It seems 2014 is the time for our '80s and '90s metal heroes to start reflecting on their careers in literary form. Scott Ian's book I'm The Man: The Story Of That Guy From Anthrax was released this week, and grabbed the headlines with a story about how the NYC rhythm king and sometime stand-up "overheard" Metallica planning to sack Lars Ulrich on the Master Of Puppets tour, not long before the tragic death of Cliff Burton. "That story's actually been out there for a long time. I'm not outing this – that would never be my intention," Scott insisted to 94.3 Kilo. "My book's not like an expose." Indeed, this allegation was made by Dave Mustaine in Rolling Stone in 2009, who qualified it with the insistence "That's what Scott told me." At the time, Anthrax immediately tweeted "Story's not true." So was Scott denying it because he was miffed at Mustaine making the headlines with his anecdote? Or is the story really not true?
In other metal book news, the new, authorised Sepultura memoir Relentless: Thirty Years Of Sepultura (following on from Max Cavalera’s autobiography My Bloody Roots, released earlier this year) will be in all good bookshops in time for Christmas. “There is fantastic research on Brazil and the political context,” enthuses guitarist Andreas Kisser. “It has some very detailed stuff on the songs and the studio. It’s awesome.” The Seps’ rags-to-riches-and-halfway-back-again story ought to be a riveting read, as long as it doesn’t skimp on the tougher questions about the Cavaleras and the band’s sometimes wayward and chequered trajectory post-Max.
No date has yet been set for Korn 1994-2014 – the limited edition, 300-page ‘photo book’ (with exclusive new notes and commentary by the band) celebrating 20 years since the Bakersfield quintet’s seminal debut – but presumably as 2014 is referenced in the title, that will also be a potential stocking filler. Alas, we’ll have to wait a bit longer for Phil Anselmo’s long-awaited autobiography Mouth For War: Pantera And Beyond, described as “a no-holds-barred look inside of Philip’s brain, his history with Pantera, the loss of his best friend Dimebag Darrell and an unflinching examination into the downward spiral of pain and drug addiction that nearly cost him his life.” Originally slated for a January release, turns out the singer is too busy on the road to meet the deadline. “The more I learn about it and its release date, the more you cats will learn about it,” Phil told Jack Antonio. “But as of right now it’s just hit the brakes.”
As long as it hasn’t hit an iceberg, which is a seamless link to the news about London industrial crew The Defiled sailing off to Greenland, setting up their gear on a big lump of ice and playing songs to an audience of twelve after the makers of Jägermeister approached expedition team Secret Compass to put a rock band on an iceberg. “It wasn’t just a PR stunt – well, it is effectively a PR stunt, but its not just a case of putting the guys on there with a bunch of instruments,” the band’s expedition guide Tom McShane told Hammer, “it was as real-life a gig as possible.” On the subject of future plans, keyboardist The AvD exclusively revealed “We have something really special planned for the next album. If it comes through, we will get to work with some thoroughly cool people.”
Cool is in the eye of the beholder, but it’s unlikely that The Defiled are hoping for a collaboration with a controversial evolutionary biologist. Whereas Nightwish have confirmed this week that they are working with prominent atheist Professor Richard Dawkins, who this week contributed a spoken word part to the band’s eighth album, currently being recorded in Oxford for a 2015 release. Nightwish mastermind Tuomas Holopainen has recently enthused about Dawkins’ 2011 book The Magic Of Reality, calling it “the most beautifully written introduction to science ever.”
We can’t end a metal news round-up with a review of a science book, so if you want to contribute funds to the making of the new album by pioneering Geordie hell-raisers Raven (who took support band Metallica out on their first major world tour in 1983), then click this way. Come on Lars, cough up or you’re sacked!