Dirt - Wednesday, Jun 13 2018

Start your day with some fresh music news in Dirt! Here’s what’s going on in the world of rock and roll:

Tool frontman Maynard James Keenan offered up perhaps his most concrete statement to date regarding the band’s long-awaited new album, which is currently being recorded. While accepting the Metal Hammer Golden Gods Icon Award at a ceremony in London, England on Monday night (June 11th), Keenan said, “A lot of work’s being done, a lot of work’s been done. I’ll go on record now saying you’re gonna see some new music next year.”

Keenan’s comment came just a day after a post on Tool’s official Facebook page revealed a picture from the studio showing bassist Justin Chancellor‘s equipment. The caption read, “Justin’s bass setup in the studio. Sounds like he is making great progress recording in ‘a great studio.’”

Drummer Danny Carey has already laid down his drum parts, meaning that Chancellor will be followed by guitarist Adam Jones in the studio, with Keenan coming in last to record his vocals. The last Tool LP, 10,000 Days, arrived 12 years ago in 2006. After touring behind that album for a couple of years and then taking a break, legal issues, illness, a drawn-out writing process and other challenges kept the band from entering the studio until this past March. Keenan has also been busy recording and touring with A Perfect Circle, whose own long-delayed new album Eat The Elephant came out in April.

Linkin Park vocalist Mike Shinoda spoke about the band’s future during an appearance on the debut episode of the podcast “Inside The Studio.” Asked if the band intends to continue as the one-year anniversary of the death of singer Chester Bennington draws near, Shinoda replied, “I don’t know. That’s the million-dollar question, right? And, unfortunately, I’ve said it before, but, unfortunately, there aren’t any answers to that at this point. It would be awesome if there were.”

Shinoda added, “If somebody comes and says, ‘Hey, Linkin Park, do you want to play a show in Germany?’ then you have to have a discussion with all the guys, and you have one guy who’s like, ‘I definitely don’t want to do it,’ and you have one guy who says, ‘I don’t know. Maybe. Maybe we shouldn’t do it,’ and two guys who say, ‘We definitely need to do it,’ and then there’s concerns . . . I definitely need some more simplicity in terms of decision making.”

Bennington was found dead last July 20th after committing suicide at his home in Palo Verdes Estates, California. Linkin Park paid tribute to Bennington in October with an emotional three-hour show that featured numerous guests joining the band onstage in Los Angeles. The group also released a live album last December recorded on Bennington’s last full tour. Shinoda will release a new solo album, titled Post Traumatic, this Friday (June 15th).


30 Seconds To Mars guitarist Tomo Milicevic has quit the band, according to Loudwire. The news came from Milicevic himself in a tweet that said, “I am no longer in 30 Seconds To Mars. I don’t really know how to explain in a note how I could have come to a decision like this, but please believe me when I say that this is the best thing for me in my life and also for the band.”

Milicevic continued, “The years that I have been privileged enough to spend with all of you live inside of my heart and mind as some of the most amazing memories I’ll ever have. Even though this is incredibly painful because of my attachment to, and love for everyone involved, I know that this pain will be fleeting for myself, and anyone who’s feeling the same because I know that it is the right thing.”

Milicevic joined 30 Seconds To Mars in 2003 and has performed on all four of the band’s albums since then, starting with its 2005 sophomore effort A Beautiful Lie.
He told us a while back that 30 Seconds To Mars has never planned too far ahead: ”We’re definitely the type of people, all three of us, that we could get up one day and just be like, ‘You know what? Think we’ve done enough. See you guys in the next life.’ (laughs) You know, there’s always music being written, and whether or not we decide to really put it out, I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.”

The group released their most recent LP, America, earlier this year. Its current single, “Dangerous Night,” currently tops the Alternative radio airplay chart. 30 Seconds To Mars is currently in the midst of a lengthy North American tour, and at press time it was unclear how the band was going to proceed without its guitarist. The tour, which also featured Joywave and Walk The Moon, is next scheduled to stop in Burgettstown, Pennsylvania on Wednesday, June 13th.

Guns N’ Roses is rumored to have been paid more than $6.5 million for its headlining performance at this year’s Download Festival, which took place last weekend at Donington Park in Leicestershire, England. It’s believed to be the most amount of money the festival’s organizers have ever given a band to perform at the legendary metal festival.

The band’s show was acclaimed by the U.K. press. The group arrived at the venue one minute before its scheduled start time and left the site shortly after the performance in a helicopter.

Guns N’ Roses’ current “Not In This Lifetime” tour ranks as the fourth-highest grossing trek of all time, according to Billboard’s Boxscore. The tour, which launched in April 2016, topped the $475 million mark at the end of 2017, with the current European run adding more to that tally.

A fire destroyed the Aberdeen Museum of History in the town of Aberdeen, Washington on Saturday, June 9th, taking with it an entire section of the museum dedicated to Aberdeen native Kurt Cobain, who launched his career and Nirvana in the town. No injuries were reported and the cause of the fire has yet to be determined.

The alarm went up around 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, when the usually busy museum was inactive. Flames said to be 15 to 20 feet high consumed the building as black smoke filled the interior before escaping through the collapsed roof.

Museum curator Dave Morris told King 5 News, “People have come from around the world to see what we had on Nirvana. Then when they saw the rest of the history they were impressed. There’s more to Aberdeen than just Kurt Cobain. This fire is history, so it will be in the record books. And we’re going to rebuild and move on, and keep the history preserved. That’s my job.”

New artwork was installed in 2017 to commemorate what would have been Cobain’s 50th birthday, including a mural painted by a local artist. Aberdeen is home to the house in which Cobain spent his childhood and part of his teen years. A local park is named after him and a statue of him was erected in the town back in 2014.

Pearl Jam kicked off its summer 2018 European tour on Tuesday night (June 12th) at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam, Netherlands. The band dedicated the performance to the late Anthony Bourdain, opening the show with “Long Road.” The band will be in Europe through mid-July, coming back to the U.S. for August shows in Chicago, Seattle, Boston and Missoula, Montana.

The Smashing Pumpkins gave their first public performance since reuniting with guitarist James Iha on Monday night (June 11th) when the band performed on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. The Pumpkins played their new song “Solara,” as well as the 1995 hit “Zero,” the latter of which was only shown online. “Solara” was released last week and is the first recording in 18 years to feature founding members Iha, William Corgan and Jimmy Chamberlin together.

Finally, we’d like to wish a Happy Birthday to Weezer‘s Rivers Cuomo and Godsmack bassist Robbie Merrill!

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