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Chris Martin, Billie Joe Armstrong & System of a Down’s Serj Tankian to Guest on New Avicii Album

Image Courtesy Anton Corbijin

Chris Martin of Coldplay, System of a Down vocalist Serj Tankian and Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong are among the artists slated to appear on the sophomore set by Swedish DJ Avicii.

Rolling Stone reports that Avicii is hunkered down in Hollywood, working on the follow-up to last year’s smash album True. Avicii has written close to 70 tunes for the as-yet-untitled disc, which he promises will be “a lot more song-oriented” than his debut, which may be part of the reason why he’s reaching out to rockers.

The pop and dance music star also says he’s learning from the veteran rockers too. Of working with Martin, Avicii says, “Chris has been like a brother… He needs every part to be perfect. I’m not like that — which is why I’ve got 70 songs.” As for Armstrong, he appears on a track called “No Pleasing a Woman.” The album is expected to be released before the year is through.


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Imagine Dragons’ Singer Says Second Album Will Be as Eclectic as Their First

Ethan Miller/Getty Images via ABCIn between concert dates, Imagine Dragons has been working on their second album in their hometown of Las Vegas, and singer Dan Reynolds says they’ve been “having a lot of fun.” He also says fans can expect a mix of sounds and styles — just like on their best-selling 2012 debut, Night Visions – because they don’t want to write “themselves into a box.”

The hit singles from Night Visions — “It’s Time,” “Demons,” “Radioactive” and “On Top of the World” — all sounded very different from one another; at times, it was hard to believe all those songs were by the same band. And Reynolds says for Imagine Dragons’ sophomore release, he expects to continue creating an eclectic bunch of tunes.

“I think a lot of my favorite artists that I listened to growing up….[like] The Beatles, were always changing and never really writing themselves in a box,” he explains. “They would write, like, ‘Helter Skelter’ and then ‘Let It Be.’ It’s like, at least for us as a band, we always are trying to push our limits and try something refreshing to us…I think we’ll always continue to do different things.”

Dan feels that Imagine Dragons’ new material shows that “we have a lot of growth as songwriters.” As for whether or not the band’s newfound success has changed their approach, Dan says he still feels that the best songs are born from trying experiences.

“I’ve always felt that struggle really breeds art, your best art,” he explains. “Sometimes, you know, happiness can breed your best art, but for me I feel like it’s always been, almost, my journal. It’s been my thing that I’ve gone to since I was in sixth grade — pretty nerdy and geeky and I still am — but it’s always…brought me comfort. At the end of the day I could write a song about what I was going through.”

Dan has hinted in the past that some of the things the band has been going through recently — like trying to adjust to their sudden fame and insane schedule — may find their way into the new music. Back in May, he told reporters that all the “crazy changes” the band has experienced “has been kind of entwining into the album, and so it has a lot of emotion…the highs and lows that come with that.”

No word yet on when we can expect the follow-up to Night Visions. The band has a string of festival dates booked next month in Europe and the U.K, and then they’ll return to the U.S. at the end of August to perform at the L.A. installment of the Budweiser Made in America festival on August 30.


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Slipknot Posts Second Album Teaser

Image Courtesy Bobby TongsWhat a week for Slipknot fans — after months of waiting for new album news, the band has posted two new album teasers in the last few days.

The second is much longer than the first, but additional footage does not mean more album information. There are equally creepy images as are in the first trailer — including the same severed ear — and ghoulish-looking young women, including one who closes the clip by holding up two severed goat heads.

The second teaser, like the first, is streaming on Slipknot’s official webpage.

Seems likely there’ll be more teasers in short time, so stay tuned.


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AMC Reality Series About KISS Members’ Arena Football Team Premiering August 12

Ben Leuner/AMCKISS‘ Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley will be featured in a new AMC reality series titled 4th and Loud that will take a behind-the-scenes look at LA KISS, the new Los Angeles-area Arena Football League team the rockers co-own. The docu-series, which premieres August 12 at 7 p.m. ET, follows Simmons, Stanley and their partners as they try to infuse some rock ‘n’ roll spirit into the first pro football franchise to play in L.A. in 20 years.

The program also will focus on the team’s players, coaches and cheerleaders as they prepare for their inaugural season.

Deadline reports that Simmons and Stanley chatted about LA KISS last week at a Television Critics Association panel in Los Angeles.

“What we’ve brought to rock ‘n’ roll we want to bring to sport,” explained Stanley.

Simmons added that they wanted the teams cheerleaders to display a bit more sex appeal than the ladies seen on the sidelines of your average NFL game. “We wanted to have girls who are not the girl next door but the girl you wish was next door,” he said.


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Lamb of God Drummer to Open Whiskey-Themed Restaurant

Image Courtesy Adrenaline PR Lamb of God‘s Chris Adler has found a good use for his time during the band’s hiatus: the drummer announced that he’s partnering with a Virginia-based resturanteur to open the Big Whiskey Grill in Richmond.

Set to open in October, the Big Whiskey Grill will offer a 700-bottle whiskey selection, 150 craft beers and a 200-bottle wine list. It will also feature two separate kitchens to accommodate people with allergies and dietary restrictions, an idea sparked by Adler’s wife. “My wife has suffered from severe food allergies for her entire life and has never been able to comfortably dine out — and she’s not alone,” Adler said in a statement. “I’m driven to create a safe environment for an dietary concern, choice or not.”

Adler also adds that he plans to be out front at the Big Whiskey Grill. “I won’t be in the back behind a purple rope holding court,” he says. “I’ll be behind the bar serving up the gold.”

Lamb of God has been largely on hiatus since singer Randy Blythe was accused in the Czech Republic of being criminally liable for the death of a fan who had died after sustaining a head injury during the band’s show in Prague. Blythe was acquitted of criminal liability in the incident in March 2013. In January, he announced on Instagram that he would not be “thinking about Lamb of God, touring, playing heavy metal, writing new Lamb of God material…for a good long while.”


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