For the Love of Rock and Metal is a blog dedicated to music articles, concert reviews, CD reviews, interviews and all other things related to rock and metal. There is an emphasis on local or semi-local music in the Madison, WI area.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Slipknot headlining the Mayhem Festival 2012

The lineup for the 2012 Mayhem Festival has been announced. Slipknot will be headlining and will be joined by Slayer, As I Lay Dying and other great bands. Check out the link here for ticket information, lineup, and anything else you could possibly want from Mayhem.

I've been to this festival before and I must say that the face-melting metal, special events, and awesome lineups are can't miss. If you have the chance to go to this tour, then GO!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Featured Video: Burn To Shine - Wasted Years

Today's Featured Video is Burn To Shine's Wasted Years. Burn To Shine is an acoustic project featuring Jamison Parker and Aaron Fishel of Silence is Broken from Rockford, IL.

Visit Burn To Shine on Facebook here.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Today in the News: Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath Diagnosed with Lymphoma

Ok, ok... I know this isn't local or regional and I swear I'll get out to some more shows soon. But, as a lover of all things rock and metal, I do like to share national and international band news (both good and band) with others who might be interested. Black Sabbath's Tony Iommi has been diagnosed with lymphoma, but the plans for the first album in 33 years are still on track. Check out this article about this news (text below) and send out any good thoughts that you have for him. And since we're on the subject - anyone who wants to get me his book, "Iron Man," I would greatly appreciate it.  :)

Article written by Billboard Staff Photo from quoted article

Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi has been diagnosed with the early stages of lymphoma but a new album for the legendary metal band is still on track, it was announced Monday.

Iommi, 63, is currently working with his doctors to determine the best course and "remains upbeat and determined to make a full and successful recovery," a statement said.

In November, the group -- Iommi, Ozzy Osbourne, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward -- announced album and tour plans. While the statement does not indicate whether live dates will be affected, the band continues to write and record their first album in over three decades. Rick Rubin will produce the group's comeback album, which is expected to be released in fall 2012 through Vertigo/Universal.

The metal pioneers are scheduled to headline Download Festival, which will take place between June 8-10 in Donington Park, England.

Since the original lineup came together in 1968, the English metal pioneers have scored album sales of 15 million, according to the RIAA. Between 1970 and 2007, Black Sabbath have had 22 entries on the Billboard 200, and their biggest-selling effort -- 1970's "Paranoid," which featured classic rock tracks like "Iron Man" and "War Pigs" -- has sold 1.6 million in the SoundScan era.

The lineup of Osbourne, Iommi, Butler and Ward released its last album, "Never Say Die," in 1978; the disc has sold 133,000 copies in the SoundScan era. Osbourne split with Black Sabbath in 1979 and went on to a hugely successful solo career, with hits like "Crazy Train," "Mr. Crowley" and "Shot in the Dark." He rejoined the band in 1997 and toured on-and-off with them through 2006, but the only new material produced was two songs tacked onto a 1998 live album.

Iommi, who wrote extensively about the band in his recent book "Iron Man: My Journey Through Heaven & Hell With Black Sabbath," told that he regrouped with Osbourne, bassist Butler and drummer Ward at Osbourne's California home in early 2011 to play some music "for a bit of fun, and to see if we could all play. It was good, but it was just purely, 'Let's have a go and see what happens.'"

Friday, January 6, 2012

Metallica's Black Album is the Number 1 Selling Album of the Last 20 Years (News Reprint)

(Reprinted from Loudwire - please note that I did not write this and you can find the original link here)

Photo from

by: Graham "Gruhamed" Hartmann

Billboard and Nielsen SoundScan have just released a list of the top-selling albums of the SoundScan era (1991-2011). Coming in at No. 1 with more than 15 million units sold to date is Metallica‘s self-titled 1991 disc, aka The Black Album.
Metallica are the most successful band in metal history regarding album sales. The thrash giants have sold more than 100 million records worldwide. Metallica also came in at No. 4 on SoundScan’s top-selling artists of the past 20 years, only being topped by Garth Brooks, the Beatles and Mariah Carey.
The Black Album topped the charts in eight countries and delivered some of metal’s most legendary tracks such as ‘The Unforgiven,’ ‘Nothing Else Matters’ and ‘Enter Sandman.’
Metallica recently celebrated their 30th anniversary as a band by four small club dates for their fan club members in San Francisco. Some of the biggest names in metal came out to share the stage with Metallica during the four-day celebration such as Ozzy Osbourne and Rob Halford as well as former Metallica members Jason Newsted and Dave Mustaine.
Metallica are set to release a B-sides album of songs recorded during the ‘Death Magnetic’ sessions on Jan 30. titled ‘Beyond Magnetic.’

Top 10 Highest-Selling Albums of the Nielsen SoundScan Era

(1991 – 1/1/2012)

ArtistUnits Sold
1‘Metallica,’ Metallica15,735,000
2‘Come On Over,’ Shania Twain15,513,000
3‘Jagged Little Pill,’ Alanis Morissette14,714,000
4‘Millennium,’ Backstreet Boys12,168,000
5’1,’ Beatles11,985,000
6Soundtrack, ‘Bodyguard’11,829,000
7‘Supernatural,’ Santana11,772,000
8‘Human Clay,’ Creed11,574,000
9‘No Strings Attached,’ N Sync11,122,000
10‘Falling Into You,’ Celine Dion10,790,000

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

In Memory of... Paul Gray

Photo from this news article

Paul Gray (Slipknot) April 8, 1972 – May 24, 2010

Paul Gray, co-founder, bassist, and songwriter of Iowa band Slipknot, was also known as #2 and The Pig. Gray was born on April 8, 1972 in Los Angeles, California but later relocated to Des Moines, Iowa. In 1995, he helped form the band Slipknot and was one of the three remaining original members when he passed away in May of 2010.

As Slipknot's bassist, Gray was the only member who remained in the same role in the band for the entire time that he was a member. He also sang back up vocals for some of Slipknot’s songs, especially when lead singer Corey Taylor’s voice and throat got tired and hoarse. He was well known for his pig face mask, thus the nickname The Pig, and the black death mask he occasionally also wore.

In addition to Slipknot, Gray was also in VeXX, Body Pit, and Anal Blast and has toured with Unida and Reggie and the Full Effect as a substitute bassist. Albums released by Slipknot include Mate. Feed. Kill. Repeat (1996), Slipknot (1999), Iowa (2001), Vol. 3 The Subliminal Verses (2004), 9.0: Live (2005) and All Hope Is Gone (2008). Personally, Mate. Feed. Kill. Repeat. is my favorite since it was the very first Slipknot album I ever heard and it was one of the first 5 metal albums I heard, leading to my current status as a metalhead. 

Known for his awesome stage presence and amazing charisma both on and off stage, Gray was an icon in the metal world. His death on May 24th, 2010 in a hotel room in Des Moines, Iowa shook up the metal world, leaving many of us wondering if The Nine would ever be the same without him, or if Slipknot would even continue. Autopsy reports later confirmed that his death was caused by an accidental overdose of morphine and fentanyl and he also had signs of significant heart disease. Gray had a history of drug problems, including an arrest after a car accident in June 2003.

No matter what the cause of death, the loss of Paul Gray was devastating to his family, his fans, and his brothers in Slipknot. Even the band Mushroomhead, which had a long standing feud with Slipknot, stepped up to express their sadness and ask for an end to the feud. Former Slipknot guitarist Donnie Steele has stepped up to try to fill #2’s shoes as the touring bassist beginning in 2011. I haven’t seen Slipknot since the loss of Paul Gray, but hopefully will have the chance soon. One man doesn’t make the band and I love this band, but I’m sure it won’t ever be quite the same.

See the video below of the press conference with Slipknot following Paul Gray's death.

Check out Slipknot's website here.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

What is... METAL

What is… METAL?
Buy t-shirt here (photo from site)
There are so many different forms of music and often it is hard to differentiate between them.  Sometimes, a band can fall into more than one genre or subgenre. First up on our list of “What is…” is metal.
Metal is characterized by certain distinctive features, including strong and vibrant drums, especially bass drum and often a double bass, forceful and dynamic vocals, guitar distortion and power chords. While these are not always hard and fast rules for metal, they are often key components.  Many subgenres of metal also include these characteristics, although sometimes the subgenres include other characteristics or exclude one or more of these. Vocals in metal can run the gamut from melodic singing to deep growls and carnal screams. Most importantly, metal is loud. The main characteristic is an assault of sounds that are akin to chaos and war, but in reality are usually fairly ordered. Metal is often associated with death, anger and masculinity.
Metal originated in the United States and the UK in the 1960’s as an alternative to the slower tempo available music. It is a spin-off of many things including rock, blues and punk. There are still subgenres of metal that represent these genres in the universe of metal, including metalcore. Some of the original metal bands included Iron Butterfly, Led Zepplin, Black Sabbath, and Deep Purple. Other bands like Pink Floyd, Cream, The Beatles, Grand Funk Railroad, and Blue Cheer also released heavier songs during the formative years of metal that would fall into the genre, even if the rest of the band’s songs don’t technically fall into the genre. These songs helped form metal and also became the basis for some of the subgenres.
As music progressed and the genre progressed through the 1970s and 1980s, more bands came into the scene and many subgenres were formed. Metallica, The Obsessed, Melvins, Quiet Riot, Motley Crue, Twisted Sister and Poison also came out during this time. Today, there are so many metal options that I’m not even sure where to start. Anthrax, Bullet For My Valentine, Megadeth, Slayer, Pantera, Lamb of God, Sepultura, Dream Theater, Children of Bodom and Slipknot are some bands that come to mind.
Although not as good of an indicator, fashion and gestures are also ways to tell if the band you are watching is metal. The fashion has changed quite a bit since the big hair metal bands of the late 1970s and 1980s, but artists in metal bands still often have long hair or non-mainstream hair, such as mohawks. They usually have tattoos, wear leather or denim, and often have t-shirts featuring their own influences in the metal world. Of course, I’ve seen many different looks on stage at a metal show so there is no all-encompassing “look.” Gestures including head banging, “devil horns” hand gestures, and fisted arm thrusting are all pretty good signs. In addition to the somewhat characteristic looks of the artists, the fans also follow many of the same fashion trends. Fans of metal are also referred to as Metalheads and come in all shapes and sizes and many of them do not always "look the part." If someone who didn't know me, for example, tried to guess what kind of music I like most based on what I looked like, my guess is that they wouldn't be able to determine that I'm a metalhead.
Still not sure that you know what metal is? Well, that’s ok – me either. If a band is very obviously one genre or subgenre, it is easy to figure out but sometimes bands blend different sounds and characteristics to create something that is not easily identified as a specific genre.
Something to look forward to: posts about identifying the subgenres of metal including Thrash Metal, Death Metal, Black Metal, Doom Metal, Power Metal, Industrial Metal, Progressive Metal and Nu Metal.