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

Epica

Formed: 2002
From: Reuver, Netherlands
Last Known Status: Active

Latest Epica News

Below is our complete Epica 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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Bullet For My Valentine Added To Wacken Open Air

Bullet For My Valentine has been announced as the latest addition to the infamous Wacken Open Air Festival in Germany. The event takes place from July 30th- August 1st next year.

The lineup for Wacken Open Air is as follows:

AMON AMARTH
CALLEJON
CATHEDRAL
EINHERJER
EPICA
GWAR
HAMMERFALL
IN EXTREMO
IN FLAMES
KAMPFAR
KORPIKLAANI
MACHINE HEAD
NAPALM DEATH
NEVERMORE
AXEL RUDI PELL
TRISTANIA
VOLBEAT
WALLS OF JERICHO

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Volbeat Added To Wacken Open Air

Danish rock band Volbeat has been confirmed to perform at Germany's infamous, Wacken Open Air festival. The event takes place from July 30th- August 1st next year.

The lineup for Wacken Open Air is as follows:

AMON AMARTH
CALLEJON
CATHEDRAL
EINHERJER
EPICA
GWAR
HAMMERFALL
IN EXTREMO
IN FLAMES
KAMPFAR
KORPIKLAANI
MACHINE HEAD
NAPALM DEATH
NEVERMORE
AXEL RUDI PELL
TRISTANIA
WALLS OF JERICHO

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Napalm Death Confirmed For Wacken Open Air 2009

Godfathers of grindcore, Napalm Death are the latest act to be confirmed for the infamous Wacken Open Air festival in Germany next year. The lineup for the festival so far is as follows:

AMON AMARTH
CALLEJON
CATHEDRAL
EINHERJER
EPICA
GWAR
HAMMERFALL
IN EXTREMO
IN FLAMES
KAMPFAR
KORPIKLAANI
MACHINE HEAD
NAPALM DEATH
NEVERMORE
AXEL RUDI PELL
TRISTANIA
WALLS OF JERICHO

Tickets include:

- free parking (for any vehicle like car, motorbike, camper van or caravan)
- free camping - right next to the vehicle for the W:O:A feeling (if the weather conditions are good enough).
- like always there are no limits as to how many drinks or how much food you may take to the parking and camping grounds
- only lawn, direct paths to the festival grounds (if the weather conditions are good enough)
- shuttle to the Wacken and Schenefeld swimming pools.
- rubbish will be collected and disposed of free of charge by us - no fee for you
- festival stickers
- free CD
- diverse top quality surprises = Full Metal Bag
- and much more......

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Xystus Announces "Equilibrio" Release Date

Sensory Records has announced the upcoming release of Dutch progressive metal band Xystus’ third album, "Equilibrio." This rock opera was recorded with a 60 piece orchestra and a 30 member choir, and includes guest performances from Simone Simmons of Epica and George Oosthoek of Orphanage. With an influx of gothic, progressive and traditional heavy metal influences melding with this dramatic orchestration, fans of Epica, Ayreon and Kamelot should keep both eyes peeled for this release to strike. "Equilibrio" is set for a North American release date of September 30.

Conceived as both an actual stage production and studio recording, "Equilibrio" was performed to four sold out audiences in July, 2008 - over 4,000 people witnessed the opera.

The studio recording of "Equilibrio" features key scenes from the opera. In addition to the 60 piece US Concert orchestra and 30 member choir, Xystus enlisted vocal performances from Simone Simons (Epica), George Osthoek (Orphanage, Delain) and Dutch theater veterans Michelle Splietelhof and John Vooijs.

The story of Equilibrio revolves around a wanderer named Diegu (Bas Dolmans) who finds himself caught between the forces of good and evil the power mad ruler Primos (John Vooijs) and the altruistic rebel Avelin (Michelle Splietelhof). Primos makes a pact with Death (George Osthoek) take over the world. After unsuccessful efforts by Diegu to mediate between Avelin and Primos, the latter ends up with complete power and the world is thrown out of balance. Diegu is summoned by the godess Lady Sophia (Simone Simons). She watches over Earth and entrusts Diegu with the job reuniting Primos and Avelin in order to restore the balance between good and evil again.

You can check out some of the band's music on their MySpace page.

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Epica Singer Set To Return To The Band

EPICA have posted this announcement on their official website:

"Good news: Simone (Simons) will perform with EPICA again! First show will be this upcoming Thursday in Bibelot - Dordrecht (only 30 tickets left). The show in Tivoli - Utrecht (cap. 1000) on the next day is a very special one. As 'The Phantom Agony' has been released five years ago, this gig will contain all 'The Phantom Agony' songs. 800 tickets have been sold for this one already. See you all next weekend!!!"

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Into Eternity Posts End of Tour Update

Canadian progressive death metallers, Into Eternity, issue the following update about their tour with Symphony X and Epica:

"Hello everybody!"

"We just finished our last show w/ Symphony X and Epica and all we can say is that the tour was killer! Everyone from the bands to the crew were super cool. It truly was one of our best touring experiences we've had. We can't express enough gratitude to the Symphony X guys for taking us out and allowing us to play to such a diverse and progressive crowd. We also were amazed to the extent of fans that came out as a result of our exposure with last years Gigantour and the amazing tour we had with Dream Theater." More...

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Epica Announce California Signing Session

EPICA will take part in a signing session on Friday, April 18 at Rasputin Records in Mountain View, California between 3:00 pm and 4:00pm

The address is as follows:
Rasputin Records
630 San Antonio Ave
Mountain View, California 94070

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Epica Singer Simone Simons Gives Health Update

EPICA vocalist Simone Simons has issued the following update:

"Hello to all of you,

One of the four tests was positive and we all decided that we shouldn’t take any risks regarding my health and that Amanda (Somerville) should replace me.

It is already a big improvement that only one of the test results is still positive, this means that the MRSA is almost out of my system!

Amanda Somerville, a great friend and member of the Epica team will replace me for the American tour with SYMPHONY X.

We chose Amanda because she is already familiar to the Epica fans. You can hear her on all our albums, singing backing vocals, on 'Seif al Din' and the' Obsessive Devotion' you can hear her speak, she is singing in the Epica choir and she was my vocal coach for all the albums.

We are happy that she is willing to fill in for me since she is already part of the band in a way.

Amanda has a great voice and a wonderful presence. I am sure you will love her long blond hair.

She will do a good job and I wish her and Epica good luck for this tour.

I will rest a bit more in the mean time and will come back soon with full force!

Love ya all, Simone."

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Imperia Begin Writing New Album

Dutch/Norwegian goth metal band IMPERIA — which is fronted by Norwegian singer Helena Iren Michaelsen (the original vocalist of the Holland-based band SAHARA DUST, which later changed its name to EPICA) — has issued the following update:

"Right now IMPERIA is busy with writing songs for the new album, which will be released — as [was] the current [IMPERIA CD] 'Queen of Light' — through Massacre Records. The release date or the studio is not decided yet, but you will be surely informed about the songwriting progress."

IMPERIA's sophomore album, "Queen of Light", was released in March 2007 via Massacre Records. The follow-up to 2004's "The Ancient Dance of Qetesh" contains 13 tracks and is "heavier and more varied" than its predecessor, according to a press release. "There are fast and powerful metal songs, slow ballads, heavy songs as well as a lot of serious guitar leads and oriental keyboards. It is a diverse album with crystal clear sound!"

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Epica Vocalist Sits Out of North American Tour

Dutch metallers Epica have announced the following statement on their website:

"The extra weeks of rest, as a result of the cancellation of most of this month's shows, have helped Simone a lot in recovering from her MRSA infection. Three out of the four aspects in her latest test already showed negative, which is a major step forward! Unfortunately this also means that one of these still showed positive. As optimistic as we may be about these final test results, we just cannot risk her health by having her go on tour this soon already."

"We have come a great way already and we must continue this way to overcome this. Therefore we have decided to ask our good friend Amanda Somerville to substitute Simone on our upcoming USA tour. As you all know, Amanda has been involved with Epica from the beginning as a vocal coach and can also be heard on every album as backing vocalist as well as part of our choir. We are very happy that Amanda is willing to help us out on this and we are most positive that these extra weeks of rest will give Simone enough time to fully recover from this infection so that she can join us on stage again during our Dutch club shows."

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Epica Singer Thanks Fans For Support

EPICA lead singer Simone Simons - who is infected with MRSA (also known as the hospital bacteria) - has issued the following update:

"I want to express my gratitude to the Epica fans who have been supporting me through this difficult period. I have received numerous emails and presents. They really give me strength! It means the world to me that you care about me.

Unfortunately I am still not healed from the infection yet. I am trying my best to get rid of it but it is a real pain in the ass. I have parted ways with antibiotics and am focussing on natural medicines. The antibiotics are the reason for my disease and I have had enough of it. Most important is still to rest a lot and to crank up my immune system.

Epica and me are very sad that the Mexican tour had to be cancelled again. We really want to come over but like many of you said it is better for me to go back on tour when I am totally healed.

Overall I am positive that I will overcome this and can't wait to get back on tour. I miss singing on stage and of course your energy.

Please be patient and I hope to see you all soon!"

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Epica Give Update On Singer's Condition

Dutch symphonic metallers EPICA check in with the following update:

"After having had a couple of weeks of rest we were very much hoping that Simone’s (Simons - vocals) situation would have improved already. Unfortunately the last MRSA test was still positive and also the infections still haven’t stopped completely. We have the feeling Simone’s health is improving but unfortunately not enough yet. We cannot risk the health of Simone and therefore, with pain in our hearts, we cannot come to Mexico and Colombia again. Also two of our three shows in the UK are cancelled for this reason. It’s still impossible for Simone to make long trips. As you can imagine we feel really bad about this, especially since our Mexican/Colombian tour was already postponed once before, but we also hope you understand and respect our decision on this. You all have our word that we will come back as soon as possible to make up for all this. Unfortunately at this moment we just can’t tell when this will be but we hope before the end of this year."

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Symphony X Give Setlist Update

SYMPHONY X's online administrator has checked in with the following update:

"I spoke to (guitarist) MJR yesterday, and he actually asked me about the poll before I had a chance to tell him about it; he was very interested to hear what the results were. He was on his way out the door to meet up with some of the other guys, and took a few minutes to write down the top fives so that they could discuss them; just like the last poll, he was surprised by some of the songs you all asked to hear. You'll be happy to hear that he said that they will definitely be using some of the songs that ya'll asked for. He also asked me to pass on the band's thanks to all of you for participating, so thank you from the band!

One more thing: Fan club members, stay tuned for an e-mail regarding the new membership structure, renewals, and the next fan club CD (which is going to be AWESOME)!"

Jax :)
SymX Staff

As previously reported, the results of the recent Symphony X setlist poll are as follows:

~Symphony X: 'Masquerade', 'Rapture Or Pain', 'Absinthe And Rue', 3-way tie for 4th: 'Premoniton', 'Shades Of Grey' and 'Thorns Of Sorrow'

~The Damnation Game: 'The Edge Of Forever', 'The Damnation Game', 'Dressed To Kill', 'A Winter's Dream - The Ascencion (Part II)', 'A Winter's Dream - Prelude (Part I)'

~The Divine Wings of Tragedy: 'Of Sins And Shadows', 'The Divine Wings Of Tragedy', 'Sea Of Lies', 'Out Of The Ashes', 'Candlelight Fantasia'

~Twilight in Olympus: 'Smoke And Mirrors', 'In The Dragon's Den', 'Through The Looking Glass', 'Church Of The Machine', 'Lady Of The Snow'

~V: The New Mythology Suite: 'Evolution (The Grand Design)', 2-way tie for 2nd: 'Communion and Oracle', 'Egypt', 'Fallen', 'A Fool's Paradise', 'Rediscovery pt. II - The New Mythology'

~The Odyssey: 'Inferno (Unleash The Fire)', 'The Odyssey', 'King Of Terrors', 'Wicked', 'Awakenings'

~Paradise Lost: 'Set The World On Fire (The Lie Of Lies)', 'Paradise Lost', 'Eve Of Seduction', 'Domination', 'The Serpent's Kiss' More...

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Epica Announce Rescheduled Shows

EPICA — whose lead singer, Simone Simons, was recently infected with Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA), also known as the hospital bacteria — has announced the rescheduled dates for its Dutch tour. The details are as follows:

May 15 - Bibelot - Dordrecht - The Netherlands
May 22 - de Kade - Zaandam - The Netherlands
May 23 - Romein - Leeuwarden - The Netherlands
May 24 - LVC- Leiden - The Netherlands
May 25 - Perron 55 - Venlo - The Netherlands
May 30 - Burgerweeshuis - Deventer - The Netherlands
May 31 - Groene Engel - Oss - The Netherlands

Simone Simons recently stated about her condition, "Since a couple of months I have been struggling with infections and had surgery many times. The doctors didn't know what was wrong with me. After a lot of tests at the hospital they found out that I am infected with MRSA, also known as the hospital bacteria. The treatment of this bacteria comes with a strict hygienic schedule which I have to work through every day. Because of this I will not be able to go on long trips, let alone living in a tour bus. . . We cannot plan too far ahead since I first have to get rid of the infection and that will take some time. How long it will take we cannot tell at the moment. We are very sorry that we cannot do these shows. We were all looking forward to this tour and to meet you guys. What I have to focus on now is getting well, so that we will be on the road again as soon as possible."

According to WebMD, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA), like all staph bacteria, can be spread from one person to another through casual contact or through contaminated objects. It is commonly spread from the hands of someone who has MRSA. This could be anyone in a health care setting or in the community. MRSA is usually not spread through the air like the common cold or flu virus, unless a person has MRSA pneumonia and is coughing.

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Into Eternity Demoing New Material

Extreme progressive metal leaders INTO ETERNITY have issued the following update:

"It's a new year now and we are almost done all the music in demo form for our new album. Stu (Block, Vocals) has actually come over to my house and belted out his first vocal for a new track. We are demoing on my computer, so my living room is now a studio. ?
The new songs are sounding really good and really heavy! We are hoping to get into the studio in mid Feb. I also am putting up some more live show dates, so check them out. We'll be back on the road soon!" More...

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Symphony X Fans Invited To Choose Setlist

The SYMPHONY X camp has issued the following update:

"There have been rumblings here and there about the band's tour setlist and how it needs some changes. We did a setlist poll a few years ago, and I spoke with MJR about it recently and he agreed that it was time to do another one. So here's your chance to let the band know what you want to see them play on tour!

Here's how it goes. You reply here (leave your comment here in the blog...comments left on the band's main page won't be counted) and tell me what songs you would like to hear the band play on their upcoming tours. Give me 90 minutes worth of material (no, the band is not necessarily playing a 90 minute set, that's just a random number I'm choosing). You can pick particular songs, or just say that you'd like to hear anything from a certain CD, or a mix of both. I'll leave this open until midnight (US Pacific time) on Sunday night (January 20th). On Monday, I'll compile the results and send them to the band, and post them for you guys as well.

The last time we did this, MJR was surprised at some of the songs you all wanted to see them perform live and took the suggestions under consideration. He says they'll do so as well this time, so make sure you let them know what you want to hear.

Looking forward to seeing what you all have to say!"

Jax :)
SymX Staff

Symphony X's tour schedule is below. Fans should be aware that although EPICA is due to open up for the band in London, UK on March 6th and support the band on their North American tour, it is unclear at this time if Epica will in fact be able to do so, as vocalist Simone Simons was recently diagnosed with MRSA (Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus). The band was forced to cancel the rest of their shows for this month as of January 16th.
More...

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Epica Cancel More Shows

Dutch symphonic metallers EPICA — whose lead singer, Simone Simons, was recently infected with Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA), also known as the hospital bacteria — have issued the following update:

"As much as we hoped to do the upcoming shows, after the shows last weekend Simone's condition just got worse and worse and therefore we have to cancel the shows for the rest of the month. Our sincere apologies for this last-minute cancellation, but as you can understand we don't want to risk anything concerning Simone's health. We will also keep you up to date about rescheduling these gigs as soon as we have more info on this."

Simone Simons recently stated about her condition, "Since a couple of months I have been struggling with infections and had surgery many times. The doctors didn't know what was wrong with me. After a lot of tests at the hospital they found out that I am infected with MRSA, also known as the hospital bacteria. The treatment of this bacteria comes with a strict hygienic schedule which I have to work through every day. Because of this I will not be able to go on long trips, let alone living in a tour bus. . . We cannot plan too far ahead since I first have to get rid of the infection and that will take some time. How long it will take we cannot tell at the moment. We are very sorry that we cannot do these shows. We were all looking forward to this tour and to meet you guys. What I have to focus on now is getting well, so that we will be on the road again as soon as possible."

According to WebMD, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA), like all staph bacteria, can be spread from one person to another through casual contact or through contaminated objects. It is commonly spread from the hands of someone who has MRSA. This could be anyone in a health care setting or in the community. MRSA is usually not spread through the air like the common cold or flu virus, unless a person has MRSA pneumonia and is coughing.

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Epica Singer Infected With MRSA

Singer Simone Simons of the Dutch symphonic metallers EPICA has issued the following update:

"Since a couple of months I have been struggling with infections and had surgery many times. The doctors didn't know what was wrong with me. After a lot of tests at the hospital they found out that I am infected with MRSA, also known as the hospital bacteria. The treatment of this bacteria comes with a strict hygienic schedule which I have to work through every day. Because of this I will not be able to go on long trips, let alone living in a tour bus. Therefore we are forced to cancel most of our shows in February. The shows on the 22nd and 23rd in Lille and Vosselaar we will still do since they are independent shows and very close by. We cannot plan too far ahead since I first have to get rid of the infection and that will take some time. How long it will take we cannot tell at the moment.

"We are very sorry that we cannot do these shows. We were all looking forward to this tour and to meet you guys. What I have to focus on now is getting well, so that
we will be on the road again as soon as possible. Please check out our site every once in a while for more information on this matter."

According to WebMD, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA), like all staph bacteria, can be spread from one person to another through casual contact or through contaminated objects. It is commonly spread from the hands of someone who has MRSA. This could be anyone in a health care setting or in the community. MRSA is usually not spread through the air like the common cold or flu virus, unless a person has MRSA pneumonia and is coughing.

On the eve of EPICA's recent live appearances in Greece, Elena Mihailidou and Vasilis Mazaris of Metalzone.gr conducted an interview with Simone Simons. Simone talks about the experience of playing live for the first time ever in Thessaloniki and being part of the first-ever March Metal Day. She also discusses her recent health problems, the band's new album and the group's upcoming touring actvities. She says her favorite EPICA album is the latest one and she describes the difficulties of releasing a DVD after leaving Transmission Records and signing a deal with Nuclear Blast. Simone also talks about how bonded she feels with her band and how she wouldn't leave EPICA in order to join another group, even if it were NIGHTWISH, as the rumor suggested when Tarja Turunen was fired from the band. She also talks about her idols and how she is still evolving as a singer, and she feels female vocals in the metal scene aren't just a passing trend.

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Epica To Perform A Classical Show In Hungary

Held in the Miskolc Ice Hall, Hungary, The Miskolc International Opera Festival will be featuring a special performance by Dutch symphonic metallers Epica: a classical show with symphonic orchestra and choir. At the "Epica: The Classical Conspiracy Show", the band will play a very specific musical program consisting of classical pieces by Mozart, Dvorak, Verdi, Orff, Prokofiev, Grieg, and Vivaldi in Epica's own style - and of course, symphonic versions of the band's own songs. A few Epica songs will be re-written especially for this event, tickets for which will set you back forty Euros. The Epica classical show will be held on the fourteenth of June, 2008, kicking off at 9pm. No news yet on whether an album or DVD will be made of the once-in-a-lifetime event, but more surprises are reportedly forthcoming.

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Epica Announce Headline Show For Haarlem, Holland

EPICA have issued the following announcement:

"We got such a great response to the special shows we did last October that we’ve decided to do one more. And which venue would be more fitting to do this than Patronaat in Haarlem? So make sure you buy your tickets today!"

The show will take place on January 11th. Go to this location for Epica's complete tour schedule and related ticket information.

As previously reported, Epica recently announced that after having worked with session drummer Ariën van Weesenbeek (GOD DETHRONED) for about a year, he decided to join th eband as a full time member.

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