Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons of Kiss have been talking openly about their decision to not perform (in any incarnation) during the band’s upcoming induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Paul said the idea of putting the original lineup (including ex-members Peter Criss and Ace Frehley) back in makeup to perform for the ceremony was “a nonstarter.”
In the same interview with the Los Angeles Times, Gene added, “Imagine getting onstage and playing with a lineup that does not exist.” Both Criss and Frehley responded in the Times article, with Criss writing, “We should [have] been able to work it out as grown men; it’s a shame we couldn’t.” Frehley added, “My guitar playing, singing, writing, performing and producing skills are as good or better than the past…For years, Gene and Paul have been trying to minimize my contributions to the band, even though I designed the famous Kiss logo … and designed the trademarked makeup for the Spaceman character.”
Said Paul, “The naysayers, and some of them are loud, talk about Tommy or Eric being impostors,” (both guitarist Tommy Thayer and drummer Eric Singer use the same on-stage personas — Criss’ and Frehley’s “Spaceman” and “Catman”). “I think an impostor is a guy up there doing it for a paycheck. We’ve never been happier.”
Here’s your first look at Better Days Comin’, the first studio album from Winger in five years. Release date: April 22nd.
Don’t expect Poison to hit the road anytime soon, according to a recent tweet (or two) by drummer Rikki Rockett. After his initial tweet, he lashed out at widespread speculation that singer Bret Michaels was the holdup and was annoyed with the coverage, saying “My personal twitter isn’t a news outlet.”
Alice Cooper retire? Nah! The original shock rocker was recently asked if there were any plans for new music. “Oh, of course,” he said. “I’m gonna make as many albums as I can. I mean, we already have next year’s tour planned — not just this year. So there’s no retirement at all involved in me. I’m not going anywhere. I tour a hundred cities a year around the world, and the show just keeps getting better.”
Bassist Rudy Sarzo, who currently plays in singer Geoff Tate’s version of Queensrÿche, recently said of the frontman, “Geoff Tate is, to me, of his generation the finest composer, singer, frontman that ever was, of that generation. [He’s] a joy to work with, to be in the band, to be in his company, to hear his voice on stage… off stage [as well], because he sings a lot off stage, too.” Geoff was asked about Rudy’s comments in a recent radio interview.
Said Geoff, “Well, that’s very complimentary. He’s quite a gentleman, Rudy. It’s a pleasure playing with that guy. He is an amazing individual. Not only is he a fantastic musician and player, but as a person, he’s one of the most down-to-earth, spiritual guys you’ll ever meet. He’s always calm. He’s the kind of guy that you can sit and have a couple of hour’s conversation with, easy.”
Regarding the current court case over the Queensrÿche name and trademark, Geoff said, “I can’t really talk about the court case anymore, ’cause it’s kind of coming down to the end of it now. But whatever the outcome of it is, I just hope that it’s settled, for everyone, in a good way and everyone’s happy and we can all part ways on good terms, and move on. And there’s a lot more music to come out, and I’m looking forward to that.”
Iron Maiden frontman (and commercial pilot) Bruce Dickinson is one of the investors behind the world’s largest aircraft, Airlander. The Hybrid Air Vehicle (HAV) can stay in the air for up to three weeks and could be a new key player in endeavors like delivering humanitarian aid, as well as heavy cargo lifting and luxury travel. Fuel efficiency, minimal noise and the lack of need for a runway are among its environmental highlights.
Bruce says the Airlander is “A game changer, in terms of things we can have in the air and things we can do. It will be able to cross the Atlantic and launch things right where they need to be. The airship has always been with us, it’s just been waiting for the technology to catch up.” The Airlander’s first passenger flight is scheduled for 2016.
A country music tribute to Mötley Crüe is on the way this summer. “This is a first for me, that’s for sure!” said frontman Vince Neil to The Tennessean. “I think it was somebody’s crazy idea that turned into reality.”
When first approached with the idea, Vince says he was lukewarm. “I was like, ‘Eh, I don’t know. Let me think about this one for a minute,'” he said. “The more I thought about it, the cooler it got, especially after Carrie Underwood did ‘Home Sweet Home’, and that was so good. I’m thinking to myself, ‘How cool would it be to hear these other acts’ renditions of the songs?'”
So, what does Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian think of fans who show up and record entire concerts with a cell phone? “I think it’s idiotic,” he told the NY Hard Rock Music Examiner. “I think the fact that someone would come to a show, spend the money to come to the show, and stand there holding their freakin’ phone over their head for 90 minutes is pathetic. It completely defeats the purpose of coming to a live show.
I think it’s a joke. I’ve seen Bruce Dickinson go off on audience members for doing that. Granted, he’s in Iron Maiden and they’re big enough to say that to their audience, but I think it’s idiotic and I don’t understand that mindset at all. You’re standing at a live show and you’re watching it through a screen on your phone.”
Metallica’s only North American date this summer will happen at the Heavy Montreal festival in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, this August 9-10. The band’s set will be part of their “By Request” series of shows, where concert ticket holders get to pick Metallica’s setlist. Get more info at heavymontreal.com.