Numerous Rock And Metal Guitarists To Take Part In Fundraiser For Jason Becker

Numerous rock and metal guitarists will be teaming up to raise money for legendary guitarist Jason Becker, who has been battling ALS for over 30 years. The fundraiser will take place throughout March and April and it will be hosted by DragonForce‘s Herman Li.

Here’s what the fundraiser will include:

“1) A livestream telethon-style fundraiser on Twitch: special guests will appear on Herman Li’s Twitch channel to play, jam and participate in fan-generated challenges with all money raised going directly to Jason’s medical trust. Over $13,000 has been raised so far. Visit Jasonbecker.com or twitch.tv/hermanli for a full schedule of livestream guests.

2) Artists will donate signed guitars, merch and other rare items which will be sold via a special Reverb shop to benefit Jason. Details to be announced.

3) Three of Jason’s most important guitars will be auctioned off later this year, including the guitars seen on the covers of “Perpetual Burn”, “Speed Metal Symphony” and the original “Numbers” guitar played by Eddie Van Halen. Details to be announced.”

Here’s the musicians that will be taking part:

  • Marty Friedman (ex-Megadeth)
  • Steve Vai
  • Joe Satriani
  • Steve Lukather (Toto)
  • Mark Tremonti (Alter Bridge, Tremonti)
  • John Petrucci (Dream Theater)
  • Kiko Loureiro (Megadeth)
  • Tosin Abasi (Animals As Leaders)
  • Nita Strauss (Alice Cooper)
  • Orianthi
  • Devin Townsend
  • David Ellefson (Megadeth)
  • Michael Angelo Batio
  • Guthrie Govan
  • Tim Henson (Polyphia)
  • Alex Skolnick (Testament)
  • Albert Lee
  • Matt Heafy (Trivium)
  • Zoltan Bathory (Five Finger Death Punch)
  • Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal (Sons Of Apollo, ex-Guns N’ Roses)
  • Satchel (Steel Panther)
  • John 5 (Rob Zombie)
  • Gus G (Firewind)
  • Nili Brosh (The Iron Maidens)
  • Jason Richardson (All That Remains)
  • The Dooo
  • Jared Dines
  • Ola Englund (The Haunted)
  • Steve Terreberry
  • Tyler Larson (Music is Win on YouTube)
  • Cole Rolland
  • Thomas McRocklin
  • Rusty Cooley
  • Mattias IA Eklundh (Freak Kitchen)
  • Sam Totman (DragonForce)
  • Chris Broderick (Act Of Defiance, ex-Megadeth)
  • Lari Basilio
  • Sophie Lloyd
  • Federico Mondelli and Fabiola Bellomo (Frozen Crown)
  • Alex Lee (Holy Grail)
  • Stevie Salas
  • Elliot Easton (The Cars)
  • Mika Tyyska
  • Daniel Dekay (Diemonds)
  • N&M Creation

Li commented:

“I’ve been a huge fan of Jason Becker since I was young, and it’s one of the biggest honors of my life to be able to help organize this tribute and raise money for him. I still have a Jason Becker poster in my studio in London. It’s been very inspiring to see everyone coming together to celebrate Jason.”

Becker added:

“I am so grateful for all the love and support everyone has given to me and my family. As far as selling my guitars being sad, and that I shouldn’t have to do it, I just want you to know that isn’t how I feel. It makes me happy to see others playing my music. I feel good about passing on my guitars, thinking they mean something to others. I can’t play them now, but other folks can. That’s a good thing. And, I want myself and my family not to have to worry about money, if possible. Thank you for all the love, I send it right back to you.”

DragonForce Cancel North American Tour

DragonForce have cancelled their North American tour due to the coronavirus pandemic. The band commented:

“Hey everyone, we will unfortunately be cancelling our upcoming March 2021 dates due to safety concerns in regards to COVID-19. Refunds will be made available at your point of purchase. We will be rebooking an extensive North American run for 2022 when it’s safe to play live concerts again. Stay safe and looking forward to seeing you all on the other side of this!”

DragonForce’s Herman Li Praises Phoebe Bridgers’ Awesome “Saturday Night Live” Performance, Offers To Let Her Smash One Of His $5,000 Guitars

Indie rock artist Phoebe Bridgers was the musical guest on the February 6 episode of “Saturday Night Live” and she finished her set with an epic guitar smash. It was a cool rock and roll moment and something that many artists have engaged in for years, but some idiots chose to complain about it. However, others have praised her performance including Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl and DragonForce’s Herman Li, the latter of which offered to give Bridgers a $5,000 guitar to smash.

Li said the following on his Twitch channel:

“People complain rock and metal music is dead. You can’t do anything crazy and fun anymore. It was cool. People that have never seen the kind of thing go, ‘Oh my gosh you’re destroying something,’ and it’s like, ‘Sorry, it’s part of the show. It’s not really such a big deal. Welcome to the world of music or rock.'”

He went on to say that he also liked her theatrical presentation and stage design, before adding:

“If I’m gonna criticize this, the main problem I have is that the guitar is too cheap. It’s only $500 for that guitar [edit: it’s $85]. Next time she’s gonna smash up a guitar make it a $3,000 guitar”

“I’ll give her one of my $3,000 guitars. You can take one of my signature guitars, smash that up. How about that PRS [points to guitar]? Take that PRS, smash that up, that’s like a $5,000 guitar.”

“Come on, you’re on Saturday Night Live, you can’t be smashing a $500 guitar — too cheap! You got to take it to another level. Smash it up, burn it, make it expensive! Annoy people even more!”

“So, Phoebe if you’re listening to me, if you can watch this video, which obviously no chance you will ever see this video, you’re not watching my Twitch for sure. If you wanna smash up another guitar, let me know, let’s get you a real guitar to smash up. My last guitar sold for $16,000 [for charity], so maybe one of those.”

He also advised her to destroy more things:

“She should’ve smashed more stuff up. Smash some of the mics up, go more full out — smash an amp. It sounds better when you smash an amp up, it’s more fun. You’re smashing a monitor — it doesn’t do enough.”

He then concluded with his approval of the performance:

“It’s a thumb up from me and everyone else is probably going to hate me now who were complaining about it. They’ll probably go, ‘Oh my god, Herman’s full of shit, he has no idea what he’s talking about.’ But that’s my take on it.”

[via Loudwire]

Watch DragonForce, Animals As Leaders, & Polyphia Members Perform “Through The Fire And Flames”

DragonForce guitarist Herman Li and bassist Alicia Vigil recently performed “Through The Fire And Flames“ with Animals As Leaders guitarist Tosin Abasi and Polyphia guitarist Tim Henson as part of “RazerCon.” You can see footage of that below:

[via The PRP]

Music From DragonForce, Helloween, Sebastian Bach, Etc. To Be Featured On “Heavy Metal” Pinball Machine

As previously reported, Stern Pinball, Inc. will be releasing a limited edition pinball machine based on Heavy Metal magazine later this year. The soundtrack for that game has since been revealed and it can be found below along with a new teaser video:

Soundtrack:

01. “Veteran Of The Psychic Wars” – Blue Öyster Cult
02. “Takin A Ride (Heavy Metal)” – Soundswitch
03. “World Of Fantasy” – Helloween
04. “Cosmic Power Of The Infinite Shred Machine” – DragonForce
05. “Heavy Metal” – Justice
06. “Midnight Flyer” – The Night Flight Orchestra
07. “I Must Be Dreamin'” – Cheap Trick
08. “Heavy Metal” – Sebastian Bach (feat. Brendon Small)
09. “At The Edge Of Time” – Blind Guardian
10. “Space Police” – Edguy
11. “Sky Is Mine” – Amorphis
12. “Lightyears From Home” – Primal Fear

The machine can be pre-ordered HERE and a description of it can be found below:

“The Heavy Metal pinball machine commemorates the 300th issue of Heavy Metal, which has been running since 1977 and inspired the 1981 animated movie of the same name. An exclusive variant cover edition of issue 300 will be included with every machine.

The original art created for the Heavy Metal pinball machine art pays tribute to characters and worlds from the magazine’s storied history. New additions from its upcoming publications join this shared universe for the first time. Gameplay revolves around the warrior heroine, Taarna and the undead tailgunner, Nelson. Both, will speak for the first time ever, supporting the in-game narrative.

EXCLUSIVE HEAVY METAL SOUNDTRACK! Featuring Sebastian Bach, Blue Oyster Cult, Cheap Trick, Brendon Small, and more.

Original hand drawn Heavy Metal artwork
Exclusive custom painted heavy Metal Action Figures
DMD display
Commercial Quality
Coin Operated
First ever Chameleon paint armor kit
Technical Specifications :
LED LIGHTING
2 STEEL RAMPS AND RAILS
PASSIVE TWO BALL LOCK
3 POP BUMPERS
OPTO SPINNER
3 DROP TARGETS
Dimensions :
Boxed -H: 56” D: 31” W: 31” Weight 280 LBS.
Unboxed – H: 75.5” D: 55” W: 27” Weight 250 LBS.”

Herman Li Says DragonForce Are “Almost Finished” Writing Their New Album

It looks like DragonForce are almost done with the writing process for their new album. Herman Li confirmed the news during an appearance on Nuclear Blast’s “Saturday Night Lockdown.”

Li said the following:

“We played our first show [in support of our eighth full-length LP, ‘Extreme Power Metal’] on the album release date [last September], which was on TwitchCon, which is a Twitch convention. And we got that streamed to, like, 1.7 million people. Everything started out great — it was awesome. We had a sold-out tour happening. Everything was going well. We were gonna film a music video for every single DRAGONFORCE song on the album, and we got halfway through it, and COVID-19 happened. So the tour stopped. And some videos, we can’t complete them. We filmed all of it, but we need some more footage. So we’ve got videos on hold now. And instead, we’re writing a new album. Why not? Just like everybody — you just write a new album when you’re sitting at home. And strangely enough, it’s almost finished. [Laughs]”

He also added:

“The way DRAGONFORCE work is the only time you can write is when you’re not touring. So if we don’t write something now and work on something now, we can never finish it, because the touring starts next March at the moment. I looked at my dates and [went], ‘When is this gonna stop?’ And I kind of thought, ‘Well, is it really gonna start next March?’ Depending on the country. So, it’s, like, we’ve gotta get this album recorded — most of it — before the touring starts. You basically have to finish it before the touring starts — that’s my view. That’s only possible, obviously, if you can record yourself, and we always record most of the album ourselves.”

[via Blabbermouth]

DragonForce Announce Rescheduled U.S. Dates

DragonForce have officially announced the rescheduled dates for their U.S. tour. The trek is now scheduled to take place in March 2021. Here’s the dates:

03/12 Brooklyn, NY – Warsaw
03/13 Worcester, MA – The Palladium
03/19 Detroit, MI – St. Andrews Hall
03/20 Pittsburgh, PA – Roxian Theatre
03/21 Cleveland, OH – Agora Theater
03/23 Chicago, IL – House Of Blues
03/24 St. Louis, MO – Red Flag
03/26 Minneapolis, MN – First Avenue

DragonForce Working On New Music

Since virtually everyone is stuck at home right now due to the coronavirus pandemic, DragonForce are using their time to work on new music. Herman Li confirmed the news during a recent interview with Ultimate Guitar.

Li said the following:

“We were originally not planning to work on any new songs. I was supposed to still be on tour right now. But we actually started writing new songs already. You have to take that time away to write new songs. Now that we’ve been sort of forced away, we’ve started to write new songs together. So we’re already working on songs for a new album which isn’t going to be out for ages.”

He also added that he doesn’t mind the current downtime:

“I’ll be honest with you, the virus has not been a good thing, but I’m happy this has happened in a really strange way. Don’t take it the wrong way, but it’s like, given me a moment of breathing space to be at home.

I have so many things to do and I couldn’t do it — I had no time to do it between touring. Now the world seems to have slowed down for a moment and it has given me time to catch up on stuff.

I don’t know if people can relate to it but I am living in Los Angeles right now, as opposed to living in Europe. Everything is a bit slower in Europe, you have more time to relax and vacation and it feels like you have more downtime to yourself. Being in the U.S., you don’t really get that. It’s kind of slowed down altogether and people are coming together. It reminds me of living back in Europe.”

DragonForce Postpone Remaining U.S. Dates

DragonForce have postponed the remaining shows on their U.S. tour with Unleash The Archers and Visions Of Atlantis due to the coronavirus pandemic. Rescheduled dates are expected to be announced soon.

DragonForce Drummer Gee Anzalone To Miss U.S. Tour Due To Health Issues

DragonForce drummer Gee Anzalone will be missing the band’s U.S. tour after being hospitalized for Myocarditis. Aquiles Priester (ex-Angra, etc.) will be filling in.

The band commented:

“Everyone please send Gee a get well message!

DragonForce are sad to announce that drummer Gee Anzalone will not be performing on the upcoming US tour. Gee has been hospitalised for Myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart muscle. Virtuoso drummer Aquiles Priester (Angra, Tony MacAlpine) will perform on the upcoming Dragonforce US Tour while Gee recovers.”

Guitarist Herman Li added:

“We will miss our brother Gee on the upcoming US tour, but health is most important. We wish Gee a speedy recovery and we know he will be back on tour with us soon. We want to thank our friend Aquiles for stepping up and helping us out on short notice.”