Dirt - Thursday, Oct 26, 2017

The Pulse Of Radio  says Greta Van Fleet will release an eight-song double EP called From The Fires on Lou Brutus‘ birthday, Nov 10th!!!  The disc will contain all four tunes from the band’s breakout Black Smoke Rising EPwhich features the chart-topping single “Highway Tune,” along with four brand new recordings from the band. Lead vocalist Josh Kiszka said about the collection, “All eight of these songs share a theme of basic humanity,”

The quartet of new tracks were recorded last month in Detroit by the Frankenmuth, Michigan-based band. Fans who purchased Black Smoke Rising digitally and want to buy this the same way will get a special price break.

Kiszka also came up with the EP’s cover art, saying, “When we were all kids, our extended families and friends spent part of every summer together at a place called Yankee Springs. We were out in the middle of the woods, and every night, we’d sit around a campfire, play music and tell stories . . . That concept is where the cover art and title come from.”

Greta Van Fleet is in the midst of a U.S. tour that stops in Los Angeles this weekend for a two-night stand on Sunday (Oct 29th) and Monday (Oct 30th).  Greta Van Fleet consists of brothers Josh, Jake and Sam Kiszka on vocals, guitar and bass/keyboards respectively, and their friend Danny Wagner on the drums. The band is named after a woman from their hometown in Michigan named Gretna Van Fleet and the name is used with her blessing.

From The Fires is the second of three EPs initially slated to form the band’s debut album, although it’s unclear whether that is still the plan. We heard from a source the band is also taking the month of November to record their first “official”  full album.  Stay tuned!

Conspiracy theories. On this???!!!!   The Pulse Of Radio says late singer Chris Cornell‘s former Audioslave  bandmate, guitarist Tom Morello, dismissed the conspiracy theories that have surfaced in the wake of Cornell’s suicide last May. Cornell hanged himself from a hotel room door in Detroit following a show with Soundgarden, but a small number of fans online have embraced theories suggesting that he was murdered. Morello said, “The only sinister hand (at work in his passing) was his lifelong addiction that finally caught up with him.”

Morello told us it’s no surprise people are still not over the shock and grief of Cornell’s passing: “I mean, it’s a horrible loss for those who loved him and for the world of music. He was a lovely person and one of the most talented people in the history of rock ‘n’ roll. The world was very surprised and saddened.”

Morello told Blairing Out With Eric Blair that he’s had a “horrible” time dealing with Cornell’s passing. He said he saw no signs of depression in the singer when they held a brief Audioslave reunion last January, adding, “He loved his life, he loved his family, he loved music, and it’s a tragedy.

Morello and Cornell recorded three studio albums as members of Audioslave and Morello has hinted recently at the existence of unreleased material from the sessions for all three records that could surface one day.

Meanwhile, Cornell’s still active social media accounts are promoting the sale of the “Chris Cornell Guitar Strap,” with proceeds going to the Chris and Vicky Cornell Foundation. The $225 strap is embroidered with a copy of Chris’s signature stitched into the leather and was custom made for the Soundgarden frontman before his death. Kind of creepy if you ask me. Would you buy the guitar strap of a dead man? And isn’t it just a little strange to use the social media platforms of someone who has passed to put out fund-raising notices.  Just seems inappropriate.   But maybe that’s just me.

Five Finger Death Punch‘s Jason Hook stands by his recent statement that his band‘s upcoming album will contain some of the band’s strongest material to date. Their follow-up to 2015′s Got Your Six was delivered to the band’s longtime record label  Prospect Park last December, but a legal battle with the company delayed the LP’s arrival.

Earlier this month, it was announced Five Finger Death Punch had resolved its dispute with Prospect Park, with a greatest-hits album set to arrive in December, and the new full-length album to follow next year.

Asked why he feels  Five Finger Death Punch‘s next disc will be the group’s finest release to date, Hook told our affiliate, Springfield, IL’s 97.7 QLZ,  at this month’s JJO’s Sonic Boom festival in Janesville, WI: “Well, there is a certain part of finishing something brand new that is going to make you feel like it’s the best. Because it’s new, it has a freshness to it, so it has an unfair advantage over the other ones. But I think that what’s really important is how the public feels about it. ‘Cause what I like and what works for me doesn’t necessarily… I can’t count on that to work for everybody. But I think it’s a great record. Everything that we do, we put a hundred and ten percent into it. I mean, we’re very particular about these records because we’re living in an age where people are so quick to consume that they’ll blow through a record and then throw it over their shoulder: ‘What’s next?’ So I kind of think that these things are forever. They have to be great. They can’t just be good; they have to be awesome, so that, well, for one, people will buy it. ‘Cause if it’s not awesome, people will just listen to it for free. I like the record. What can I tell ya? I hope you all get to hear it next year.”

The guitarist was also asked if it’s important for ‘Death Punch to continue to make full-length albums as opposed to putting out singles and EPs, like other artists have done. He said: “Well, I don’t know if anyone’s really figured it out. I never really liked the EP thing. To me, it was always, like, ‘Why an EP? Are you gonna come back and finish the rest of it later? Or you didn’t have money to finish it? I mean, why an EP?’ I like just making proper full records. I think that we’re just gonna take our chances and continue to release full records.” (Thanks Blabbermouth.)


Blabbermouth also reporting Metallica‘s guitarist Kirk Hammett has recorded a guest appearance on the upcoming album from Michael Schenker Fest, the project led by legendary German axeman Michael Schenker.

Schenker told Metal Discovery that Hammett laid down his part at a studio in Hawaii with producer Michael VossKirk, you know, he’s a Michael Schenker fan all the way, and he has become a friend, and he plays in the biggest band on this planet,“ Schenker said. “So I asked him if he wanted to do this, and he was more than happy. And so Michael Voss flew over there and recorded him.”

Hammett and Schenker first traded licks during the taping of VH1 Classic‘s “That Metal Show” in April 2015 at Metropolis Studios in New York City. Less than a month later, Kirk joined Michael on stage at the RockBar in San Jose, CA to perform a couple of songs: UFO‘s “Natural Thing” and Scorpions‘ “Blackout”.

In an interview with Guitar World magazine, Hammett spoke about how his life was changed when he first heard UFO’s 1975 album  Force It, which featured Schenker on guitar.

“I was 15 years old and a friend of mine brought it over to my house insisting I had to hear it,“ Hammett recalled. “I was still living at my parents’ house at the time, and they had a very loud stereo system. My friends would come over and we would blast it up to what we thought was concert level. Boy, was I naïve!  The first track my friend played was ‘Mother Mary’, and I thought, wow, these guys are just as heavy as Thin LizzyAerosmithMontrose and all the other hard rock stuff that I was listening to before I got into heavy metal. When it got to the guitar solo, I was just blown away by Michael Schenker‘s tone, phrasing and technique. By the time the second solo came on with the fastest descending lick I’d ever heard, I was totally hooked! I immediately grabbed the album cover and saw the picture of Schenker playing a Flying V. From that point on, I knew there was an entire rock vocabulary out there that was not just based on pentatonic scales, and I set out to learn as many Schenker solos as possible while trying to write heavy riffs just like UFO. I also wanted a Flying V so bad! That record taught me a lot about solo structure, phasing and melody, as well as playing for the song. I was amazed how UFO could be so heavy and so melodic in the course of one song. I think the band I was in at the time added two UFO songs to its set that week.”

“For me, the standout tracks on ’Force It’ are ’Mother Mary’, ’Shoot Shoot’, ’This Kid’s', ’Out On The Street’ and ’Let It Roll’. Every time I pick up the guitar and start improvising, I think a lick or two from that album squeaks out subconsciously. I probably spew the most Schenker licks on [Metallica's 1983 debut album] Kill ‘Em All because everything was still kind of new to me at that time.”

The Michael Schenker Fest album will be released in early 2018 via Nuclear Blast.

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