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- Mr Geoffrey Lloyd, Under-Secretary to the Home Office, paid a flying visit to the Government's civilian anti-gas school at Hawkhills, Easingwold, where 60 policemen and other officials were being trained as instructions in air raid precautions. Mr Lloyd flew from Hendron to Linton-on-Ouse, where he was met by Wing-Commander E J Hodsoll, Inspector-General of Air Raid Precautions, before being driven to Easingwold.]]>
- Daniel Ash and Kevin Haskins were founding members of all three. Now joined by Kevin's daughter Diva Domp on bass, they have formed a new band called POPTONE.]]>
- Judas Priest, Saxon, Black Star Riders There's no arguing that both Iron Maiden and Judas Priest played a huge part in forging the path for heavy metal and every sub-genre that's branched from it. But Maiden's been writing the same record over and over again since 1986's Somewhere in Time , while Priest's discography is full of epic peaks, dismal valleys, and everything in between.]]>
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- TWISTED SISTER guitarist Jay Jay French took part in a question-and-answer session at this month's Spooky Empire convention in Orlando, Florida. You can now watch the discussion below.
Speaking about bands which have continued performing well past their prime, French said: "[JUDAS] PRIEST is 65 years, 70 years old, SAXON's 80 fucking years old. THE ROLLING STONES are 90 years old. Watching Keith [Richards] and [Ronnie Wood] trying to play guitar is like being driven in a tour bus by José Feliciano and Ray Charles without GPS — it's a terrifying fucking experience. If THE STONES were smart, they'd hire two 25-year-old guys from Nashville who know how to play their song parts and let these two cadavers walk around on stage and fucking act like Johnny Depp in fucking 'Pirates Of The Caribbean'. They can't fucking play. And it bothers me they charge eight hundred dollars [for a ticket]. At least when you go to see THE EAGLES, there's 45 guys on stage, 'cause you want the [band] to sound like THE EAGLES. And when you see go see Roger Waters, there's 45 guys on stage, 'cause you wanna hear what 'The Wall' sounds like. But THE STONES insist that you watch them decompose in front of your eyes for a high ticket price. And they suck so bad.
"I get annoyed only because we work so hard to be perfect every night," he continued. "And I watched them. I've been a STONES fan, by the way, all my life and saw them at the peak of their fucking life — in '69, '70, '71, '72. They were arguably the greatest rock band on the planet earth. And there's a DVD, 'Ladies And Gentlemen: The Rolling Stones', which you can watch. Why are they happy sounding so bad when you've got this?
"Now, PRIEST. Look what you've got with PRIEST. K.K.'s [Downing, guitar] gone — he went to golf. And now Glenn's [Tipton, guitar] left. And it's wonderful. And now it's a cover band, essentially."
After an audible reaction from the crowd, Jay Jay attempted to clarify his comment. "No, no, no… Wait, wait, wait… Hold on… I don't say this… I come from a world of cover bands," he said. "When TWISTED SISTER started in the bars, the cover bands that played the bars were better than the bands they covered. The reason why we were so big, the reason why RAT RACE CHOIR and the STANTON ANDERSON [BAND] — these are the bands that existed as bar bands back when we were playing in the bars — the reason why they were so good was 'cause they were better than the bands they were copying.
"You guys don't even know that [LED] ZEPPELIN was deteriorating so badly that by 1975, you couldn't go to a ZEP concert without throwing up," he said. "They were so bad! You couldn't give tickets away to ZEP concerts, but if you came to see ZEBRA playing ZEPPELIN on Long Island, you heard perfect ZEPPELIN — perfect LED ZEPPELIN. If you saw RAT RACE CHOIR, you saw perfect PINK FLOYD, you saw perfect EMERSON, LAKE & PALMER. It really mattered. I get that. I do understand it. It's a cover band. And that's what a lot of these bands are. FOREIGNER is a complete cover band; there's nobody left in FOREIGNER."
According to Jay Jay, TWISTED SISTER called it quits in 2016 because the members of the band wanted to go out while they could still deliver the kind of performances that earned them the reputation as one of the strongest live acts around.
"TWISTED SISTER has a credibility thing," he said. "It's called we like to play with a band called TWISTED SISTER with the guys from TWISTED SISTER playing TWISTED SISTER music for TWISTED SISTER fans. And if we can't do that, we're not gonna do it. That's a personal choice that we made. And if we do it again, it'll be because we all decided we wanted to do it. That's a credibility issue that we have.
"TWISTED SISTER is a perfectionist band," he continued. "We've played thousands of shows. Every show is perfect. Every show is the last show of our life. Every show is done with the sincerity and the heartfelt desire to make sure you walk out thinking that's the best thing you're ever gonna see. We may not be the best band in the world, but damn it, when you see us live, playing with [IRON] MAIDEN or any of these other bands, you're gonna walk out thinking we're the best band in the world, because that's what we do. And we all say this to every band we play with: 'Blow us away. Take us out. Knock us on our ass. Because if you do that, you've made the fans happy. You've made the fans really happy, giving them their money's worth.' Nobody ever does — ever comes even close."
TWISTED SISTER retired from the road less than two years ago after completing a farewell 40th-anniversary tour. The band's last-ever concert took place in November 2016 — 20 months after the passing of TWISTED's longtime drummer A.J. Pero.
TWISTED SISTER frontman Dee Snider recently said that he had no regrets about putting the group to rest, explaining that he wanted to "step away gracefully" before it was too late.
"Honestly, I can't do today what I did at the last TWISTED SISTER show — physically," he said. "I'm not getting any younger, and stuff is deteriorating, things are deteriorating, and there's things that I knew… I was thrashing like a lunatic, throwing my body on the ground, and I said, 'I can't go much longer.'
"Nobody gets to beat gravity," Snider continued. "When somebody defeats gravity, when somebody beats gravity, let me know. Because eventually it takes everybody out and we're all pulled into the ground. So I said, 'I've got to draw a line somewhere so that I can at least step away gracefully in some way.' It's what I had to do. And I love the [other] guys [in TWISTED SISTER] — I just couldn't continue on like that."
- Dutch symphonic metallers DELAIN are working on material for the follow-up to 2016's "Moonbathers" album. "We're writing," keyboardist Martijn Westerholt told Heavy New York before a recent concert on the band's North American tour as the support act for KAMELOT (see video below). "Right now, we're not, because we're touring the U.S. and Canada, of course. But when we're back [from the road], we will continue writing. It's a little bit quiet on purpose, because we wanna focus on writing. And the plan is to release [the new album] next year, so let's hope it works out."
Last year, Westerholt told music journalist Joel Gausten that DELAIN would spend most of 2018 away from the road as the band works on its next disc. He also confirmed that DELAIN's next album will mark the first time guitarist Merel Bechtold will be involved with one of the band's full-length recordings from the start of the creative process. "That's true, but in our case, it's never a big issue," he said. "To be frank, [singer] Charlotte [Wessels], [studio collaborator] Guus [Eikens] and I already do everything, and we do try — and are very open — to welcome band members to participate on it. But this train is rolling with or without them — preferably with them. But for us, it's not a big issue. We do like to have them involved and stimulate that. For example, Timo [Somers, guitar] did a lot of guitar arrangement on our previous album. I don't think people will hear a big difference. With all due respect to Merel — because she's great — it's not the way DELAIN works, so to say. But I do hope that she will contribute, and she surely has the talent for it. She's very creative, so let's see what happens."
DELAIN spent much of 2016 and 2017 celebrating its tenth anniversary — from the release of "Moonbathers" and an anniversary edition of its debut disc, "Lucidity", to extensive headline tours across Europe and North America to gracing some of the world's biggest festival stages — and capped it off with the release of its first-ever live DVD/Blu-ray package.
Last fall, DELAIN completed the "Danse Macabre" tour, featuring special guest and frequent collaborator Marco Hietala from NIGHTWISH on all dates.
- Finnish metallers BATTLE BEAST have commenced the songwriting process for the follow-up to 2017's "Bringer Of Pain" album. "We started in the beginning of this year, doing the demos," singer Noora Louhimo told Antihero Magazine during a recent interview (see video below). "And when we get back [from the road], we continue doing the new album. So it's gonna be out next year."
Asked what fans can expect to hear on the next BATTLE BEAST disc, Noora said: "I don't wanna say anything too much revealing, but a hundred percent heavy metal. [Laughs]"
BATTLE BEAST's fourth album, "Bringer Of Pain", was released in February 2017 via Nuclear Blast Records. The ten-track disc was recorded and produced at JKB Studios by keyboardist Janne Björkroth, was mixed by Björkroth alongside Viktor Gullichsen and Mikko Karmila, and was mastered by Mika Jussila at Finnvox Studios. The cover artwork was crafted by Jan Yrlund.
"Bringer Of Pain" was BATTLE BEAST's first album to feature guitarist Joona Björkroth, who joined the band in 2015.
BATTLE BEAST in February 2015 parted ways with lead guitarist and main songwriter Anton Kabanen due to "insurmountable disagreements" with the other members of the band.
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- Most of you know the Gauntlet has been running for 23 years consecutively. Many from the early days will remember this sheet as an organization that was radically willing to do anything to get recognition for Metal Bands.
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