"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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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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Epica Announce New Full Time Drummer

Dutch symphonic metal band EPICA has posted the following bulletin on its official MySpace account:

"We are very happy and proud to announce that after having worked with us as a session musician for about a year now, Ariën van Weesenbeek [drums; also of GOD DETHRONED] has decided to join EPICA as a full time member! We also want to thank Koen Herfst for helping us out with all the live shows he did in the last couple of months and we want to wish him all the best with BAGGA BROWNZ."

Nuclear Blast Records released a limited deluxe CD edition in Europe of EPICA's new album, "The Divine Conspiracy", featuring the bonus tracks "Higher High" and "Replica" (FEAR FACTORY cover), video clips and a "making-of" enhanced section.

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Epica Cancel Mexican, Columbian Dates

Dutch female-fronted symphonic metallers EPICA have postponed their previously announced Mexican and Colombian dates due to an illness suffered by the group's lead singer, Simone Simons.

The affected dates are as follows:

Nov. 29 - Circo Volador - Mexico City Mexico
Nov. 30 - Teatro Estudio Cavaret - Guadalajara Mexico
Dec. 01 - Cafe Iguana - Monterrey Mexico
Dec. 05 - Downtown Majestic - Bogota Colombia
Dec. 07 - Country San Manuel - Puebla Mexico
Dec. 08 - Skyros concert and music hall - San Luis Potosi Mexico
Dec. 09 - Circo Volador - Mexico City Mexico

EPICA played a gig last night (November 26) at the Melkweg in Amsterdam, Holland without Simone, with the group's setlist consisting of mostly "grunt-oriented" songs.

Nuclear Blast Records released a limited deluxe CD edition in Europe of EPICA's new album, "The Divine Conspiracy", featuring the bonus tracks "Higher High" and "Replica" (FEAR FACTORY cover), video clips and a "making-of" enhanced section.

"The Divine Conspiracy" was mixed by Sascha Paeth and features a session appearance by GOD DETHRONED drummer Ariën van Weesenbeek. EPICA has yet to name a full-time drummer following the departure of Jeroen Simons in 2006.

As previously reported, EPICA has been confirmed as the support act for SYMPHONY X on their upcoming North American tour in April/May.

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Epica To Play Show Without Singer

Dutch female-fronted symphonic metallers EPICA have issued the following update:

"We are very sorry to announce that Simone [Simons, vocals] is very ill at the moment. She has been ill for a couple of days already, but unfortunately today it just isn't possible for her to perform on stage at Melkweg [in Amsterdam, Holland]. As you can imagine we all feel very bad about this and as we want to end this tour in the best possible way we have decided to still do the show, but without Simone. Tonight's set list will therefore contain mostly grunt-orientated songs. We wish her all a quick recovery."

Nuclear Blast Records released a limited deluxe CD edition in Europe of EPICA's new album, "The Divine Conspiracy", featuring the bonus tracks "Higher High" and "Replica" (FEAR FACTORY cover), video clips and a "making-of" enhanced section.

"The Divine Conspiracy" was mixed by Sascha Paeth and features a session appearance by GOD DETHRONED drummer Ariën van Weesenbeek. EPICA has yet to name a full-time drummer following the departure of Jeroen Simons in 2006.

As previously reported, EPICA has been confirmed as the support act for SYMPHONY X on their upcoming North American tour in April/May.

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Epica Post Milan Concert Footage Online

Fan-filmed video footage of Dutch female-fronted symphonic metallers EPICA performing the song "Fools of Damnation" on November 19, 2007 at the Alcatraz club in Milan, Italy can be viewed here.

EPICA's new album, "The Divine Conspiracy", registered the following first-week chart positions:

Holland: #9
Switzerland: #29
France: #36
Germany: #41 More...

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Paradise Lost Added To Knock Out Festival

The 2008 edition of Germany's Knock Out Festival is scheduled for January 12th at the Europahalle in Karlsruhe, Germany.

The latest act confirmed for the festival is British metallers PARADISE LOST.

Also on the bill: PARADISE LOST, EPICA, WITHIN TEMPTATION, HELLOWEEN, GAMMA RAY and AXXIS.

The second edition of the Knock Out Festival will be taking place in one of the two Karlsruhe’s biggest indoor-concert venues and will be established as a German indoor winter festival.

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"20 Years Of Nuclear Blast" Trailer Posted Online

A three-minute trailer for the forthcoming "20 Years of Nuclear Blast" two-DVD set can be viewed below. Due on November 30 via Nuclear Blast, the collection — as the title implies — celebrates the 20th anniversary of the German metal label, featuring two DVDs with almost six hours' worth of footage, including 70 promotional clips and a four-part history of the label hosted by DESTRUCTION bassist/vocalist Marcel "Schmier" Schirmer.

The following clips can be found on the "20 Years of Nuclear Blast" two-DVD set:

01. DIMMU BORGIR - Progenies Of The Great Apocalypse
02. IMMORTAL - One By One
03. HYPOCRISY - Scrutinized
04. GOREFEST - The Glorious Dead
05. KATAKLYSM - Manipulator Of Souls
06. BENEDICTION - I Bow To None
07. PUNGENT STENCH - Shrunken And Mumified Bitch
08. BELPHEGOR - Sanctus Perversum
09. NILE - The Language Of The Shadows
10. DEATH - Scavenger Of Human Sorrow
11. MALEVOLENT CREATION - Assasin Squad
12. DESTRUCTION - The Butcher Strikes Back
13. DEW SCENTED - Cities Of The Dead
14. ANTHRAX - What Doesn’t Die
15. EXODUS - Riot Act
16. DEATH ANGEL - The Devil Incarnate
17. I - Warriors
18. SONIC SYNDICATE - Psychic Suicide
19. CLAWFINGER - The Price We Pay
20. CHIMAIRA - Worthless
21. IN FLAMES - Only For The Weak
22. MESHUGGAH - Future Breed Machine
23. SOILWORK - Exile
24. THE DESTINY PROGRAM - Project Hoax
25. SCAR SYMMETRY - The Illusionist
26. THREAT SIGNAL - Counterbalance
27. MNEMIC - Ghost
28. EKTOMORF - Destroy
29. AGNOSTIC FRONT - Warriors
30. ALL SHALL PERISH - Eradication
31. BLEED THE SKY - God In The Frame
32. DARKANE - Solitary Confinement
33. THE DUSKFALL - Trust Is Overrated
34. ONE MAN ARMY AND THE UNDEAD QUARTET - So Grim, So True, So Real
35. WINTERSUN - Winter Madness
36. HAMMERFALL - Hammerfall
37. RIDE THE SKY - New Protection
38. EDGUY - King Of Fools
39. BLIND GUARDIAN - The New Order
40. SONATA ARCTICA - Caleb
41. GOTTHARD - Master Of Illusion
42. RAGE - Full Moon
43. GRAVE DIGGER - Valhalla
44. HELLOWEEN - Immortal
45. STRATOVARIUS - Why Are We Here
46. TAROT - Before The Skies Comes Down
47. THUNDERSTONE - Face In The Mirror
48. COMMUNIC - Conspiracy In Mind
49. THRESHOLD - Slipstream
50. CANDLEMASS - Of Stars And Smoke
51. CATHEDRAL - Corpsecycle
52. NIGHTWISH - Eva
53. AFTER FOREVER - Transitory
54. EPICA - Never Enough
55. ECHOES OF ETERNITY - Voices In A Dream
56. SIRENIA - The Other Side
57. DEATHSTARS - Greatest Fight On Earth
58. SAMAEL - Valkyrie’s New Ride
59. THE KOVENANT - In The Name Of The Future
60. AMORPHIS - The White Swan
61. THERION - Der Mitternachtslöwe
62. CREMATORY - Revolution
63. FARMER BOYS - For The World To Sing
64. PYOGENESIS - Addiction Pole
65. LIQUIDO - Ordinary Life
66. CHROME DIVISION - Serial Killer
67. DIE APOKALYPTISCHEN REITER - Riders On The Storm
68. SUBWAY TO SALLY - Meine Seele Brennt
69. KNORKATOR - Wir werden alle sterben
70. SUCH A SURGE - Mission Erfüllt More...

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Into Eternity Guitarist Talks Upcoming Tour

Extreme progressive metallers INTO ETERNITY will join SYMPHONY X and EPICA for a month-long North American trek next spring. The tour, which kicks off on April 4, will mark the start of the worldwide touring cycle for the much anticipated new INTO ETERNITY album.

Tim Roth (guitars, vocals) states: "The whole band is blown away to be touring with SYMPHONY X! What a way to kick off the new album cycle. I look forward to seeing EPICA as well. This is going to be a heavy tour with lots of high singing and shredding, and an amazing package for the fans to see!

"When we were writing 'Buried In Oblivion' in 2002/2003, we listened to a lot of SYMPHONY X. They were an influence on our band for sure. We met Russell [Allen, SYMPHONY X vocalist] at a gig on the DREAM THEATER tour this summer. Then he came to one of our shows on the EDGUY tour, where we hung with him and got wasted on our RV! Thanks to Russell and the guys for going to bat for us and getting us on this package. Hopefully Micheal Romeo will show me a few licks at some point in the tour!"

INTO ETERNITY are currently hard at work on material for their new recording, which guitarist/vocalist Tim Roth says will be the group’s first conceptual album. "The Scattering of Ashes" campaign saw the band embark on five North American tours with highlights including an appearance on Gigantour performing alongside MEGADETH and LAMB OF GOD, but it was this past summer's tour alongside DREAM THEATER that really saw the band reach out to a new audience.

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Epica Announced For Knockout Festival

The 2008 edition of Germany's Knock Out Festival is scheduled for January 12th at the Europahalle in Karlsruhe, Germany.

The latest act confirmed for the festival is Dutch female-fronted symphonic metallers EPICA.

Also on the bill: WITHIN TEMPTATION, HELLOWEEN, GAMMA RAY and AXXIS.

The second edition of the Knock Out Festival will be taking place in one of the two Karlsruhe’s biggest indoor-concert venues and will be established as a German indoor winter festival.

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Symphony X Book North American Tour with Epica

Progressive metallers SYMPHONY X will embark on a North American headlining tour in April 2008. Support on the shows will come from EPICA and INTO ETERNITY. The dates are as follows:

Apr. 04 - Cambridge. MA @ Middle East
Apr. 05 - New York, NY @ Nokia Theater Times Square
Apr. 06 - Philadelphia, PA @ The Trocadero
Apr. 08 - Quebec City, QUE @ Imperial de Quebec
Apr. 09 - Montreal, QUE @ Medley
Apr. 11 - Toronto, ONT @ The Opera House
Apr. 12 - Cleveland, OH @ Peabody's
Apr. 13 - Mokena, IL @ The Pearl Room
Apr. 16 - Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
Apr. 17 - Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theatre
Apr. 18 - San Francisco, CA @ Slim's
Apr. 19 - West Hollywood, CA @ House of Blues
Apr. 20 - San Diego, CA @ House of Blues
Apr. 22 - Santa Ana, CA @ Galaxy Theatre
Apr. 26 - Houston, TX @ Meridian
Apr. 27 - Ft. Worth, TX @ Ridglea Theater
Apr. 29 - Ft. Lauderdale, FL @ Culture Room
Apr. 30 - St. Petersburg, FL @ The State Theatre
May 01 - Atlanta, GA @ The Masquerade
May 02 - Charlotte, NC @ Tremont Music Hall
May 03 - West Springfield, VA @ Jaxx

Tickets are available exclusively through EnterTheVault.com until November 24 at which point tickets will go on sale through all normal ticketing outlets.

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New Photos In The Photo Gallery

I just wanted to mention that we've posted quite a few new photos in the photo gallery lately. Many of them have been posted after the initial tour report or without a special announcement so I wanted to draw some attention to the latest galleries including:

  • Epica, Visions Of Atlantis, The Agonist and Unexpect From their NYC show

  • Lamb Of God, Hatebreed, Behemoth, and 3 Inches of Blood on an Off-Fest 2007 date in Baltimore, MD

  • Dimmu Borgir's Invaluable Darkness Tour stop in Tampa, FL

  • Cthonic's Off-Fest date in St Paul, MN

  • The Summer Slaughter tour stop in NYC

You can check them all out at our photo gallery.

PS - I'm well aware that the gallery is due an update.

PPS - Coming soon - photos from the Viva La Bands tour in Baltimore with CKY, Gwar and Cradle of Filth

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Ebony Ark Signs With Ascendance Records

Ascendance Records, the new label funded by Lee Barrett (founder of Candlelight Records; former member of EXTREME NOISE TERROR, currently in TO-MERA) and A&R'd by Sam Grant (writer, promoter, broadcaster, interviewer for Sonic Cathedral online), has announced the signing of the Madrid, Spain based, female-fronted gothic/progressive metal act EBONY ARK. The group's new album is tentatively scheduled for release in early 2008.

EBONY ARK's first concert outside Spain took place on May 4, 2006, supporting the Dutch band EPICA at Amsterdam's infamous Paradiso venue. In May of that year they started recording the "Decoder 2.0" CD (a revamped version of their 2004 debut, "Decoder") for their new label Transmission Records. Unfortunately Transmission Records went bankrupt before the album could be released and the LP never saw the light of day.

For more information, visit their Myspace page.

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Watch Unexpect's Live Performance From NYC Online

Montreal's UNEXPECT have issued the following update:

"A short video of our last show in New York with the band EPICA has been posted at this location. More shows have been added to the list, which is always growing in length to our greatest pleasure…in the new additions are shows in Sherbrooke, Winnipeg, Minneapolis, another date with PARADISE LOST in Bedford and the Trois-Rivieres Metalfest 2007. While we wait for those cortex stretching musical moments, we keep on composing for the next album. The creative chemistry is really alive and healthy…and if Salvador Dali was still alive, I’d say to him: Hi Dali!"

Upcoming Unexpect live dates can be found at their MySpace here.

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The Agonist Tour Schedule

The Agonist will be touring in September and October. Here are the tour dates:

dates w/ Epica, Visions of Atlantis
9/6 Hartford, CT @ Webster Theatre
9/8 Bedford, NH @ Mark's Place
9/9 New York, NY @ Highline Ballroom

dates w/ Sonata Arctica, Firewind
9/12 Dallas, TX @ Palladium
9/14 Albuquerque, NM @ The Launchpad
9/15 Tempe, AZ @ The Clubhouse
9/16 Hollywood, CA @ The Key Club
9/17 Santa Ana, CA @ The Galaxy Theatre
9/19 Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theatre
9/21 Chicago, IL @ Metro/Smart Bar
9/22 Detroit, MI @ Harpo's Concert Theatre
9/23 Cleveland, OH @ Peabody's Down Under
9/24 Toronto, ON @ The Opera House
9/26 Quebec City, QC @ Salle Albert Rousseau
9/27 Montreal, QC @ Medley
9/28 Poughkeepsie, NY @ Chance Theater
9/29 Worcester, MA @ The Palladium (no Firewind)
9/30 New York, NY @ B.B. Kings Blues Club
10/02 Philadelphia, PA @ The Trocadero
10/03 Springfield, VA @ Jaxx
10/06 Ft. Lauderdale, FL @ Culture Room
10/07 Winter Park, FL @ The Haven
10/09 Houston, TX @ Meridian

dates w/ Overkill
10/11 Covington, KY @ The Mad Hatter
10/12 Columbus, OH @ Al Rosa Villa
10/13 Detroit, MI @ Harpo's
10/14 Mokena, IL @ The Pearl Room
10/15 Maplewood, MN @ The Rock
10/16 Cedar Falls, IA @ Reverb
10/17 Sauget, IL @ Pop's
10/18 Cleveland, OH @ Peabody's Down Under

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Evergrey Frontman To Guest On New Ayreon CD

AYREON, the brainchild of Dutch guitarist/composer Arjen Lucassen, has posted an audio sample of the next guest singer who will appear on the the band's upcoming album, tentatively due late 2007/early 2008: EVERGREY mainman Tom S. Englund. Other vocalists scheduled to appear on the CD include Ty Tabor (KING'S X), Magali Luyten (VIRUS IV), Simone Simons (EPICA) and Liselotte Hegt (DIAL). A total of fifteen singers have been confirmed to guest on the album, with more to be added.

AYREON's last CD, "Ayreon: The Human Equation", was released in 2004. It contained guest appearances by a number of acclaimed vocalists, including James LaBrie (DREAM THEATER), Mike Baker (SHADOW GALLERY), Mikael Åkerfeldt (OPETH), Eric Clayton (SAVIOUR MACHINE), Devon Graves (DEADSOUL TRIBE, ex-PSYCHOTIC WALTZ) and Devin Townsend (STRAPPING YOUNG LAD).

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Unexpect Announce More Upcoming Shows

Canadian experimental metallers UNEXPECT have lined up the following upcoming North American tour dates:

August 17 - Toronto, ON @ The Metal Bar
September 9 - New York, NY @ Highline Ballroom w/ Epica, Visions of Atlantis
September 14 - Oshawa, ON @ Royal Canadian Legion
September 30 - New York, NY @ B.B. King Blues Club w/ Sonata Arctica
October 13 - Worcester, MA @ The Palladium (Rock and Shock Festival)
October 14 - Hartford, CT @ Webster Underground
October 15 - Cleveland, OH @ Peabody’s w/ Epica, Visions of Atlantis
October 16 - Toronto, ON @ Opera House w/ After Forever
October 17 - Ottawa, ON @ Mavericks w/ After Forever
October 26 - Poughkeepsie, NY @ The Loft w/ Prong
October 27 - Bedford, NH @ Mark’s Place w/ Prong
November 8 - New York, NY @ B.B. King Blues Club w/ Enslaved, Arsis

The band will also be taking part in the previously announced North American tour featuring TRAIL OF TEARS, CELLADOR, and ECHOES OF ETERNITY. You can check out the dates for that tour online here.

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Watch Epica's 'Never Enough' Video Online

EPICA's new video, "Never Enough", has been released and can be viewed here. The song comes off the Dutch symphonic metal band's new album, "The Divine Conspiracy", due in North America on August 28 via Nuclear Blast Records. The CD will be issued in in Europe on September 10 (September 7 in Germany). Check out the CD cover artwork at this location.

Nuclear Blast will release a limited deluxe CD edition in Europe of "The Divine Conspiracy", featuring the bonus tracks "Higher High" and "Replica" (FEAR FACTORY cover), video clips and a "making-of" enhanced section. A gatefold vinyl edition will also be issued containing the same two bonus tracks. More...

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