"some music was meant to stay underground..."


Formed: 1990
From: Newcastle, United Kingdom
Last Known Status: Active

Latest Skyclad News

Below is our complete Skyclad news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.

Note: We began associating news directly with bands in late 2003. Therefore, earlier band news may not be listed on this page.

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A Day At Leyendas Del Rock

Europe is renowned in the metal world for it's many metal and rock festivals, with particular focus being shed on Germany. However, many other countries are now getting in on the action, with Belgium and the Czech Republic becoming more well known for the Graspop Metal Meeting and Brutal Assault festivals respectively. Spain is also making strides in the field, with such events as Resurrection Fest and the growing reputation of another festival in the south eastern area of the country, Villena to be exact, named Leyendas del Rock.

Having only been able to attend for the Thursday, we arrived on the first full day just in time to catch the final few songs of veteran Danish rockers, D-A-D. Though being unfamiliar with the group, they displayed a frantic energy and a passion to win over as many newcomers as they could, putting in a shift that put plenty of younger bands to shame. Despite catching only a glimpse, I will certainly be checking out more of their catalogue in the near future.

Up next on the second main stage, a system which is becoming used by more festivals across the continent, was British based power metal act, Dragonforce. I'm sure most readers are familiar and plenty will remember trying not to break their fingers playing, "Through the Fire and the Flames" on guitar hero, so there's not much need for an introduction. Although they've been the subject of ridicule and criticism, the band actually carry themselves very well. Stand in frontman Alessio Garavello is great at interacting with the crowd and all members perform with focus and skill. They might not be everyone's cup of tea, but Dragonforce did themselves proud on this day. More...

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Bloodstock Festival Reveals Full 2014 Lineup

The final bands have now been announced for this year's edition of the Bloodstock Festival, which takes place from August 7th - 10th (get ticket info and other details over here). The organizers of the festival comment:

"The ‘Metal 2 The Masses’ finals have rocked to a conclusion and some more lucky young bands are joining the New Blood stage at Catton Park next month, plus there's a few last additions for the Sophie and Jagermeister stages.

"Balls Deep bring their trad groove metal to the Sophie Lancaster stage. The Brit outfit have been busy honing their ‘Pro-Pain cut with Black Sabbath’ sound, coming on like the bastard sons of Pantera and classic heavy metal.

"Over on the Jagermeister stage, female-fronted power metallers Aceldama will be impressing allcomers with their high octane performance and audience interaction, while New Blood stage stoner rocker’s Resin will be offering an additional acoustic spin on their new material.

"Meanwhile, the New Blood stage welcomes the last clutch of winners from the last batch of M2TM roadshow finals. Goat Leaf bring their doom groove from the Sheffield heats, Oakhaart’s tech death noise hails from Gloucestershire, impressing judges at the Bristol event, Sinpathetic grace us with their death metal from the Preston night, Eradikator’s thrash metal won out in Birmingham, and lastly but not least, Cacodaemonic's unholy, neo-classical infused death metal represents Nottingham."

The full 2014 festival lineup will be as follows: More...

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Hellfest Live Stream Available This Weekend

Hellfest Open Air takes places this weekend in Clisson, France and many great acts are set to appear. If you are unable to make the festival, then you can enjoy some of the bands via a live stream at this location. Click on the link and scroll to the bottom.

Among the acts set to be streamed (check out the link for the official "countdown" clock for each act):

June 20th:

Death Angel

June 21st:

We Came As Romans

June 22nd:

Angra More...

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Bloodstock Adds More Bands To 2014 Lineup

The organizers of the Bloodstock Festival have checked in with the following update about confirming more bands for the 2014 edition:

"Things are hotting up at Bloodstock HQ and even more bands are unveiled for 2014!! Joining the main stage bill are the newly renamed, Entombed A.D. After having to change their name from just ‘Entombed’, LG Petrov and his fellow band members are once again ready to let the music do the talking after a year of internal struggles. They release the highly anticipated new album ‘Back to the Front’ on 4th August via Century Media and are eager to get back on the road.

"Getting the heads banging on the Sophie stage on Thursday are British trad metalheads Monument, and bringing their own brand of theatrical madness and extreme metal are former ‘Metal 2 The Masses’ winners, Gethika. Bringing an international flavour on Sunday are death/thrash metallers Krow, who hail all the way from Brazil. Fancy something a little different? Then check out 16-yr old blues star in the making Aaron Keylock, also performing on Sunday’s Sophie stage.

"Not content with that, Bloodstock can also reveal six killer bands for the Jagermeister stage! Grab a couple Jagerbombs and come headbang to Undersmile and King Creature on Friday, plus Massive Wagons and a special acoustic set from Orphaned Land on Saturday. If you’re still standing come Sunday, be sure to catch Rabid Bitch of the North and The Heretic Order."

The festival takes place from August 7th - 10th and full details are available at this location. The currently announced lineup is as follows: More...

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Martin Walkyier's Viking Funeral Posts Live Dates

This September, Xanden Concerts and Terrorizer Magazine will present Martin Walkyier's Viking Funeral; a string of shows that marks the final time Walkyier will perform classic Skyclad material live in the UK. Intended as a swansong that will allow the legendary pagan metal vocalist to close the book on Skyclad and focus his attention on The Clan Destined, Martin Walkyier's Viking Funeral will consist of three shows in London, Birmingham and Dublin.

Italian Melodic Folk Metallers Elvenking will back the singer up on stage as well as make their live UK debut on the tour. Direct support will come from Devilment, the new project featuring Cradle Of Filth vocalist Dani Filth. The band is currently hard at work on its debut album.

Portugal's premier melodic death metal band, We Are Killing Ourselves (WAKO) join the bill as they start to develop their fanbase in Europe. The opening slot will be filled by Devil's Clause Records newest signing Helgrind. The London based thrash metal band who are the main support to WAKO UK Headlining Tour will open with their new album in the process of being mastered.

Martin Walkyier's Viking Funeral featuring Martin Walkyier goes Skyclad, Devilment,
Elvenking, We Are Killing Ourselves & Helgrind dates:

September 4th - O2 Academy Islington, London
September 5th - O2 Academy2, Birmingham
September 6th - The Pint, Dublin*

*No WAKO or Helgrind

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Dark Tranquility Replaces Soilwork At Dong 2013

Germany's Dong Open Air 2013 will take place during this upcoming July 11th - 13th, with full details available at the festival's website.

Fans wanting to see Soilwork perform in support of latest album "The Living Infinite" (reviewed here) will be disappointed to know the band has now pulled out of the festival.

However, the organizers of the fest have announced Dark Tranquility will be stepping in to replace Soilwork. Dark Tranquility's new album "Construct" is due out on May 27th in Europe and on May 28th in North America via Century Media Records.

The currently announced lineup for the Dong Open Air fest features: More...

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Sunday Old School: Skyclad

It’s interesting that in well over a hundred columns, Sunday Old School has barely touched on the folk metal sub-genre, (unless you include Primordial and Bathory.) This week we will be rectifying this by examining one of, if not the first folk metal band, Skyclad. Skyclad was formed in 1990 by vocalist Martin Walkyier, who had recently left his position as lead vocalist of the thrash metal outfit, Sabbat, and former Satan guitarist Steve Ramsey, with the intention of forming the "ultimate pagan metal band," which initially included such ideas as costumes, though thankfully these were soon ruled out. The original lineup was completed by drummer Keith Baxter (later of Northern Irish alternative metal group, Therapy?) and bass player Graeme English, who had worked with Ramsey as part of Pariah. They soon signed with Noise Records, a surprising choice considering how they were alleged to have treated Sabbat and released their first album, "The Wayward Sons of Mother Earth" in 1991.

They added to their ranks after a tour with New Jersey thrash metal legends Overkill, when they recruited Fritha Jenkins to perform keyboard and violin duties and released their acclaimed sophomore record, "A Burnt Offering of the Bone Idol," the next year, in what was to be the first of several album titles involving what appears to be Walkyier’s love of puns, something brought up again on the third album, "Jonah’s Ark," on which they had replaced Jenkins with Cath Howell. Their next album was to be entitled, "Prince of the Poverty Line," which according to some members is their biggest selling album to date and is loosely a concept album, dealing with a decaying Britain left after the Thatcherite reign. Special editions of the album included a number of tracks from the groups, "Tracks From the Wilderness" EP, including a faithful but unique cover of "Emerald" by Thin Lizzy. Skyclad soon faced difficulties in keeping a stable lineup. After replacing Howell with Georgina Biddle for their fifth album, "The Silent Whales of Lunar Sea," both Pugh and Baxter decided to leave the group, though the band were still able to support Black Sabbath on their 1995 "Forbidden" tour, albeit as a last minute replacement for Tiamat, as well as releasing another album that year named, "Irrational Anthems." More...

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Skyclad Issues Tour Recap

U.K. metallers Skyclad have issued the following European tour recap:

"Whilst contemplating this tour blog, I was reminded of a line from a Tom Verlaine song that says, 'the travels fulfils you but the distance it kills you’. It would be easy indeed to moan about the long distances, the aches and pains caused by too little sleep, too much alcohol and the rather variable nutritional intake – and don’t even mention the ‘excess baggage’ charges (budget airlines my arse). However, the clue is in the title, if you want to ‘tour’ you gotta travel and it aint a ‘9 to 5’ gig (man); and so we set off (at 4:30 in the morning) for the ‘In The East All Together’ Tour. Passing through nine countries (covering half of Europe) to play eight gigs in seven days.

"The first gig was in Oberhausen, Germany (Skyclad’s ‘second home’) at the Helvete Club. Good solid metal gig with a great crowd. It was also my birthday (cue jokes but thanks to all for singing ‘Happy Birthday’) and it was great to meet up with a lot of old friends; including the Dong Open Air crew and our friends from Carlisle (good effort lads) and thanks everyone for all the photos, videos, cards and presents – the Port will find a good home. We had gigged with Adorned Brood before but it was nice to meet up with a young Spanish band, Kathaarsys, from Galicia (another favourite haunt of Skyclad), who brought greetings from the TNT bar in Santiago (what a night). So far so good and it was a great start to the tour. More...

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Elvenking Announces Italian Tour Dates

Italian power metal band Elvenking has announced the following Italian tour dates:

08 OCT - Urban - Perugia (ITA)
16 OCT - Motorockas - Mozzate, Como (ITA)
31 OCT - Deposito Giordani - Halloween Party - Pordenone (ITA)
20 DEC - Soundtrack - supp. SKYCLAD - Arcene, Bergamo (ITA)

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Rock City Open Air Cancelled

Romania's forthcoming metal festival, Rock City Open Air, appears to have either cancelled or postponed. A message from black metal legends Mayhem reads as follows:

"Unfortunately, Mayhem will not perform in Romania next week as the whole festival has been canceled (or apparently postponed). We are deeply sorry for the fans who wanted to see us performing there. This is of course totally out of our control.

"A statement regarding the reason of the cancellation should be posted on the festival's MySpace page soon."

This news come after the recent news that Immortal, Blood Red Throne, Macbeth and Trail Of Tears have all pulled out of the event. The festival was scheduled to be held from August 20-23rd in Fetesti, Romania.

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Skyclad Announces Festival Appearances

U.K. folk metallers Skyclad have issued the following announcement about upcoming festival appearances:

"After a fantastic album launch at the Performance Academy in Newcastle (and a very drunken ‘aftershow party’), it was time for Skyclad to join in with the festival season. We have just headlined our first ever UK folk festival at Spratton. This happened on Friday June 10th and got a great reception – even though we might be a bit ‘heavier’ than the bands that normally play there, so thanks to the organisers for taking a chance and making this happen. Hopefully there will be more events like this for Skyclad in the UK – we are ready and waiting.....

"Skyclad has also just paid another return visit to the Dong Open Air festival in Germany (we have now played in 2003, 2005, 2007 and 2009). This has got to be one of our favourite festivals (and probably a favourite of many others as it sold out in just four hours) partly because of its unique location (on top of the ‘Dongberg’) but also because of its ‘small but perfectly formed’ philosophy. They could move this festival and make it bigger etc but they have created a nice ‘niche’ for themselves and long may it continue. We are planning to return next year (we know it breaks the sequence but…) for the DOA tenth anniversary and Skyclad twentieth anniversary. ‘A fistful of cows’ indeed.....

"So what’s next? Well the next festival will be the ‘Rock City Open Air’ festival in Romania. This one is at the other extreme to the Dong as it is a four-day event with over a hundred bands. Skyclad are set to play on Friday 21st August (there is a link from this site).....

"Apart from the festivals, Skyclad have also now confirmed all the dates for a tour of Eastern Europe in October (see tour dates) and there will be more news about this, and any other shows added, in the coming weeks." More...

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Skyclad Announces After Show Party

U.K. folk metallers Skyclad have issued the following announcement about an after show party for the release of their new album:

"Hi all, just to let you know that we’ve booked ‘The Globe’ (aka ‘the Polish bar) for the ‘Aftershow Party’ for the launch of ‘In The…All Together., this is for after the gig at Newcastle College. This bar is a very convenient ‘watering hole’, as most of the Academy staff will tell you, because it is just two minutes walk from Newcastle College. They also do some good ‘pub grub’, if you want to visit before the gig (but stay off the 7% lager until later). It also has a small stage, so we might be persuaded to do a few ‘unplugged songs’ and a terrace (weather permitting) but most importantly, it’s open until 3am!

"For all you trendy people on ‘Facebook’ check out – Pub The Globe, for all internet geeks there’s www.stolowka.co.uk (in English AND Polish, with maps and everything) and for mere mortals the address etc is: Telephone: 0191 2984000 The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE4 7AD."

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Skyclad Streaming New Songs Online

U.K. folk metallers Skyclad have issued the following announcement about streaming new songs from their latest album on their MySpace page:

"To celebrate the release of the new Skyclad album 'In The...All Together', we have posted some (edited) MP3s of all the tracks from the album. So, hopefully, everyone can get to know the songs and join in at gigs and festivals over the coming months.

"Cheers & Beers Skyclad!"

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Skyclad Issues Band Update

U.K. folk metallers Skyclad have issued the following update about upcoming tour dates:

"Just a note to say that we are awakening from our hibination to start doing some gigs in support of the new album, 'In The... All Together'. First up, we have a 'warm-up' gig at Langley Park, Durham on Sunday May 2. This is a charity gig and for those who are making the trip I said I would post the post code for the old Sat Nav (it is Front Street, Langley Park, DURHAM, DH7 9SG as far as I can guess). I've posted this info on the events page and hopefully we'll meet up there and share a jar and a chat for the forthcoming year."

The band's currently confirmed live dates are as follows:

5/3 Langley Park Live Langley Park, Durham, Northeast

7/10 Spratton Folk Festival Spratton
7/18 Dong Open Air Neukirchen-Vluyn, DE

11/21 Pounding Metal - Wimp Reaper Festival Live Factory Adelsheim

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German Dong Open Air Tickets Sell Out In First Day

The 2009 Dong Open Air festival will take place from July 17 - 18 in Neukirchen-Vluyn, Germany. The official website for the festival has been updated with the following announcement that all tickets have already been sold out:

"Many, many thanks for that great reception of yours! The Dong Open Air 2009 is sold out after exactly 4 hours of pre-sales. We never thought of such a fast thing! We all are happily looking forward to seeing you all in best party-mood in front of our beloved stage on the Dong hill on the 17th and 18th of July!"

The line-up for the show will be as follows: More...

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Skyclad Signs With Scarlet Records

UK folk metallers, Skyclad, have signed a deal with Scarlet Records. The group's twelfth album, "In The… All Together," is due in the spring. The CD was recorded and mixed by Dario Mollo (THE CAGE, VOODOO HILL) at Damage Inc Studio, in Ventimiglia, Italy during August 2008.

According to a press release, "[the new album] mixes the usual thrash/speed metal influences with the extraordinary folk melodies that made the band famous all around the world, maintaining a fresh and dynamic approach which gives a strong live dimension to the new songs."

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Headline News

Former Skyclad, Therapy? Drummer Dead At 36

According to Kerrang! magazine, former 3 COLOURS RED / THERAPY? / SKYCLAD drummer Keith Baxter has passed away.

Baxter, who shot to fame with 3 COLOURS RED in the '90s, died of liver failure in hospital on January 4, 2008, surrounded by family and friends. He was 36 years old.

Baxter was born in Lancaster, Lancashire, UK. As a teenager he became a founding member of SKYCLAD, recording five albums with them before leaving in 1995 to join 3 COLOURS RED, with whom he recorded two UK top 40 albums ("Pure" and "Revolt") which included six Top 40 singles.

Following 3 COLOURS RED's split in 1999, he formed ELEVATION with former 3 COLOURS RED bandmate Pete Vuckovic. The group signed with Sony but was dropped a year later. He briefly played with the Northern Irish band THERAPY? in 2002.

3 COLOURS RED reunited to record a third album ("The Union of Souls") in 2004, but split up again the following year.

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Skyclad Issues 2007 Recap

British "folk metal" act SKYCLAD has issued the following update:

"Seeing as the site has been quiet for a while, we thought we should post a little note here to keep everyone informed as to all things SKYCLAD as we head towards the end of 2007. It has been, when all is said and done, quite a quiet and 'steady as you go' sort of year with just the usual round of gigs and festivals happening.

"There have been a few high points and a few 'firsts' that are worth mentioning, from playing some songs for the first time — such as 'Helium' and 'Bury Me' (both at the request of the relevant promoters for the Dong Open Air and the Metieval Fest respectively). It was the first time for the Metieval Fest in Beverley, in fact, and we look forward to returning there. There was also the first visit by SKYCLAD to Moscow, Russia. This happened just a few weeks ago and (once we all got over the colds and got our equipment back — again) it was a great experience, Again, hopefully one we'll repeat." More...

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Skyclad Announce Final "Jig-a-Gig" Tour Dates

Skyclad are pleased to announce that the final dates for the "Jig-a-Gig Tour 2006" have been confirmed. These are April 14th at The Frontline in Ghent, Belgium and April 18th at 'Goudvishal' in Arnhem, Netherlands.

Tour dates so far:

Apr. 09 Paris, FR - La Maroquinerie (w/ Meden Agan, Tornaod, Nocommentclatura, Chugga Chugga)
Apr. 12 Naples, I - Duel Beat
Apr. 14 Ghent, B - The Frontline (w/ Crusader)
Apr. 15 Rotterdam, NL - Baroeg (w/ Elvenpath)
Apr. 16 Luxembourg City, Lux - Centre Culturel (w/ Clanrock, Elvenpath)
Apr. 17 Bonn, D - Klangstation (w/ Elvenpath)
Apr. 18 Arnhem, NL - Goudvishal (w/ Elvenpath)
Apr. 19 Hamburg, D - MarX (w/ Elvenpath, Orcshop)
Apr. 20 Berlin, D - K17 (w/ Elvenpath)
Apr. 21 Gießen, D - Jokus (w/ Kampfar, Heidevolk, Nydvind)
Apr. 22 Merseburg, D - Gasometer (w/ Elvenpath)

Skyclad has finished their 'Jig-A-Jig' EP, which will be available on the tour.

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Skyclad & Paragon To Play Ragnarok Preshow

Skyclad and Paragon have been confirmed to co-headline the Fimbulvetr [="Winters of Winters' in Nose mythology] Preshow at this years' Ragnarok festival, which is set to take place on November 4th at the new Concert Hall in Perth, Scotland.

The aim of the gig is to provide a top quality night of metal, featuring five bands from the UK and abroad in a smaller, more intimate venue than that of the main day's festivities. The preshow will be taking place on November 3rd.

The event will be recorded for future inclusion on live DVD/CD.

For more information, visit www.ragnarokfestival.com.

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