VIXEN Guitarist JAN KUEHNEMUND Dies

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The official Facebook page of the platinum-selling all-female ’80s band VIXEN has been updated with the following message:

“It is with profound sadness that we announce the sudden passing of VIXEN founder and lead guitarist, Jan Kuehnemund, who lost a fierce battle with cancer on Thursday, October 10, 2013.

“Though most well known for her gifted guitar playing and other musical talents, Jan was a rare friend and beautiful in every sense of the word. Humble, thoughtful, loyal and kind, she was the most gracious of women, possessing the quiet strength of a true warrior. She genuinely loved and appreciated her friends and fans more than most could ever know. Those who were most fortunate to have known her and loved her are heartbroken at the loss of Jan, whose spirit will shine through her music eternally.

Jan was very courageous. Never complained. Never gave up. The cancer beat her body but it NEVER broke her spirit at any point.

“Up until the actual moment that she died, she really believed she was going back home.

Jan… you will be missed… but never forgotten.”

Jan Kuehnemund was only 51 years old at the time of her death.

VIXEN‘s last studio album, “Live & Learn”, was released in 2006.

The group, whose latest lineup featured Kuehnemund alongside Jenna Sanz-Agero (vocals), Lynn Louise Lowrey (bass), and Kat Kraft (drums), reformed several times, most recently in 2008, resulting in the live release “Live In Sweden”, which arrived in 2009.

“Live & Learn” was VIXEN‘s first studio recording to feature Kuehnemund since 1990’s “Rev It Up”.

Kuehnemund reformed VIXEN in 2001 for the Voices of Metal tour with a lineup that had to be revamped 10 dates into the trek. Undeterred, with less than a month of rehearsals, the three new members successfully finished the run.

VIXEN‘s original members, Kuehnemund, vocalist Janet Gardner, drummer Roxy Petrucci and bassist Share Ross appeared together on VH1‘s “Bands Reunited” in October 2004 to reminisce about their start on L.A.’s Sunset Strip and their rise to fame in the late 1980s, before the onset of grunge in the early 1990s displaced metal at the top of the charts. They also took part in a short performance for the program.

GardnerPetrucci and Ross are currently performing together in a new band called JANETSHAREROXYGINA. The group’s lineup is rounded out by Gina Stile, who was the guitarist on VIXEN‘s “Tangerine” album.

In a statement on her Facebook page, Ross wrote: “Much more than simply a brilliant guitarist and amazing songwriter, Jan was one of the kindest souls you could ever hope to meet. She remembered everyone’s birthdays and special occasions with gifts and was one of the most gracious women on the planet.

“Through her year-long battle with cancer, Jan was very courageous. She never complained and never gave up. The cancer beat her body but it never broke her spirit at any moment.

“For those of you who wondered why VIXEN never reunited, we actually did reunite.

“We had resolved our differences and were wholeheartedly looking forward to playing together again.

“In January 2013, only days before the announcement was to be made public, Jan was given her cancer diagnosis. She requested that we keep her illness private and out of respect for her wishes when press and fans asked us why we were not back together, we replied ‘it’s a matter of timing.’ Since then we’ve been in regular contact with her and offered our loving support while continually hoping to make 2014 the year of VIXEN. However, it was not meant to be.

“Our condolences go out to her family.

“Memorial services will be announced at a later date.

Jan, you will be missed. But never forgotten.

“Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.”

In April 2013 interview with GuitarWorld.comRoss stated about the formation of JANETSHAREROXYGINA: “We’ve been talking about getting back together as VIXEN for a while. I know some people think there are some big shenanigans going on, but the fact is we’re all still friends with Jan. The timing just isn’t right. So, we’ve decided to let go of the VIXEN thing for now and reached out to Gina. Out of respect for Jan, we’re not going to call it VIXEN and instead calling it JSRG.”

GHOST's DAVE GROHL-Produced 'If You Have Ghost' Covers EP Due In November

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Swedish occult rockers GHOST will release a covers EP, “If You Have Ghost”, on November 19 via Loma Vista Recordings. The five-track EP was recorded and produced by Dave Grohl (FOO FIGHTERSNIRVANA), and includes cover versions of songs by ROKY ERICKSONABBA, ARMY OF LOVERS and DEPECHE MODE, plus a live version of the GHOST offering “Secular Haze”, recorded in Brooklyn earlier this year.

Outside North America (with the exception of Scandinavia), Spinefarm Records will be the new releasing partner for Loma Vista on all GHOST recordings, including the new EP and previous album. Spinefarm releases are distributed through Caroline/Universal in all territories, including the U.K., where a November 18 date has been confirmed for the release of “If You Have Ghost”; the EP release date in other territories will vary slightly.

“If You Have Ghost” will be available on CD, 12-inch vinyl and digitally. Those who pre-order the EP will receive an instant free download of “Secular Haze – Live”.

The track listing for the effort is as follows:

01. If You Have Ghosts (ROKY ERICKSON cover)
02. I’m A Marionette (ABBA cover)
03. Crucified (ARMY OF LOVERS cover)
04. Waiting For The Night (DEPECHE MODE cover)
05. Secular Haze (live at Music Hall Of Williamsburg In Brooklyn, NY)

GHOST recently travelled to the U.S. to join AVENGED SEVENFOLD and DEFTONES for the “Hail To The King” tour; these dates — which run until October 26 — mark the band’s first proper U.S. outing since their “Haze Over America” trek earlier this year. GHOST also appeared at various music festivals across the U.S. this summer, including CoachellaLollapalooza and Rock On The Range.

In Europe, meanwhile, GHOST will join forces with ALICE IN CHAINS for a run of dates that start in the U.K. on November 9, before heading across to mainland Europe.

“Infestissumam” sold around 14,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 28 on The Billboard 200 chart.

The CD topped the official chart in the group’s home country after selling nearly five times as many copies as the No. 2 album, MISS LI‘s “Wolves”.

In a recent interview with ARTISTdirect, a nameless ghoul from GHOST said about “Infestissumam”: “It feels way more theatrical and bombastic. In many ways, ‘Infestissumam’ is thematically a continuation of where [the debut album] ‘Opus Eponymous’ began. Whereas a lot of the thematic ideas we have in mind for upcoming albums might differ a little bit and will go in another direction. That’s not to say we won’t sing about the things we do and not have makeup. I’m just saying it will evolve into other things in the future. On this record, I feel like we’re doing a lot of things we intended to do on the first naïvely being we could pull off a show like that at that point — which we couldn’t. Now, we have a little bit more muscle. The attendance is probably more in accordance with being able to present a show like that.”

Regarding the lyrical themes covered “Infestissumam”, the nameless ghoul said: “Thematically we knew the major difference between the first and the second albums as much as we do between the second and the third. It’s a bit ironic now. Jumping up to the contemporary controversy with our album artwork and the refusal of printers to print the art is funny because the whole record is about the presence of the devil. Obviously, it’s about how mankind relate to the presence of the devil. Historically, it’s always been the female body that has taken the fall for that, which is what happened in this case. The problem was a vagina in the art not the inverted crosses.”

GHOST was forced to modify its name in the U.S. to GHOST B.C. for “legal reasons.”

AVENGED SEVENFOLD Guitarist Responds To ROBB FLYNN's 'Covers Album' Criticism

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AVENGED SEVENFOLD guitarist Zacky Vengeance has addressed recent comments from MACHINE HEAD frontman Robb Flynn, in which Flynn called AVENGED‘s new “Hail To The King” CD a “covers album.” Flynn specifically called AVENGED SEVENFOLD out for songs like “This Means War”, which bears a strong resemblance to METALLICA‘s “Sad But True”, along with others.

Vengeance told U.K.’s Kerrang! magazine: “With any success, a lot of voices come out, and you start hearing a lot more opinions on the matter. We’ve provoked very strong reactions in both directions since day one, and coming from a very humble hardcore scene in Orange County, California, and being a band that has gone on to put out ballads, we’ve gotten the worst of it off of that.”

The guitarist refused to be drawn on the direct nature of the MACHINE HEAD frontman’s criticism, saying: “My only comment [on Robb] is that I really, truly hate to see any sort of divide in rock and metal.

“I think everyone’s trying to come up together and bring up other bands along the way, and we’ve always been really blessed to have bands like METALLICA and IRON MAIDEN take us under their wing and say nice things about us. When you have that, you are really so appreciative, and we hope to do the same for younger, up-and-coming bands, because we’re just not ready to give over the throne of rock and metal to a bunch of bands that blow on jugs and play tambourines!”

AVENGED SEVENFOLD singer M. Shadows recently told a Canadian radio station about Flynn‘s comments: “I have met Robb on numerous occasions and he’s always been cool to me. And I just read it as a joke . . . I really don’t know what to say about it other than I agree with him on the ‘Sad But True’ thing — that was obviously an inspiration for that song. Everything else, I kind of think he . . . If it is a joke, it was kind of overboard, ’cause it doesn’t make sense in my mind.”

Shadows added, “Some people might see it as being as an underhanded . . . joke. But, to me, if he just wants to go in there and write whatever he wants, I think that’s totally cool. Everyone has an opinion and everyone should be entitled to say whatever they want. So it’s no skin off our backs.”

Flynn didn’t pull any punches in his critique, writing, “Congratulations to AVENGED SEVENFOLD on their latest ‘covers album’ coming in at #1. Who knew that re-recording METALLICAGUNS N ROSES and MEGADETH songs could be such a worldwide hit!!?? Ba-dap Psssssss!!”

Asked if the bands Flynn mentioned were influences, Shadows replied, “I think all the bands he said we were very inspired by. I think also [BLACKSABBATH, [LEDZEPPELINTHE ROLLING STONES.”

“Hail To The King” sold 159,000 copies in its first week of release, giving the California band their second straight chart-topper after 2010’s “Nightmare”.

AVENGED SEVENFOLD kicked off its first major tour in support of the new CD on October 3 in Chicago.

GENE SIMMONS’ USED GUM SELLS FOR ALMOST $250,000

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You might love the music of Kiss, and you might even be one of the band’s biggest fans. But you’re probably nowhere near as passionate (or whatever you want to call it) as the person who just dropped nearly a quarter of a million dollars for a piece of Gene Simmons‘ used chewing gum.

KISSopolis reports that the gum sold via an eBay auction, with all proceeds going to the Street Leagueorganization, a charity that uses sports programs to try and help combat youth unemployment in the U.K.

Sounds like a good cause, but as for whether that justifies spending such an outrageous sum on a piece of previously chewed gum — even if it has graced the molars of the Demon — well, we’ll have to leave that up to the winning bidder. (For the record, eBay tallied 99 bids on the auction in all, so more than a few people clearly wanted to own this particular piece of memorabilia.)

According to Kissopolis’ report, Simmons chewed said gum on the set of the British television show ‘Soccer AM,’ making a promotional appearance as part of his trip overseas to sing the national anthem before the Pittsburgh Steelers played the Minnesota Vikings in London on Sept. 29. Here’s hoping the gum’s new owner has enough money left over to buy some nice gallery lighting for his or her investment.

HETFIELD: METALLICA Will 'Hopefully' Start Work On New Studio Album Next Spring

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METALLICA frontman James Hetfield recently spoke to Gary Graff of Oakland Press about the progress of the songwriting sessions for the band’s follow-up to 2008’s “Death Magnetic”.

“Hopefully [we will return to the studio] soon,” Hetfield said. “I’m itchin’. We have tons of material to sift through. That takes a lot of time, because there’s a lot of great stuff. I know we only need a few songs, but there’s 800 riffs we’re going through. It’s kind of insane. We have sifted through a lot of the stuff and pulled the cream of the crop — it’s just sitting there waiting for us to take it to the next level.”

He added: “I know we do need to decompress after this, get this [‘Through The Never’] film thing out of our systems. It’s taken up a lot of time and a lot of effort. We go full-throttle into something and multitasking is not what we’re after. So the next record will hopefully start some time in the spring.”

Hetfield also weighed in on the box-office performance of “Metallica Through the Never”, which has grossed $2.724 million so far, having moved to standard theaters last weekend after opening September 27 on IMAX screens.

“I didn’t really have any huge expectations,” Hetfield explained. “I’m just excited to have the baby out of the womb and walking around now, finally, (after) two years at least with the process as it was — and having the idea for decades.

“As far as (box office) numbers coming back, management is certainly a little more focused on numbers and all of that and what it means. I don’t know much about the movie world. As an artist, I just like that the thing is out there. It’s exactly what we wanted, and we’re proud of it.”

Financed by the METALLICA members themselves at a budget of $18 million, “Metallica Through The Never” is the first new release via Picturehouse, the full-service independent film marketing and distribution company started in 2005, which reopened its doors with founder Bob Berney at the helm. The film’s surreal narrative winds its way through the concert footage, in which a roadie played by Dane DeHaan finds himself in an increasingly hostile urban environment while on a mission for the band.

The soundtrack, which features a number of METALLICA classics performed live in the movie, was released on September 24. The two-disc CD came out on METALLICA‘s own label, Blackened Recordings, also in digital and vinyl formats.

GENERATION KILL: 'We're All Gonna Die' Info

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GENERATION KILL, the band featuring EXODUS frontman Rob Dukes, will release its sophomore album, “We’re All Gonna Die”, on November 15 via Nuclear Blast. The CD was produced by Chris “Zeuss” Harris, who has previously worked with SUICIDE SILENCEALL THAT REMAINSSHADOWS FALL and SOULFLY, among others.

In the video clip below, Dukes and GENERATION KILL bassist Rob Moschetti (formerly of PRO-PAIN and M.O.D.) talk about their old-school songwriting approach on “We’re All Gonna Die”.

Commented Dukes: “We called this album ‘We’re All Gonna Die’ because, for the most part, the lyrics are about the darker side of the existence of humans on this planet.

“The album as a whole is so diverse, drawing from our influences that we grew up on.

“We achieved our goal of creating something that we all are so proud of. I personally think this is the strongest vocal performance of my career, and as a band we can’t wait for the hard rock/metal world to hear this album.”

Added Zeuss: “This album is not an EXODUS clone. This is an album of music where five guys got together an explored our own roots of music, the records we grew up listening to and wrote songs paying homage to what we love.”

“We’re All Gonna Die” track listing:

01. Born To Serve
02. Prophets Of War
03. Self Destruction
04. Friendly Fire
05. Carny Love
06. Vegas
07. There Is No Hope
08. We’re All Gonna Die

GENERATION KILL‘s debut album, “Red White And Blood”, was released in September 2011. The CD was recorded at J. Rod Production Studios in New City, New York (where the vocal tracks for EXODUS‘ “Let There Be Blood” and OVERKILL‘s “Ironbound” were previously laid down).

GENERATION KILL is:

Rob Dukes – Vocals
Rob Moschetti – Bass/Backing Vocals
Jason Trenczer – Lead Guitar
Jason Velez – Lead Guitar
James DeMaria – Drums

KORN Singer Says He 'Butted Heads' With Guitarist WELCH During Making Of New Album

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KORN releases its highly anticipated 11th studio album, “The Paradigm Shift”, on Tuesday (October 8). The disc is the first to feature original guitarist Brian “Head” Welch since 2003’s “Take A Look In The Mirror” and follows up 2011’s dubstep experiment, “The Path Of Totality”. Frontman Jonathan Davis told The Pulse Of Radio that Welch‘s return on guitar was a good balance to Davis‘ own continued fascination with electronic music. “We wanted to make a record that everybody was happy with, and Head coming back, I think, was great, ’cause me and him butted heads. ‘Cause he really is on the rock side and I was on the electronic side, and it was good having the compromise on both sides. It was just good for the creative process, I think.”

Welch recently told Rolling Stone that the new album has “the old KORN vibe, but with a new twist . . . The end product is a really good mix of old KORN mixed with some new elements. It’s got a fresh new KORN 2013 sound.”

Welch left KORN in 2005 after he converted to Christianity and got off drugs. He rejoined them for a handful of live performances last year before officially becoming part of the lineup again in early 2013.

Davis recently revealed that he was dealing with personal issues during the early stages of the new disc, including his son being diagnosed with diabetes and his own struggle to kick an addiction to anti-depression medication.

KORN was scheduled to perform a mini-concert on the “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” outdoor stage in Hollywood on Monday night (October 7).

The band will be inducted into the Guitar Center‘s RockWalk on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood, California on Tuesday to celebrate the release of the new CD.

KORN is on a headlining North American tour right now that brings the band to Los Angeles on Thursday (October 10).

After this, KORN and ROB ZOMBIE will co-headline the “Night Of The Living Dreads” tour this fall. The 17-date run begins on November 3 in Reno, Nevada and wraps on November 26 in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

METALLICA's 'Through The Never' Has Earned Less Than $3 Million So Far

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According to Box Office MojoMETALLICA‘s new movie, “Metallica Through The Never”, expanded to 589 locations on October 4, but in the process lost most of its IMAX screens to “Gravity”, the outer-space thriller starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney. As a result, it plummeted 56 percent to $697,763. So far, the hybrid concert movie, which was written and directed by Nimród Antal (“Kontroll”“Predators”), has earned just $2.7 million.

“Metallica Through The Never” officially opened on September 27 for an exclusive week-long run on IMAX screens. The film’s surreal narrative winds its way through the concert footage, in which a roadie played by Dane DeHaan finds himself in an increasingly hostile urban environment while on a mission for the band.

Financed by the METALLICA members themselves at a budget of $18 million, “Metallica Through The Never” is the first new release via Picturehouse, the full-service independent film marketing and distribution company started in 2005, which reopened its doors with founder Bob Berney at the helm.

Asked if making the movie was worth the financial risk, METALLICA drummer Lars Ulrich told The Quietus: “That remains to be seen. Ask me when I come back and talk about the new record two years from now. I have no idea. I do know that we rarely consider other options, so compromise is not METALLICA‘s major strength. And I think that the fans hopefully appreciate that if its got the word ‘METALLICA‘ written somewhere on or near it, that it comes from us.”

He continued: “Creative experiences aren’t really ones we share with anyone other than the closest few that we sort of purposefully let in. So, to sit there and take a bunch of money from a bunch of people to then have them [be] involved in editing and controlling the movie and so on just seemed wrong. That, of course, was before the project ran amok, but they always run amok, so it’s nothing new.

“In METALLICA, we don’t look at things as… there’s a word called ‘cross-collaterizing.’ You sort of put everything against everything else so it’s not [a case of], ‘How is the movie going to do, as itself?’ It’s not like an isolated entity…

“I think nowadays in media it’s very much, ‘What did it cost? What did they get back? Was it a success? Was it a failure?’ It’s slightly more complicated than that, and that kind of breaking it down to absolutes really doesn’t interest me.

“This is another chapter in METALLICA‘s existence, and I’m sure that if we don’t make all the money back, then, I don’t know, [we will in] t-shirt sales seven years down the line. Something good will come in the wake of these projects. It’s just sort of how we roll.”

The soundtrack, which features a number of METALLICA classics performed live in the movie, was released on September 24. The two-disc CD came out on METALLICA‘s own label, Blackened Recordings, also in digital and vinyl formats.

SLAYER HOPE TO UNVEIL NEVER-BEFORE-HEARD JEFF HANNEMAN MATERIAL ON NEXT ALBUM

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Slayer fans, we’ve got some exciting and exclusive news to share with you! The passing of iconic Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman hit us all like a ton of bricks, but we’re ecstatic to report that new Hanneman material may appear on Slayer’s upcoming 11th studio album.

We spoke with frontman Tom Araya earlier today (Oct. 7), and he confirmed that past songs Hanneman shared with his band, along with never-before-heard archived audio recorded by the guitarist will be extracted for Slayer’s upcoming writing sessions.

Earlier this year, Jeff Hanneman died at the age of 49. Having battled with a freak case of necrotizing fasciitis along with liver damage for a number of years, the legendary shredder succumbed to liver failure on May 2, 2013. Although the news was, and still is, incredibly sad, Slayer fans can raise their heads (and devil horns) high knowing that Jeff Hanneman’s work could appear on Slayer’s next album.

“We have two songs,” Araya tells us. “I haven’t had the privilege of going through his audio files at the moment, but that’s something I plan to do. Once we get some business squared away, that’s something I plan to do; to go through his music and see what he has. I know that he had several ideas together that he had presented to us in the course of the past year. Before he passed away, there was one complete song that he had managed to send to everybody that I listened to and that I thought was really, really good and communicated that to him. There’s stuff that I thought would be great to listen to just to see what’s there and how we can possibly use what he had done. That’s something I have every intension of doing.”

Araya goes into more detail, “One song was a song we didn’t finish for ‘World Painted Blood.’ That song is actually complete. Me and Jeff were working on melody and lyric ideas for that song. We weren’t really happy with what we were doing or what was becoming of that song, so it didn’t make it on the album. It was just something we were working on and we couldn’t find anything we were happy with that would work well lyrically and melody-wise, so that’s one reason why that one didn’t make it on the album, but that song is complete, it’s done, it’s ready to go. I don’t want to use the term ‘typical’ [laughs] but it’s Jeff, it’s obvious who put the song together. It’s Jeff music. He created a certain way and he put music together a certain way; it’s signature Jeff. It’s new, it doesn’t sound like anything else that we’ve done, in my opinion. Jeff usually just wrote songs and a lot of his stuff had certain signature things he would do to songs. That stuff is in there, but I would consider it new.”

We also asked Araya what emotions come up when he hears the second full song Hanneman submitted to Slayer shortly before his death. “Listening to that, and this isn’t meant in a bad way, but when I listen to it and I’m thinking about him, it’s kind of like, ‘F—in’ Jeff!” [laughs]. That’s what crosses my mind; ‘F—in’ Jeff!’ Some people wouldn’t understand that, but having conversations with Paul [Bostaph, drums] on these past tours that we’ve done together, I’ll look at him, I’ll be onstage playing and then it’ll hit me. Then I’ll be talking to Paul after the show and I’ll look at him and sometimes I’ll just be like, ‘F—in’ Jeff!’ and he’ll just smile and say, ‘Yeah, I know what you mean.’ [Laughs] I do that periodically. When I think about him, that’s usually the phrase that’ll come to my mind.”

METALLICA's LARS ULRICH: 'Another Frontier' Announcement Coming This Week

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METALLICA drummer Lars Ulrich told the San Francisco radio station 107.7 The Bone in an interview last month that the band has something coming up in December that will surprise fans. Asked what the group had in store for the immediate future, Ulrich explained, “There’s a very interesting thing coming our way in December . . . There’s another frontier heading in METALLICA‘s direction in December. Which, if anybody (at the band’s management) even knew that I just said what I just said, they would hunt me down and silence me. But there is another frontier coming in December, which we’re very excited about.”

During a roundtable with a group of journalists in London, England last week, Ulrich was asked for more clues as to what this “frontier” might be. “‘Lulu Part 2’ — just to piss everybody off!” he jokingly replied before adding, “I believe that there’s an announcement on October 8. But don’t hold me to that, I’ve been a little caught up in [the new METALLICA movie, ‘Metallica Through The Never’]. It’s not anything of that magnitude… There may be a few of you that would be disappointed; it’s not anything quite at that level.”

He continued: “I found myself telling one of your colleagues earlier, there’s an IRON MAIDEN album called ‘The Final Frontier’. So I’ll borrow that from my interview an hour ago, and say, ‘My clue will be the IRON MAIDEN album ‘The Final Frontier’. There you go.”

During The Bone interview, Ulrich was also asked if the group planned to stage a third installment of its Orion Music + More festival in Detroit next year, after bringing the show’s second edition there last June.

The drummer replied, “Detroit was a great experience. We’d love to bring this thing back to Detroit. We’ve gotta sit down and look at the practical parts of it. And our good friends at (promoters) C3 (Presents) have gotta sit down and probably get their calculators out and all that stuff that we try to stay out of . . . It’s not an easy thing to launch a festival, but we’ve had a lot of fun the last two years doing it, and we hope to bring it back to Detroit.”

Last June’s Orion event drew at least 20,000 people per day over the course of two days to see METALLICARED HOT CHILI PEPPERSDEFTONESSILVERSUN PICKUPSRISE AGAINST and more.

“Metallica Through The Never” opened on 308 IMAX screens last weekend and earned $1.7 million, making it the biggest IMAX opening for a concert film ever. The movie, which expanded to more theaters on Friday (October 4), ranked 13th on the overall box office chart.