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Band Photo: Testament (?)

Formed: 1983
From: San Francisco, CA, United States
Last Known Status: Active

Latest Testament News

Below is our complete Testament 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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Testament Members Comment On Nuclear Blast Deal

TESTAMENT members Chuck Billy (vocals) and Eric Peterson (guitar) have commented on their new deal with Nuclear Blast Records.

"We are very happy that we are signed to one of the best metal labels in the world. It's a great feeling that we are in a house that will not crumble," said Billy.

"This is going to be our best record to date, and it will be the essence of what TESTAMENT is," added Peterson. "Nuclear Blast is the perfect label for us. They eat, breathe and sleep, metal. I am excited also because a lot of my favorite bands are on Nuclear Blast, giving us the opportunity to be labelmates with them. Finally we are coming home!"

The group will enter the studio late summer/early fall to record its long-awaited new album for a March 2008 release.

Original TESTAMENT members Alex Skolnick (guitar), Billy, Greg Christian (bass), and Peterson, along with new drummer Nick Barker (ex-DIMMU BORGIR, CRADLE OF FILTH), have finished writing more eight or nine songs for the group's long-awaited follow-up to 1999's "The Gathering".

In a recent interview with RockConfidential.com, Billy stated about the new TESTAMENT material, "The music is very heavy but it's very catchy. Eric's got some really catchy riffs. The vocals are real melodic with some catchy hooks. It's really heavy. It's something new. Nick, coming from a black metal background, is adding that spark that we needed. It's a fresh breath of life to our writing. In the past couple of years we've written some songs but they weren't up to par with 'The Gathering'. Those songs just went in the trash. We just started over when Nick came into the picture. We're on a roll and the songs are turning out really good. . . [Lyrically] it's gonna be covering a lot of stuff, things we've experienced in life. Especially my illness, the cancer, and what I went through. I had some healing sessions and did a lot of sweat lodges with some indians and medicine men. I'm sure I'll be talking about my experiences with the medicine men. My father and Eric's father both passed away within the past couple of years. The war in Iraq. We'll be talking about those issues. It's things that people deal with in everyday life. We've gone away from the cliche gloom-and-doom lyrics, the typical heavy metal lyrics."

TESTAMENT parted ways with Spitfire Records earlier in the year (the Spitfire Records catalog was acquired last summer by Redux Records, the company formerly known as Sheridan Square Entertainment).

Spitfire released a TESTAMENT compilation, "The Spitfire Collection", in February. Consisting of tracks from such Spitfire titles as "The Gathering", "Demonic", "Live at the Fillmore", "First Strike Still Deadly" and "Live in London", the 14-track set chronicles an era that ultimately saw the original TESTAMENT reunite for a successful 2005 tour.

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Gene Hoglan Checks In

Drummer Gene Hoglan (STRAPPING YOUNG LAD, ex-DARK ANGEL, ex-DEATH, ex-TESTAMENT) has posted this message on his MySpace page:

"What's happening, folks? Well, last Sunday, we visited our friends at The Armoury Studios here in Vancouver, to lay down the drum tracks for Jed's mighty TENET album. Now, I don't know why, but I was really nervous about tracking this one, mainly because I wanted to make sure I gave Jedly's baby the love it deserved, which was well-precluded by the 'up-to-my-eyeballs-ness' of my schedule up here in Van. Y'see, when my manager (and chief poobah here at Gene Hoglan Industries) Byron Stroud called me a month-and-a-half ago about this project, his last words were, "It probably won't even have a release 'til early next year, so we'll have plenty of time to get it done", so I thought, 'Okee dokee, piece o' cake!' Well, schedule-goblins being what they are, upon my return from the UNEARTH stint, I was informed that I was to be tracking in about two weeks. The bricks then appeared in my pants.

Gene: 'B-but Byron, I don't know if I'll have enough time to prepare for this, what with the DVD editing, the MECHANISM mixing/jamming, the MR. PLOW tracking, plus, don't forget about the carousing...'

Byron: 'Shut up and do it, ya fat fuck, or I'll SMASH ya.'

Ahh, the soothing nature of By's subtle persuasion.

So, I broke out the Kraft Extra Creamy peanut butter (Jed's fave), the cheese slices, the Stoli Razz (again, Jed's fave), fired up a buncha Jed's famous 'Thrash Metal Sandwiches' and hunkered down for a good ol' preppin' party.

And, it was just like ridin' a bike. All the songs came back to me, no problem. And I ended up tracking everything in the typical day-and-a-half. Figgers. Don't know why I was worried. I was just happy to hook my brother up. I love Jed, I'd do anything for him.

So, with that done, and hopefully Jed'll be psyched when he hears it (cuz remember, he was in Philly gettin' to know his little one during this entire process, tracking included), I've just been informed that, finally, my 'Gene Shirts' are ready! The girlie-T's were ready last week, but it took a little extra time to get the main T-shirt design right. So, the minions here at Gene Hoglan Industries (God, that cracks me up every time I say it), are finalizing 'the Store', and by Tuesday, we're gonna pull the trigger on the whole shebang. I'm also gonna figure out how to get the designs loaded up around here (little help?), so at least people can get a gander at the beauty that will be, 'My Face Across Your Manboobs'. And, oh, yes, the big brothers are gonna be taken care of as well, as the shirts will be available up to XXXXL.

Oh, by the way, Jedly, I've got an untouched bottle of Stoli Razz here for ya. And an extremely-touched jar o' Kraft Extra Creamy...

See ya all early next week!

Gene"

3 Comments - Discuss

Testament Sign To Nuclear Blast

Testament have inked a worldwide deal with Nuclear Blast Records. The group will enter the studio late summer/early fall to record its long-awaited new album for a March 2008 release.

Original Testamentmembers Alex Skolnick (guitar), Chuck Billy (vocals), Greg Christian (bass), and Eric Peterson (guitar), along with new drummer Nick Barker (ex-Dimmu Borgir, Cradle of Filth), have finished writing more eight or nine songs for the group's long-awaited follow-up to 1999's "The Gathering".

Testament parted ways with Spitfire Records earlier in the year (the Spitfire Records catalog was acquired last summer by Redux Records, the company formerly known as Sheridan Square Entertainment).

Spitfire released a Testament compilation, "The Spitfire Collection", in February. Consisting of tracks from such Spitfire titles as "The Gathering", "Demonic", "Live at the Fillmore", "First Strike Still Deadly" and "Live in London", the 14-track set chronicles an era that ultimately saw the original TESTAMENT reunite for a successful 2005 tour.

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Chuck Billy Talks New Testament Album

Jesse Capps from RockConfidential.com recently conducted an interview with TESTAMENT vocalist Chuck Billy. Here are some extracts from the conversation:

RockConfidential.com: What's touring looking like this year?

Chuck Billy: "We've got a few shows in July. We're gonna finish writing. We've got a few shows scattered through September. Between touring we'll be getting in the studio getting the record done."

RockConfidential.com: How many songs do you have right now?

Chuck Billy: "We have eight or nine. Alex (Skolnick - guitar) has a few himself. The hardest thing is none of us live near each other. Alex lives in New York, Nick (Barker - drums) lives in England, Eric (Peterson - guitar) lives about two and a half hours from me. Whenever we get together it's like this big, orchestrated plan. It's been working out really good. We've been rehearsing at my house. Everybody's been flying in and staying for the weekend. We live and write and breathe the songs all weekend long."

RockConfidential.com: I'm sure that keeps you on your toes, too. You probably don't waste much time while you're all together.

Chuck Billy: "We only practice a couple of hours a day if we meet at a studio. At the house we'll take a break and work on the record and then take another break and then work on the record. We're working on it all day and night as opposed to two or three hours in a studio. It works better because we keep focused on what we're doing."

RockConfidential.com: It's been eight years since the last studio record. I'm really anxious and curious to hear the new stuff. You could really do anything now...

Chuck Billy: "I really like the way 'The Gathering' record turned out. To me, vocally, it's got everything I imagined for vocals. I used about three different tones of voices. It added more life and dynamics to me. That's the direction we'll go vocally. The music is very heavy but it's very catchy. Eric's got some really catchy riffs. The vocals are real melodic with some catchy hooks. It's really heavy. It's something new. Nick, coming from a Black Metal background, is adding that spark that we needed. It's a fresh breath of life to our writing. In the past couple of years we've written some songs but they weren't up to par with 'The Gathering'. Those songs just went in the trash. We just started over when Nick came into the picture. We're on a roll and the songs are turning out really good."

RockConfidential.com: What about lyrically this time around?

Chuck Billy: "It's gonna be covering a lot of stuff, things we've experienced in life. Especially my illness, the cancer, and what I went through. I had some healing sessions and did a lot of sweat lodges with some Indians and medicine men. I'm sure I'll be talking about my experiences with the medicine men. My father and Eric's father both passed away within the past couple of years. The war in Iraq. We'll be talking about those issues. It's things that people deal with in everyday life. We've gone away from the cliche gloom and doom lyrics, the typical Heavy Metal lyrics."

6 Comments - Discuss

Thrash Metal Book To Surface In September

Zonda Books has posted this press release:

Garry Sharpe-Young's latest book, "Thrash Metal", is being readied for publication this September. In addition, Zonda Books publishes Garry's "Death Metal", "Black Metal" and "Power Metal" all before the end of the year. These MusicMight titles replace the 2001 editions, which have consistently ranked number 1 on their Amazon.com searches for five years and more.

Thrash Metal. At first mocked by the Rock traditionalists Thrash would swamp the hard n' heavy world propelling one of its own - METALLICA, to the very pinnacle of Rock's elite.

In the early 80s Thrash breathed new life into the Rock scene providing older acts with a much needed kick. This new force opened the floodgates to armies of teens armed with flying Vs, bullet belts and a sense of purpose that would fuel genres such as Thrashcore, Crossover and technical Speed Metal. Without Thrash there would be no Death Metal, no Black Metal. That explosion of aggression has seen subsequent afterblasts, most recently Europe and South America has seen a genuine renaissance of Thrash Metal.

Without doubt, Thrash Metal still continues to make its mark in the biggest possible way. The "big four" - METALLICA, MEGADETH, ANTHRAX and SLAYER are all documented here in the greatest possible detail with full, up to the minute histories, exclusive photographs and global discographies, which include demos, albums, singles, chart positions, track listings and catalogue numbers. Over 400,000 words leave no stone left unturned in pursuit of knowledge of ex-members, rare recordings and career milestones. The author has interviewed all these major acts. Indeed, he interviewed METALLICA's late Cliff Burton just days before his passing. The early days of MEGADETH are straight from the mouth of Dave Mustaine.

Also covered are the legion of groundbreaking Bay Area acts such as METAL CHURCH, TESTAMENT, EXODUS, DEATH ANGEL and HIRAX. The European thrash explosion of KREATOR, RAGE, DESTRUCTION, SODOM, GRAVE DIGGER and HELLOWEEN is also covered in frightening detail. The Pagan Thrash of SABBAT, the avant garde eccentricity of CELTIC FROST and the Funk Thrash of MORDRED - it's all here. The second wave of thrash with major artists such as SEPULTURA, PANTERA and MACHINE HEAD takes the genre right up to the new breed of Thrashers, now a truly world-wide phenomenon. All examined in depth.

Having achieved its quarter of a century, Thrash Metal is not only alive, it is thriving. If you thought this rawest form of Heavy Metal was consigned to the past this book will deliver a rude awakening! Read the book, buy the records and bang that head!!

The scope of 'Thrash Metal' includes artists such as A.N.I.M.A.L., ABANDONED, ABATTOIR, ACCUSSER, ACID, ACID DRINKERS, ACID REIGN, ACROPHET, AFTERMATH, AGENT STEEL, AGONY, AGRESSOR, AIRDASH, AMEBIX, ANESTHESY, ANGEL WITCH, ANGKOR WAT, ANNIHILATOR, ANTHRAX, ANVIL, ANVIL CHORUS, APOKALYPTIC RAIDS, ARBITRATER, ARCH ENEMY, ARMORED SAINT, ARMOURED ANGEL, ARTILLERY, ASSASSIN, AT WAR, ATHEIST, ATOMIZER, ATOMKRAFT, ATROPHY, AZOTIC REIGN...

And that's just some of the "A"'s!

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Testament Announce East Coast Tour Dates

Veteran San Francisco Bay Area metallers TESTAMENT have announced several East Coast dates July. The group's schedule is now shaping up as follows:

Europe:
Jul. 06 - Mortegliano (Udine), Italy @ Festa in Tenda
Jul. 07 - Leeuwarden, Netherlands @Waldrock Festival

USA:
Jul. 13 - Poughkeepsie, NY @ The Chance
Jul. 14 - Sayreville, NJ @ Sounds Of The Underground
Jul. 15 - Springfield, VA @ Jaxx
Jul. 16 - Southbridge, MA @ ADC Performance Center

Europe:
Jul. 19 - Rieden, Germany @ Earthshaker Fest

Asia:
Jul. 27 - Taipei, Taiwan - Formoz Fest
Jul. 28 - Incheon City, Korea - Pentaport Rock Fest

Europe:
Aug. 16 - Derbyshire, U.K. @ Bloodstock O.A. Fest
Aug. 17 - Oulu, Finland @ Jalometalli Festival
Aug. 18 - Notodden, Norway @ Metal Heart Fest
Aug. 19 - Gotenborg, Sweden @ TBC
Aug. 21 - Kolding, Denmark @ Godset
Aug. 22 - Antwerpen, Belgium @ Hof Ter Loo
Aug. 23 - Deventer, Holland @ Burgerweeshuis
Aug. 24 - Bergen, Norway @ Hole in the Sky - Bergen Metal Fest
Aug. 25 - Gemunden, Germany @ Up From The Ground Open Air Fest
Aug. 31 - Rimini, Italy @ Velvet
Sep. 01 - Palmaggio-Casserta, Italy @ Route to Hell Fest More...

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Testament Announce Asian Tour Dates

Veteran San Francisco Bay Area metallers TESTAMENT have announced two dates in Asia in late July:

Jul. 27 - Taipei, Taiwan - Formoz Fest
Jul. 28 - Incheon City, Korea - Pentaport Rock Fest

For a complete list of upcoming TESTAMENT dates, click here.

TESTAMENT singer Chuck Billy, bassist Greg Christian, and guitarists Alex Skolnick and Eric Peterson, alongside ex-DIMMU BORGIR and CRADLE OF FILTH drummer Nick Barker, have finished writing more than half a dozen songs for the group's long-awaited follow-up to 1999's "The Gathering". Tracking is scheduled to begin in July/August for a tentative late 2007/early 2008 release. "It's been a long time coming," Billy said. "This new album is like a good wine: You throw in the grapes and crush." More...

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Dublin Death Patrol Release Upcoming US Tour Dates

DUBLIN DEATH PATROL (DDP), featuring TESTAMENT vocalist Chuck Billy and former EXODUS singer Steve "Zetro" Souza, have announced the following upcoming tour dates:

June
3 - Santa Ana, CA - Galaxy Theatre
8 - San Francisco, CA - Fat City
9 - Concord, CA - Time Out Tavern
13 - West Midlands, UK - J.B.'s
16 - Biddinghuizen, NL - Fields Of Rock Fest
18 - London, UK - The Underworld
19 - Bradford, UK - Rio's

Dublin Death Patrol also features Andy Billy (guitar - SACRED DOG, RAMPAGE, GUILT), Greg Bustamante (guitar - Rampage), Steve Robello (guitar - OUT OF CONTROL), Philthy Demmelition (aka Phil Demmel, guitar - MACHINE HEAD, VIO-LENCE, DEATH PENALTY, METAL WARRIOR), Willy Langenhuizen (bass - Rampage, LAAZ ROCKIT), John Souza (bass) and Danny Cunningham (drums).

The band's debut DDP 4 Life, is out now via Godfodder Records.

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All That Remains To Guest On NJ SOTU 2007 Stop

Massachusetts' ALL THAT REMAINS has been confirmed as a special guest for the July 14 Sounds of the Underground show at Sayreville, N.J.'s Starland Ballroom, following completion of the band's current tour supporting Bullet For My Valentine, a handful of one-off headlining shows, and a quick Canadian run with Protest The Hero. "We're wicked excited to be a part of this year's Sounds Of The Underground at the Starland Ballroom," frontman Phil Labonte says. "We were proud to be a part of the first US and European Sounds, opening up, so it's a huge honor to be a special guest in Jersey. The show is gonna rule - FUCKING TESTAMENT!!! - and it's a great excuse to hang with our friends in the The Acacia Strain, Shadows Fall, Every Time I Die, Chimaira, GWAR and so many others. Get your tickets early and GET INTO IT!" Tickets can be purchased here.

Recently returning from a European headlining run with Textures and Misery Signals, ALL THAT REMAINS is already back on the road in North America, continuing to support the band's latest effort, 'The Fall of Ideals,' which saw a summer 2006 release and has since yielded the band critical praise and spots on Ozzfest 2006, Sounds of the Underground Europe, as well as tours alongside the likes of DragonForce, Killswitch Engage, and a hugely successful headlining tour earlier this year.

The band's latest video, for the track "The Air That I Breathe," will once again be aired on this week's edition of MTV2's Headbanger's Ball. Check your local listings for time and channel. The Darren Doane-directed clip can be seen online here, while behind the scenes footage from the video shoot can be viewed here.

Here are the current ALL THAT REMAINS tour dates: More...

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Testament Postpone Russian Dates

TESTAMENT's previously announced Russian dates, which were scheduled to take place in early July, have been postponed. The new dates have not yet been announced.

TESTAMENT singer Chuck Billy, bassist Greg Christian, and guitarists Alex Skolnick and Eric Peterson, alongside ex-DIMMU BORGIR and CRADLE OF FILTH drummer Nick Barker, have finished writing more than half a dozen songs for the group's long-awaited follow-up to 1999's "The Gathering". Tracking is scheduled to begin in June. "Working hard with Nick on some new ideas and some cool old-school styles [that are] coming together really killer," Peterson said in a statement. "It's been a long time coming," Billy added. "This new album is like a good wine: You throw in the grapes and crush."

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Immortal To Headline Hole In The Sky Festival

Norwegian black metallers IMMORTAL are confirmed as headliners for this year's Hole In The Sky festival, which will take place August 22nd-25th in Bergen, Norway. Other acts on the bill include MELECHESH, DESTROYER 666, IMMOLATION, NAPALM DEATH and TESTAMENT. More...

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Testament Announce Tour Dates

Veteran San Francisco Bay Area metallers TESTAMENT have lined up the following summer tour dates:

Europe:

Jul. 03 - Voronej, Russia @ 100 Streams
Jul. 04 - Saratov, Russia @ Vostok
Jul. 05 - Moscow, Russia @ Apelsin Club
Jul. 06 - Mortegliano (Udine), Italy @ Festa in Tenda
Jul. 07 - Leeuwarden, Netherlands @Waldrock Festival

U.S.A.:

Jul. 21 - Sourbridge, MA @ ADC Performance Center
Jul. 14 - Sayreville, NJ @ Sounds of the Underground

Europe:

Jul. 19 - Rieden, Germany @ Earthshaker Fest
Aug. 17 - Oulu, Finland @ Jalometalli Festival
Aug. 18 - Notodden, Norway @ Metal Heart Fest
Aug. 19 - Goteborg, Sweden @ [to be announced]
Aug. 21 - Kolding, Denmark @ Godset
Aug. 22 - Antwerpen, Belgium @ Hof Ter Lo
Aug. 23 - Deventer, Holland @ Burgerweeshuis
Aug. 24 - Bergen, Norway @ Hole in the Sky - Bergen Metal Fest
Aug. 25 - Gemunden, Germany @ Up From The Ground Open Air Fest
Aug. 31 - Rimini, Italy @ Velvet
Sep. 01 - Palmaggio-Casserta, Italy @ Route to Hell Fest More...

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Special Guests Announced For SOTU 2007

Tickets for the Hot Topic Presents Sounds of the Underground Tour are now available through Artist Arena at a discounted price for a limited time. A portion of the proceeds generated from the pre-sale will be donated to Cure Autism Now.

In addition to the previously announced stellar lineup, which includes headliners GWAR, Chimaira, Every Time I Die, and Job For A Cowboy, the third annual Sounds of the Underground summer touring fest will feature additional bands in select cities:

  • Thrash metal veterans Testament will play before GWAR at the Starland Ballroom on July 14 in New Jersey.

  • Mushroomhead will close the show in their hometown of Cleveland, Ohio on July 21 and will also perform as special guests in Columbus on July 22, Chicago on July 23, and Minneapolis on July 24.

  • The legendary Suicidal Tendencies will close shows in San Jose, California on August 3, Irvine, California on August 4, and Mesa, Arizona on August 5.

  • Modern thrash titans Lamb of God will headline a recently added date on August 11 in Louisville, Kentucky and will be joined by special guests Hatebreed and Behemoth.

The regular lineup for Hot Topic Presents Sounds of the Underground includes headliner Gwar, with co-headliners Chimaira, Every Time I Die and a band to be announced soon rotating set times throughout the tour. The lineup will be rounded out by Job For a Cowboy, Necro, Darkest Hour, Amon Amarth, The Acacia Strain, The Devil Wears Prada, Heavy Heavy Low Low, The Number Twelve Looks Like You Goatwhore, This Is Hell, and 2 Cents.

Oderus Urungus, lead throat-thing of GWAR, rulers of Earth, when told of the addition of the various guests, responded, "I give my personal seal of filthy approval to this excellent selection of bands. Suicidal in particular played one of the first GWAR shows ever. Tonight I shall burn a baby upon the Altar of Eternal Syphillis."

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Testament In "Writing Rehearsals" For New Material

Testament "writing rehearsals" got underway the weekend of April 14, 2007. Alex was back east due to shows with the Alex Skolnick Trio. The band leaves for Mexico/South America this week. Yopu can check out some pics from the rehearsals on this MySpace post.

The band previously reported that they had six songs completed earlier in the year. Tracking is scheduled to begin in June.

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Epica and Kiuas Added To Bloodstock Open Air 2007

Dutch Gothic Metal Band EPICA and Finnish Metallers KIUAS are the latest additions to the line up for this years Bloodstock Open Air. To recap, bands confirmed so far are:

In Flames
Lacuna Coil
Arch Enemy
Testament
Dream Evil
Korpiklaani
Rise To Addiction
Benediction
Wolf
Epica
Kiuas
Memfis
Beyond All Reason

Many more bands to be announced.

As previously reported, the open air leg of this year’s Bloodstock has moved from July 6-7 to August 16-18. The rescheduling also means that the annual indoor part, usually held in September will not be taking place this year. Despite the confusion and disappointment, the event which takes place at Derbyshire’s Catton Hall boasts its strongest line-up yet.

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BOA Changes Dates, Indoor Fest is Cancelled

The open air leg of this year’s Bloodstock has moved from July 6-7 to August 16-18. The rescheduling also means that the annual indoor part, usually held in September will not be taking place this year. Despite the confusion and disappointment, the event which takes place at Derbyshire’s Catton Hall boasts its strongest line-up yet with Swedish royalty In Flames and Arch Enemy alongside thrash legends Testament and Italian goth metallers Lacuna Coil. Other bands confirmed are Dream Evil, Wolf, Korpiklaani, Memfis and Rise To Addiction.

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Testament Update On Recording Sessions

Four of the five original members of influential San Francisco '80s thrash band Testament are back in the practice room working on songs for a new album. Singer Chuck Billy, bassist Greg Christian, and guitarists Alex Skolnick and Eric Peterson are being joined by ex-Dimmu Borgir and Cradle of Filth drummer Nick Barker, and so far they've got six new songs. Tracking is scheduled to begin in June. "Working hard with Nick on some new ideas and some cool old-school styles [that are] coming together really killer," Peterson said in a statement. "It's been a long time coming," Billy added. "This new album is like a good wine: You throw in the grapes and crush."

As part of their current world tour, Testament will play five U.S. shows, starting March 26 in Dallas and ending March 31 in Santa Ana, California.

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Testament Release More Tour Dates

Testament have updated their tour schedule, which now includes the following dates:

March:
03/26/07 Granada Theatre - Dallas, TX
03/27/07 Scout Bar - Houston, TX
03/29/07 Rialto Theatre - Tucson, AZ
03/30/07 The Orpheum Theatre - Flagstaff, AZ
03/31/07 California Metal Fest: Galaxy Theatre - Santa Ana, CA


April:
04/01/07 Modesto, CA - Fat Cat Music House
04/19/07 Torreon, Mexico - Salon Ferrocarrilero
04/20/07 Monterrey, Mexico - Café Iguana
04/21/07 Mexico City, Mexico - Circo Volador
04/22/07 Carolina, Puerto Rico - Arena
04/25/07 Sao Paulo. Brazil - Via Funchal
04/26/07 Curitiba, Brazil - Hellooch
04/27/07 Rio de Janiero, Brazil - Canecao
04/29/07 Buenos Aires, Argentina - El Teatro Flores
04/30/07 Santiago, Chile - Teatro Caupolican

July:
07/03/07 RUSSIA - Voronej @ 100 Streams
07/04/07 RUSSIA - Saratov @ Club Vostok
07/05/07 RUSSIA - Russia @ Apelsin Club
07/06/07 ENGLAND - Derbyshire @ Bloodstock Open Air Fest
07/07/07 NETHERLANDS - Leeuwarden @ Waldrock Fest

August:
08/17/07 FINLAND - Oulu @ Jalo Metalli Fest
08/18/07 NORWAY - Nottoden @ Metal Days Fest
08/19/07 SWEDEN - Goteborg @ Musikens Hus
08/21/07 DENMARK - Kolding @ Godset
08/22/07 BELGIUM - Antwerpen @ Hof Ter Lo
08/23/07 HOLLAND - Deventer @ Burgerweeshuis
08/24/07 NORWAY - Bergen @ Hole In The Sky Fest
08/25/07 GERMANY- Gemunden @ Up From The Ground Fest
08/31/07 ITALY - Rimini @ Velvet

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Testament Guitarist Talks About Upcoming Album

Peter Atkinson of KNAC.COM recently conducted an interview with TESTAMENT guitarist Alex Skolnick. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow:

KNAC.COM: What's been your impression of Nick [Barker, new TESTAMENT drummer] so far?

Skolnick: So far it's been great. I wasn't that familiar with him before, but a lot of drummers I know are familiar with him. He sounds great. He's a really good guy to work with. He seems like this big, intimidating, hardcore metal drummer, but he's actually a sweetheart to work with and honored and blown away that he's working with TESTAMENT.

KNAC.COM: When I spoke with Chuck [Billy, vocals] earlier, he mentioned that you had worked on some new material with them during the rehearsals.

Skolnick: It was mostly the old stuff, because he [Nick] was about to do his first gig with us, ever. But we did look at some new ideas. And I brought in an idea of mine that is a little more complicated than things we did in the past as far as timing and stuff, but he did a great job on it and I'm really excited to see where it goes. But what's cool is he can keep a solid groove, which that was a concern of mine because I'd heard the DIMMU BORGIR stuff and I thought it was amazing, but I wasn't sure that he could keep a solid groove. There's some musicians, not just drummers but guitar players too, that can play all over the place but have trouble playing simple and he can play simple. He's great, he's one of these guys who can do both, and that's important. There's gonna be parts where you want him to go off and use all his resources, but there's other parts where you just want it to be solid and establish a groove, and because he can do that I think that's going to be a big plus for the band.

KNAC.COM: How will you approach the writing of the remainder of the album, will you work it all out as a group or just bring all your various parts together and try to make them fit?

Skolnick: I think we're going to get together and put the parts together. I've always come up with parts on my own, and I also like add to other people's parts. But it's hard for me to be in a room full of people and be creative on the spot. That's a step in the process the makes more sense once there are ideas to work with. We're still at the point where we're creating a lot of ideas in our separate camps. We have put some of them together and it's starting to sound good. But the camps will come together as the project gets closer. And in the meantime we'll be spending a lot of time together on the road, so we'll be able to look at some new material there as well.

KNAC.COM: Given how much metal has changed since you were with the band, and how the band's sound evolved after you left, and Eric's [Peterson] black metal dabblings with DRAGONLORD and whatnot, are you excited about the prospect of bringing all the pieces together, or could it be a recipe for disaster?

Skolnick: (Laughs) It's going to be a very different record because of all that. But I'm more excited about it than nervous. I know we can't try to re-create the past, I don't want to. We need to make an album that sounds like today. And I don't think it should be that hard to do because we are living today. It's not 1989, and I'm much more excited about what we can come up with now. I think the best thing to do is have fun with it and see where it goes.

KNAC.COM: Since much of what you've been doing is so radically different from TESTAMENT, has it been difficult to get back in TESTAMENT writing mode, or is that something that never left your system?

Skolnick: I don't think it really left my system. I was actually sort of surprised. A lot of ideas come about and it's a very similar process to the way I did it the first time around. But at the same time, I find I do have to separate myself from some of the other music I do because it is such different frames mind, not just musically, but physically. The way I touch the instrument is different if I'm playing TESTAMENT music than if I'm playing with my trio. With my trio I have more of a modern jazz approach, it's a lighter touch, it's much more sensitive, it's a quieter volume and it's a very different tone, it's much more acoustically toned. With TESTAMENT, there's a sense of dynamics, but the dynamics come more from a volume that's already cranked and it has to do more with how you strike the chords, the balance between open rhythms and closed rhythms and different types of grooves using a metal tone. But it's fun to compare the differences and similarities.

Read the full article at KNAC.com.

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Testament's Peterson Working w/ Barker On Material

Bay Area bashers Testament have been out of the loop for a while, but the band is working to change that. Guitarist and main songwriter Eric Peterson has recently been working in a Northern California practice space with ex-Dimmu Borgir and Cradle of Filth drummer Nick Barker on songs for the band's first album of original material since 1999's The Gathering. "It's feeling pretty good so far," commented Peterson. "Nick's playing has sparked some fire in me like [Slayer drummer Dave] Lombardo did back in '99 when he played for us on The Gathering." Not only are Testament back, they're back with the crux of their powerhouse '80s lineup: Peterson, guitarist Alex Skolnick, bassist Greg Christian and singer Chuck Billy. Next week they'll leave for a tour of Australia but plan to resume work on the new album when they return.

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