John Finberg, the owner of First Row Talent who worked as a booking agent for Nightwish, Epica, Amorphis, Delain, Amaranthe, Suffocation, Sonata Arctica, Overkill, etc., has been accused of sexual harassment, bullying, racism, sexism, and more. The allegations were shared in a new expose from Metalsucks, which details a number of disturbing incidents involving Finberg. You can read that piece HERE. You can also find statements from various artists, who have taken to social media to distance themselves from Finberg, below:
Amaranthe have premiered a new video for their new song “Strong.” This track features Battle Beast’s Noora Louhimo and it will appear on the band’s new album “Manifest,” which is set to be released on October 2. Amaranthe said the following about the song:
“Devil and saint, martyr and sinner, betrayal and loyalty — ‘Strong’ essentially underlines the dualistic nature of what it means to be human. In an increasingly polarized world, we found it incredibly exciting to reach across the metal world, and find collaboration and unity with the phenomenal Noora Louhimo. Even if the world around you is on fire, and if you find yourself at a disadvantage, remember that there is always one part of you that will remain — ‘Strong’.”
During a recent interview with Finland’s Kaaos TV, Battle Beast’s Noora Louhimo discussed her upcoming solo album. According to her, the effort will feature “soulful blues rock with country influences.”
Louhimo said the following:
“A couple of more songs [need to be] done, [and] then the material is there, and then we are doing the arrangements. For example, I’m going to have some horn sections and real instruments in this album. So this is going to be, music-wise, soulful blues rock with country influences, and I really want to involve here real instruments and really pro musicians. So I’m really excited that I can actually go not just to the roots music-wise but also with the instruments.”
She continued after being asked if it was important to go in a different musical direction than Battle Beast:
“Of course, it’s important. And I really feel like, because I have different sides as a musician, and my roots, as a musician, is in blues music and in soul music, so I really want to show that side also to the audience — that I’m not just about heavy metal, but I want to show the people where I come from. And also I really don’t want to compete with my own band [laughs], because I think it’s really good that people can see different sides of me as a musician and as a person. And in the album, all the lyrics will be about my personal life, so I’m gonna show people myself in a whole new level.”
On another note, Louhimo also confirmed that Battle Beast have started writing material for their next album:
“The songwriting process has already started for the sixth BATTLE BEAST album. And Joona [Björkroth, guitar], Janne [Björkroth, keytar] and Eero [Sipilä, bass], who are primarily the songwriters, they have been doing some stuff. And I’m waiting to get to the demo sessions and see what they have been writing.”
The lineup has been confirmed for the 2021 Hellfest Open Air festival in Clisson, France. The event will take place on June 18-20, 2021 and it will feature a majority of the bands that were previously booked for the scrapped 2020 edition.
Ego Kill Talent
Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes
The Inspector Cluzo
The Great Old Ones
Tremplin Voice Of Hell
At The Gates
Tremplin Voice Of Hell
Youth Of Today
Dog Eat Dog
In Other Climes
Faith No More
Heaven Shall Burn
Fire From The Gods
The Dead Daisies
Flotsam And Jetsam
The Toy Dolls
Reverent Horton Heat
Mono & The Jo Quail Quartet
John Garcia & The Band Of Gold
High On Fire
Me And That Man
System Of A Down
Maximum The Hormone
Regarde Les Hommes Tomber
Devin Townsend (by request set)
Walls Of Jericho
While She Sleeps
Moscow Death Brigade
Life Of Agony
Noora Louhimo (Battle Beast) has been working on her first solo album at JaBa Recording Studios in Hankasalmi, Finland with Samuli Erkkilä. She said the following:
“It takes sleepless nights, hard work for brain and long days to make rock music. Yes, we are at @jaba.studio with my co-writer and co-producer @samylee_erkkila making passionately some magic happen for my first solo album😜 Ps. Cool news to be released in couple of weeks😎🤗 Stay tuned and have a great day! #soloalbum #songwriting #nooralouhimoexperience #noexband #jabastudio #makingof #friends #bro”
Amaranthe have cancelled their North American tour with Battle Beast and Seven Spires due to the coronavirus pandemic. The band issued the following statement:
“While the cancellation of our U.S. tour probably doesn’t come as a surprise to anyone, with the COVID-19 situation being far from over with — it is still really devastating for us. We were massively looking forward to visit U.S. soil again after a three-year absence, and judging from the ticket sales, so were you guys — thank you for the support! Obviously, we will be back as soon as we possibly can, so keep your eyes peeled to our sites, and we will be rocking together again before you know it!!”
Grave Digger have premiered a new video for their new song “Thousand Tears.” This track features Battle Beast’s Noora Louhimo and it will appear on the band’s new album “Fields Of Blood” (out May 29).
Chris Boltendahl commented:
“With ‘Thousand Tears’, we pay homage to the unforgettable Queen of Scotland, Mary Stuart… Noora from Battle Beast gives Queen Mary an incredible, warm and fragile atmosphere through her voice which at the end of the song turns into pure anger and despair. We couldn’t have found a better voice for this song. We are proud to present ‘Thousand Tears’ featuring Noora Louhimo. One of the best ballads Grave Digger has ever written, maybe the best of our entire career.”
“It’s an honor to do a collaboration with the legendary Grave Digger and I’m very intrigued by the Scottish-themed songs they’ve done. Now I will also be part of their historical song ‘Thousand Tears’ as the voice of Queen Mary. I hope all listeners can hear the big emotions and get a little glimpse of her story as one of most powerful women that lived in her time.”
HammerFall have premiered a new video for their new version of “Second To One” featuring Battle Beast’s Noora Louhimo. The original track is from the band’s latest album “Dominion.”
Oscar Dronjak said the following:
“It all started with Joacim [Cans] suggesting we should try to write a song together with our longtime producer James Michael. We went over to Los Angeles for a weekend, not knowing what to expect. Within the first 30 minutes, I played an idea I had for James. He immediately responded with some chords and melodies, and we took it from there. Together, we wrote the music in just a couple of hours and met the next day to just finalize all the details. That’s how fast it can go sometimes when you get a feeling for something and the snowball just starts rolling, and it’s the greatest feeling in the world. The ‘hit-or-miss’ weekend in this case definitely turned out as a hit.”
“Already during the writing process, I had the feeling this song would be perfect as a duet — a sort of modern ‘Ozzy and Lita Ford.’ I have had my eye on Battle Beast and Noora Louhimo for quite some time and was blown away by her vocal skills and stage presence. I had a feeling our voices would be a perfect match. When we decided to make the duet idea reality, I just picked up the phone and called Noora who instantly said, ‘Hell yeah!’ Working with Noora was nothing but awesome and we bonded the second we met. Not only is she an extremely talented vocalist, she is also a fantastic human being. The great connection between Noora and I really shows in the video clip for the song.”
Louhimo also commented:
“I was contacted by Joacim and asked if I wanted to do a duet with him on ‘Second To One’. My first thought was ‘what an honor’ and that I needed to listen to this song to make my final decision. Once I heard it, I knew it was going to be something special and agreed on the collaboration. I flew to Gothenburg for the sessions and even though I hadn’t met Joacim or the others from HammerFall before, it felt very natural and easy to work with them. I also agree with Joacim that we hit it off right away and you can see that in the music video how comfortable things were between us. I am so excited to be part of this and to go on tour with them with Battle Beast in the end of January.”
The lineup has been revealed for the 2020 Hellfest Open Air Festival. The event will be held in Clisson, France on June 19-21 and the daily stage lineups can be found below.
Mainstage 01: Deftones, Incubus, Opeth, Leprous, Ego Kill Talent, Soen, and Frog Leap
Mainstage 02: Volbeat, The Offspring, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, The Inspector Cluzo, Ghostemane, Danko Jones, The Wildhearts, and Laura Cox.
Altar Stage: Obituary, Death DTA, At The Gates, Entombed A.D., Grave, Unleashed, Cadaver, Necrowretch, and Tremplin Voice Of Hell.
Temple Stage: Mayhem, Abbath, Rotting Christ, Primordial, The Great Old Ones, Seth, Mephorash, Numen, and Tremplin Voice Of Hell.
Valley Stage: Electric Wizard, Baroness, OM, Witchcraft, Black Mountain, Elder, ASG, Greenleaf, and Ecstatic Vision.
Warzone Stage: Body Count, Suicidal Tendencies, Powerflo, Youth Of Today, Dog Eat Dog, Slapshot, Jesus Piece, Higher Power, and In Other Climes.
Mainstage 01: Faith No More, Infectious Grooves, Alter Bridge, Heaven Shall Burn, Thy Art Is Murder, Crystal Lake, and Fire From The Gods.
Mainstage 02: Deep Purple, Airbourne, Steel Panther, Alestorm, The Darkness, Last In Line, L7, The Dead Daises, and Galactic Empire.
Altar Stage: Sepultura, Sacred Reich, Flotsam And Jetsam, Exciter, Loudblast, Xentrix, Rectal Smegma, Brutal Sphincter, and Karras.
Temple Stage: Wardruna, The Hu, Ensiferum, Taake, Kamppfar, Einjerjer, Helheim, Aktarium, and Artus.
Valley Stage: Envy, Mono & The Jo Quail Quartet, John Garcia & The Band Of Gold, High On Fire, Pelican, Me And That Man, The Picturebooks, Duel, and Point Mort.
Warzone Stage: Social Distortion, The Toy Dolls, Agnostic Front, Reverent Horton Heat, Anti-Flag, Frustration, Guerilla Poubelle, Lion’s Law, and Grade 2.
Mainstage 01: System Of A Down, Korn, Maximum The Hormone, BABYMETAL, Jinjer, Lacuna Coil, Kontrust, and Deadly Apples.
Mainstage 02: Judas Priest, Running Wild, Down, Michael Schenker, Doro, Delain, Sortilege, Battle Beast, and Tempt.
Altar Stage: Devin Townsend, Meshuggah, The Black Dahlia Murder, Periphery, Dying Fetus, Misery Index, Ingested, Dyscarnate, and Exocrine.
Temple Stage: Watain, Alcest, Belzebubs, Borknagar, Gaahls Wyrd, Regarde Les Hommes Tomber, Numenorean, Penitence Onirique, and Deliverance.
Valley Stage: Killing Joke, Perturbator, Life Of Agony, 3TEETH, Hangman’s Chair, Twin Temple, Inter Arma, Lysistrata, and Abrahma.
Warzone Stage: Walls Of Jericho, August Burns Red, While She Sleeps, Lionheart, Rotting Out, Landmarks, Moscow Death Brigade, and Wolfpack.
The lineup has been revealed for the 2020 Graspop Metal Meeting festival. The event will take place in Dessel, Belgium on June 18-21 and it will feature: Airbourne, Alcest, Alestorm, Alter Bridge, Amorphis, Anathema, Anti-Flag, August Burns Red, Babymetal, Battle Beast, Beyond The Black, Body Count, Boston Manor, Bury Tomorrow, Chelsea Grin, Creeper, Deep Purple, Deez Nuts, Deftones, Dimmu Borgir, Disillusion, Disturbed, Dog Eat Dog, Dool, Down, Dream State, Dying Fetus, Enter Shikari, Exciter, Fields Of The Nephilim, Foreigner, Fu Manchu, Gaahls Wyrd, Good Riddance, Heathen, Heaven Shall Burn, High On Fire, In Extremo, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Kadavar, Killing Joke, Killswitch Engage, Korn, Lagwagon, M.O.D., Mayhem, Me And That Man, Mercyful Fate, Mispyrming, Motionless In White, My Dying Bride, Naglfar, Obituary, Of Mice & Men, Opeth, Our Survival Depends On Us, P.O.D., Paradise Lost, Powerflo, Powerwolf, Sacred Reich, Sepultura, Shvpes, Silverstein, Slapshot, Soen, Steel Panther, The Great Old Ones, The Offspring, The Vintage Caravan, Thunder, Tribulation, Vltimas, Wayward Sons, and Wednesday 13.