Heavy Metal News Week In Review: 12/12/14

by I.O. Kirkwood on December 11, 2014

BATTLECROSS' pilgrimage to DIMEBAG DARRELL's grave site. \m/

BATTLECROSS’ pilgrimage to DIMEBAG DARRELL’s grave site. \m/ l-r: Don, Alex, Gumby, Tony, and Hiran


One of Metal Music’s most iconic guitarists was remembered on the 10th anniversary of his tragic death on December 8, 2004. “Dimebag” Darrell Lance Abbott, brother of Vinnie Paul, and a founding member of PANTERA and DAMAGEPLAN, was gunned down by Nathan Gale during a DAMAGEPLAN performance at the Alrosa Villa in Columbus, OH. After the fatal shot, Gale continued on his rampage killing three more and wounding seven others. One of many remembrances of “Dimebag” Darrell on the anniversary of his death was undertaken by BATTLECROSS, who made a pilgrimage to the late guitarist’s grave at Moore Memorial Gardens in Arlington, TX. The epitaph reads:

“He came to rock…and rocked like no other with the heart twice the size of Texas, our beloved brother, companion, mentor, idol, and friend…We love you Dime…Until we meet again.”

Other musicians have their own rituals to honor “Dimebag” so we’ve collected a number of tribute articles that you can visit below to learn more about how fucking awesome “Dimebag” Darrell was. Let’s keep his legacy vital.

In Other News…

After a trying year and the loss of their brother and band mate Athon, BLACK TUSK will be honoring Athon’s wishes and going on tour in Europe with BLACK LABEL SOCIETY:

“It’s been an incredibly trying time for us over the past month and we want to thank everyone for their support. We had confirmed the tour with Black Label Society and finished the new album before Athon’s accident and Athon, specifically, had been very excited about the opportunity to tour with BLS and we feel there’s no way he’d want things to end on this note. Corey Barhorst, formerly of Kylesa and currently of Niche, will be stepping in for Athon for the time being. All of us go back over 10 years and Corey seemed the natural choice to carry on for Athon.”

The band has set up a Memorial Fund for Athon, his girlfriend and his family. Donations can be made at AthonFund@gmail.com. The band recently completed their fifth full-length record with producer Joel Grind of Toxic Holocaust at Audiosiege Studios in Portland, OR this past September.


The Best Of 2014 Lists have been finalized. Give us your top 3 best of 2014 in the comment section!

Round IV of the Battle of the Underground Bands is ON!


municipal waste


  • Residents of the East Coast have much more to fear than Category IV storms this hurricane season. Why? ‘Cuz seven shows have been booked in January throughout the eastern part of the U.S. by Richmond, Virginia’s speed metal punks MUNICIPAL WASTE, who are sure to cause some serious winter damage to more than just your rose bushes! MUNICIPAL WASTE will headline; direct support comes from Florida’s heavy hard rockers TORCHE; opening will be New Jersey punk rockers NIGHT BIRDS. Check it out HERE.
  • This past February, WITHIN TEMPTATION’s sixth studio album Hydra debuted at #16 on the American Billboard Top 200 Albums. Two weeks ago, the 2-in-1 reissued version of WITHIN TEMPTATION‘s long out-of-print full-length debut album Enter (1997) and The Dance EP (1998) debuted at #98 on the American Billboard Hard Rock chart. Today, their Let Us Burn: Elements & Hydra Live In Concert DVD has debuted at #41 on the American Billboard Hard Music chart.
  • The New Wave Of British Heavy Metal pioneers TYGERS OF PAN TANG, will release a special Limited Edition album titled “Tygers Sessions: The First Wave” via Skol Records. The CD will be limited to only 1000 copies, and will include 11 classic songs of the band, re-recorded for the anniversary EP releases “The Spellbound Sessions” and “The Wildcat Sessions”, which were originally available through the band’s fan-club and website only, and quickly sold out.
  • VENOM announced the January 27th release of From The Very Depths (Spinefarm Records). The metal icons, who are pretty much responsible for authoring their own genre, have followed up the album release news by sharing the two-horns-up album artwork. The cover is visually arresting, featuring skeletal beings bathed in red and orange tones. The image is dominated by the instantly recognizable VENOM logo, and is a natural successor to the artwork for previous album, 2011’sFallen Angels, also released via Spinefarm. Click the image for a close up.


  • Where Greater Men Have Fallen, the long anticipated new studio album from Ireland’s most adored metal exports, PRIMORDIAL, debuted at #24 on Billboard’s Top New Artist Chart and #43 on the Billboard’s Hard Music Chart! Additionally, the record ranked in at #104 on Billboard’s Independent Albums Chart.
  • Mesopotamian thrashing black metal pioneers MELECHESH return this winter with their sixth full-length album! On March 10, 2015 MELECHESH will release Enki in the U.S., the follow-up to their 2010 masterpiece The Epigenesis. With this deep and personal album, filled with metaphor and spiritual/philosophical references, MELECHESH are yet again ready to spread their sonic magic and enlightened revelations to the cosmos! Pre-order your copy here: http://smarturl.it/MELECHESH-Enki-NB

  • Hard rock icons MASTODON have been nominated for a Grammy Award under the category of “Best Metal Performance: ‘High Road'” from their new album ONCE MORE ‘ROUND THE SUN. This marks the third Grammy nomination for the Atlanta quartet, who were previously nominated in 2007 (“Best Metal Performance: ‘Colony of Birchmen’ from the album BLOOD MOUNTAIN),and again in 2012 (“Best Metal Performance: ‘Curl of the Burl’ from the album THE HUNTER).

  • Tridroid Records is happy to announce the release of VOIVOD’S Target Earth on tape! You can order a copy of the tape from our Bandcamp for only $7.

  • CATTLE DECAPITATION will be returning to Dave Otero’s Flatline Audio studio in Colorado. Otero was at the helm for both of the band’s previous albums, and the collaboration promises to compound on the exercises in melodic extremity that have vaulted CATTLE DECAPITATION to the top of the extreme metal heap. The band is giving fans one final chance to see them live, and to hear new songs, before they begin to track their upcoming album
  • MARDUK’s new album Frontschwein (MARDUK’s first completely war-themed album since 1999’s legendary Panzer Division Marduk) will be released in North America on February 10, 2015. The band has just released another new song. It’s the album’s fourth track, “Wartheland” and can be checked out here:


Check out the previously released track “Rope Of Regret” here:




  • A Conspiracy Of Stars presents UFO’s current line-up for the first time: along with the original members, Phil Mogg (vocals), Paul Raymond (keyboards, guitar) and Andy Parker (drums), lead guitarist Vinnie Moore has been a permanent member of the group since 2003, American bassist Rob De Lucajoining the fold in 2012. De Luca is not only a brilliant instrumentalist but has also contributed two of the album tracks as a songwriter. The majority of the new material was composed by Vinnie Moore, the album also featuring a song by Paul Raymond and a collaboration between Raymond and De Luca. The lyrics were penned by frontman Phil Mogg. March 3, 2015 will see the U.S. release as Digipak (including poster and bonus track), jewel case, vinyl colored double LP and download.

Track Listing:
01. The Killing Kind
02. Run Boy Run
03. Ballad Of The Left Hand Gun
04. Sugar Cane
05. Devils In The Detail
06. Precious Cargo
07. The Real Deal
08. One And Only
09. Messiah Of Love
10. Rolling Rolling
11. King Of The Hill (Bonus Track)

  • Reactivated Los Angeles, California’s “Spooky Core” band COAL CHAMBER has announced a North American Headline Tour for Spring 2015. The tour is in support of their forthcoming album that will be released on Napalm Records. Support on the tour will come from Filter, Combichrist and American Head Charge. The tour begins March 6th in Tempe, AZ and runs through April 12th in Dallas, TX. COAL CHAMBER is offering an exclusive VIP Packages for every date on the tour HERE. COAL CHAMBER is currently in the studio working on their first studio album in over 12 years. The band is working with producer Mark Lewis (Whitechapel, DevilDriver, Black Dahlia Murder) on the yet still untitled album, which is tentatively slated for a Spring 2015 release.
  • SUICIDE SILENCE will return to the US on a headlining run this winter dubbed the “Stronger Than Faith Tour”! The band will be continuing on in support of their release You Can’t Stop Me, which came in at #16 on the U.S. Billboard Top 200 Chart upon its release this past July.

“We had an amazing time this last fall on tour and now it is time to really bring the fire on our first US headlining tour of 2015,” says vocalist Eddie Hermida. “We are bringing our good friends in EMMURE, WITHIN THE RUINS and FIT FOR AN AUTOPSY out this time so be ready for an ass whoopin’ you won’t be able to cry home to your mom about! Come early and hang out with us this spring on the ‘Stronger Than Faith’ tour!”

  • Despite the name, SYLOSIS’ forthcoming release Dormant Heart is not a peaceful album: it’s about a powerful force unleashing anger against everyday injustice and a sleeping society that lets these things wash over them. Watch frontman Josh Middleton explain how the tracks ‘Servitude’, ‘Indoctrinated’, ‘Harm’, ‘Mercy’, ‘Callous Souls’ and ‘Quiescent’ came about, in their second track-by-track trailer, here:

  • Checking in from Solslottet Studio in Bergen, members of Norwegian progressive extreme metallers ENSLAVED offer the final installment in their seven-part “Diary of Mad Men” series shedding insight into the band’s upcoming as-yet-untitled thirteenth studio album, set for an early 2015 release.
  • Still working diligently on their as-yet-untitled eighth studio album, Finland-based symphonic metal storytellers NIGHTWISH have just released their eighth “Making Of” trailer, which features the band’s visit to the majestic Angel Studios in London where adult & children’s choirs, percussion, and orchestra sessions were presided over by esteemed orchestral arranger Pip Williams. Watch Episode 8, “London,” on the Nuclear Blast YouTube channel:

ioI.O. Kirkwood is METAL DESCENT’s Senior Live Music Editor. You can read her personal blog HERE.

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