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

Armored Saint

Formed: 1982
From: Los Angeles, CA, United States
Last Known Status: Active

Latest Armored Saint News

Below is our complete Armored Saint 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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ProgPower USA XIV: Saturday Crazies

Carrying the energy over from ProgPower XIV’s Friday show to Saturday’s show was like a Herculean trial for me, running on a combined total of 6 hours sleep from the last two days. In the quiet of dawn, nobody from ProgPower: Hardcore, the unofficial fitness group, was awake enough to run or work out, but not for lack of effort -- They had put in a good run and hot yoga session earlier in the week. (Only at ProgPower, folks.) Fortunately, each of the seven bands on the second day’s roster brought its game face and gave me and the other concert-goers what we needed to raise our bodies, put our hands in the air, bang our heads, jump (if you really enjoyed Sabaton), and fall in love all over again.

After descending upon Einstein Bagel Co at the end of Peachtree St for breakfast with my group of fellow black-shirted friends, which brought a few funny reactions from the locals, we headed down to The Loft next to Center Stage to see Wolverine’s exclusive all-acoustic set for Gold Badge holders and sponsors only. Having rehearsed well in advance, Wolverine was a well-oiled machine, although the same could not be said for the guitar cables that seemed to be shorting out on them by the dozen. Nevertheless, the show was to be unforgettable. Drawing heavily from “Communication Lost,” perhaps the easiest Wolverine album to translate to an acoustic setting, the show took the form of a sort of “Storytellers” gig.

The typical routine they followed went something like this: Vocalist Stefan Zell or bassist Thomas Jansson would give a background and context to a song, they would play it through, Jansson or keyboardist Per Henriksson would take a passionate but subdued solo, Zell would light up the air with his voice, and the crowd would weep. It’s true -- one attendee brought a box of tissues with her, which the band autographed after the performance, for members of the audience that couldn’t help but resonate with the song. The whole performance gave the impression of a slow burn -- warm and electrifying. A special set, indeed. More...

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OpEd

ProgPower USA XIV: At A Glance

In its 14th year for 2013, the ProgPower USA Festival is one of the longest-running US festivals, and the longest-running US multi-day festival to feature bands from outside the US.

This year, it has the special distinction of being the US debut show for five bands. Totaling more than a hundred and twenty band performances in its time, it has developed a reputation as a tastemakers’ festival, heightening awareness within the US of foreign bands.

It can be a daunting festival, price- and endurance-wise, but it’s one that should be considered if the genres it derives its name from at all turn your head. Here’s what you can expect from this year’s celebration of the fast and the nerdy down at Center Stage in Atlanta, Georgia, starting on September 4th. More...

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ReinXeed Cancels ProgPower USA Performance

Swedish metal act ReinXeed has cancelled its first U.S. performance, which was scheduled for Saturday, September 7, 2013 at the ProgPower USA Festival in Atlanta, GA. Festival promoter Glenn Harveston announced that Chicago progressive metal act Divinity Compromised will fill the 2-3pm opening spot for that day.

The band provided the following explanation: "We are very sorry to announce our cancellation of ProgPower USA and all other shows and festivals in 2013. Due to personal private reasons Tommy ReinXeed will not do any more live shows after the "Rock out Wild" festival and for the rest of the year.

"We are all very sorry about this but respect his decision and are looking forward to the upcoming release of the album 'A New World' and new strength and motivation to tour in the future."

The revised lineup for ProgPower USA is as follows:

Thursday, September 5, 2013 (Kickoff Show):

In The Silence - 6:00 to 6:45
Circle II Circle - 7:15 to 8:45
Luca Turilli's Rhapsody - 9:30 to 11:45 More...

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John Bush Performs Songs For "Metal Gear Rising"

"Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance," the latest entry in the storied video game franchise, was released in North America last week.

On Sunday, February 17th, John Bush (Armored Saint) joined a host of other musicians to perform songs from the soundtrack at an official launch party at LA's Universal CityWalk. Live footage from the concert, which was held at the Hard Rock Café, is available below courtesy of YouTube user "TheBitBeacon."

John Bush comments on his involvement: "I was asked through Vince at Metal Blade if I wanted to sing a couple of tracks for Metal Gear's Revengeance. I was excited to be a part of it cause I never sang on a video game before. Jamie Christopherson is the musical director and he created some killer, heavy tunes. When you play 'Metal Gear Rising Revengeance,' listen for the songs 'Return to Ashes' and 'The Hot Wind Blowin!'"

Additional photos and info from the launch party can be found on geekexchange.com here. More...

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Metal Blade Updates 30th Anniversary Show Lineup

Metal Blade Records is proud to announce that Amon's Amarth's Johan Hegg, Ray Alder of Fates Warning/Redemption, as well as dUg Pinnick of King's X have been confirmed as the special guests for the 30 Anniversary show set for Friday, November 30th at the House of Blues in Los Angeles, CA.

The guest musicians will join Armored Saint on stage throughout the band's set to perform a variety of cover songs. Also confirmed to attend the show and celebration are That Metal Show's Eddie Trunk and Don Jamieson, who will be hosting the event.

Here's what Don had to say about hosting the show: "So pumped to be hosting Metal Blade's 30th Anniversary Show with quintessential metal warriors, Armored Saint and a destined-to-be quintessential metal band, Gypsyhawk. Gonna be heavier than Honey Boo Boo's mama!"

Unfortunately the shock metal act Lizzy Borden will no longer be able to play the event, but the label will be making it up to the fans by bringing out new guests for the special jam session. Metal Blade will be announcing the special guests in the coming weeks. Tickets are currently on sale right here. More...

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ProgPower USA Reveals 2013 Festival Lineup

Just following Epica's performance on the first day of ProgPower USA XIII, festival promoter Glenn Harveston revealed the lineup for ProgPower XIV, held annually at Center Stage in Atlanta, Georgia. For 2013, Saturday's event will be held on Friday, September 6-7, 2013 and will have one less band, but Saturday there will be a triple co-headliner. The roster was revealed as the following:

Friday, Sept. 6, 2012:

Damnation Angels
Myrath
Xandria
Wolverine
Ashes of Ares
Soilwork (co-headliner)
Shadow Gallery (co-headliner)

Saturday, Sept. 7, 2012:

ReinXeed
Heaven's Cry
Wolf
Circus Maximus (co-headliner)
Armored Saint (co-headliner)
Sabaton (co-headliner) More...

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Armored Saint To Re-Issue Early EP On Vinyl

On the 10th/13th of August LA's most headbanging band Armored Saint will re-issue the group's first self-titled EP with bonus tracks on vinyl. The track listing is as follows:

1. Lesson Well Learned
2. No Reason to Live
3. False Alarm
4. Stricken by Fate
5. On the Way

Metal Blade Records commented:

"All five songs will be on side A, side B will feature a nice etching! Armored Siant will be heading back to Europe next week. At Sonisphere in France, the SAINT will be playing on the same day as Ghost, Evanescence, Wolfmother, Soulfly, Lacuna Coil, and more. Bang Your Head's list of confirmed bands includes Arch Enemy, Exodus, Thin Lizzy, Primordial, and more. Dong Open Air also features Napalm Death, Sepultura, and many others. Along with the festival appearances, Armored Saint will be playing three headlining shows with UK's Collapse as the supporting act."

Armored Saint's John Bush elaborates on the dates: "I'm very excited for our upcoming summer dates. First, Armored Saint has never played in France. Not only are we doing the awesome Sonisphere show, we are also doing a headline club show in Paris. About fucking time. Also, we're extremely pumped to play the Bang Your Head festival again. It's one of the best metal shows in Germany. Plus, we get to be part of the DONG festival. First time there.

"The tour wouldn't be complete without playing in Holland, which is the first country Armored Saint ever played in Europe back in 1989; and Zurich, where it will be our first time to headline in the beautiful country of Switzerland. Armored Saint doesn't tour all that often so come out and join us, cause you're never sure when or if we'll be touring again. We'll be playing songs from our entire catalog as well as from our most recent record, La Raza, which we're extremely proud of. See ya this summer." More...

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Breaker Confirmed For Bang Your Head 2012

Cleveland, Ohio metallers Breaker been confirmed for this year's edition of the Bang Your Head festival, set to take place July 13th - 14th, 2012 in Balingen, Germany.

Breaker will perform an exclusive European reunion show with original vocalist Jim Hamar to celebrate the band's 30th anniversary and the 25th anniversary of the release of the landmark "Get Tough!" album on Auburn Records.

This will be Breaker's fifth visit to Germany and second to Bang Your Head. The band's only previous festival appearance in Germany with Hamar on vocals was at Wacken Open Air in 2000.
Visit the Bang Your Head website for more information.

The festival billing is shaping up as follows: More...

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Armored Saint Announces European Shows

LA's Armored Saint is excited to announce that the band will be heading to Europe in July. At Sonisphere in France, the Saint will be playing on the same day as Ghost, Evanescence, Wolfmother, Soulfly, Lacuna Coil, and more. Band Your Head's list of confirmed band's includes Arch Enemy, Exodus, Thin Lizzy, Primordial, and more. Dong Open Air also features Napalm Death, Sepultura, and many others. Along with the festival appearances, Armored Saint will be playing three headlining shows with UK's Collapse as the supporting act.

Armored Saint's John Bush elaborates on the dates: "I'm very excited for our upcoming summer dates. First, Armored Saint has never played in France. Not only are we doing the awesome Sonisphere show, we are also doing a headline club show in Paris. About fucking time. Also, we're extremely pumped to play the Bang Your Head festival again. It's one of the best metal shows in Germany. Plus, we get to be part of the DONG festival. First time there.

"The tour wouldn't be complete without playing in Holland, which is the first country Armored Saint ever played in Europe back in 1989; and Zurich, where it will be our first time to headline in the beautiful country of Switzerland. Armored Saint doesn't tour all that often so come out and join us, cause you're never sure when or if we'll be touring again. We'll be playing songs from our entire catalog as well as from our most recent record, La Raza, which we're extremely proud of. See ya this summer." More...

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Seven Witches Playing Shows With Armored Saint

Seven Witches will be supporting legendary metallers Armored Saint on three special East Coast dates beginning tomorrow at Ollie’s Point Bar in Amityville, New York. The band will be supporting the "Call Upon the Wicked" full-length released in North America earlier this year by FrostByte Records.

"Call Upon The Wicked" (reviewed here) was recorded at Lickman Studios by Frost with co-producers Mike LePond and Joey Vera (Armored Saint, Fates Warning), who also mixed the record. The band's upcoming shows with Armored Saint are as follows:

11/30/2011 Ollie’s Point Bar – Amityville, NY
12/02/2011 Crocodile Rock – Allentown, PA
12/03/2011 The Studio at Webster Hall – New York, NY

The Seven Witches touring lineup (for AS dates):

Alan Tecchio (Hades , Non Fiction, Autumn Hour ) – Vocals
Paul Marciano (Die Hard Till Death, ex- Belladonna ) – Drums
Mike Lepond (Symphony X) – Bass
Jack Frost (Bronx Casket Co., ex-Savatage, Lizzy Borden, Belladonna ) – Guitar

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Armored Saint Announces Show Dates In U.S.

Armored Saint announced that they will be playing some dates in the U.S. with Seven Witches in support. Confirmed dates are as follows:

11/30/2011 - Amityville, NY @ Ollie's Point Bar
12/02/2011 - Allentown, PA @ Crocodile Rock
12/03/2011 - New York, NY @ The Studio at Webster Hall

Bassist Joey Vera said of the shows: "In July, we held a poll asking fans to choose their favorite Saint songs and we compiled a list of the top 10. At recent gigs in Los Angeles and in Germany, we would allow fans to come up and choose one of the top 10 songs for us to play, right there on the spot. We did this three times during our set. It was such a good time that we’re going to do this again for our tri-state shows. John Bush will stop the show at three different times and choose someone from the crowd to come up and pick what song we play next. So come down and be a part of choosing our set list for the night!"

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Armored Saint Announces Upcoming Shows

LA's Armored Saint will be performing the band's first, and possibly only, shows for 2011 this summer. On July 9th, the band will once again be hitting the Sunset Strip in Hollywood for a show at the Key Club with Hirax. In August, the Saint plans to head overseas for several European appearances including the group's first ever Norwegian appearance at the Lillehammer Rock Festival with Thin Lizzy, Hammerfall, UFO and more.

Armored Saint's "La Raza" was released in March of 2010 and debuted on Billboard at #49 on the Hard Music Albums Chart, #18 on the Heatseekers chart, #52 on the Top Independent Albums chart, and #2 on the Hard Music Core Stores chart. "La Raza" also entered the official German Album Charts at #96.

The band's upcoming shows are as follows:

07/09 Hollywood, CA The Key Club
08/11 Cologne, Germany Werkstaat
08/12 Hamburg, Germany Knust
08/13 Lillehammer, Norway Lillehammer Rock Festival More...

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Armored Saint Announces Signing Session

Armored Saint will be playing at The Avalon in Santa Clara, CA on Saturday, October 16th. To make this event even more special, Armored Sinat will be doing a signing at the venue from 7:30pm until 8:15pm. Fans can bring their Armored Saint albums and memorabilia for the band to sign.

Joey Vera adds: "We know we said that our Los Angeles show in May was going to be our only show this year, but some things changed with John Bush’s availability so we decided to play a show for our Bay Area brothers and sisters. Come on out!"

The details are as follows:

October 16th, 2010
The Avalon Nightclub
777 Lawrence Expy
Santa Clara, CA 95051

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Column

Sunday Old School: Armored Saint

Often in the Sunday Old School articles, we tend to focus on the sub-genres of heavy metal such as thrash, death and black metal, amongst others. This week we take a look at a great example of traditional heavy metal in the form of California's Armored Saint. Armored Saint was formed in 1982 by brothers Phil and Gonzo Sandoval, who played guitar and drums respectively,along with friend Dave Prichard who also played guitar, whilst students at South Pasadena High School. Soon after their formation the band recruited bass player Joey Vera and lead singer John Bush. The name of the band was suggested by Gonzo while the band were watching the movie Excalibur and a five song demo was recorded not long afterwards, that included the song, "Lesson Well Learned," which was featured on the Metal Massacre II compilation. After releasing a self-titled EP through Metal Blade Records in 1983, the band signed to Chrysalis Records the next year. Their debut album, "March Of The Saint" was released that year and earned the band a minor hit with the song, "Can U Deliver?," as well as critical praise. A second album entitled, "Delirious Nomad" was released in 1985 and, like the first album, earned the band critical acclaim.

Soon after the release of "Delirious Nomad," Phil Sandoval decided to quit the band, leaving Armored Saint has a four-piece. The quartet began work on their next studio album, which resulted in 1987's "Raising Fear." The album did not sit as well with critics as the past two albums had and many believed that Phil Sandoval's exit had shaken the band's confidence. The album did however garner the band another minor hit with the song, "Isolation." After "Raising Fear" was released, a live album named, "Saints Will Conquer" hit the shelves the next year but sadly these would be the final albums to feature guitarist Dave Prichard. Although Prichard participated in the writing and demoing of their next album, he unfortunately passed away from leukemia during the sessions. The resulting album, "Symbol Of Salvation" was released in 1991 and used the guitar solo Prichard recorded for the song, "Tainted Past." The album also featured the return of Phil Sandoval, as well as new guitarist Jeff Duncan. The record was seen as a return to form and perhaps their best yet by critics and fans alike but ultimately the band were unsure of a future without Prichard. During this period of uncertainty, John Bush was asked by Anthrax if he would be interested in becoming their new vocalist, replacing the recently departed Joey Belladonna. Bush's decision to accept the job proved to be the final straw for Armored Saint and they decided to call it a day. During the band's inactivity, other members kept themselves busy with various musical proects. Bassist Joey Vera found success as a producer, whilst also performing in bands such as Fates Warning and Lizzy Borden and the Sandoval brothers formed a new band together entitled Life After Death, which was more inspired by the likes of Thin Lizzy than the heavy metal influences of Armored Saint. More...

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Armored Saint Posts New Music Video Online

Los Angeles, California metal act Armored Saint has posted their latest music video online for the track "Left Hook From Right Field". The song comes off of the band's latest album "La Raza." The video was directed by Jeremy Schott of Mental Suplex.

The video can be viewed below:

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Joey Vera Posts Comments on Dio's Passing

Joey Vera of Armored Saint and Anthrax has posted the following comments on the passing of Heavy Metal Legend Ronnie James Dio:

"Ronnie James Dio.

His name shall be part of the very definition of the term heavy metal.

All of us in this community owe a big part to him as he helped shape our entire genre. And he did it with complete originality and sincerity. He is the real deal.

By now you've read much about him and how every person who'd had the pleasure of meeting the man use the words "kind," "nice," "humble" and so on. I can tell you that these descriptions are truly accurate.

I had the honor of being on tour with Dio on two occasions. Once on his "Magica" tour in 2001 while I was in Armored Saint and then later in 2004 while I was touring with Anthrax. I would watch Ronnie every night side stage and I was continuously blown away by his high level of performance. I must have seen over 40 shows from this vantage point and I never, ever saw or heard a single flaw. You always knew he was a great singer but It was then that I was convinced that he was a gift to us from some other place. Then there's all the times I saw him with Sabbath.

I can't even go on…

When you have the privilege of meeting someone like Ronnie — an idol, a legend — you almost expect a person like this to be overly confident, cocky, and they deserve to be, really. But Ronnie was the complete opposite. He really was the most humble, sincere and kind person you'd ever meet. He would always find time to stop in his tracks and say a few words to you. He was so down to earth and generous.

Through his humility he's taught us all that a man is not measured by the size of his wallet, or trophy collection, but instead by the size of his heart.

I myself am glad that he chose the profession of singing because even though his body has been taken from us, his voice will stay here for all eternity.

We're all trying really hard here, but Ronnie, we can't thank you enough.

Joey Vera"

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Armored Saint's New Album Now Available on Vinyl

Armored Saint recently announced that their new album, "La Raza," is now available on vinyl, as well as being available digitally and on CD.

The vinyl version is a 180 Gram Audiophile Vinyl Double LP with Double Gatefold LP packaging, and includes a previously unreleased demo version of the title track.

The vinyl version of "La Raza" can be purchased on Amazon.com through North America, Europe and Japan.

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Armored Saint to Play Just One Show This Year

Armored Saint announced on their MySpace Page that they will be supporting their newest album, "La Raza," with just one live show. Scheduled for May 28th at the House Of Blues Sunset Strip in Hollywood, tickets can be purchased at the box office or at Ticketmaster. Bassist Joey Vera clarifies:

"[The HOB show] is the first gig in support of our new record La Raza which was released on March 16 on Metal Blade Records. At this time, this will be the ONLY show the band plans on playing for the remainder if this year. You can plan on hearing several tracks from the new record at this show along with a list of classics. We are also putting final plans together for a video shoot for the song 'Left Hook From Right Field' which should take place in May."

Armored Saint's most recent album, "La Raza," was released on March 16th to lots of anticipation. You can view Metal Underground's review of "La Raza" here, and other reviews of the album here.

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Armored Saint Posts New Song Online

Armored Saint has unveiled the cover art and the first single from their first new album "La Raza" The album's foundation was laid back in 2008 when Joey Vera and John Bush began writing new material for what would become "La Raza" and the album was completed in December at Tranzformer Studios in Burbank, CA. The album was produced by bassist Joey Vera, and engineered by Bryan Carlstrom and his assistant John Nuss. Recording was mostly done with analog equipment and the final album mix was delivered on 1 inch tape. This gives La Raza the most organic sound as possible. Fans can hear the first single, "Left Hook From Right Field," on their MySpace page.

To complete the package, the band employed photographer Stephanie Cabral and Metal Blade's own Brian Ames. Joey Vera comments further, “Metal Blade is doing a really cool digi pack package for us. We felt like the city of Los Angeles is such a big part of our fabric that we wanted to use that in the design of the artwork. So with the help of our good friend and photographer Stephanie Cabral and Brian Ames from the Metal Blade art department, we came up with a really cool package that represents our band and the music on this record. We also wanted to incorporate a 'green' action by leaving out the plastic CD tray and using recycled paper. The result is a classy and poignant package.” More...

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Armored Saint Reveals New Album Details

Los Angeles metal band Armored Saint has announced the tracklisting for the band's recently completed album "La Raza," the band's first new album since 2001's "Nod to the Old School." "La Raza" was recorded at Tranzformer Studios in Burbank, CA, was produced by bassist Joey Vera, and engineered by Bryan Carlstrom and his assistant John Nuss. "La Raza" will be available everywhere on March 16th 2010.

"La Raza" tracklisting is as follows:

01. Loose Cannon
02. Head On
03. Left Hook from Right Field
04. Get Off the Fence
05. Chilled
06. La Raza
07. Black Feet
08. Little Monkey
09. Blues
10. Bandit Country More...

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