The Definitive Rock N’ Roll Queen: One-On-One With Lita Ford

By Andrew Bansal

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One of the most recognizable, admirable and respected rock n’ roll personalities, not only amongst women but in the world of hard rock and heavy metal as a whole, Los Angeles-based guitarist, singer and songwriter Lita Ford is still going strong after four decades in the business, and has proven herself as nothing short of a living legend. She did not let her role in the well-documented and extremely shortlived mid-70s all-girl band The Runaways be her only claim to fame, and carved out a successful solo career for herself over the past 30 years. Earlier this year, Ford released a throwback album called ‘Time Capsule’, a collection of tracks made from old demos and recorded fresh with high-profile guest musicians. 2016 also saw the release of her colorfully entertaining autobiography ‘Living Like A Runaway’. She has been touring actively, and now, besides working on new original music, she prepares to take part in the Sirius XM Hair Nation Festival at Irvine Meadows on September 17th. She was one of the judges for the ‘Battle For Hair Nation’ BOTB event at the Whisky-A-Go-Go last Wednesday August 17th, but before doing that, she spent some time at the Rainbow Bar & Grill with the press folk. She was much smarter than any of the other musicians and personalities being interviewed, as she secured her own booth in the cozy indoors of the Rainbow. Metal Assault sat down with her for a one-on-one conversation about a range of topics, aside from Hair Nation. Enjoy the chat below. Continue reading

Interviewing The Interviewer: Eddie Trunk Discusses Hair Nation, Veteran Rockers, ‘That Metal Show’ & More

By Andrew Bansal

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TV, radio and internet personality Eddie Trunk has been anchoring heavy metal talk shows and interviewing bands for over 30 years, best known for ‘That Metal Show’ which ran on VH1 Classic for as many as 14 seasons. The show was put on hold by the network earlier this year, but Trunk and his co-hosts Don Jamieson and Jim Florentine have brought a live stand-up version of ‘That Metal Show’ across stages in America. But besides that and his radio shows/podcasts, Eddie Trunk also hosts several hard rock/heavy metal concerts, festivals and cruises. He will be hosting the Sirius XM Hair Nation Festival at Irvine Meadows on September 17th 2016, and last Wednesday August 17th, he not only hosted and judged the ‘Battle For Hair Nation’ BOTB event at the Whisky-A-Go-Go, but before the show he was also at the Rainbow Bar & Grill to discuss his participation in the festival, among other things. Metal Assault caught up with Trunk for a brief chat about the state of the ‘hair metal’ genre, his picks for the best old rockers still standing, and more. Enjoy the conversation below. Continue reading

Talent Unbound: Catching Up With 18-Year Old Metal Singing Prodigy Gabbie Rae

By Andrew Bansal

Photo by Carsten Steinhausen

Photo by Carsten Steinhausen

Unlike the days of metal legends like Dickinson, Halford and Dio making their mark as singers in the early years of their respective bands, it’s extremely rare to come across pure young singing talent in heavy metal in the modern era. Enter 18-year old Los Angeles-based Gabbie Rae. Inspired by the likes of Ronnie James Dio, Gabbie Rae has already established herself as an unbeatable, unmissable metal voice, opening shows for bands like Queensrÿche, Europe, Dio Disciples and many others, as well as appearing on festivals and concert cruises. Fronting her eponymous five-piece band and mainly performing hard rock/heavy metal covers with jaw-dropping perfection, she also throws in an original tune or two, and is now hard at work on a full-length album showcasing her own music. Gabbie Rae is part of the Sirius XM Hair Nation festival set to take place at Irvine Meadows on September 17th 2016, and was at the Rainbow Bar & Grill in West Hollywood last Wednesday August 17th to talk to journalists about the festival and more. Metal Assault caught up with her for a brief and precise conversation. Enjoy it below, and be on the lookout for much more from Gabbie Rae in the near and distant future. Continue reading

In Conversation With Black Crown Initiate Guitarist/Vocalist Andy Thomas

Interview by Jason Williams

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Reading, Pennsylvania progressive/technical extreme metal quintet Black Crown Initiate released their second full-length album ‘Selves We Cannot Forgive’ via EOne Music in July 2016, and to coincide with the release, embarked on a North American tour supporting Australian band Ne Obliviscaris, a four-week run of dates they concluded with a show at Chain Reaction in Anaheim, CA on August 13th. Black Crown Initiate have grown increasingly impressive as songwriters and performers in their genre, and gaining new fans every time they step on a stage, they are fast emerging as a band extreme metal fans should add to their knowledge base. At the Anaheim show, our writer Jason Williams caught up with guitarist/clean vocalist Andy Thomas for a chat about the tour, the new album and lots more. Enjoy the conversation below, along with a taste of the new music. Continue reading

Beast From The East: Indian Band SystemHouse33 Looks Back On First Ever U.S. Tour

By Andrew Bansal

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Hailing from Mumbai, India, death/thrash band SystemHouse33 followed up their adventures in Europe in 2015 and recently completed their first ever U.S. run of shows, as successful participants in this year’s Metal Alliance package tour featuring headliners Dying Fetus and support acts The Acacia Strain, Jungle Rot and Black Crown Initiate. SystemHouse33 played the last 17 shows of the eight-week tour, and garnered a positive response from extreme metal hungry audiences across the States. Besides, the band also released their fifth full-length studio album ‘Regression’ independently in January 2016. Vocalist Samron Jude spoke to Metal Assault to reflect on the Metal Alliance tour, discuss the new album, future plans and other things. Enjoy the conversation below. Continue reading

Lovely Sort Of Goth Metal: Bloody Hammers Mainman Discusses New Album

By Andrew Bansal

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Based out of Charlotte, North Carolina, Bloody Hammers is a goth/stoner/doom metal quartet led by bassist, vocalist and principal songwriter Anders Manga, and the band’s lineup also includes his wife Devallia on the organ and piano. Having started out in 2012 and still very young in their career, Bloody Hammers have already put out three full-length albums, and are now ready to unveil their fourth LP ‘Lovely Sort Of Death’, slated for an August 5th 2016 release via Napalm Records. The band’s newest effort presents gothic elements in a manner very few other bands have. The discernibly ‘European’ sound, the tone and the atmosphere of this set of tunes is something metalheads would, in all probability, readily appreciate, and with this release, Bloody Hammers are staking their claim as frontrunners in establishing goth metal as a desirable musical genre for listeners. On July 28th, Metal Assault spoke to Anders Manga to discuss the album and more. Enjoy the conversation below. Continue reading