Video of the Day: Lars Ulrich Tries Out for DREAM THEATER

Unless you’re a METALLICA fanboy in 2011 (what’s wrong with you?), it’s a universally accepted truth that Lars Ulrich is one of the worst drummers in metal history. So to have some fun, dmdollinar08 posted this brilliant video chronicling Lars‘ audition for the recent vacancy on the drum stool for prog juggernauts, DREAM THEATER.

Enjoy!

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METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH, ANTHRAX to Bring “The Big 4” to New York this Fall

After last week’s successful The Big 4 concert in Indio, California, the heavy metal foursome of METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH, and ANTHRAX have announced an East Coast edition of the show at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, New York on September 14th, 2011.

Tickets go on sale Friday, May 6th at 10am through Ticketmaster. Pre-sales for MetClub members and Yankee season ticket holders go on sale Wednesday, May 4th.

Follow “The Big 4” on Facebook for all the latest info:
http://www.facebook.com/TheBig4

The Big 4 is Upon Us; LA Weekly Talks to SLAYER’s Tom Araya, ANTHRAX’s Scott Ian

This weekend is The Big 4 festival out in Indio, California with METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH, and ANTHRAX.

Check out some interviews in LA Weekly with SLAYER‘s Tom Araya and ANTHRAX‘s Scott Ian. They talk about the original Big 4 show in Bulgaria, the Coachella festival (which took place at the same venue as the upcoming Big 4), and their festival buddies METALLICA and MEGADETH.

Scott Ian
Tom Araya

Goldenvoice Announce “The Big 4”: METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH, ANTHRAX to Play Indio, CA

The collective of heavy metal titans known as “The Big 4” of METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH, and ANTHRAX have been confirmed to share the stage together via Goldenvoice‘s “The Big 4” for North American fans. The four bands shared the stage for the first time together last year in Europe. This event is slated to be the only time the bands will play together in the U.S.

The bands will take over Empire Polo Club in Indio, CA (home of Coachella and Stagecoach) on April 23, 2011. Tickets will range between $99 and $199 and go on sale Friday, January 28 at 10 AM.

Visit the official site for more info: http://www.thebig4festival.com/

Concert Memories: METALLICA, SUICIDAL TENDENCIES, CANDLEBOX, FIGHT @ Cal State Dominguez Hills, Dominguez Hills, CA (07/26/94)

Back in the summer of 1994, I was a pimple faced teenage metalhead whose world revolved around classic rock, hard rock, and heavy metal. And like virtually every metalhead on the planet, I viewed METALLICA as the absolute infallible, invincible gods of metal. The band had taken the world by storm with the Black Album and they were in the midst of the height of their popularity.

After missing out on the first few rounds of the Black Album tour as well as the dream tour with GUNS ‘N ROSES, my time had finally come to see my first concert via the 1994 Shit Hits the Sheds Tour. To say my friend and I were stoked is an understatement. In hindsight, I really didn’t even know to expect at a metal show. Man, was I in for a surprise.

The tour’s Los Angeles-area stop took place on a huge grass field at a university, and there was definitely a festival vibe to things. There were thousands of people on the field. The crowd was a great reflection of the Los Angeles metal scene in general at the time. There were diehard fans since the 70’s and 80’s, young fans, lots of female fans, and a diverse array of cultural backgrounds represented. To this day, I have never seen such a wide array of metal shirts in all my life.

Up until that tender age, I had never smelled weed smoke before but I knew exactly what that skunky smell was right when it hit me. There were literally hazes of smoke flowing over the field the whole day. Yeah, this was LA alright.

Despite arriving in the late afternoon, the show had already started with Rob Halford‘s FIGHT playing songs off their excellent debut, War of Words. Watching the Metal God stalk the stage with his big, black goatee and singing better than on the record was a truly awesome site to behold.

ALICE IN CHAINS were originally on the tour but had to pull out due to drug issues with singer Layne Staley. I was bummed out as Facelift and Dirt had greatly impacted my young life. Unfortunately, for some godforsaken reason, super shitty CANDLEBOX took their place on the tour. Their brand of soft rock did not go over well as the audience quickly booed them continuously and gave them the finger. The band eventually got butthurt enough that they were forced to cut their set short. The lame singer made sure to give us all the finger before he left the stage. We all had a good laugh about that.

As dusk settled in, Venice, CA’s SUICIDAL TENDENCIES took the stage to the roaring approval of the crowd. As soon as the first note was played, the crowd went apeshit. Gigantic moshpits instantaneously formed all across the field. Everyone was pushing, shoving, and just going crazy. I got sucked into a few pits and was too busy fighting for my life to be scared. By the middle of SUICIDAL‘s set, I found myself near the front of the stage and utterly smashed like canned sardines against everyone else around me. It was hard to breathe at times and that was a freaky feeling. The band was awesome so it helped to distract you from the discomfort of elbows flying, crowd surfers landing on your spine, and lots of man sweat from strangers being rubbed on you. It was easy to see just why vocalist Mike Muir was such an icon. The man is charismatic as hell.

Once SUICIDAL concluded their set, I was more than relieved because I could finally get a breather from the madness. The grass field had been transformed into a dirt field and the air was thick with dirt and dust. I was thirsty as hell but there was no way I could get to the vendors as I was stuck right near the front of the stage.

It took at least an hour for METALLICA to hit the stage. The wait was excruciating to say the least. I hadn’t seen my friend since SUICIDAL played and figured I’d have to find him after the show. Once “Ecstacy of Gold” starting playing, the crowd was instantly energized. James Hetfield ran out on stage playing the first notes to “Breadfan” and the madness went to a whole new level. Plumes of weed smoke bellowed into the night air. Everyone was furiously headbanging, pumping their fists, singing along, moshing, pushing, kicking, punching, and any other primal behavior possible. The crowds of today in the U.S. don’t even come close to the brutality of those final years of metal’s mainstream heyday.

Throughout their 2+ hour set, you couldn’t help but think that METALLICA were indeed the gods. Seemingly endless classic song after classic song put me in heaven. And to be up so close to the band was just amazing. I could clearly see every member’s faces. Watching Lars disappear through his secret trap door behind his drumkit was hilarious. I don’t think I’ve ever been to another show with so much enthusiasm. People were high fiving each other after every song and headbanging together in camaraderie while others chose to bash each other to a pulp. It was a special night where thousands gathered to enjoy the thing they enjoyed most in life, metal music.

After the show, I eventually found my friend and both of us were covered in dirt and dust. He managed to escape the moshpits by fleeing to the side of the field. My eyeglasses were bent out of shape while being in my pocket, and my shoelaces were severed. I was coughing up and sneezing dirt for days. Also, I was sore all over for days.

Since that summer night, I’ve gone to literally hundreds of shows but nothing compares to that show. It was the perfect night, time period in my life, and era of metal to have my first concert experience. Who knew that METALLICA would not only ruin my life but the lives of millions around the world two years later with their next record?

VOLBEAT: One Continent at a Time

Nothing beats good, memorable songs and Copenhagen, Denmark’s VOLBEAT specialize in them. Their rise to fame in Europe is quite impressive as the band have earned multiple platinum and gold records, and several hit songs. In contrast, the band have only recently begun making their presence known in U.S. beginning with their tour earlier this year with fans, METALLICA. But make no mistake, the band have a very loyal underground following in the States that is only growing larger. APESHIT met up with guitarist Thomas Bredahl and drummer Jon Larsen before their sold out show in Anaheim, CA to speak with the new Danish gods about the secrets to their success.
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DEVIN TOWNSEND: The Rebirth of Devin Townsend

Few artists in metal have been as single-handedly influential and prolific in the late 90’s/2000’s as DEVIN TOWNSEND. Despite amassing a diehard fanbase and the high praise and respect of his peers, Devin‘s personal life was suffering. After taking a self-imposed sabbatical in conjunction with the end of STRAPPING YOUNG LAD, Devin went through a soul searching journey and a reevaluation of his life.

APESHIT spoke to the mad scientist of metal before his show in LA earlier this year. We’re happy to report that not only is Devin back with a renewed sense of purpose and inspiration, he’s here to be bigger and stronger than ever.
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The Big Four’s Sofia, Bulgaria Concert to Be Beamed to Movie Theaters Around the World

The “Big Four,” METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH and ANTHRAX, are bringing their historic European tour to the global stage by beaming the event via satellite to movie theaters around the world in a special HD cinematic event. These four legendary acts broke out of the underground thrash movement in the 1980’s to dominate the metal world, selling millions of records and packing arenas across the globe. Despite huge demand, these musical giants have never shared the same stage until now. The legendary June 22nd concert from the tour’s stop of the Sonisphere Festival in Sofia, Bulgaria will air the same day in over 450 theaters in more than 140 markets in the U.S., as well as beamed into theaters in Europe, Canada and Latin America. Delayed screenings are planned in Australia, South Africa and New Zealand. Tickets for “The Big Four: METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH, ANTHRAX” go on sale starting today Friday, May 21st in the U.S. and internationally starting Friday, May 28th at participating theater box offices and at www.thebigfourlive.com, where fans can also view the event cinema trailer.

In December 2009, the bands announced that they would be joining forces to take part in the traveling Sonisphere Festival for only 7 shows across Europe. Now, this one-time only event from the Sofia show makes it possible for fans far and wide to participate in what otherwise is a very limited run of dates. The high-definition concert presentation will memorialize the event and the impact will be amplified globally with the cinema screenings, making the dreams of fans around the world over become a reality.

Lars Ulrich of METALLICA says of this historic announcement, “Who would have thought that more than 25 years after its inception, thrash metal’s Big Four would not only still be around, be more popular than ever, playing shows together at stadiums all over Europe, and on top of that, coming to a movie theater near you in High Definition (for better or worse??!!). Bring it on!”

ANTHRAX guitarist Scott Ian says “Damn, as if this Big 4 tour wasn’t exciting enough now we get to be on the big screen worldwide! Metal at the movies, two big horns up! It is unbelievably gratifying that this means so much to the metal community around the globe. Get your tix, grab some popcorn and get ready to bang your head!”

Declares SLAYER’s Kerry King, “I can’t believe someone didn’t make this happen 15 years ago! The fans finally get what they want. I think it’s awesome!”

Says MEGADETH’s Dave Mustaine, “The magnitude of this event hasn’t really sunk in yet, and I am thrilled to know that people around the planet will be able to walk into a movie theater and experience the greatest line up of Heavy Metal in the history of the world!”

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Andreas Kisser: Guitar Hero

In the world of death metal (and extreme metal as a whole), there are very few lead guitarists that can match Andreas Kisser‘s body of work. After being the guitar hero for SEPULTURA for almost 25 years, Kisser has released his first solo release and labor of love, Hubris I & II. Enlisting the help of some of Brazil’s most well-known musicians, Kisser has dished out a musically diverse and stimulating double album. APESHIT spoke to him from his home in Brazil about such his musical roots, his guitar heros, jamming with METALLICA and the SCORPIONS, and more.
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METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH, and ANTHRAX to Share the Stage for the First Time

The world wide web has been abound with speculation on a possible “Big Four” tour for several months. Now, the UK/European Sonisphere can exclusively reveal that METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH and ANTHRAX will play together for the first time in history, in a move that will have metalheads across the globe frenzied with excitement.

Says Lars Ulrich of this historic announcement: “Who would have thought that more than 25 years after its inception, thrash metal’s big 4 would not only still be around and more popular than ever, but will now play together for the first time…what a mindfuck! Bring it on!”

“It’s about fucking time this happened,” says SLAYER‘s Kerry King, “and about time the fans finally get what they want. This is fucking awesome.”

ANTHRAX guitarist Scott Ian agrees, commenting on the enormity of the announcement.

“People have been talking about these four bands playing together since 1984. That’s twenty-six years of expectation!! And the thing is, I believe not only will we live up to the expectations, we will shatter them! No other four bands as influential as the four of us have ever done this. Imagine if The BEATLES, STONES, THE WHO and ZEPPELIN had done shows? Or SABBATH, PRIEST, MAIDEN, MOTORHEAD? Well, I may be getting into some rarified air here but as a fan, that’s how big I feel this is.”

These four legendary acts broke out of the underground thrash movement to dominate the metal world in the 1980s, selling millions of records and packing arenas across the globe. The metal giants have never before all shared the same stage, despite huge demand. But on June 16, 2010, METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH and ANTHRAX will take to the Sonisphere stage at Bemowo Airport, Poland, to make the dreams of headbangers the world over become a reality. A second Big Four appearance is planned for Sonisphere Czech Republic three days later, with more Sonisphere shows featuring the awesome combo to be announced in the coming days and weeks.

“This is a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ opportunity for heavy metal fans to see the four greatest heavy metal bands in American history back together on one stage,” concludes MEGADETH main man Dave Mustaine. “If there are any heads left at the end of this festival that haven’t banged, they don’t belong there.”

Tickets are available from www.sonispherefestivals.com.