Dirt - Wednesday, Nov 22, 2017

Although Linkin Park has not revealed whether the band intends to carry on without late lead singer Chester Bennington, one close friend thinks they should. Avenged Sevenfold frontman M. Shadows says Linkin Park has “every right to move forward” following Bennington’s passing. He told podcaster Eddie Trunk while he didn’t know Bennington well, he was good friends with co-vocalist Mike Shinoda and bassist Dave Farrell, explaining, “They’re human beings and they have a long life to live. And I think if they love music this much, they have every right to move forward. Knowing Mike as well as I do, he’s always been, in my opinion, the leader of that band — the guy who gets things going, the guy who gets demos going, the guy who obsesses over every detail of that band.”

Shadows added, “It’s gonna be hard to lose Chester; he easily was one of the best vocalists of our time. From when I was growing up, just watching them live, he just was flawless for what he did. And it’s gonna be tough, but at the same time, Mike is such a hard worker and he’s so dedicated to that band and put so much time in that I can’t just see him just being done with it.”

Avenged Sevenfold weathered its own tragedy eight years ago when drummer Jimmy “The Rev” Sullivan died from substance abuse in December 2009. Guitarist Synyster Gates told us at the time the band came very close to splitting up but that it was their fans and Sullivan’s family that pulled them together: “For the first two weeks after he passed, we were done as a band. We were just done. And because of the fans and Jimmy’s parents and relatives and stuff like that, they just demanded that we continue on and spread the legacy that is, you know, the crazy James ‘The Rev’ Sullivan. And we feel so good doing that and they completely expedited that process. They really got our ass in gear to get out and finish the record and bring it to life, you know.”

Chester Bennington died on Jul 20th at his Los Angeles area home after committing suicide at the age of 41. Linkin Park paid tribute to Bennington on Oct 27th with an emotional three-hour show that featured numerous guests joining the band onstage in Los Angeles. Shadows was one of the guests at the event.

Linkin Park will release a concert album titled One More Light Live on Dec 15th. The band’s future plans remain unclear at this time. (Thanks The Pulse Of Radio and Blabbermouth.)

Blabbermouth  & The Pulse Of Radio reporting System Of A Down vocalist Serj Tankian has two new film scores under his belt. The first, for a film called Intent To Destroy, was released digitally via iTunes and Apple on Nov 17th, while the second, for a movie titled Furious: The Legend Of Kolovrat, will arrive digitally on Dec 8th.

Intent To Destroy, from Oscar-nominated director Joe Berlinger (Paradise Lost: West Memphis Three; Some Kind Of Monster;  Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2), is a documentary that examines genocide denialism. The film outlines the century-old denial campaign of the Armenian Genocide by the Turkish government and brings it into the current age of disinformation and scare tactics. The film was released in theatres on Nov 10th.  Tankian called Intent To Destroy ”one of the most powerful films I’ve ever seen let alone been a part of.”

Meanwhile, Furious: The Legend Of Kolovrat is a Russian historical fantasy film about a 13th century knight named Evpaty Kolovrat, who led a 17-man squad against thousands of Mongol warrior hordes.  Tankian said about this project, “I’m a huge fan of historical action films, so I welcomed the opportunity to create my first epic score for Furious.’” (Note: the video above for the track “A Fine Moment To Die” from Furious, features vocal performances by Tankian and female singer Katya Ivanchikova has already become a viral hit with more than 500,000 views.)

Tankian’s other film work includes scores or musical pieces for 1915The InhabitantThe Promise and others. He also has composed for TV and video games.

Tankian told us a while back that some fans might not enjoy his other kinds of music: “You know, it’s all about opinions. It’s music, it’s based on taste and, you know, everyone likes a certain thing and there are certain people that will gravitate toward a certain type of music and others that will gravitate to another. And there’s no telling what people may or may not like, to be honest. You make the record that you believe in, the expression that you want to say, and whoever feels that way will gravitate toward it. It’s really that simple.”

His other solo work includes three rock albums, a live set, a classical symphony and a jazz recording. Tankian has toured with System Of A Down over the past few years but the band has not released new music since 2006.

In a related item, Bush frontman Gavin Rossdale told me about the new A&E series he’s composed and recorded the score and title theme for entitled Undercover High. It’s a docu-series about seven young adults going undercover to investigate the inner workings of life in public high school in Topeka, KS. Undercover High premiered its 12-episode run at 10 PM ET/PT on Tuesday, Oct 10.  For the score, he collaborated with classical composer Shawn Pierce.  (Set your DVR to check out the future airings on A&E.)

Gavin also mentioned he is launching a clothing line and working on new Bush material. The band released a deluxe/extended version of Black & White Rainbows which contains two new songs, “This Is War”  and “Alien Language.”

In the meantime, new concert dates are in the works to send Bush to South America in the new year and the European festivals next spring.   I did a 30 minute chat with Gavin that will perhaps be a hardDrive DL podcast in the coming weeks.

Blabbermouth also reporting this morning Avenged Sevenfold drummer Brooks Wackerman will be a guest musician with the band on NBC’s Late Night with Seth Meyers.  The show is known for inviting famous drummers to sit in with Meyers’ band.  Others in the past have included Ray Luzier of Korn, Danny Carey of Tool and Abe Cunningham of Deftones.  Pretty awesome.  I actually met the man in charge of enlisting the talent for this slot at Korn’s concert in New Jersey.    (Forgot the dude’s name, but he’s a cool guy.)

Being Thanksgiving and all, I thought I’d share this 15 Greatest Moments on Game Of Thrones.   (Warning: explicit language, violence and nudity.)

Celebrating life over the next few days:  Wed, 11/22:  Shawn Fanning, creator Napster-37, Ville Valo-HIM-41, Mark Ruffalo-The Hulk-50, Terry Gilliam-Monty Python-77.  Thu 11/22:  My brother David is 58.   Fri, 11/24:  Chad Taylor of Live is 47 and Godsmack’s Tony Rombola is 53.  Sat, 11/25: Mark Lanegan of Screaming Trees/ex-Queens Of The Stone Age -53, Tim Armstrong-Rancid is 52.

Have a great long holiday!    Enjoy family and friends!

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