Last Known Status: Active
Voivod (consisting of singer Denis "Snake" Belanger, guitarist Denis "Piggy" D'Amour, drummer Michel Langevin, and bassist Jean-Yves Theriault) was one of the first thrash bands out of Canada to gain popularity outside of their home country. From their beginning in the early '80s, their main goal was to be different from anyone else and thus they incorporated odd musical tempos and futuristic story lines into their songs, often dealing with technology taking over the world. Voivod opened the way for other Canadian thrash bands and for metal bands with their unique styles of performing and writing.
Such early releases as 1984's "War and Pain" and 1986's "Rrrroooaaarrr!" showed that the quartet was aligned to the then up-and-coming thrash metal movement, eventually letting their prog-rock influences seep in on 1987's "Killing Technology" and 1988's "Dimension Hatross." By the time of their major-label debut for MCA, 1989's "Nothingface," Voivod had perfected their thrash metal/prog rock style, resulting in the most commercially successful release of their career -- spearheaded by a video for their cover of Pink Floyd's "Astronomy Domine" (which enjoyed airings on MTV's Headbangers Ball) and a headlining club tour over a pair of bands that would soon change the landscape of alt-rock by the early '90s, Soundgarden and Faith No More.
But just as it appeared as though Voivod may be able to break through to a wider audience, Theriault left the group right after the release of 1991's "Angel Rat" as the album quickly sunk from sight while the rest of the rock world focused their attention on the burgeoning alt-rock/Seattle movement. "The Outer Limits" followed two years later, which was followed shortly thereafter by Belanger's exit from the band. By the mid-'90s, Voivod's lineup had been scaled down to a trio -- newcomer Eric Forest doubled on vocals and bass, resulting in such releases as 1995's "Negatron" (which was the #1 Aggressive Rock in the United States in the first week of release) and 1997's "Phobos." 2000 saw the release of the odds and ends compilation "Kronik" as well as the live set "Lives." In early 2001, the remaining members decided to call it a day when Forest departed, only to reunite several months later with Belanger back on board and with former Metallica member (and longtime Voivod fan) Jason Newsted filling in on bass.
Latest Voivod News
Below is our complete Voivod 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.
Special Report by David Perri
The late VOIVOD guitarist Denis "Piggy" D'Amour was inducted into the Quebec Metal Hall Of Fame on September 1 as part of this weekend's three-day 25 Years Of Quebec Metal festival at Club Soda in Montreal.
The induction was preceded by a video montage that paid tribute to Piggy, and an elegant banner marking his induction was then hoisted to the venue's rafters. All the while, one of Piggy's home-made guitars was also on display.
Touching remarks about Piggy's life were subsequently delivered to the crowd by Maurice Richard (former Voivod manager/25 Years Of Quebec Metal promoter), Steeve Hurdle (NEGATIVA/ex-GORGUTS), Ian Campbell (DESCEND INTO NOTHINGNESS/ex-NEURAXIS), and Denis "Snake" Belanger (Voivod).
A surprise, unannounced performance then began, with a supergroup including Daniel Mongrain (MARTYR) and Jean-Yves "Blacky" Theriault (ex-Voivod) playing a spirited medley of Voivod classics.
After the Voivod medley ended, Snake and Voivod drummer Michel "Away" Langevin joined Blacky on stage. Piggy's family and his girlfriend also came out on to the stage. Snake folded the hall of fame induction banner and presented it to the D'Amour family.
All in all, the induction was a classy and moving affair that justly gave praise to one of metal's most innovative figures.
Piggy died on August 26, 2005 from complications arising from cancer. He is greatly missed by many.
Voivod drummer Michel "Away" Langevin has told Greg Prato of Billboard.com that he is keeping busy with several upcoming Voivod-related releases, including the group's final studio album, comprised of tracks left over from the last sessions with late co-founding guitarist, Denis "Piggy" D'Amour. The group will congregate in the fall to finish off the tracks.
Also forthcoming are reissues via Sanctuary Records of all of Voivod's releases for the Noise label during the 1980s. Each album will be remastered and updated with a DVD of vintage live performances. "There are quite a few treasures there — like the first U.S. show, when we opened for VEnom at the Ritz in New York," Langevin says. "There are also the demos we sold through the fan club in the '80s, a lot of rehearsals from '83 and '84 when we were writing the first two albums and sketches for the album covers."
In addition, there will be book of VOIVOD-related artwork that Langevin has assembled, with a working title of "Voivod in Art" (Troubleman Unlimited).
VOIVOD drummer Michel "Away" Langevin has told MTV.com that he recently finished remastering the band's 1986 album, "Rrröööaaarrr!", and editing a bonus DVD that will accompany the re-release of the LP in the fall. The package will be filled with live and demo recordings that were sold in the '80s via the band's Iron Gang fan club; fan-recorded footage, including the group's first U.S. show, an opening gig for VENOM; rare archival photos; and cassette recordings dating back to 1980. "I found an early tape of Piggy doing an avant-garde collage of sounds that's very good, so that will be a bonus on 'Rrröööaaarrr!' as well," he said.
The "Rrröööaaarrr!" reissue will be followed early next year by reissues of 1987's "Killing Technology" and 1988's "Dimension Hatröss", which will be similarly equipped with bonus DVDs. After the first batch of reissues come out, Langevin plans to work on reissues of 1991's "Angel Rat" and 1993's "The Outer Limits". He's negotiating to put out 1989's "Nothingface" as well but is running into some red tape.
"We had a deal back then where it was distributed by MCA in America and Noise in Europe," Langevin said. "And right now that's causing some logistical issues that we need to settle before I can start thinking about that."
Langevin also plans to begin work on a box set of VOIVOD's '90s catalog, much of which featured Eric Forrest on vocals. As if that's not enough VOIVOD to shake a psychedelic stick at, next year Langevin will assemble two proper VOIVOD DVDs, "D-V-O-D-2" and "D-V-O-D-3", to follow up 2005's "D-V-O-D-1". These discs will feature the professionally filmed material lacking from the album-reissue bonus DVDs.
Read more at MTV.com.
VOIVOD drummer Michel “Away” Langevin has issued an update on the band’s current activities:
“Hello there, Here’s what’s up: The video for ‘Polaroids‘ is finished. It was done with Banger Productions and Ottoblix and contains some of my animation work. I started working on the video for ‘The X-Stream,’ also in collaboration with Banger Productions and Ottoblix. We will be recording the follow-up to Katorz in the fall 2007. I’m almost finished with the Roar re-issue on Sanctuary. It will include a bonus DVD pulled from the Iron Gang archives of the era. Expect a fall release.
“Troubleman Unlimited are done with the layout of my art book. The book will contain 325 Voivod related drawings and covers the years 1976-2006. No release date yet but it’s getting close! Check out our new belt-buckles, soon on Bandmerch.com. My project LES ÉKORCHÉS is out on Indica/Outside. Produced by Glen Robinson. Info: lesekorches.com and myspace.com/lesekorches.
“My other project KOSMOS will come out this year on The End. Info: myspace.com/kosmostheband. Snake’s project PARANOLAND is on the way. Also produced by Glen Robinson. Info: myspace.com/paranoland. Also in the works: The Outer Limits and Angel Rat re-issues on The End. Killing Technology and Dimension Hatross re-issues with bonus Iron Gang DVDs on Sanctuary. DVOD 2 and DVOD 3 are coming along too.
“That’s about it I guess. I’m very sorry about the delays, all of this is a lot of work! Peace, Away“
THE END RECORDS has set a release date of August 21st, 2007 for the self-titled debut from KOSMOS, the Canadian prog/psych quartet which features Voivod's Michel 'Away' Langevin on drums. The band is rounded out by guitarist Jetphil (Paradise), bassist Vincent Peake (Groovy Aardvark/Grim Skunk) and keyboardist/programmer Alex Crow
Says Langevin about KOSMOS, "We're a progrock collective from Montreal, Canada and we're influenced by the 70's Krautrock scene and avant-garde music."
The 12 tracks found on KOSMOS offer journeys through cosmic prog psychedelia, a spaceship built for fans of Hawkwind, Amon Duul II, Zombi and Monster Magnet. The tracklisting is as follows:
03. Grand Grizou
05. Indu Kush
06. Much Too Old
12. Messe Noire
VOIVOD fan site Voivodfan.com has posted demos of the Katorz album tracks 'Mr. Clean', The Getaway', 'Red My Mind' and 'After All'. Check them out at this location.
Im aware of the fact that its a little late, and pushed closely together with TWIM for 9-8-06 but nonetheless I would hate to see you guys miss out on a week of news. So without further ado the records chart courtesy of CMJ :
|3||1||SYL||The New Black||4||1|
|4||4||All That Remains||The Fall of Ideals||4||2|
|5||6||The Human Abstract||Nocturne||3||5|
|6||-||Bury Your Dead||Beauty & The Breakdown||2||6|
|8||5||Unearth||III: The Eyes Of Fire||3||5|
|10||7||Shadows Fall||Fallout From The War||4||1|
Hatebreed becomes our third #1 ever, beyond Shadows Fall and SYL. It is amazing for them as a band to completly jump Slayer. All That Remains maybe just hitting stride in their young career, the success of this album and the sales and touring they are doing are pushing them over the top of their genre. Bury Your Dead returns to the chart with strong sales following a bouncey chart release. And the boys from Shadows Fall look like their run of 4 weeks in the chart might end as they slip to the #10 slot.
Onto the singles, courtesy of MusicMatch:
|2||1||Unearth||The Glorious Nightmare||3||1|
|4||3||The Human Abstract||Crossing the Rubicon||2||2|
|5||4||Mastodon||The Wolf Is Loose||2||4|
|6||9||Shadows Fall||Will To Rebuild||4||1|
|8||6||Lamb of God||Redneck||4||2|
|9||7||All That Remains||This Calling||2||7|
Not much change to the charts other then that of Stone Sour resurging to the #1 slot after never reaching it within the first four weeks. Between The Buried and Me makes a debut with Malpractice and the bottom of the chart holds strong with Slayer staying in the #10 slot. All four #1's in the charts 4 weeks remain, including the only 2 songs to be on all 4 weeks.
A third week, and to my surprise Slayer isn't number 1. Strapping Young Lad keeps the #1 spot for the second straight week. Meanwhile Slayer is at their heels and I would bet good money they takeover the top spot next week. Hatebreed's new album Supremecy could be the only thing that comes inbetween all of that but I highly doubt it. All That Remains holds strong as one of 4 bands that have stayed in the top 10 since TWIM was brought back. The second biggest highlight of the chart is the fact that All Shall Perish has broken thru and taken a spot inside the top 10. I've been a fan of these boys for a while and its amazing to see their name share spots with the likes of Shadows Fall and Unearth. And now for the chart courtesy of CMJ :
|1||1||Strapping Young Lad||The New Black||3||1|
|4||2||All That Remains||The Fall of Ideals||3||2|
|5||7||Unearth||III: The Eyes of Fire||2||5|
|7||3||Shadows Fall||Fallout From the War||3||1|
|9||4||Between the Buried and Me||The Anatomy Of||3||4|
|10||*||All Shall Perish||The Price Of Exsistance||1||10|
And now for the tunes, with a drastic change in this weeks chart. Unearth jumps from seven to first, while Slayer's Cult drops from first to tenth. Only six songs stayed on the chart, while we had four really strong debuts from great bands. Hatebreed, Mastodon and the new ATR single. Not to mention the ever-growing popularity of Human Abstract debuts. The singles chart is always shaky as the seeming flavor of the week is always ahead here, and now for the music, courtesy of MusicMatch:
|1||7||Unearth||The Glorious Nightmare||2||1|
|2||*||The Human Abstract||Crossing The Rubicon||1||2|
|4||*||Mastodon||The Wolf Is Loose||1||4|
|6||2||Lamb of God||Redneck||3||2|
|7||*||All That Remains||This Calling||1||7|
|8||10||Strapping Young Lad||You Suck||2||8|
|9||3||Shadows Fall||Will To Rebuild||3||1|
A new top album ? Its true, this week Strapping Young Lad takes over the top spot from Shadows Fall. Both of these bands are very deserving, but we crown our second #1 in as many weeks. Last weeks top 7 managed to stay on the chart, but jump around a little bit. While we have 3 brand new albums debuting this week, with one going as high as #6 in Voivod's Katorz. This is quite possibly the best album these guys have released and they are finally getting the notority they deserve. Not far behind them in the new releases is Unearths' III: The Eyes Of Fire, which is amazing considering it hasnt been released in alot of areas yet but the pre-orders are astounding. I see a #1 in the future for these guys, but who can knock off the consistancy SYL is showing. All That Remains also leapfrogged The Shads into the #2 slot and the big jumper was Between The Buried And Me gaining three slots, which is hard to do considering the company they are in. Meanwhile, Cellador dropped from 8th to 11th. Acacia Strain from 9th to 14th and BYD to 12th. New albums already making a storm up the charts are Slayers "Christ Illusion" with pre-ordering alone landing it inside the top 20. Hatebreed's Supremecy is also showing strong and will reach the top 10 next week. Also in responding to the comments I am considering making this, and the singles list a top 15. If you think its a good idea please respond so, or if thats too much tell me to keep it at 10. \m/.
|1||2||SYL||The New Black||2||1|
|2||3||All That Remains||The Fall of Ideas||2||2|
|3||1||Shadows Fall||Fallout From The War||2||1|
|4||7||BTBAM||The Anatomy Of||2||4|
|7||-||Unearth||III: The Eyes of Fire||1||7|
|8||6||Stone Sour||Come What(ever) May||2||6|
Now for the singles, with a very familiar band to anyone who visits this site, taking over as #1. Lamb of God also stays strong moving up 1 to #2. Shadows Fall and Stone Sour round out the top 4 with a big jumper for the week Celtic Frost's Ground moving up to number 5. Threat Signal holds strong and then we get to three really strong debuts by 3 really strong bands. SYL's new ozzfest anthem boasts the #9 spot as a highlight of the new songs. Roudning out the top 10 is BLS with Concrete Jungle.
|2||3||Lamb of God||Redneck||2||2|
|3||1||Shadows Fall||Will To Rebuild||2||1|
|6||7||Threat Signal||Rational Eyes||2||6|
|7||*||Unearth||The Glorious Nightmare||1||7|
|8||*||Terror||Strike You Down||1||8|
|9||*||Strapping Young Lad||You Suck||1||9|
|10||9||Black Label Society||Concrete Jungle||2||9|
Justin Donnelly of Australia's The Metal Forge recently conducted an interview with VOIVOD/ex-METALLICA bassist Jason Newsted. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow:
On how VOIVOD's new album, "Katorz", has been received by critics and fans:
"The reviews are something I definitely care about man. I try not to let it affect me too much, especially if there's any negativity, but thankfully there isn't that much for 'Katorz'! (Laughs) So far, it's been working out good! It's all been positive vibes from people, because they know that it's true.
"Fans of VOIVOD are real music fans. They're practiced and seasoned listeners. You have to be a little more than the everyday sort of music listener to really get into VOIVOD. It's those people that realize how cool this album is, and they've given us nothing but positive vibes.
"I think this album has every chance of being one of VOIVOD's biggest albums. I guess the reason I care so much is because I want for D'Amour's family, along with Bélanger and Langevin, to be able to reap what they really have deserved all along.
"VOIVOD are one of the most underrated and unrecognized outfits in metal. You know it and I know it. They really deserve the recognition from this generation of metal music lovers who don't quite know about VOIVOD and their incredible influence throughout the years. This generation really needs to hear this, and realize where the bands they dig now come from. I mean, where did these new bands get their ideas for the dissonant chords and all those crazy sounds? That would be from D'Amour's unique and inventive tunings! He composed all of the one hundred and eighty odd songs that VOIVOD has ever recorded, so he really made VOIVOD's sound. He invented that stuff! (Laughs)
"There are so many bands that are influenced by VOIVOD. Ask the guys in TOOL about where some of their craziness comes from. Ask Dave Grohl from the FOO FIGHTERS where all those dissonant guitar notes comes from. You know where it comes from. They would tell you straight up where all that comes from. To see VOIVOD finally get that recognition would be really cool. That's the reward I would like to see the most, along with some financial rewards. It's not something I'm after. I only hope this album is success is purely for them."
On the planned two sequel DVDs to follow up 2005's "D-V-O-D-1":
"Langevin has been compiling all kinds of footage for those. I think he has a plan for three instalments, or at least that's what I understand. The mid-period with Eric Forrest (1994 to 2001) will most likely be next. I don't think I start coming into the picture until the third one, if he plans to do them in a chronological manner, that is. We have a lot of footage for the third one, including some footage from the 2003 Ozzfest tour. That was the big tour year for the band, which was the biggest one for VOIVOD in a long time. We were opening for OZZY OSBOURNE across North America, and did some really cool big shows. There was a lot of hype and excitement, partly because I was playing with Osbourne at the same time as well. It was a great offer, an honour, and I loved doing it. There was no question about that. But it was also something to completely help VOIVOD. I was willing to give whatever I had to push that album. That whole summer we had a lot of opportunities to film with proper cameras from local and regional people, along with some friends who came out with some proper gear too to specifically record some shows as well. So there's a lot of stuff to choose from with number three, actually."
On VOIVOD's long-term plans:
"When it comes to predicting the future, that's a really tough question to answer. The way I see it, speaking to you in July 2006, there's really nobody that can take D'Amour's place. We could plan one big show, or a couple of shows together where there would be guest taking his place on a few songs. People like Dave Grohl (FOO FIGHTERS) and Josh Homme (QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE) would certainly like to do that. But in regards to a full-fledged VOIVOD tour, I don't know how it would be possible. The way that he tuned, the way that he played, and the way he constructed all of the seeds for all VOIVOD compositions, that's some unfillable shoes to me. VOIVOD will be forever. The thing keeps going back into the ice, only to thaw back out and come back stronger. It's obvious that the thing will not die — ever! We have a lot of recorded stuff, and we have a lot of cool stuff from the Chophouse that people have never heard before. There's no telling what we will end up doing with that stuff. There's a lot of other tracks with Piggy playing, including him doing completely different styles and stuff, so there's no telling what could happen with a cool compilation in the future. But right now we have a good record to go on, and we'll see how people enjoy it and just try to realize what its all about. We'll get together when we can to formulate things for the other tracks, and get that out there to share with people again. Then there's the VOIVOD DVDs as well. There's still a lot of material that we plan on releasing to keep VOIVOD alive. So that's another couple of years away. We'll just see what happens from there. Having said that, switching on the current generation of players with new VOIVOD really does bode well with the future, even if just within that thought alone. And as long as Langevin stays at the helm as the brains of the outfit, D'Amour the heart and Bélanger the voice, I think VOIVOD could be forever."
On Thursday, July 27, at 6 p.m. EDT, music lovers and VoiVod fans can catch the gala launch of the famous metal band's latest album, Katorz, live on www.bandeapart.fm and on SIRIUS satellite radio (channel 93). The two-hour audio/video special will also air again Canada-wide at midnight on Espace musique (100.7 FM in Montreal).
RealityTVWorld has issued the following report from Steve Rogers:
"CBS has revealed the identities of the fifteen singers who will compete in Rock Star: SUPERNOVA, this summer's new edition of the Mark Burnett-created Rock Star: INXS reality talent competition that the network aired last summer.
Scheduled to premiere Wednesday, July 5 at 8PM ET/PT with a special 90-minute episode, Rock Star: Supernova will look for a lead singer for Supernova, a newly-formed band comprised of MÖTLEY CRÜE drummer (and former NBC reality show star) Tommy Lee, former METALLICA guitarist Jason Newsted (VOIVOD), and former GUNS N' ROSES guitarist Gilby Clarke. First season co-hosts Dave Navarro and Brooke Burke will both return for Rock Star's second edition.
Following its July 5 premiere, a special Thursday broadcast of Rock Star: Supernova's second episode will follow Big Brother 7: All-Stars' July 6 premiere, after which the series will settle into its regularly scheduled Tuesdays at 9PM ET/PT and Wednesdays at 8PM ET/PT time periods.
Canada's pioneering metal band VOIVOD has teamed up with MP3.com to host a five-minute trailer about the making of the band's much-anticipated new album "Katorz", set for release in North America on July 25 via The End Records.
The five-minute trailer — containing footage from a documentary in the works about the life of VOIVOD guitarist Denis "Piggy" D'Amour — was assembled and directed by Canadian documentary filmmaker Sam Dunn, whose stellar "Metal: A Headbanger's Journey" film includes the last-known filmed interview with Piggy. See Sam's travel journal at www.metalhistory.com to read his comments on meeting and filming VOIVOD. It contains exclusive footage of the recording process of "Katorz" and interview segments with drummer Michel Langevin, singer Denis Belanger, bassist Jason Newsted and producer Glen Robinson (ANNIHILATOR, VOIVOD's "Nothingface"). Revealed is how the demo tracks from Denis D'Amour — guitar parts that guitarist Piggy had finished before his untimely death in August 2005 — were re-amped to form the foundation of this new record.
About the artwork for "Katorz", Langevin (who creates all the artwork for VOIVOD) commented: "Most people will probably expect the usual strange VOIVOD creature on the cover, but the truth is I really wasn't in the right mood to create monsters this time around. Instead, out of respect for Piggy, I decided to design something more band-oriented, with encouragements from Snake and Jason. For the CD itself, we used the title handwritten by Piggy. It was scanned from one of the ProTools CDs. For the booklet, I used many sketches done while listening to the demos over the last couple of years. The idea was to keep it consistent with the album, since a lot of it was pulled from demos. We wanted to keep the art raw and honest, much like the music of 'Katorz'."
"Katorz" track listing:
01. The Getaway
03. Mr. Clean
04. After All
05. Odds & Frauds
06. Red My Mind
07. Silly Clones
08. No Angel
09. The X-Stream (mp3)
The preliminary cover artwork for VOIVOD's new album, "Katorz", has been posted online at this location.
"Katorz" is scheduled for release on July 25, 2006 in North America via The End Records. VOIVOD recorded and mixed the album with producer Glen Robinson (ANNIHILATOR, TEA PARTY, GWAR) at Multisons studio in Montreal, Quebec, Canada and mastered the CD in New York.
The follow-up to 2003's "Voivod", "Katorz" is the first album in the band's 20-plus-year career that did not feature founding guitarist Denis "Piggy" D'Amour working alongside his bandmembers in the studio. D'Amour died August 26, 2005 in a Montreal hospital from complications of advanced colon cancer.
In order to record "Katorz", singer Denis "Snake" Belanger, drummer Michael "Away" Langevin, and bassist Jason "Jasonic" Newsted utilized all of the guitar parts that Piggy had recorded for the record on his laptop with ProTools before his death.
In a recent interview with Greg Prato of Billboard.com, Langevin had the following to say about the upcoming CD: "It came about in unfortunate circumstances, but the result is mind-blowing. Right before his departure, Denis explained to me that he had recorded all the tracks that we had been working on with Jason and Snake for the past two years. He had recorded that on his laptop with ProTools, and even though he would have preferred to re-do the whole thing in a real studio, there was a chance that we could use the tracks. We built the album based on the guitar tracks, which was difficult, because normally, we go the other way around — we start with the drums, and then add stuff on top. But it sounds amazing."
"'Katorz' means 14 — it's the 14th effort of the band," Belanger added. "The first time Piggy put it together and gave us the demo was on CD, [and he had written] 'Katorz', which is not the right way to write it. Of course [there is] an emotional side to it, so we took the demo, and the design of it will be his handwriting."
You can check out the track "The X-Stream", taken from the upcoming CD, in streaming audio format at MP3.com.
Steve Rogers of Reality TV World has issued the following report:
CBS announced Friday (May 5) that "Rock Star: Supernova", this summer's new edition of the Mark Burnett-created "Rock Star: INXS" reality talent competition that the network aired last summer, will premiere on Wednesday, July 5 at 8PM ET/PT. A special Thursday broadcast of "Rock Star: Supernova"'s second episode will follow the next day's premiere of "Big Brother 7: All-Stars", after which "Rock Star" will settle into its regularly scheduled Tuesdays at 9PM ET/PT and Wednesdays at 8PM ET/PT time periods.
As previously announced, "Rock Star"'s second season will look for a lead singer for SUPERNOVA, a newly-formed band comprised of MÖTLEY CRÜE drummer (and former NBC reality show star) Tommy Lee, former METALLICA bassist Jason Newsted, and ex-GUNS N' ROSES guitarist Gilby Clarke. First season co-hosts Dave Navarro and Brooke Burke will both return for "Rock Star"'s second edition.
Read the full article at Reality TV World.
Former METALLICA / FLOTSAM & JETSAM / current VOIVOD bassist Jason Newsted has rejected accusations that he is "selling out" by associating himself with the the "Rock Star" talent-search TV program to find a lead singer for SUPERNOVA, the new band he is forming with ex-GUNS N' ROSES guitarist Gilby Clarke and MOTLEY CRUE drummer Tommy Lee.
As previously reported, "Rock Star" has signed songwriter-performer Butch Walker to produce SUPERNOVA's first album, to be released just before the new band hits the road in 2007. Walker, named Rolling Stone's 2005 "hot" producer, has written or produced tracks for AVRIL LAVIGNE, PINK, BOWLING FOR SOUP and TOMMY LEE.
When asked what his reponse is to the people who think he is selling out by appearing on "Rock Star", Newsted said during his appearance on the "Camp Freddy Radio" show on Indie 103.1 FM on Saturday (April 1), "When people say something like that, then you go, 'OK, well, if I put you in the same situation, and knowing that you have spent through all the years millions upon squillions of dollars for advertisement, marketing, all this stuff, to get your band out there and get it noticed as you tour and whatever, and your album is out and everything. All of a sudden you have this opportunity where the people that are backing you and paying for the advertisement all over 70 countries for your band, for your new band, and it's not on your dime. C'mon, what? I said, 'What time and what city?' when they asked me. Would you not take this opportunity of a lifetime to be recognized possibly at the top of your field once again, take it to the mountain another time? What? C'mon."
During the same interview, Newsted also dismissed suggestions that SUPERNOVA could end up running into some legal trouble down the line over their name. Back in the early 1990s, a poppy punk trio called SUPERNOVA emerged from California's Orange County. The band, which released its first album on Atlantic Records in 1995, is perhaps best known for the track "Chewbacca", which appeared on the soundtrack to Kevin Smith's "Clerks".
Commented Newsted: "There was once a band called that [SUPERNOVA], and they had a song in the movie 'Clerks', I think in '93 or '94. [But the people behind the 'Rock Star' program] worked it out to trademark the name and do all the proper things you're supposed to do with a band, and there was a couple of other bands that had it in their name amongst a few other words, but that's all been worked out, and we are the one and only SUPERNOVA."
After Canadian documentarian Sam Dunn interviewed members of Voivod for his movie, "Metal: A Headbanger's Journey," Voivod recruited him to make a film about their group.
"It was a real honor to be asked, and we've already started shooting," said Dunn. "The documentary is going to be about Piggy's life [the band's founding guitarist, Denis D'Amour, who passed away of colon cancer last year] and the making of the new record and how those are tied together." No release date has been set for the project.
"Metal: A Headbanger's Journey" will come out as a double-DVD on May 23.
A brand new VOIVOD song, entitled "The X-Stream", has been made available for streaming at MP3.com. The track comes off the Canadian pioneering metal band's upcoming album, "Katorz", due in June on The End Records in North America and Nuclear Blast Records in Europe.
VOIVOD recorded and mixed the album with producer Glen Robinson (ANNIHILATOR, TEA PARTY, GWAR) at Multisons studio in Montreal, Quebec, Canada and mastered the CD in New York.
The follow-up to 2003's "Voivod", "Katorz" is the first album in the band's 20-plus-year career that did not feature founding guitarist Denis "Piggy" D'Amour working alongside his bandmembers in the studio. D'Amour died August 26, 2005 in a Montreal hospital from complications of advanced colon cancer.
In order to record "Katorz", drummer Michael "Away" Langevin, singer Denis "Snake" Belanger and bassist Jason "Jasonic" Newsted utilized all of the guitar parts that Piggy had recorded for the record on his laptop with ProTools before his death.
Jonathan Cohen reports for Billboard.com:
Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee, former Metallica bassist Jason Newsted and former Guns N' Roses guitarist Gilby Clarke have formed a new band, Supernova, and will utilize the CBS reality show "Rock Star" as the vehicle by which to select a lead singer. The show will premiere this summer.
Once a singer has been selected, Supernova will hit the studio with producer Butch Walker (Pink, Avril Lavigne) to record an album that will be released in the fall. A world tour will follow in early 2007.
Guitarist Dave Navarro and actress Brooke Burns will return as the show's hosts. Navarro promises appearances from Slash, Macy Gray, Moby and Rob Zombie during the competition.
Last fall, "Rock Star" debuted as a talent search for a new INXS frontman. With winner J.D. Fortune in tow, the group has revived its career with a new album, "Switch," and an extensive tour.
Greg Prato of Billboard.com reports: Veteran Canadian rock act Voivod will in June release "Katorz," its first album for The End Records. The set is also the first to be released since co-founding guitarist Denis D'Amour (a.k.a. Piggy) died last August after a battle with colon cancer.
"It came about in unfortunate circumstances, but the result is mind-blowing," drummer Michel "Away" Langevin tells Billboard.com. "Right before his departure, Denis explained to me that he had recorded all the tracks that we had been working on with [bassist] Jason [Newsted] and [vocalist] Snake [Belanger] for the past two years. He had recorded that on his laptop with Pro Tools, and even though he would have preferred to re-do the whole thing in a real studio, there was a chance that we could use the tracks. We built the album based on the guitar tracks, which was difficult, because normally, we go the other way around -- we start with the drums, and then add stuff on top. But it sounds amazing."
"'Katorz' means 14 -- it's the 14th effort of the band," Belanger adds. "The first time Piggy put it together and gave us the demo was on CD, [and he had written] 'Katorz,' which is not the right way to write it. Of course [there is] an emotional side to it, so we took the demo, and the design of it will be his handwriting."
The album was assembled in a much different way than Voivod has worked in the past. "After Ozzfest [in 2003], we set up and jammed a few days in a row, we kept it and Piggy worked on it a little bit," Belanger says. "Everything was there -- it was just a few things to arrange. But it's all from improvisation."
Although the band's touring future is up in the air ("The chances are very slim -- it was very difficult just to do the album," admits Langevin), more releases are planned, including further studio albums taken from guitar parts that D'Amour left behind on his laptop. Thirteen songs should be completed and released later this year, with an additional 25 songs to follow at some point in the future.
Additionally, Voivod plans to issue a follow up last year's archival live DVD, "D-V-O-D 1."