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Reflections On A Father/Son Weekend At Knotfest (Day 1)
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Ides Bergen   |  @   |  
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Ides and Jesse Bergen Knotfest Selfie

Over the weekend of October 25 and 26, 2014, my 11-year-old son Jesse and I embarked on a heavy metal pilgrimage. San Bernadino, CA is 60 miles away from our home in Burbank and is home to the San Manuel Amphitheater. It was there that Slipknot was holding Knotfest, a three-day heavy metal summit featuring 60-plus bands on five stages over the course of three days.

This occasion was custom-made for some quality father/son bonding time and an early celebration of Jesse’s 12th birthday (which was on October 30th — Happy Birthday, Jesse!).

The festival actually commenced on Friday night with a special pre-event concert for the folks who purchased camping passes for the weekend and it featured performances from the likes of Suicide Silence, Chelsea Grin, and The Black Dahlia Murder. Since we aren’t really the camping type, we unfortunately missed that night.

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Thrashback Thursday: “Souls Of Black” By Testament
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Ides Bergen   |  @   |  
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Teastament Band Photo

With the title track of their fourth album, Souls of Black, (1990) here’s Oakland, CA thrash legends Testament.

Watch the video for “Souls of Black” here below.

Testament is still active after 30 years and ten studio albums. In fact, the band has produced some of it’s most criticality acclaimed and commercially successful music during the thrash revival of the past few years. I highly recommend checking out The Formation of Damnation (2008) or Dark Roots of Earth (2012), both of which present a master class in the genre.

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King Diamond “Trying To Be Nice” In Feud With Former Bassist But It’s Getting Ugly
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Empress Eve   |  @   |  
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King Diamond (right) and bassist Hal Patino (left) performing on stage

[King Diamond (right) and bassist Hal Patino (left) image via Facebook]

Before the boom of social media, when a musician quit or was fired from his band, you’d have to wait a long time to hear anything from either party about the situation. If the band was big enough, like say The Rolling Stones, then maybe you’d read an official statement in the daily newspaper. Other than that, the monthly music magazines had to catch up on the story, interview both parties, and even then, musicians tended to keep private matters private (until their tell-all memoirs were released years-to-decades later). More often, music magazines would fuel the fire of the feud by quoting each musician to make it seem like more of a fight. This was common between Metallica and Megadeth throughout the 1980s, where magazines would put James Hetfield and Dave Mustaine on the cover with a jagged line splitting their images with some kind of fighting words on the cover. (Hey, it sold magazines, that’s for sure.)

Now, instead of waiting for journalists to ask about the details of the split, when someone is fired from or quits a band, they take right to their Facebook accounts to give their side of the story, and soon after, you can expect a response from their former bandmates, and it likely won’t end there.

The most recent band feud to surface is out of the King Diamond camp after it was announced on the band’s official Facebook page on July 19, 2014, that bassist Hal Patino that he had been “relieved of his duties with King Diamond, for reasons very similar to why he was fired from the band in 1990.” The reasons alluded to are Patino’s alleged drug problems. Not surprisingly, Patino took to his Facebook page later that same day to state that he was not fired, but rather that he quit and that he did not have a drug problem. On July 20, 2014, King Diamond himself posted a lengthy step-by-step rebuttal of Patino’s statement, which led to, you guessed it, yet another response from Patino on his own Facebook page.

You can read all the statements here below.

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Slipknot Announces Dates and Lineup For U.S. Version Of Knotfest
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Ides Bergen   |  @   |  
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Slipknot

Maggots rejoice: Slipknot has just announced that they will be bringing their massive Knotfest back to America. The 3-day event will take place at San Manuel Amphitheater (formerly known as Glen Helen Pavilion) in San Bernadino, CA this year on October 24, 25 and 26.

In addition to Slipknot headlining both Saturday and Sunday nights, the festival will feature over 60 bands including a “who’s who” of metal. Some of the acts scheduled to appear include: Danzig, Anthrax, Five Finger Death Punch, Volbeat, Killswitch Engage, Testament, Black Label Society, and many more. Tickets go on sale to the general public on Friday, July 11, 2014 with pre-sale being offered from 8-10am on Monday, July 7, 2014.

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Metal Masters 5: Slayer, Anthrax, Megadeth, Testament, Pantera Members Live Concert (Video)
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Empress Eve   |  @   |  
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Metal Masters 5 Slayer, Anthrax, Megadeth, Testament, Pantera Members

The Metal Masters clinic held their annual concert on January 22, 2014 at the House Of Blues in Anaheim, CA, where members of metal giants like Slayer, Anthrax, Megadeth, Testament, Pantera, and more shared the stage to play songs together from their respective back catalogs.

Pro-shot footage of the 3-hour headbanging event, Metal Masters 5, is now online and you can watch it here below.

Some of the songs played were Iron Maiden and KISS covers, but most were from the aforementioned bands, like Slayer’s “South Of Heaven” and “Raining Blood” and Pantera’s “I’m Broken,” “Strength Beyond Strength,” and “Mouth For War.” And the all-star jam finale? Pantera’s “Fucking Hostile,” sung by frontman Phil Anselmo and Testament’s Chuck Billy; a nice touch was seeing bass titan Billy Sheehan playing along on this one, and on Slayer’s “Mandatory Suicide” WITH the guys from Slayer. Too awesome.

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MP3 Deal: 50 $5 Metal Albums [Updated]
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Empress Eve   |  @   |  
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Metallica - And Justice For All

There’s just a few days left of Amazon’s celebration of heavy metal with their
50 $5 Metal Albums sale. For only $5 each in MP3 format, there are some insanely good must-have metal albums up for sale through the end of March, like Metallica‘s …And Justice For All, Judas Priest‘s Screaming For Vengeance, Black Sabbath‘s Heaven And Hell, Quiet Riot‘s Metal Health, and many more, including some really great “Best Of” compilations.

I picked out a few here below, but be sure to check out the main sale page to see all the albums available now for only $5 each.

Metallica …And Justice For All
Danzig Danzig
Judas Priest Screaming For Vengeance
A Perfect Circle Thirteenth Step
Pantera The Best Of Pantera
Van Halen Van Halen – Best Of Volume 1
Megadeth Megadeth – Greatest Hits: Back To The Start
Black Sabbath Black Sabbath – Heaven And Hell
Cinderella Night Songs
Rainbow Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow
Testament The New Order
Anthrax Spreading The Disease
Kiss Kiss
Queensryche The Best Of Queensryche

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What If The Big 4 Metal Tour Was The Big 8?
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Empress Eve   |  @   |  
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The Big 4

Metal Sucks posed a question this week: If The Big Four were The Big 8, which bands would be the next four in the group?

If you’re unaware, The Big 4 Tour is comprised of thrash metal giants Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth, and Anthrax. The tour is scheduled to arrive in just one city this April in the United States, much to the dismay of metalheads across the nation who wanted the tour to hit more cities.

I’ve seen some reactions from fans who aren’t in total agreement with this touring line-up, stating that not every band on the bill fits the “Big 4” mold. I happened to think it’s a great bill, but I’ve wondered what other bands would fit nicely on this tour.

So, if The Big 4 Tour was actually The Big 8 Tour, what four additional bands do you think deserve to be on it?

Check out my picks below and let me know what yours would be.

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