Megadeth Bassist On Risk: ‘We Weren’t Trying To Be Disturbed Or Godsmack”

In 1990, Megadeth would put out the massive behemoth of an album, Rust in Peace. The group’s subsequent offerings, beginning with Countdown to Extinction in 1992, may have proven the laws of diminishing returns was a true concept, but their catalog was still better than what most other thrash bands were doing at the time. Then, on August 31st, 1999, the band threw a curveball and released their most controversial and fan-derided record, Risk.

The aptly-titled Risk was a experimental album for Megadeth. Instead of a straightforward metal release, this album was a hodge-podge of sounds that permeated the hard rock landscape of the 1990’s that would not normally be found on a Megadeth album. “It was definitely a risk for sure,” David Ellefson tells Alternative Nation.

Fans accused Megadeth on cashing in on the rock music trends of the late 90’s. One example is the song “Crush Em”, which has industrial elements. This song featured as the theme song to the Van Damme film Universal Soldier: The Return. 

Then we have the track “Insomnia”, which is the band’s attempt at atmosphere, while “The Doctor is Calling” finds comparisons to Alice in Chains and “Breadline” screams late 90’s cheese in the same vein as bands like 3 Doors Down. “I’ll Be There” is a very soft ballad, probably the softest the band has ever done. Just about every song on this album is slow with no payoff, while Dave Mustaine seems bored.

Despite these comparisons to their contemporaries, Ellefson tells us in retrospect that the band tried to distance itself from such genres as post-grunge and nu metal. “I remember at the time, a lot of these nu-metal bands like Disturbed and Godsmack were coming out and we wanted to do something way different.”

Megadeth would bounce back in the mid 2000’s with albums like United Abominations and Endgame, only to put out an equally derided record in 2013 known as Supercollider. Sixteen years later, Ellefson looks back on the record rather fondly, even if the record wasn’t well received by the metal fanbase.

“Looking back at it, I feel if we had more time to work on it, it would have been a better record,” Ellefson tells us. “I remember spinning it a little while ago and thinking this isn’t so bad of a record. It might not be one of our best records, but I feel it has some good material on it.”


Foo Fighters Sing Happy Birthday To Dave Grohl’s Mom

At Foo Fighters’ epic show at Wrigley Field in Chicago last night, Dave Grohl brought his mother Virginia Grohl and cousin Tracy on stage so that fans could sing happy birthday to them! Grohl also discussed his mother drinking with Green Day. Watch video below!

Happy birthday to Dave's cousin Trac(e)y and his mom! @foofighters

A video posted by Katie (@devillibrarian) on

Foo Fighters Wrigley Field Setlist:
Monkey Wrench
Learn to Fly
Something From Nothing (with Rick Nielsen)
The Pretender
Big Me (slow version)
Van Halen covers (Snippets during band introduction)
Roundabout (Yes cover) (Snippet during band introduction)
School’s Out (Alice Cooper cover) (Snippet during band introduction)
Cold Day in the Sun
My Hero
All My Life
Happy Birthday (Mildred J. Hill cover) (to Virginia Grohl and Tracy Dave´s mom and cousin)
Times Like These
These Days
Miss You (The Rolling Stones cover)
White Limo
This Is a Call
Best of You

Foo Fighters performed at the First Niagara Pavilion in Burgettstown, PA on Tuesday, and Dave Grohl discussed his throne, broken leg, and his roots in the area, as transcribed by Alternative Nation. Grohl first discussed he would be happy if he had to stay in his throne.

“You know why I’m sitting in it, don’t you? You know why? Cause it’s fucking cool as shit, that’s why. Oh, and also I can’t walk! But let me tell you, if I never, ever, have to stand up again, I think I might be perfectly happy in this thing because it has a drinkholder, and lights.”

Grohl then changed his tune, hoping he can soon be ‘learning to walk again.’ Grohl said, “But I hope it’s just temporary, because I sure love running around when we play, for anyone who has ever seen us before. I’m singing a ballad right now, and I’m not going to dedicate it to the ladies. I’m not going to dedicate it to the wonderful people of this part of the country where my people come from, just so you know. I think this is as close as I’m going to get on this tour to the place that I was born. I got a little Pittsburgh in me! Sweet Miss Virginia Grohl, my mother, was born in Pittsburgh, I don’t know if you know, it’s true. All of my family comes from that other turnpike, that’s over there.”

A fan also requested “Low” with a sign, and Foo Fighters obliged the request and performed the song live for the first time since 2009!

Jack White, Tom Morello & Conan O’Brien Attend Baseball Game

Tom Morello (Rage Against The Machine/Audioslave), Jack White (The White Stripes/Ranconteurs/Dead Weather), Conan O’Brien, and Bob Newhart attended a Chicago Cubs vs. Los Angeles Dodgers game together over the weekend at Dodger Stadium. See photos below!



Tom Morello is a long time Chicago Cubs fan. He even wrote an article for Rolling Stone in 2014 detailing what the Cubs needed to do to win a world series. Below is an excerpt:

he question we have to ask ourselves (ownership, fans, players) is this: does it MATTER if the Cubs win the World Series? Peace in the Middle East matters. Curing disease matters. Stopping global warming matters. But does it really MATTER whether or not or the little Midwestern team dressed in blue wins a World Series in our lifetime? I think it does. And not merely out of some tribal affiliation to the place I grew up. I truly believe that if this seemingly unredeemable team can make it to the Promised Land then, really, ANYTHING is possible.

“But how can I, how can WE, make it happen? The previous six points are a guide, but what if nothing changes? Are we looking at another 106 years of agony? What leverage do we as fans really have?

It’s the elephant in the room of all Cubs discussion, so let’s deal with it head on. Baseball is a business. Sure, we fans are wistful dreamers who fantasize about glory on the diamond, but to the people who hold the purse strings, the Cubs win the economic World Series every year. It’s a smashingly profitable franchise because of OUR continued support in the face of a century of sorrow. We fill the stands. We buy the merchandise. We drink the beer. Whether the team wins or loses, whether the fans boo or cheer, there’s only one sound that echoes at the end of the day: KA-CHING!

That is unless we boycott.

I propose that unless this plan is adopted by Cub’s ownership, we let our voices be heard and next year, we skip Opening Day. Imagine that. Opening Day at Wrigley Field and an empty stadium. Now you have their attention. Maybe we boycott the first home game of each month? Maybe “No Merch Monday’s?” I can see team accountants rushing to their calculators now! Scouts scanning the free-agent wires in earnest! Of course we should continue enjoying all Wrigley has to offer the rest of the time, but we will no longer be the passive partner in this abusive relationship. We have needs too, ya know? But we also have power and we won’t be silent anymore. Why? Because we love this team. Because we love Chicago. Because we deserve a World Series championship. Because it matters.”

Jack White, also a baseball enthusasist, attended a Cubs game with Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder last year. See photos below of the pair at the game with Cubs President Theo Epstein.




Limp Bizkit Helped Axl Rose & Slash Reconcile, According To Fred Durst

Guns N’ Roses may potentially reunite for the nookie, if the words of Fred Durst are to be believed.

The controversial Limp Bizkit frontman, strutting the NME/BBC Radio 1 Stage, asserted to a raucous crowd at Reading festival that he got Axl Rose and Slash rollin’ down the right path. “I’d like you to know that we’re responsible for Axl and Slash being back together,” Durst told the crowd. “We had a meeting and it went really well.”

If you take a look around the internet, you will find rumors of a 2016 reunion of the classic lineup of Guns N’ Roses featuring Axl Rose, Slash, Duff McKagan, Izzy Stradlin, and Steven Adler. Guitarists DJ Ashba and Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal both departed the modern incarnation of the band over the past year, and Slash recently claimed that he and Axl Rose had finally buried the hatchet.

“It was probably way over due but it was very cool at this point. Let some of that…Dispell some of that negative stuff that was going on for so long,” the legendary Guns N’ Roses and Velvet Revolver guitarist told Aftonblade.

Slash’s camp later took a shotgun to the rumors. On the latest Eddie Trunk podcast, Trunk discussed recently contacting Slash’s management for a comment regarding rampant Guns N’ Roses reunion rumors that have spread following the reports of Axl Rose and Slash reconciling. Trunk was told by Team Slash that the whole thing has been blown far out of proportion, and he’s laying low now when it comes to interviews. Trunk did say that he believes a Guns N’ Roses reunion will eventually happen.

Let’s just hope Fred Durst has given my generation a chance at seeing the classic lineup of Guns N’ Roses play live.

Iron Maiden’s Albums Get Ranked Up!

Formed in 1974, Iron Maiden is a household name among metalheads and casual music listeners alike: the band’s mix of speed, energy, complexity, well written lyrics, and epic feel keeps fans counting the days to the next Maiden release and devouring concert tickets. Maiden is also known for staying true to their sound no matter what the current rock or metal trends might be.

Even bad Iron Maiden albums, for the most part, will have at least one good song. To celebrate the band’s soon to be released 16th album, The Book of Souls (due September 4), we decided to base the next installment of Ranked Up! on none other than Iron Maiden.


TIE: The X Factor and Virtual XI (1995, 1998)

Both of these albums are tied for the same slot as they are both the worst for the same reason: Bruce Dickinson was replaced by Blaze Bayley, whose voice was not very good at all, and the songwriting ranged from subpar to godawful. During this time, Bruce released two solo albumsAccident of Birth and The Chemical Wedding. Both of these albums feature Adrian Smith on guitar and are much better then these two Maiden albums.


No Prayer for the Dying (1990)

No Prayer for the Dying is the most infamous Maiden album to not have Blaze. Around this time, longtime guitarist Adrian Smith left the band and was replaced by Janick Gers. The single “Bring Your Daughter to the Slaughter” is the band’s only number one hit to date, but the track itself isn’t very good. Credit is due, however, for the solid tune “Tailgunner“.


Dance of Death (2003)

Released two years after the amazing Brave New World, this release was a bit of a step backwards, and the album failed to deliver the level of quality Maiden is known for. The track “Rainmaker” is one of the bands post 80’s songs, however.


Fear of the Dark (1992)

Fear of the Dark is one of the band’s most overlooked albums. While the title track is one of the most popular Iron Maiden songs, the rest of this album is normally panned by your average listener. A dedicated fan will dive in and realize the album has many underrated tracks, including “Be Quick or be Dead“,“Judas My Guide” and “Afraid to Shoot Strangers“.

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A Matter of Life and Death (2006)

In 2006, several classic metal bands, including Terrorizer, Sepultura, and Slayer showed the world that putting out albums is something… that they should probably stop doing. Iron Maiden, on the other hand, showed us that still got it. The album was Maiden’s heaviest release at the time as well as their longest and most progressive. Many great tracks are to be heard here including “The Pilgrim“,”The Reincarnation of Benjamin Breeg“, “Different World” and “Brighter then a Thousand Suns“.


The Final Frontier (2010)

This 15th entry in the Iron Maiden saga was originally supposed to be the band’s last release. Bassist Steve Harris would later reveal this to be untrue. It would have been a sweet final effort, as The Final Frontier is the band’s best work since Brave New World. The album is even longer then the last one, but doesn’t drag on at all. The best tracks from this album are “El Dorado“,”The Alchemist“, “Mother of Mercy“, and “The Talisman“.

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Brave New World (2000)

Thanks to Blaze, the mid to late 90’s were the worst time for Iron Maiden. This was until 1999, when Blaze left and Bruce came back and brought with him Adrian Smith. To this day, the band still has three guitarists. At the dawn of the new millennium, the band released this monster of a comeback. Brave New World is an hour and seven minutes of pure awesome. With tracks like “Blood Brothers“, “Brave New World” and “Wickerman“, this is easily the best non-80’s Maiden release.

Iron Maiden Somewhere In Time

Somewhere in Time (1986)

Trying to figure out what Maiden’s weakest 80’s release is is a bit redundant, as they are all metal perfection. Somewhere in Time is still an amazing record, despite being ranked the lowest on this list in reference to that era. Best songs from here are “Wasted Years“, “Alexander the Great“, and “Stranger in a Strange Land“.


Killers (1981)

Killers is the last album to feature Paul Dianno on vocals and first to feature Adrian Smith on guitar. This is the only Maiden album to date to have two instrumental tracks: “Gengus Khan” and “Ides of March“. Killers is largely composed of unreleased songs from the band’s self titled debut. “Wrathchild” is the most popular song from this album and was even featured in game that everyone probably forgot existed, Guitar Hero Rock the 80’s. The album includes other fan favorites such as “Twilight Zone” and “Purgatory“.


Iron Maiden (1980)

Iron Maiden is some record that a bunch of no names put together in their spare time: Paul Dianno, Steve Harris, Clive Burr, and Dennis Stratton. It would launch the career of one of metal’s most legendary outfits. Running Free“,”Iron Maiden” and “Phantom of the Opera” are still stables of Maiden’s sets in a post-Paul Dianno world.


Piece of Mind (1983)

Piece of Mind is the first Iron Maiden album to feature the band’s most well known drummer, Nikko McBrain. This album’s line up of him, vocalist Bruce Dickinson, bassist Steve Harris, guitarist Adrian Smith, and guitarist Dave Murray would go on to be known as the classic Maiden lineup. The band would keep this line up throughout the 80’s then bring in it back, with the addition of third guitarist Jannick Gers, in 1999. This album has “The Trooper“, which is one of the band’s most well known songs. “Flight of Icarus“, “Where Eagles Dare” and ” Die With Your Boots” and pretty much the rest of this album is just as good. Along with Powerslave and Number of the Beast, Piece of Mind is the best Maiden albums to start out with.


Powerslave (1984)

Powerslave is the most underrated of the classic era Maiden albums. The song writing on this album is top notch. The album is most known for the singles “2 Minuites to Midnight” and “Aces High” as well as the 14 minute epic “Rime of the Ancient Mariner“. While those songs are awesome, the best song from this album is “Flash of the Blade“, a song that was used as the theme to the Dario Argento horror classic Phenomena.


Seventh Son of a Seventh Son (1987)

When a man is born the seventh son from a man that was the seventh son of his parents, this child would be born with supernatural powers. This man’s power would be strong enough to make a difference in the everlasting battle between good and evil. This is the story behind this epic concept album, the band’s only true concept album to date. Panned by fans during its original release due to the addition of synths, Seventh Son of a Seventh Son has now gone on to be one of the band’s most beloved works.

This album is also the first time Maiden would expand upon their prog rock influence, something that has stuck with the band in later releases. In 1988 the band would tour for the album and play the whole thing in its entirety. In 2012, they would tour again for this album this time was Alice Copper as support. Even when not celebrating the album, the songs “Can I Play With Madness“,”The Evil That Men Do” and “Seventh Son of a Seventh Son” are likely to appear in the band’s set lists. Due to being pretty different from what the band is known for, it might not be the best album to start out with, but once you become a fan of the band it is a must hear!

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Number of the Beast (1983)

Number of the Beast was the fuse the sparked Maiden’s explosion out of clubs and into international success. Out was a majority of the punk influence from the first two albums and in were Bruce’s epic opera vocals, cementing the band’s signature sound. The album contains the band’s two most well known songs, “Run to the Hills” and “Number of the Beast” as well as what this humble writer considers the band’s greatest song to date, “Hallowed Be Thy Name“. Let’s just say if it wasn’t for a cheap copy in a local mall in middle of nowhere upstate New York, you might not be reading this list. The entire album is a masterpiece from front to back without a single skip-able track. Number of the Beast is one of the greatest metal albums ever released.

Chris Cornell Talks Mad Season Reunion: ‘It Was Kind Of A Shock’

Chris Cornell discussed fronting Mad Season for their January 2015 Sonic Evolution concert in a new interview with Radio 929. Cornell praised the show, but downplayed rumors of a full fledged reunion.

“Well, that’s not something we ever really talked about, but I can say that I really enjoyed being on stage with those guys, and it was kind of a shock to be standing there…I was trying to remember the songs and trying to sing them well and sort of do right by the history of it, and once I was on stage and we were doing it, then it kind of hit me, I’m standing here with these guys, all of which I’ve known for years and years and been friends with but had never been on stage with them like that. It was pretty great. It was pretty moving.”

Mad Season recently released the concert as a live album, see more information below:

On January 30, 2015, surviving Mad Season members Mike McCready and Barrett Martin performed selections from the band’s repertoire at the Seattle Symphony’s Sonic Evolution concert, with conductor Ludovic Morlot and guest artists including Soundgarden’s Chris Cornell (filling in for the late Layne Staley), Pearl Jam drummer Matt Cameron and Guns N’ Roses bassist Duff McKagan (filling in for the late John Baker Saunders).

The Mad Season performance also included guests Jeff Angell, Kim Virant, Sean Kinney (Alice In Chains), Skerik, and Tim Dijulio. The night also included an appearances from Jeff Ament and Stone Gossard who alongside Cornell, McCready, and Cameron, performed songs as Temple Of The Dog.

This event was the result of a year-long artistic collaboration between Mike McCready and Seattle Symphony Music Director Ludovic Morlot. Proceeds from the album sales will benefit the Seattle Symphony and the Vitalogy Foundation.

1. Waking The Horizon (McCready w/ Symphony)
2. Long Gone Day – Mad Season w/ Symphony
3. River Of Deceit – Mad Season w/ Symphony
4. I Don’t Know Anything – Mad Season w/ Symphony
5. Wake Up – Mad Season
6. Lifeless Dead – Mad Season
7. Above – Mad Season
8. Call Me A Dog – Temple Of The Dog
9. Reach Down – Temple Of The Dog
10. All Alone – Mad Season

Andy Summers’ Police Update: “We’re All Completely Connected”

When I recently chatted with Police guitarist Andy Summers for Long Island Pulse, we touched upon quite a few topics, including his band new all-instrumental solo album, Metal Dog, as well as the must-see Police documentary, Can’t Stand Losing You: Surviving The Police.

But most interesting, was the following update regarding the future of the Police:

LI Pulse: Are you still on good terms with the other Police members?

Andy Summers: Yeah. I saw Stewart [Copeland] last week. There’s always stuff. The band, or “the brand,” continues forever. We always have to make some decision about something. The relationship doesn’t go away. Stewart lives close to me in LA; we’re more likely to see each other than Sting…I’m not sure where he is. But we’re all completely connected.

To read the rest of the interview (including additional Police tidbits), click your clicker here.

Meeting Flea: Red Hot Chili Peppers Icon Made Me Faint

Flea. Some might refer to him as the bassist of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Others might refer to him as “God.” Bottom line, he is Flea, and he is a very unique person. Jaco Pastorius, Bootsy Collins, John Paul Jones, Sid Vicious, and those before them, whether they realized it or not, were part of the world’s anticipation for the arrival of bass guitar’s savior, Flea.

Though do not be mistaken, Flea wasn’t always the great bassist he is today. Flea, early in life, was a child prodigy in trumpet playing and had no interest or extensive knowledge of any kind of rock music until high school, preferring jazz. His childhood inspirations included Louis Armstrong and Miles Davis. In high school, befriending Hillel Slovak meant befriending punk rock, opening doors to so much different music. Funk became a common ground and the foundation for the Chili Peppers when they were established a few years later. Jazz’s influence on funk made the transition very natural for Flea. Anthony Kiedis, Hillel Slovak and Flea all around the same time became enamored with George Clinton’s Parliament-Funkadelic, the greatest music collectives of funk.

Similarly, I started playing trumpet in elementary school, but by no means was I a prodigy. After struggling with guitar in high school, I discovered the heart and soul of bass. My friend Keelan and I started learning at the same time, and we tried our best to out-Flea each other. He formally introduced me to the Chili Peppers – though sadly he could not join me Wednesday to meet the man himself, he had school.

Flea and Anthony Kiedis acted as executive producers for the Sundance Film Festival contestant Low Down, a film on the life of jazz pianist Joe Albany, based on the memoirs written by his daughter Amy-Jo Albany. Flea starred in the film alongside John Hawkes and Elle Fanning. It premiered on January 19th, 2014 at last year’s Sundance and was later released on October 24th, 2014 in New York, and a week later on Halloween in Los Angeles.

Flea and Amy-Jo Albany decided to host a DJ set in promotion of the film’s soundtrack on August 26th, 2015 at 5PM at Amoeba Records in Hollywood. I found this out at about 12:30AM, 15 hours prior to the event. My friend Evan told me as we were sitting in his apartment, midst me teaching my girlfriend Francecsa the Chili Peppers’ cover of “Higher Ground” on bass guitar. We had immediately decided to go. Evan and I stayed up all night, hoping to write poetry, which we half accomplished until the 6 cups of highly caffeinated tea hit my stomach wrong when I took my medication, Norflex, an anti-cholinergic muscle relaxant. I launched into a panic attack as it hit me: what if I have to go to the hospital and miss meeting Flea? Well, thinking about that didn’t help my anxiety at all. I made myself throw up for about an hour and a half, and slept for a few hours. We left for LA around 11 o’clock in the morning and made it to Amoeba in about an hour.

After we bought the merchandise applicable for signing (just in case they sold out), to kill time we decided to visit Hillel Slovak’s grave at Mount Sinai Memorial Park Cemetery, about 15 minutes away. It was hot, hot, hot, red hot in fact, and we sat under a tree for a little while. Hillel became one of three Chili Peppers we would come in contact with that day. My girlfriend, Evan and I left back for Hollywood (not without saying goodbye to Hillel) to get some food and with anxious excitement, we returned to Amoeba. After this, the day only got weirder.

We hung out in Amoeba, contemplating which R.E.M. or Tom Waits albums to buy, when Evan jerks my arm down the aisle as I’m browsing for what John Frusciante albums the store carries. I’m not sure what I expected. Maybe Evan found an album we both love. Nope, even better.

Flea. Flea walked down the aisle a few feet from us and runs into some fans and poses for a quick picture, then disappears into the back room. I run up to the fans and talk to them about what happened, and no sooner than we finish our conversation, Flea comes back out, about 10 feet away from me. During the drive, I wrote a very nice letter to Flea, explaining how his music led me to the gospel that is music, and some other personal things about my life and music. The letter was probably 10-12 sentences long and in nervous, messy handwriting. I decided this was the perfect opportunity to give him the letter. So I walk up to him, not saying a word, and a friendly Flea says jovially, “Hey! What’s happening man.” Still, no words come out. I hand him the letter. “Thanks man, I’ll read it.” I wave goodbye, and faint on the hard linoleum floor. My girlfriend and Evan come and drag me up, and I get up unhurt, but definitely shaken.

We go outside for a cigarette and a much needed conversation. A gentleman walks up to us and pulls out a cigarette, and joins our conversation. He just got done taking a picture with Flea himself. The gentleman looks very, very familiar. He mentions he’s in a cover band, the Red Not Chili Peppers, who I only saw with my girlfriend about a week before. Angelo, the band’s new guitarist, is an incredible guitar god, very much worthy of holding the John Frusciante role in the RNCP. I shake his hand and take a picture with him. The four of us proceed to spend the next couple hours together.

The set started a bit late, but in the time between, I make eye to eye contact with none other than Anthony Kiedis. Standing around waiting for Flea and Amy-Jo to hit the stage, this time it’s my turn to pull Evan’s arm, and tell him semi-quietly, “Look! It’s Anthony! It’s the porno stache!” Sure enough, Kiedis is standing about 6-7 feet away from us, donning a black helmet and what I believed to be some kind of handkerchief. Kiedis makes his way down the aisle behind us and we exchange a quick and unforgettable glance. He is soon gone, nowhere to be seen.

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A flea hard at work

The DJ set featured mostly jazz tracks, particularly from the Low Down soundtrack they were promoting. Highlights included “Angel Eyes” by Joe Albany, and “Ruby My Dear” by Thelonious Monk. The energy of jazz felt alive, and the crowd slowly danced along and bopped their heads to the sweet sounds of brass. Flea was dancing too, in only the way Flea can. The set lasted about 45 to 50 minutes. As the last song was announced, we soon made our way to the line that was forming.

As the line drew shorter, so did my composure. Even the employee watching the line made note to Flea and Amy-Jo later on that I was “overwhelmed.” Indeed. Evan, in front of me, had only bought the book written by Albany, so indeed he took out a nearly empty cigarette pack of Marlboro 27’s to which Flea gladly signed. I handed Flea the vinyl and managed not to faint. I can’t even remember everything I said, even when I tried to retrace my words immediately after leaving the store. I said hi to Flea, and he returned the hi with his iconic smile. “I…I really dig you man.” I don’t remember his exact response, but it was a positive one. There was a moment where we just looked at each other smiling. I mentioned I was having trouble expressing myself and that I hadn’t really proofread the letter. He said it was no problem and that he understood. He said something along the lines of, “Sometimes silence speaks more than words.” I exchanged words with Amy-Jo briefly and told her that I was very anxious and had problems with anxiety. She acknowledged she suffered from similar issues. As I stepped away I managed to squeak out, “I love you Flea.”

“I love you too,” says Flea. I am elated.

I wait for my girlfriend outside of the line, and then the three of us waited for Angelo. My last words to Flea were “Have a good day Flea!”

“You have a good day too man!”

I wanted to ask him about the new album. I wanted to ask him about his bees. But, my mind just shut down when I was face to face with Flea. Lenin is quoted as saying, “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen”. There are minutes where lifetimes happen. I had just been thinking the other day how cool it would be to meet Flea. Then, the opportunity just arose so spontaneously. I saw three Chili Peppers in one day. That’s not by any means an average day, but it was an awesome one. The Red Hot Chili Peppers’ music has been upheld by many great people in my life, and not all of them are here today. But the power of funk that they taught me I simultaneously keep hidden and wide open, for my heart to keep and the world to see. They are the ultimate fans’ band, a band who loves music just as much as their fans love theirs. It’s truly a beautiful thing. The Chili Peppers still got me by my soul to squeeze.

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The Low Down soundtrack is available here for purchase on Amazon.

To find out more about the Red Not Chili Peppers, Angelo’s band, visit their website here.

To visit Flea’s twitter and view his wisdom, click here.

Slash Responds To Guns N’ Roses Reunion Rumors With Manager Statement

On the latest Eddie Trunk podcast, Trunk discussed recently contacting Slash’s management for a comment regarding rampant Guns N’ Roses reunion rumors that have spread following the reports of Axl Rose and Slash reconciling. Trunk was told by Team Slash that the whole thing has been blown far out of proportion, and he’s laying low now when it comes to interviews. Trunk did say that he believes a Guns N’ Roses reunion will eventually happen.

Whiplash recently accused the reporter who conducted the interview where Slash revealed he had ended his feud with Rose of sensationalizing the story through ‘cut and paste’ editing. Frasse Levinsson, the reporter who conducted the interview, refuted this accusation. “Which answer seems out of place? I only asked him six questions. I think that the only one left out is: How are you tonight? I’ve read your article via Google Translate. What happened was that I said ‘after all those year….after all those years,’ so they edited that away. I can e-mail you the sound file of the full interview if you would like that.”

Slash stated the interview with Aftonbladet that he and former Guns N’ Roses bandmate Axl Rose are friends again.

The reporter asked: “I heard you made friends with Axl Rose again, how was that possible after all those years?”

Slash responded: “It was probably way over due but it was very cool at this point. Let some of that…Dispell some of that negative stuff that was going on for so long.”

Slash refused to discuss a possible Guns N’ Roses reunion, asking to change the subject. The Guns N’ Roses News Twitter has a major update on this story, reporting that Axl Rose and Slash have been communicating for months, with a source informing them about their reconciliation months ago.

Watch Foo Fighters’ Epic Harmonica Jam With Blues Traveler Frontman

Blues Traveler frontman John Popper joined Foo Fighters for an epic jam session last night at the Klipsch Music Center in Noblesville, IN that was led by Popper going all out on his harmonica. The jam session combined southern rock, the blues, and folk, much like Blues Traveler, who have been known for their jamming and segues during their live performances over their 28 years as a band.

Monkey Wrench
Learn to Fly
Something From Nothing
The Pretender
Big Me (Slow Version)
Eruption (Van Halen cover) (Intro Snippet)
You Really Got Me (The Kinks cover) (Intro Snippet)
Roundabout (Yes cover) (Intro Snippet)
God Save the Queen (Sex Pistols cover) (Intro Snippet)
Cold Day in the Sun
My Hero
All My Life
Times Like These
These Days
This Is a Call
Jam (with John Popper)
Under Pressure (Queen & David Bowie cover)
Tom Sawyer (Rush cover)
Best of You

Dave Grohl mocked bands who play short concerts during a recent Foo Fighters concert in Calgary. Grohl said, “You don’t want one of those little hour and a half long shows do you? You don’t want that shit. All of those new bands that play those little two hour concerts, you don’t want that shit. 2 hours and 15 I don’t think is enough. 2 and a half hours, does that sound okay? That’s not enough is it? Here’s our fucking problem. We’ve been a band for 20 fucking years, we have a lot of fucking songs, and then add my big mouth on top of that, and we’re going to be here all night.”

Dave Navarro: Overcoming Drugs & Smoking

Jane’s Addiction’s guitarist Dave Navarro, iconic for chain smoking on stage, has quit the world’s favorite bad habit: smoking. According to his reply to a tweet just a few hours ago, when asked “What kind of cigarettes do you smoke?”, he gave the answer: “I don’t smoke anymore, I quit 8 months ago.”

And that’s not all, Dave Navarro, as of about 2 months ago, has also conquered four years of sobriety. Navarro struggled with substance abuse for much of his adult life, with on and off long segments of sobriety followed by relapse. He reported this on his Instagram:


Here is the reported tweet below:

While Dave Navarro’s health is more important than anything, needless to say, he looked really good when he smoked, as has been the tradition with rock and roll guitarists like Keith Richards. Let’s take a moment to look back and remember fondly when Dave smoked with some of the most bad ass images of Dave Navarro smoking.


Dave Navarro smoking in 2010, shortly before Eric Avery’s second departure from Jane’s Addiction.

red hot chili peppers com dave navarro

Left to right: Flea, Chad Smith, Dave Navarro (with lit cigarette in hand) and Anthony Kiedis presumably mixing during the recording and production of One Hot Minute, circa 1994-5.


Dave Navarro, driving and smoking, date unknown (Chili Peppers era?)


Jane’s Addiction, left to right: Stephen Perkins, Perry Farrell, Eric Avery and Dave Navarro (smoking?) Circa 1991


Dave Navarro debuting new hair cut with cigarette, circa 2013


Live on the air! With Dave Navarro AND a lit cigarette


Dave Navarro, smoking and playing guitar


Onstage with Jane’s Addiction, smoking a hardy cigarette


Dave Navarro and Slash smoking cigarettes together! Wow!

Well, Jackson Browne said all good things gotta come to an end.

Interview: Megadeth Bassist Says Pantera’s Phil Anselmo ‘Sounds Best He Has Since Vulgar Display Of Power’

Edited by Brett Buchanan

David Ellefson is Megadeth’s second most iconic member. He has played on almost every Megadeth release and as of now the only other original member left in the band besides Dave Mustaine. More recently, Dave has been playing in a massive supergroup called Metal Allegiance. This supergroup also features guitarist Alex Scholnick from Testament, ex-Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy, and Mark Menghi from the New York band Constricted. Their debut self titled album also features guests from metal greats such as Death Angel, Anthrax, Down, Mastodon as well as the one and only Bumblefoot. I was recently able to conduct a telephone interview with him. After being starstruck, I was able to interview him about this project, where he reveals that a recent collaboration with Pantera’s Phil Anselmo might be the best he’s sounded since Vulgar Display Of Power.

How did a huge gathering like this happen and what was the idea behind it?

It all happened when me and founder Mark were talking about jamming together as well as with a lot of other artists and how cool it would be. This was back right before Motorhead’s Motorboat fest in September. We then noticed a slot was open. The promoter then called me and I said that I think we could get this idea on there and call it Metal Allegiance. After the performance Alex hit me up and him and Mike Portnoy had the idea to make a record and not just keep this a live act. So December of last year we went over to Mike’s place and started writing songs for the record. When the songs were finished we showed it to Nuclear Blast and they signed us.

During that first performance did you guys have any original songs or just did covers?

At that time we did not have any original songs written. We just played covers by classics such as Iron Maiden, Judas Priest and Thin Lizzy.

Is this a one time only project or will they be more releases in the future?

I plan for this project to continue to develop. We hope to do future records and tours.We want this to be a really cool event that just keeps continuing.

I notice Geezer Butler and Wolfgang Van Halen were live guests. Any plans to record with them?

The thing is with Wolfgang was he was playing in Tremonti while we were on the boat. We told him we had plans of playing the entire self-titled Van Halen album front to back and asked if he wanted to jump in on some songs and he said sure. That’s the beauty of this project, we are not so locked into roles. We allow all these guests so we can have all these crazy and spontaneous moments.

For those that don’t know can you tell us about the upcoming live interview?

Only 100 people can get into it.It will be at AOL studios in New York City.It will be a very personal thing where audience can all ask the bands questions. It will be filmed and broadcast across AOL’s networks.

When listening to your album I noticed the track with Phil Anselmo, “Dying Song” sounded a lot like Down. Was this meant to be an homage?

Yes it is, and I found that to be really cool. This project is a collection of all styles of metal. When writing this album if we noticed a track sounded like something else we kept it and thought it was cool. If a song sounds too much like other stuff or to much like we have already done we try not to repeat that, but with this band we see it as tipping our hats to a style. If we heard something sounding thrash it’s awesome. We try not to limit anything, and as a result we now have a well rounded collection of all styles of metal. I thought “Dying Song” is one of the best performances Phil has done on record since early Down or even since Vulgar Display of Power. He really knocked it out of the park.


Interview: Soilwork Drummer Is ‘Not A Big Fan Of Modern Music Production Trends’

Dirk Verbeuren is a musician most known as the drummer for the Swedish metal powerhouse Soilwork. He joined the band in 2004, just in time for their groundbreaking Stabbing The Drama album. Beyond his flagship band, he has made many contributions both live and in-studio to bands such as Satyricon, Aborted, The Devin Townsend Project, Jeff Loomis, Warrel Dane, The Project Hate MCMXCIX and many others. He also hosts his own instructional drumming program over the internet for paid subscribers called Dirk Blasts!.

Needless to say, he has kept busy as a musician, especially with the upcoming release of Soilwork’s tenth studio album The Ride Majestic. Nevertheless, Dirk took some time to answer some questions on the band he has spent over a decade in, as well as questions about his drumming style.

I saw the documentary on this new album that featured Björn. Obviously the events leading up to making the album were a ‘majestic ride’ for him. What does the album title mean to you personally? Have you experienced a ‘majestic ride’ of your own while in this band?

Yes. I’ve been so fortunate to spend a decade in Soilwork, and for the most part it’s been a fantastic time. I’ve certainly experienced my share of bumps in the ride, both within the band and on a personal level. What I take away from that is a new understanding about how best to navigate through life and become a better person in the process. Every moment is important and it’s really up to us to make the best of whatever situation life hands us. It’s a majestic ride if we choose to make it so.

For this new album the band has teamed up with the management company Breaking Bands, [founded by Testament vocalist Chuck Billy and The Zazulas]. How did this all transpire?

We found ourselves in a tricky place after releasing The Living Infinite. Our relationship with our then-manager was steadily deteriorating to the point where it became almost impossible to function as a band. We decided to stop touring, let the contract run out and move on. Chuck has been a Soilwork fan and a friend of Björn’s for many years. When we found out that Breaking Bands was interested in working with us, it was pretty much a no-brainer for us. Chuck, Jonny and Marsha Zazula, and Maria Ferrero have already taken things to a whole new level for us. With their help, we’re more ready than ever to conquer the world!

Looking back, what was your favorite moment of recording The Ride Majestic ?

I was in the studio only when recording my parts. As much as I enjoy being around to see an album come together, my schedule rarely allows for that to happen. But I know my bandmates always deliver incredible music and performances, as they all did on The Ride Majestic. My favorite thing was that I got to practice the songs and arrange the structures with Björn and David beforehand. Thanks to that, I got to record full takes of almost every song. I’m not a big fan of the trend of “perfect” productions; the organic and spontaneous aspect of my playing is what matters most to me, and our producer David Castillo was 100% in tune with that. We did absolutely minimal editing on the drum parts. I like to hear the little imperfections and the vibe of the moment captured in the songs.

What made Soilwork decide to record their recent live album in Helsinki?

Finnish music enthusiasts embraced Soilwork early on. I can’t remember a single show in Finland where the crowd was anything less than amazing. With that in mind, we felt that we owed it to them to shoot our DVD there. And it turned out to be an incredibly epic night indeed!

I noticed on Live In The Heart Of Helsinki a lot of material from before Stabbing The Drama. What is your take on the older material? Or do you not like to change up the drum tracks so much?

We respect all of our fans, including the ones who think the first two albums are the best. Live In The Heart Of Helsinki contains songs from every one of our albums. Our music has evolved along with us over the years but we’ll always be immensely proud of our legacy. Also, one of the beautiful things about Soilwork is that every musician is allowed ample room to be himself, to express his own personality. I play the old songs my own way but I do my best to incorporate the key elements of the performances of my predecessors Henry Ranta and Jimmy Persson.

You have an instructional program for purchase on the internet called Dirk Blasts! which updates regularly. Have you ever considered an extensive instructional DVD for worldwide distribution?

I considered it. Making a DVD is quite a project though. As much as I love my vinyl collection, physical formats are inevitably dying off. Streaming platforms and interactivity are becoming the norm. I wanted my drum lessons to be in tune with the way people obtain their information. My wife Hannah came up with the idea of creating instructional videos and interacting directly with my students through the Dirk Blasts Facebook group. And of course she was right: it worked out really well! My fellow drum fanatics are sharing their knowledge and questions, and I’m learning as much from the whole experience as they are. We’re all students. I’m really proud and happy to be a part of this growing community! Anyone who’s interested to join Dirk Blasts can sign up at

What’s your favorite Soilwork song to drum along to?

I love them all, but I never seem to get tired of “Nerve”. It was a pretty tough song to master at first. Now I have it down to where it has a solid flow. I can bang my head when I play it and I keep messing around and improvising the details, which keeps it fun and also challenging. That song never fails to get audiences going.

Finally, what is your desert island album?

Fredrik Thordendal’s Special Defects Sol Niger Within. I’ve played it hundreds of times and it still gives me goosebumps. One of the most unique, heartfelt and inspiring pieces of music ever created.

Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready Releases First Single For New Record Label

Seattle, August 26, 2015: Mike McCready of Pearl Jam has long had a love for vinyl, and for recording and listening to good music. His new Label Hockeytalkter, will release vinyl singles by some of his favorite artists, in small-lot, limited edition, batches. The first single will be available at the new Hockeytalkter website. Additional copies will be also available at Seattle’s Easy Street Records locations.

Mike plans to release a few projects a year, artists that he enjoys and some that he likes to collaborate with.

Hockytalkter’s first release is with Danny Newcomb and the Sugarmakers. Of them, Mike says:

“I started playing music with Danny Newcomb in 1978, when I was 12, in our first band, Warrior, which later became Shadow. Danny was the lead guitar player and I played rhythm and he pushed me to become a better player. Danny is not only one of the best guitarists in the Northwest, but he has also always been an amazing songwriter. His new album (Masterwish) is fantastic and I hope people take the time to listen!”

Danny Newcomb helped found the Rockfords with McCready, as well as Shadow. His last popular project was Goodness, and a rock band from Seattle which he co-founded with singer Carrie Akre, and was on Atlantic records.

The Hockeytalkter single features two songs “One Wish” and “Sundays”. Mike McCready plays the lead on Sundays. Both songs are off Danny Newcomb’s new release, ‘Masterwish’, which is in rotation now on Seattle’s KEXP.

Alice In Chains’ Layne Staley & Mike Starr Honored By Seattle Rockers

Layne Staley- Mike Starr Seattle Tribute Weekend Recap
Written by Cindy Slade
Edited and review co-written by Brett Buchanan

This past weekend marked the 14th annual birthday celebration for late Alice In Chains singer Layne Staley. After the passing of Alice In Chains original bassist Mike Starr in 2011, the annual August tributes incorporated the celebration of his life as well.

Layne Staley’s 48th birthday would have been this past Saturday, August 22nd, and that date is also why the annual tributes are around this date annually.

As someone who has attended these tributes off and on over the years (regularly since 2013), this year was a combination of spectacular, and absolutely magical.

On Friday August 21st, the celebration started off at the Central Saloon in Seattle for an acoustic night for fans 21 and older. The coordinator of this weekend’s events JT Phillips (who also plays guitar in Alice In Chains tribute band Jar of Flies and Soundgarden/Temple of the Dog tribute band Outshined) told me that they wanted to do an acoustic night to replicate MTV’s “Unplugged” show, which Alice In Chains performed on in 1996. They were able to achieve this by bringing in “flameless” candles with dim lighting. Jar of Flies’ “Unplugged” replication was on the money at least setlist wise, as they played just about every song from that show, except two I’m told, and they also played them in the same order as well. Outshined also performed, as did “Poottana…Play for Money,” a Nirvana tribute band all the way over from Milan, Italy. This is Poottana’s second time coming over to perform for the annual tribute weekend. Their last visit was in 2013.

One thing I didn’t know is that both Jar of Flies and Outshined are really considered one big band. That’s because both Jar of Flies and Outshined have the same members, except for the singers. Rane Stone is the lead singer of Jar of Flies, and Kevin Hoffman is the lead singer of Outshined. JT told me that it’s like one big brotherhood, and judging from the show they clearly love what they do.

The very next night, Saturday August 22nd, was the all-ages show at The Crocodile, which just so happens to be co-owned by Alice In Chains drummer Sean Kinney.  It was evident that the show was sold out.  The maximum capacity of 525 people had been reached, but with the energy it felt like well over 1000.  Italians rockers Poottana…Play for Money opened the show.  The band consists of the following wonderfully talented musicians; Pino Foderaro-guitarist, Andrea Paglione (lead vocals/guitar), Claudio Ciaccia (drums), and Steve Stewie Armeli (bassist).  They go by Shame the Band when they perform original material.


From the very moment Poottana…Play for Money went on, the crowd was on fire, they were like kids at their first concert. Jar of Flies and Outshined guitarist Shannon Sharp was definitely touched by the performance, saying he closed his eyes and for a second thought it was Kurt Cobain out there singing. Poottana..Play for Money ended their set with Nirvana’s seminal hit “Smells Like Teen Spirit.”


The Outshined portion of the big “brotherhood” band performed next. A soulful Kevin Hoffman sang Mother Love Bone’s “Stardog Champion” in memory of the late Andrew Wood to end their set on an emotional high note.


Jar of Flies headlined the show, led by the charismatic Rane Stone.  Their set was filled with special guests who honored Layne Staley and Mike Starr.  Mad Season’s “I Don’t Know Anything” was a definite standout. Jason Kertson sang “Down in a Hole”, “What the Hell Have I?” and “Again”.  On “Again” Jason sang with JoF bassist Lee Bruso, which was brilliant and closely replicated the recorded version, due to Layne Staley’s use of stacking his vocals through innovative production techniques when he was recording that song for the Tripod album.

Powertrain & Pretso Ballet bassist Bobby Ferkovich and drummer Martin Lyson stepped in for “What The Hell Have I?” and “Again.”  The next special guest was Randy Vanadisson, performing an original song with JT Phillips, written for Layne, titled “Body and Soul.” The final guest was Stacey Meyer who sang “Junkhead.” Stacey is also the vocalist for Seattle band Furniture Girls.  Jar of Flies closed the show with a rousing rendition of “Would”.

I had a chance to talk to the band members and about why it’s important for them to continue to perform at these shows. Here is Alternative Nation’s interview with Jar of Flies vocalist Rane Stone.


Alternative Nation: Rane, why do you continue to do the Layne Staley and Mike Starr tributes year after year?

Rane Stone: Interesting question, we could go on and on about Layne and Mike and the fans and the families, music, how it meant so much and all…but in reality, we never knew Layne or Mike. So, us being philosophical about reasons and feelings, and emotions and such about why we do it in order to, most likely, manipulate people into thinking that we do it for some higher purpose of “channeling Layne” or recreating some moment of walking in the flesh of spirits and such; well that’s just a bunch of fakery. We do it for the legacy and heritage of the Seattle music scene. Our main reason is the preservation of a period of time for the historical, musical heritage and legacy of what meant SO very much to so many over the world.

AN: When did you join Jar of Flies?

RS: I joined in 2005, been doing it about 10 years. It has been a blast and I’m so thankful and grateful for the opportunity to be just a small part of it. IT IS AWESOME!

AN: Why is it important for Jar of Flies to replicate the original sound of Alice in Chains?

RS: Well obviously they were the Led Zeppelin of a generation. So you don’t go Led Zeppelin’s back yard and start playing a hack version of their songs, and since we’re in the backyard of AIC, with all their friends and families usually in attendance, we better not do a hack job of that either. Tell the stories the way the stories were told; no more, no less. Give homage, give respect, show some class and do it in a way that their friends and family can be proud of the performance. If it isn’t on par, or at least in the ballpark of the original, then don’t touch it, don’t do it and just move on. If we can’t do it right, we simply just will not do it at all.

AN: How are you able to engage the crowd so easily?

RS: Am I? I don’t notice. I’m just being myself. I do make efforts to remove as much as myself from the performance as possible, because it is about the material of the music and has absolutely nothing to do with me. I get to just enjoy the ride. Maybe that is why…People see that we as a band are having fun, and in that, everyone else is able to see and know that they can have fun as well. It’s a celebration! So, let’s have some fun together remembering the times we all heard those songs for the very first time! Let’s be kids again in high school/college for a couple of hours. Let’s rock out together!

AN: I noticed you guys played some songs you don’t normally play, was there a specific reason for that?

RS: I think that has to do with just wanting to keep each performance fresh. Change it up. Do songs that people may have never heard live before. Do acoustic versions of songs that have never been done before. We have done the entire Dirt, Jar of Flies and Facelift Albums before, and some songs work well live and others don’t. We have yet to do the entire SAP and Alice in Chains (Tripod) albums yet…..and yet to do Mad Season Above in it’s entirety. But…I’m sure we will….soon.

AN: For someone that has been attending your shows regularly over the years, I noticed this year in particular was nothing short of electrifying, did you feel that too? And if you did, why do you think that is?

RS: Well, let’s put it this way, we knew this weekend was going to be magical. We didn’t know why or how, we just knew it. And it was. The entire weekend was absolutely magical and we are so happy that people from all over the country and all over the world were able to be a part of this celebration of life and music and memory. We feel so tremendously blessed to be just a small part of some aspect that does its best to provide a time and a place for the friends, families and fans that adored this music and these lives so very dearly and so very much. We feel honored to have been a part of it and it is an absolute privilege for us to be able to do this for so many people that love and adore Alice in Chains and Seattle music in general. We feel very full, thankful and grateful.

AN: What does it feel like to have a sold out show?

RS: AMAZBALLS dripping with AWESOMESAUCE!! When it came down that by 8:30pm, 15 minutes before the show….IT WAS SOLD OUT!?!? On Layne’s B-Day Party Celebration!?!? I just chuckled to myself and said “Thank you Layne, Thank You Mike, Thank You Andrew, Thank You Kurt. Let’s go have some fun, guys! You guys Rock.”

AND THEY DID ROCK….the entire night.  Portions of the proceeds from the weekend’s events goes to the Layne Staley Memorial Fund through Therapeutic Health Services in Seattle; if you’d like to donate, click here.

I briefly spoke with Pino Foderaro, the guitarist for Poottana..Play for Money.  He told me (on behalf of himself and the band) that it was the Seattle music that brought them here. He said the main reason they came back is because they felt loved by so many people. In Italy, they also do their own annual tributes for Layne and Mike in April. They also donate a portion of the proceeds from their events to the Layne Staley Memorial Fund through Therapeutic Health Services also.

I would like to take the opportunity to introduce the band members by name and how long they’ve been playing with Jar of Flies and Outshined.

Jar of Flies and Outshined are:

Rane Stone- Vocalist for Jar of Flies, since 2005
Kevin Hoffman-Vocalist for Outshined, since 2012
JT Phillips- Guitarist for Jar of Flies/Outshined, since 2006
Shannon Sharp- Guitarist for Jar of Flies/Outshined, since 2006
Daryl Williams-Drums for Jar of Flies/Outshined, since 2005
Lee Bruso- Bassist for Jar of Flies/Outshined, since 2013

You can find Jar of Flies and” title=”Outshined” target=”_blank”>Outshined on Facebook to check out where they are performing next, you’ll definitely want to see them.

Thanks to all of the band members for allowing Alternative Nation into their world for one night. Special thanks to JT Phillips for making all the arrangements.

Axl Rose & Slash On ‘Good Terms,’ Guns N’ Roses ‘Mulling Options’

GNRTruth reports that they were made aware of Guns N’ Roses frontman Axl Rose and Slash reconciling in 2014. The pair spoke and are now on ‘good terms.’ Despite this reconciliation, at the time Rose remained focused on his followup to 2008’s Chinese Democracy, and the GNR camp did not want news of the reconciliation coming out at the time since it would immediately fuel reunion rumors.

Guns N’ Roses News
also reported that the reconciliation doesn’t necessarily mean that a reunion will immediately happen, but that the band is ‘mulling its options.’

“Only GNR can speak for GNR, but all that’s happened here is that Axl and Slash are on better personal terms. So far there has been no indication of an immediate plan to do business together. Why would GNR make an official announcement about Axl and Slash communicating if a business model involving the two is yet to be agreed? It doesn’t make any sense. GNR is mulling its options. There’s no need to fan the flames of any particular possibility at this point.”

Despite this, James Young told Triple M Radio last Friday that he was told a Guns N’ Roses reunion may be in the works, as transcribed by Alternative Nation:

“I heard the most amazing rumor this week, from a very well informed heavy hitter in the Australian music industry, giving me the name of the headline act for Soundwave next year. Now we know that a mystery band has come in and saved the festival, and now owns it, so they they are going to have a big say. So what mega band could it be? Well I have heard ‘fantasized’ on Wednesday night that it will be: Steven Adler, Izzy Stradlin, Duff McKagen, Slash and Axl Rose, the reformation of the original 1987 Appetite for Destruction Guns N’ Roses lineup, can you believe it? It’s incredible, I’ve had sleepless nights fantasizing about it.”

Watch Tennis Legend John McEnroe Butcher Nirvana

John McEnroe is one of the greatest tennis players of all time, but he hasn’t yet mastered the art of covering Nirvana songs. McEnroe is a music lover, having guested in a Future User video for Rage Against The Machine bassist Tim Commerford. In the “Clockwork” video, McEnroe beat Commerford in a tennis game, and is captured and water boarded like a suspected terrorist.

McEnroe, with the help of wife Patty Smyth and daughter Ava, covered Nirvana’s “Territorial Pissings” at The Stephen Talkhouse in Amagansett, New York last Saturday. McEnroe didn’t hit the notes, but we can’t fault him as he seemed to have a great time performing with his family, so rock on John!

Page Six
reports that Lorne Michaels and Harvey Weinstein were in the crowd. Tim Commerford discussed filming Future User’s “Clockwork” video with McEnroe during a 2014 interview with Yahoo. “Yeah, Mac is another friend of mine I met through cycling and if he’s in town for seven days we’ll ride every day of the week. At first when I told him I wanted to make a video about some of these human rights issues happening around the world and especially here in America in Guantanamo Bay, he was reluctant. He said, ‘Yeah, but some of these guys are terrorists.'”

If you missed the “Clockwork” video McEnroe did with Future User, watch it below!

Dave Grohl Reveals Why He Would Be Happy To Never Walk Again

Foo Fighters performed at the First Niagara Pavilion in Burgettstown, PA on Tuesday, and Dave Grohl discussed his throne, broken leg, and his roots in the area, as transcribed by Alternative Nation. Grohl first discussed he would be happy if he had to stay in his throne.

“You know why I’m sitting in it, don’t you? You know why? Cause it’s fucking cool as shit, that’s why. Oh, and also I can’t walk! But let me tell you, if I never, ever, have to stand up again, I think I might be perfectly happy in this thing because it has a drinkholder, and lights.”

Grohl then changed his tune, hoping he can soon be ‘learning to walk again.’ Grohl said, “But I hope it’s just temporary, because I sure love running around when we play, for anyone who has ever seen us before. I’m singing a ballad right now, and I’m not going to dedicate it to the ladies. I’m not going to dedicate it to the wonderful people of this part of the country where my people come from, just so you know. I think this is as close as I’m going to get on this tour to the place that I was born. I got a little Pittsburgh in me! Sweet Miss Virginia Grohl, my mother, was born in Pittsburgh, I don’t know if you know, it’s true. All of my family comes from that other turnpike, that’s over there.”

A fan also requested “Low” with a sign, and Foo Fighters obliged the request and performed the song live for the first time since 2009!

Monkey Wrench
Learn to Fly
Something From Nothing
The Pretender
Big Me (Slow Version)
I’m the One (Van Halen cover) (Band Intro snippet)
Roundabout (Yes cover) (Band intro snippet)
School’s Out (Alice Cooper cover) (Band Intro Snippet)
Cold Day in the Sun
My Hero
Under Pressure (Queen & David Bowie cover)
All My Life
Times Like These
These Days
Skin and Bones
Low (Request by a fan w/ sign & First time since 2009)
This Is a Call
Best of You

Soundgarden, Pearl Jam & Neil Young Honor Kurt Cobain: Reading 1995 Retrospective

Photo credit: Rolling Stone Magazine, August 1995
Edited by Brett Buchanan

Next weekend the Reading festival will welcome Metallica, but 20 years ago a slice of Seattle and alternative rock came to Reading to raise the spirits of fans still grieving over the loss of Kurt Cobain

If Kurt Cobain’s death really did spell the end for Grunge, then the Reading Festival in England, 16 months after his 1994 suicide, was a reanimation of sorts.

The August bank holiday festival, which dates back to 1971, had already had its fair share of artists from Seattle and alternative music from across the pond. Nirvana had performed at Reading in 1991 and then infamously headlined the following year. The Sunday slots in 1992 were filled with a mostly Grunge alternative collective mass, with Screaming Trees, Mudhoney and the Melvins joining Nirvana.


Pennywise opened the main stage at Reading 1995 with a rousing version of “Territorial Pissings.” This led to a stage invasion rarely seen at a festival before or since.

The ever popular Blind Melon followed with a ten song set and a lively Shannon Hoon, on what was proving to be a particularly windy day. This show would be the band’s final with Hoon in England; with Hoon tragically dying 8 weeks later from a drug overdose in New Orleans.

White Zombie, Babes In Toyland, Buffalo Tom and Pavement also played, but the main acts that would make Reading 95 so memorable were yet to play.

Mudhoney were back at the festival promoting their new record My Brother the Cow, but it was the older material that got the greatest reactions. “Fuzzgun 91,” which had not been played for 4 years, and “Touch Me I’m Sick” were welcomed enthusiastically. They finished the set with The Dicks classic, “Hate the Police.”

The last time Soundgarden were in the UK, the news had filtered through that Kurt Cobain was dead, and yet the foursome were due to play at the festival a year before. However, singer Chris Cornell was struck down by polyps of the vocal chords and the band had to pull out at the 11th hour. Playing in 1995 was a major moment for Soundgarden, and the crowd respected the fact that they had returned as soon as they could to the festival to make up for the disappointment a year prior.

Soundgarden kicked off their set with “Searching with My Good Eye Closed.” 10 of the 18 songs were from Superunknown, and the 80 minute set led to nonstop crowd surfing. The set included a cover of The Doors’ classic “Waiting for the Sun,” and just before “Head Down,” Cornell admitted that this was his favorite Soundgarden song. The set ended spectacularly with The Beatles’ “I Want You (She’s So Heavy).” The long dragging bass of Ben Shepherd, the slow drums of Matt Cameron, and the snarling guitars of Cornell and Kim Thayil served during a dusty, windy, and cloudy early evening ended their set as if the stage was literally eating them up.

After a delayed start, Neil Young was the final act of the night. What made Young’s appearance so special was that his backing band was none other than Pearl Jam. The two forces of music had gotten together that year to collaborate on the fantastic record Mirrorball.

They opened up to a wall of flashes from the photographers eager to get as many pictures as they could of this historic moment. The first song was “Big Green Country” followed by “Song X.” With the crowd in a frenzy, as members of Pearl Jam had not toured in the UK since 1993, the atmosphere was electric. Most of the material came from Mirrorball, but Young had no problems diving into his older tunes. “The Needle and the Damage Done” seemed like a poignant tribute to Cobain, and “After the Goldrush” was played for an extended amount of time. The set finished with “Rockin’ in the Free World,” a song that Pearl Jam themselves would adopt in many concerts also as their show closer.

Reading 95 was indeed the last gasp of the Grunge era when the bands were still recognized in their prime of their careers, and it was definitely a fitting tribute to Kurt Cobain.

Guitarist Says 2016 Will Be ‘Big Year’ For Guns N’ Roses

Richard Fortus, the only guitarist who is officially still in Guns N’ Roses, discussed the status of the band during a recent interview with KSHE 95. He was not asked about Slash and Axl Rose reconciling, so the interview may have been conducted before the news came out. Alternative Nation has transcribed Fortus’ Guns N’ Roses discussion with the DJ.

DJ: Now, I would normally not ask you about Guns N’ Roses at all, because it is just old news, but man, are you the only guitar player left in the band now?

Richard Fortus: (Laughs) I’m the last man standing.

DJ: I’m telling you, you are! I know you are.

Richard: No, there’s a lot going on with that whole thing right now. It is looking like next year is going to be the big year for Guns N’ Roses.

DJ: Well, I’ve been hearing that, I’ve been hearing new record, but man, we hear that all the time about them. We hear that all the time about Van Halen, and it never happens.

Richard: I can’t really speak about Van Halen. (Laughs) But I think they should get Gary Cherone back.

DJ: Oh stop, stop, don’t get off the subject. Tell me now, you are the only Guns N’ Roses guitarist left right now.

Richard: (Stutters) Man, I can’t divulge information like that.

DJ: Alright, well let’s put it this way. To the mass audience out there, all we know of right now, is that you are the only guitar player left, because it’s been out.

Richard: As far as you know, that’s right (laughs).

Richard then sarcastically said that he wants to play in St. Louis next year with Guns N’ Roses, and hopes that all will be forgiven for the riot.

Slash stated in a recent interview with Aftonbladet that he and former Guns N’ Roses bandmate Axl Rose are friends again.

The reporter asked: “I heard you made friends with Axl Rose again, how was that possible after all those years?”

Slash responded: “It was probably way over due but it was very cool at this point. Let some of that…Dispell some of that negative stuff that was going on for so long.”

Slash refused to discuss a possible Guns N’ Roses reunion, asking to change the subject. The Guns N’ Roses News Twitter has a major update on this story, reporting that Axl Rose and Slash have been communicating for months, with a source informing them about their reconciliation months ago.