLE/VIDEO, 'MARK THIS'
"We were also hoping to convey the look, feel and flow of some of the classic, timeless rock and metal videos from the height of MTV's popularity..."

virginmarys THE VIRGINMARYS ANNOUNCE HEADLINE UK TOUR FOR JUNE 2016
"It's going to be so great to get back in front of our home fans again, and really important to us to play some of the towns we've been wanting to come back to..."

weapon uk WEAPON UK TO HEADLINE THE RETRIBUTION ALIVE ROAD TRIP IN MAY
"They toured with Motörhead in the 80s, including four sold out shows at the Hammersmith Odean and I have to say, we're pretty excited about this!"

headbangers ball ICED EARTH AND ENSIFERUM TO HEADLINE MTV HEADBANGERS BALL TOUR 2016: FULL DATES HERE
"So brace yourselves for the ultimate Metal experience of a lifetime! See you in front row!"

bloodstock BLOODSTOCK ADDS MORE BANDS, DETAILS METAL 2 THE MASSES FINALS AND ANNOUNCES FIRST NEW BLOOD STAGE WINNERS
Bloodstock HQ is readying to send Team M2TM out on the road for the finals, but in the meantime, there's a few more band additions to the August bill

dead daisies THE DEAD DAISIES ANNOUNCE UK AND EUROPEAN DATES FOR JULY/AUGUST IN SUPPORT OF NEW STUDIO ALBUM 'MAKE SOME NOISE'
The Dead Daisies, the biggest new name in Rock, have just recently announced the addition of Doug Aldrich (Whitesnake, Dio) as their new lead guitar player

wolf hoffmann WOLF HOFFMANN TO RELEASE SOLO ALBUM 'HEADBANGERS SYMPHONY' ON JULY 1st
"I have always incorporated classical music in my song writing with Accept, especially with 'Metal Heart', but I constantly felt there was so much more that I could do..."

jaegermeister JÄGERMEISTER RELEASE FULL DOCUMENTARY OF WORLD'S FIRST MUSIC GIG ON AIR, SEA AND LAND
"We go bigger every year and because of the nature of this world first this gig was not only a test of friendship but one of supporting each other too..."

john otway JOHN OTWAY PLANNING ON BEING FIRST ARTIST SINCE THE ROLLING STONES TO RECORD IN MONTSERRAT
"Although the old Air Studios are now derelict the studio in the basement of Sir George Martin's house is sound – it just needs rebuilding..."

fates warning FATES WARNING - NEW STUDIO ALBUM 'THEORIES OF FLIGHT' ANNOUNCED, ARTWORK UNVEILED
"There's a loose theme running through a lot of the lyrics, and this developed organically and separately..."

amon amarth RAISE YOUR HORNS AND BE IN AMON AMARTH'S NEW MUSIC VIDEO
Swedish Heavy Metal goliaths Amon Amarth are inviting their fans around the globe to be a part of their forthcoming video...

sixx am SIXX:A.M. ANNOUNCE THE "#REASONTORISE" CAMPAIGN, TOUR DATES AND 'VOL.1 PRAYERS FOR THE DAMNED' DETAILS
"It is our duty as citizens of this world to come together, communicate with one another and rise up to demand more of ourselves and our leaders."

armored saint ARMORED SAINT ANNOUNCE EUROPEAN FESTIVAL AND CLUB APPEARANCES
"For our first time in Spain, it's gonna be sick! And as if this wasn't enough - Saint is playing for the first time ever in Japan..."

black country communion BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION TO REFORM IN 2017
"Preparing BCC Rocket Ship Re-launch for 2017 - all systems go."

tarja TARJA PREMIERES OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO OF HER NEW SINGLE 'NO BITTER END'
'No Bitter End', the opening track of the prequel album 'The Brightest Void', is the first glimpse of Tarja's new work – her heaviest to date...

stratovarius STRATOVARIUS RELEASE LYRIC VIDEO FOR 'UNTIL THE END OF DAYS'
"To me it's a testament to the fact that paying attention to song writing and production was expensive, but so worth it..."

brian johnson EXCLUSIVE: PROMINENT AC/DC CREW MEMBER GIVES REMARKABLE INSIGHT INTO AXL ROSE APPOINTMENT
AC/DC are covering themselves in case Axl's poor reputation for unprofessionalism manifests itself...

brian johnson THE DARKEST DAY OF MY PROFESSIONAL LIFE: BRIAN JOHNSON ISSUES PERSONAL STATEMENT ON AC/DC DEPARTURE
"I wish to assure our fans that I am not retiring. My doctors have told me that I can continue to record in studios and I intend to do that..."

thin lizzy THIN LIZZY ANNOUNCE BASS PLAYER AND NEW DRUMMER FOR 2016/17 ANNIVERSARY SHOWS
Thin Lizzy are undisputed legends and to be a small part of their lineage is a humble honor for me...

ian gillan IAN GILLAN TO PERFORM UNIQUE SOLO SHOW OF DEEP PURPLE CLASSICS IN BULGARIA
There is a possibility that Ian will also play some material from his catalogue outside of Deep Purple...

don airey DEEP PURPLE'S DON AIREY AND FRIENDS ADDED TO CAMBRIDGE ROCK FESTIVAL PLUS ATOMIC ROOSTER
Expect to hear many classics from Airey's illustrious past which includes time spent with Rainbow, Ozzy Osbourne as well as his current job with Deep Purple...

wildfire festival WILDFIRE FESTIVAL 2016 ANNOUNCE SUNDAY NIGHT HEADLINERS AND FIVE MORE ACTS
With June creeping ever closer, Wildfire Festival's impressive main stages line-up is all but finalised...

whitesnake THE END OF WHITESNAKE: DAVID COVERDALE TO RETIRE IN 2017
Whitesnake headline the UK's Ramblin Man Festival in July in what could be their final ever UK appearance...

axl rose AXL ROSE CONFIRMED AS AC/DC SINGER FOR THE REMAINING ROCK OR BUST DATES
The worst kept secret in rock is now official...

aerosmith THE END OF AEROSMITH?: NO FAREWELL TOUR CONFIRMED AT THE MOMENT
"A farewell tour is something we've talked about doing for years, let's say roughly in the last five years..."

hrh united ALESTORM, HAMMERFALL, FINSTERFORST, NAPALM DEATH, ARMORED SAINT, VENOM INC. AND EVIL SCARECROW ANNOUNCED FOR HRH UNITED
HRH United 3 will be an exclusive upgraded Metal Edition taking over the entire site @ Camp HRH, Pwllheli, North Wales...

rolling stones PROUD GALLERIES PLAYING HOST TO FABULOUS ROLLING STONES PHOTO EXHIBITION: TERRY O'NEILL TO ATTEND SIGNING SESSION
It's a wonderful book by photographer Terry O'Neill of Rolling Stones images from 1963 to 1965, an era when the Stones were just "breaking through"...

between the buried and me BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME ANNOUNCE EUROPEAN SUMMER DATES
As well as the European tour dates, BTBAM have launched a live video for 'The Ectopic Stroll' whih you can see here...

jade vine LONDON BASED ALTERNATIVE PROG ROCKERS JADE VINE ANNOUNCE ALBUM LAUNCH SHOW
Jade Vine's music has been influenced by artists such as Pink Floyd, Jeff Buckley, Radiohead, Anathema and Pain Of Salvation...
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