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Onslaught

Formed: 1982
From: Bristol, United Kingdom
Last Known Status: Active

Background

Onslaught was formed in 1982 by Nige Rockett (guitar) and Steve Grice (drums). The band began life under the influence of the second generation of hard-core punk bands like Discharge, G.B.H, & The Exploited and the more metal influence of Motorhead. After 2 years of writing and hard gigging a deal was secured with underground label Children of the Revolution, and the band released its first album, Power From Hell, in 1985 with the lineup of Nige Rockett (Guitars), Steve Grice (Drums), Paul Mahoney (Vocals) and Jason Stellard on bass. The album was fervently received by the nascent thrash underground and contained a number of tracks that were to grow to become considered as thrash metal anthems, including the eponymous Onslaught (Power From Hell), Angels of Death and Death Metal (itself the subject of some conjecture – was this tune the first usage of the term ’Death Metal’ anywhere?) In 1986, Onslaught with the addition of new vocalist Sy Keeler signed to the mighty ’Music for Nations’ records which saw the release of the highly acclaimed ’The Force’ album, for many this is the definitive Onslaught record, containing more thrash classics like ’Let There Be Death, Metal Forces and Fight with the Beast’, the album received rave reviews across the world and catapulted Onslaught in to the higher circles of thrash metal and were seen by many as Europes hopefuls to end the American domination of the metal scene.. Touring with Motorhead, a legendary appearance at the 1st Dynamo Festival and shows with Anthrax and Nuclear Assault, simply added more firepower to Onslaughts evergrowing arsenal.. The huge success of ‘The Force’ album saw a wealth of major labels chasing Onslaughts signatures for the release of the 3rd album ‘In Search Of Sanity’. Onslaught eventually signed with ‘London records’ before releasing ISOS in 1989, but this was not to be without controversy.. Sy Keeler was unceremoniously sacked by the record company and Steve Grimmett was brought in as his replacement. The album was the bands biggest selling album to date, containing blistering thrashers like ‘Lightning War’ ‘Powerplay’ and the epic ‘Welcome To Dying’.. but die-hard Onslaught fans found the album too much of a departure from previous releases, due to the over-polished production and the replacement of Sy Keeler… Was this Onslaughts ’Final Moment’….? No, 15 years pass, Power From Hell & The Force are re-released on cd through the ’Blackened’ label, the interest in Onslaught is still strong, little did people know the band had reformed and had been secretly writing / rehearsing for 6 months at a hideaway outside Bristol.. Onslaught are returned with Sy Keeler once again at the mic. They then signed a worldwide deal with the impressive ’Candlelight’ label and the band entered ‘Backstage Studios’ Derbyshire, with long time friend Andy Sneap (Megadeth, Arch Enemy, Exodus) at the production / mixing helm..to record their 4th studio album ’Killing Peace’ The album was released to much critical acclaim in March 2007.

Latest Onslaught News

Below is our complete Onslaught 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.

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Eindhoven Adds More Bands To Lineup

Marduk, Vektor, Purgatory, Desaster, Necros Christos, Todestriebe and the Dutch metal battle winner Rise a Thousand are the latest acts that have been confirmed for the seventh edition of the independent Eindhoven Metal Meeting festival.

This year's edition is set to take place December 11 & 12th, 2015 at the Effenaar venue in Eindhoven, The Netherlands. In total 32 bands will make their appearance at the festival. More bands will be announced soon, and for now the current lineup is as follows: More...

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Godflesh And Onslaught Join Bloodstock Bill

The organizers of the Bloodstock Festival are excited to announce their third headliner for the Sophie Lancaster Stage, and a slew of other Sophie stage bands for the August 2015 event.

Industrial outfit Godflesh is to headline Sunday night on the Sophie Lancaster stage. Frontman Justin Broadrick comments: “Godflesh is thrilled to be playing a very metal UK festival! We don’t get asked to play many, as we’re often viewed as not ‘real’ metal enough, or we’re generally seen as outsiders, which we are, thank you. That doesn’t mean we don’t like to be invited to be a real metal band once in a while and especially in the Derbyshire countryside! Thank you Bloodstock!“

British thrash stalwarts Onslaught also join the Sophie stage line-up on Sunday. The band is celebrating the 30th anniversary in 2015 of debut album, "Power From Hell," with a special EP on the cards for release and special anniversary merch available.

Self-appointed "caveman battle doom" 3-piece, Conan will crash Friday’s Sophie bill. Having recently returned from a string of shows in Australia and mainland Europe, Conan is prepping for a slot on the Maryland DeathFest this summer, before bringing an unholy wall of sound to Catton Park in August.

Greek southern-tinged heavy rockers Planet Of Zeus step up for a Sophie stage slot on Saturday, while London’s blackened doomsters Bast also join the Friday bill. The currently announced lineup for the 2015 edition is as follows: More...

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Column

Thrashback Thursday: Destroyer Of Worlds

Welcome to the first edition of a brand new column entitled, Thrashback Thursday! The purpose of this new feature is to find a metal song (and not necessarily thrash, before anyone starts screaming and pointing fingers) that the writer hasn't heard for a while, felt has been overlooked or simply just likes. So let's get things started with British thrash metal legends, Onslaught!

In early 2007, Onslaught, perhaps the favourite name of British thrash metal, finally released their long awaited comeback album, "Killing Peace." It was a big thing for fans as it was their first album in eighteen years, one which proved waiting for thanks to songs like "Burn" and the title track, though the song which stood out to me personally was, "Destroyer of Worlds." I had seen (and indeed, heard) Onslaught for the first time a year before when they were supporting Venom in London and "Destroyer of Worlds" was the only new song they played to the crowd, which went over a treat.

It’s easy to see why. It has a fantastically dark intro and builds up to a sneering and aggressive verse, showcasing the unique vocal style of Sy Keeler perfectly. From there it works its way to an anthem like pre-chourus, before exploding into a rapid fire storm of verbal bullets. A chourus so quick is rarely so catchy and it really does stick with the listener for a long time. It’s an excellent example of a thrash band proving their place in the modern metal world and one which helped make, "Killing Peace" such a triumph of metal. More...

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Neil Turbin Contradicts Onslaught's Nige Rockett

Talking to the "Heavy Metal Mayhem" radio show earlier this month, Neil Turbin claims that he simply didn't have enough time to prepare all songs and he states that he left the trek in Anaheim because he was owed thousands of dollars in back pay and his share of the merchandise revenue.

Says Neil Turbin: "If people want the truth, here's the truth. The truth is that I have a contract that was sent… dated September 26th. The contract itself has a date of September 23rd, but I e-mailed the completed, executed contract to the leader of Onslaught on the 26th, so I had less than thirtee days that I was confirmed in writing, by contract, to do the "Thrash Invasion Tour" of North America - U.S. and Canada - Brazil and Chile. So that date range on that contract, just so you know… If you want the facts, here's the facts… That date range was from October 23rd to December 11, 2014. And this contract was negotiated between myself and the leader of Onslaught, so there were some changes to it before we came to the conclusion, before it was executed. The reason I left the tour two days before it ended… I left it in Anaheim… I had a conversation with the leader of Onslaught before we went on stage, and that conversation was about money. And it was specifically about the last-week-of-the-tour money and also moneys that were due to me per the contract. More...

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Onslaught Says Turbin Had 15 Weeks To Learn Songs

Jimmy Cabbs of KNAC.com conducted an interview with guitarist Nige Rockett of British thrashers Onslaught at the final show of the band's North American "Thrash Invasion Tour 2014" with Artillery. You can now listen to the chat using the PodOmatic widget below.

A few excerpts read as follows:

On why Onslaught didn't cancel the North American tour once it became clear that singer Sy Keeler wasn't going to be able to make the trek due to health issues with Keeler's son:

Rockett: "We've got bills to pay, families to feed. And it's not only us; it's the other bands involved on the tour… (Denmark's Artillery). If we would have canceled this, this would have been their second U.S. tour cancelation, which would really have done them serious damage, I think — to cancel two tours in two years. So we had an obligation to those guys as well, and also our booking agent, who worked solidly for two or three months booking this tour and put so much time and effort in. And we can't just shit on these guys, you know!? They worked hard and we've gotta look after their careers as well as our own. As I said, we've got bills to pay, families to feed.

Rockett:"If you look at the music industry, a lot of bands have to do it. You look at Anthrax, Slayer… They all go out with stand-in musicians. It's all across the board. It just doesn't work sometimes for bands these days. The money's not there, so people have other commitments outside of bands and stuff, and that's the way it's gotta be in 2014."

On why Onslaught chose to work with former Anthrax singer Neil Turbin as the stand-in vocalist for the North American tour:

Rockett: "We spoke to 5 or 6 really top vocalists that I feel are particularly good guys, great guys, we're friends with and we have been friends with for many years. I won't mention their names or bands, but unfortunately, due to commitments that they already had, they couldn't make it. They were, like, 'Wow! You want us to sing for Onslaught.' But sadly it didn't work. We were working with this young German guy, and the energy and attitude he had was fantastic. He was not quite there with the vocals — he was very dramatic in his delivery, which was maybe not quite right for us — but he had everything else. But then we met with management and agents, blah blah blah, and they kind of figured it wasn't good to go out with a unknown [singer]. Because of the story, they needed a name to stand in. And that was it. That was, basically, what swung us to Neil Turbin." More...

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Headline News

Confusion About Neil Turbin's Quitting Onslaught

While Onslaught guitarist Nige Rockett claims the band fired singer Neil Turbin (ex Anthrax) 2 days before completion of the North American "Thrash Invasion" tour, Turbin states he left the tour by his own accord after not being paid for the final week of the trek.

You can read the 2 versions and watch a fan-filmed video footage of Onslaught's final performance with Turbin on November 24 in Anaheim, California below.

Version 1: Neil Turbin has posted the following statement on his Facebook page regarding his early departure from the Onslaught tour: More...

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Artillery Kicking Off North American Tour

Veteran Denmark-based thrash metal outfit Artillery will kick off the band's first ever North American tour tomorrow, October 23rd.

Joined by Onslaught and Striker, the trek will commence at Saint Vitus in Brooklyn, New York and weave its way through thirty cities before coming to a close at The Whisky in Hollywood, California on November 26th.

Guitarist Michael Stützer comments: "One of Artillery's biggest goals way back since the early demo days in 1982 has been to tour USA/Canada. After a few shows in the USA, playing at Maryland Deathfest, Barge To Hell and Saint Vitus in New York we are finally doing our first full North American tour! We can't wait to play songs from our new album Legions together with old classic songs like 'Terror Squad' and 'Khomaniac!' Join The Legions!" More...

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Onslaught Drops Off Eindhoven Bill

The Eindhoven Metal Meeting organization has announced that due to scheduling issues Onslaught has cancelled the band's previously planned performance at the festival.

Recently reunited U.K. thrashers Xentrix will replace Onslaught on Saturday December 13th, 2014.

Xentrix has released four albums through Roadrunner Records: 1989’s "Shattered Existence," 1990’s "For Whose Advantage," 1991’s "Dilute to Taste," and 1992’s "Kin." Heavy Metal Records also released a 1996 LP called "Scourge."

The currently announced lineup for Eindhoven Metal Meeting 2014 is as follows: More...

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Onslaught Releases New Music Video

As a preview of what to expect on the upcoming "Thrash Invasion" North American tour, Onslaught today releases a music video for "66 Fucking 6," which comes off the "VI" album and can be seen below.

It was also recently announced that Onslaught vocalist Sy Keeler will sit out the US / Canada tour due to his son’s health issues, and Neil Turbin - known for his vocal work on the Anthrax album "Fistful of Metal" - will fill in for Sy during this tour. Dates for the trek are as follows:

23-oct Brooklyn, New York, Saint Vitus
24-oct Cambridge, Massachusetts, Middle East Club
25-oct Long Branch, New Jersey, The Brighton Bar
26-oct Peterborough, New Hampshire, The Wreck Room
28-oct Chicago, Illinois, Reggie's
29-oct Indianapolis, Indiana, The Headquarters
30-oct Lakewood, Ohio, The Foundry
31-oct Columbus, Ohio, The Alrosa Villa
01-nov Rochester, New York, The Bug Jar
02-nov Trenton, New Jersey, The Backstage at The Championship Bar
03-nov Springfield, Virginia, Empire
04-nov Hartford, Connecticut, Webster Underground
05-nov Albany, New York, Bogie's
06-nov Quebec City, Quebec, Canada, La Salle Multi
07-nov Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Hard Luck
08-nov Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, Mavericks
09-nov Montreal, Quebec, Canada, Le Petit Campus
11-nov Kingston, Canada, Mansion
12-nov Detroit, Michigan, The Token Lounge
13-nov Cudahy, Wisconsin, The Metal Grill
14-nov Spring Lake Park, Minnesota, Pov's 65
15-nov Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, Zoo Cabaret
16-nov Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Palomino's
17-nov Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, The Pawn Shop
18-nov Vancouver, B.C., Canada, Red Room
19-nov Seattle, Washington, Studio Seven
20-nov Spokane, Washington, The Hop
21-nov Victoria, B.C., Canada, The V-Lounge
22-nov Portland, Oregon, Tonic Lounge
23-nov San Francisco, California, The DNA Lounge
24-nov Anaheim, California, Orange County Music Hall
25-nov Mesa, Arizona, Club Red
26-nov Hollywood, California, Whisky a Go Go More...

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Onslaught Frontman To Sit Out Upcoming Tours

Onslaught vocalist Sy Keeler will sit out the band's upcoming "THRASH INVASION TOUR" of the U.S., Canada, and South America, featuring Artillery and VX36, due to health issues with his son.

Sy Keeler comments:

"I know you are going to be disappointed with my decision as am I, but I sincerely hope you can understand our situation.

"My reason for this is the ongoing health issues with my son who has been suffering with a debilitating illness for some time, he is still on a downward path with no sign of any recovery on the horizon, therefore to be away for 2 months will put a lot of pressure on the family and increased anxiety on my son. We also have regular visits to specialists coming up during the next 6 months.
Therefore at this time I am having to think of my family first and sadly I am unable to be away in the Americas for the duration intended.."

Onslaught guitarist Nige Rockett adds:

"We’re extremely gutted that Sy cannot make this tour and of course we wish Sy’s family all the best in this difficult time, we are positive things will improve in the very near future and look forward to having Sy with us back real soon...

"It was a really tough decision for us to make also, but Sy was very supportive that we take out a replacement vocalist to make this tour happen.

"So much work had already been carried out by our management, booking agents, and promoters behind the scenes. It would have been unfair to let our team down, the other bands down and most importantly our fans.

"On a positive note, It’s gonna be awesome to have Neil Turbin on board for the tour, for me he’s always been one of the best Thrash Metal vocalists out there no question, his work on the Anthrax album ‘Fistful of Metal’ was simply amazing and I believe he’s one of the only guys in the genre who could step into Sy’s shoes. I think It brings a unique edge to this tour and I’m sure the fans will really dig what they hear..!!"

Onslaught & Artillery "Thrash Invasion" U.S./Canada Tour dates:

10/23 Brooklyn, New York, Saint Vitus
10/24 Cambridge, Massachusetts, Middle East Club
10/25 Long Branch, New Jersey, The Brighton Bar
10/26 Peterborough, New Hampshire, The Wreck Room
10/28 Chicago, Illinois, Reggie's
10/29 Indianapolis, Indiana, The Headquarters
10/30 Lakewood, Ohio, The Foundry
10/31 Columbus, Ohio, The Alrosa Villa
11/1 Rochester, New York, The Bug Jar
11/2 Trenton, New Jersey, The Backstage at The Championship Bar
11/3 Springfield, Virginia, Empire
11/4 Hartford, Connecticut, Webster Underground
11/5 Albany, New York, Bogie's
11/6 Quebec City, Quebec, Canada, La Salle Multi
11/7 Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Hard Luck
11/8 Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, Mavericks
11/9 Montreal, Quebec, Canada, Le Petit Campus
11/11 Kingston, Canada, Mansion
11/12 Detroit, Michigan, The Token Lounge
11/13 Cudahy, Wisconsin, The Metal Grill
11/14 Spring Lake Park, Minnesota, Pov's 65
11/15 Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, Zoo Cabaret
11/16 Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Palomino's
11/17 Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, The Pawn Shop
11/18 Vancouver, B.C., Canada, Red Room
11/19 Seattle, Washington, Studio Seven
11/20 Spokane, Washington, The Hop
11/21 Victoria, B.C., Canada, The V-Lounge
11/22 Portland, Oregon, Tonic Lounge
11/23 San Francisco, California, The DNA Lounge
11/24 Anaheim, California, Orange County Music Hall
11/25 Mesa, Arizona, Club Red
11/26 Hollywood, California, Whisky a Go Go

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Striker Drops Off North American Tour

Striker has issued the following brief announcement about cancelling upcoming North American tour dates:

"We are extremely disappointed to announce that due to reasons beyond our control, we are forced to drop off of the Onslaught/Artillery North American tour.

"We'd like to apologize to our Canadian and American fans and are working to rebook something as soon as possible."

Striker also just released new album "City Of Gold," which can be heard in full via the SoundCloud player below. More...

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Eindhoven Metal Meeting Reveals Full Band Lineup

The Eindhoven Metal Meeting is very proud to announce that with the addition of In Solitude, Valkyrja, Thanatos, Skyforger, Dust Bolt, The Committee, and Miasmal, the line-up for this year's edition - set to take place December 12 & 13th, 2014 at the Effenaar venue in Eindhoven, The Netherlands - is now complete.

The Dutch all-female death metal band Sisters Of Suffocation will also perform on Friday, December 12th at the official after party at the Dynamo Club together with the cover-bands Mercyfull Fake and Forever Twisted. Entrance is free with an Eindhoven Metal Meeting ticket!

The full festival billing is as follows (in alphabetical order): More...

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Asphyx And Carach Angren To Play Eindhoven

The Eindhoven Metal Meeting is very happy to welcome Asphyx, Carach Angren, Cripper, and Funeral Whore to lineup for this year's edition, set to take place December 12 & 13th, 2014 at the Effenaar venue in Eindhoven, The Netherlands. The festival billing is shaping up as follows (in alphabetical order):

Aborted
Asphyx
At The Gates
Attic
Blasphemy
Bölzer
Carach Angren
Cripper
Cruachan
Ensiferum
Evil Invaders
Exhumed
Funeral Whore
Holy Moses
Morbid Angel
Morbus Chron
One Tail, One Head
Onslaught
Origin
Primordial
Thyrfing
Triptykon
Unleashed
Urfaust
Saille
Sinister
The Vision Bleak
Woland

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Artillery Announces North American Tour Dates

The Denmark thrash metal veterans in Artillery will return to North America this fall for their first ever North American tour.

Artillery will join Onslaught and Striker beginning on October 23rd at Saint Vitus in Brooklyn, NY. The tour will weave its way throughout North America before coming to a close at the Whisky a Go Go in Hollywood, CA on November 26th.

Guitarist Michael Stützer comments: "One of Artillery's biggest goals way back since the early demo days in 1982 has been to tour USA/Canada. After a few shows in the USA, playing at Maryland Deathfest, Barge to Hell and Saint Vitus Club (in New York) we are finally doing our first full North American tour! We can't wait to play songs from our new album 'Legions' together with old classic songs like 'Terror Squad' and 'Khomaniac!' JOIN THE LEGIONS!" More...

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Demonic Resurrection Announces U.K. Shows

Demonic Resurrection is gearing up to release new album "The Demon King" on July 13th (India), July 14th (EU/UK), and July 15th (USA) via Candlelight Records.

With the album release looming, the India-based band has now announced several upcoming U.K. tour dates with Onslaught and Artillery. Details are as follows:

16.07.14 - O2 Academy, Newcastle
17.07.14 - O2 ABC2, Glasgow
18.07.14 - O2 Academy2, Sheffield
19.07.14 - O2 Academy, Bristol
21.07.14 - O2 Academy2, Birmingham

You can also hear the "Trail of Devastation" album taken off "The Demon King" over at this location. More...

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Hatriot Comments On Tour Cancellation

Bad news, Hatriot fans: the band won't go on tour with Onslaught and Artillery in Europe next month. Hatriot issued the following statement about the cancellation:

"Due to circumstances out of our control Hatriot is not going to be able to do the tour with Onslaught and Artillery next month. Thank you and sorry to all the fans out in Europe that were looking forward to seeing us. We will be back in due time."

You can also read Onslaught's statement about the European leg of the Thrash Invasion tour being cancelled here. More...

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Onslaught Cancels European Shows

Onslaught has issued the following announcement about canceling upcoming European dates:

"Ladies and gents, sometimes no matter how hard you try and no matter how much you want something to happen, at times events and other circumstances that are completely out of your control unfortunately conspire to prevent those things happening.

"So it's with great regret that we have to announce that the European leg of the 'Thrash Invasion' tour has been cancelled. Its a shitty situation but things were always out of our hands on this tour!

"Needless to say ourselves and the other bands involved are gutted. We will, however, be looking to reschedule the shows at a later date.

"The UK tour is still going ahead as planned with Onslaught and Artillery and believe me it's going to be pretty damn epic!

"We would like to thank and wish Zetro all the very best with Exodus and hope to hook up with him and the rest of the guys from Hatriot very soon." More...

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Morbid Angel To Play Eindhoven

The Eindhoven Metal Meeting is very happy to welcome U.S. death metal band Morbid Angel again at this year's edition, set to take place December 12th & 13th, 2014 at the reputable Effenaar venue in Eindhoven, The Netherlands.

The band will play the "Covenant' album in its entirety, followed by a shorter best-of set list. Also exclusively confirmed are Swiss atmospheric black metallers Bolzer! A few more bands will be announced soon. The festival billing is shaping up as follows (in alphabetical order):

Blasphemy
Bölzer
Cruachan
Ensiferum
Evil Invaders
Exhumed
Holy Moses
Morbid Angel
Morbus Chron
One Tail, One Head
Onslaught
Origin
Primordial
Thyrfing
Triptykon
Unleashed
Urfaust
Saille
Sinister
The Vision Bleak
Woland

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Thyrfing, Ensiferum, And More Playing Eindhoven

Ensiferum, Blasphemy, Thyrfing, Aborted, Onslaught, Exhumed, Origin, Attic, and Woland are the latest bands to have been confirmed for this year's Eindhoven Metal Meeting festival.

The 2014 edition is set to take place December 12th & 13th at the Effenaar venue in Eindhoven, The Netherlands. More bands will be announced soon.

The festival billing is shaping up as follows (in alphabetical order):

Aborted
At The Gates
Attic
Blasphemy
Ensiferum
Exhumed
Holy Moses
Morbus Chron
Onslaught
Origin
Primordial
Thyrfing
Triptykon
Urfaust
Woland

Further details and ticketing information can be see at the festival's official website here. More...

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Artillery Announces Tour With Onslaught

The Danish masters of the riff in Artillery have announced a summer tour in support of U.K. thrash act Onslaught. Artillery comments:

"Artillery is very anxious to hit the road with Onslaught and Hatriot, to support the overwhelming reception of Legions. We can't wait to play some of the new songs together with some of the old classics. Looking forward to meet the best and most dedicated melodic thrashers out there!"

Artillery's latest album, "Legions," was released on November 26th, 2013 via Metal Blade Records. Catch the band live: More...

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