Metal File: Hard And Heavy News On Ozzfest, Sick Of It All, Lamb Of God, Halford, Candiria, Motorhead And More

Hey fellow metalists, what's up? How's it been with you this week? Iann Robinson here with a big helping of metal news for you to feast on, all of it very cool.

The big thing for me this week was the Lamb of God record, As the Palaces Burn. This is a bad-ass record that may just crush everything in its wake. LOG take the best aspects of thrash and death metal and combine them into a sonic fury that hits its zenith by creating killer riffs that are also killer hooks — not an easy job.

I also got to check out the new Katatonia album, Viva Emptiness, which is amazing. Building on the new sounds of their last offerings, Katatonia manage to blend prog-rock, metal and goth music perfectly. It's definitely one of the more sonically dense and experimental records I've heard in the world of metal.

My final thing is a bit of a gripe with the band 16. Now we all know 16 are amazing, we all know their take on ultra-violence hardcore is second to nobody, but they have a new album out in Japan called Zoloft Smile, and I've heard some of it. It's really good work, but YOU CAN'T GET IT IN THE STATES. Please 16, if you love us at all, work on getting it out in the U.S. I tried to get it off their Web site, but it jumps you to a site for the Japanese record label releasing the record, and the whole thing is in Japanese making it impossible to order. I beg you 16, unleash the carnage here, for us! Well, that's it, read on, dig the metal news and remember, if you find yourself giving the devil horns to a fellow frat brother during a "kegger," this ain't the page for you!

You won't see the King when the Jailhouse Rock Part 2 Tour kicks off in June, but you can catch hardcore heavyweights Hatebreed, Agnostic Front, Biohazard, Throwdown and relative newcomers Full Blown Chaos. The short East Coast trek will begin June 5th. ... Meanwhile, Hatebreed will hit the studio on April 26 to start recording their next album. ...

Sick of It All will be releasing a new album this summer titled Life on the Ropes. ... Entombed also return this summer. They will release Inferno on August 4. …

Make more room in the Ozzfest parking lot: The Datsuns have been added to the tour's main stage for five dates, while Revolution Smile and Marz have been added to the Ozzfest second stage. ...

The bands behind the Metal Gods 2003 Tour — Halford, Immortal, Primal Fear and Pain Museum — will hit the HMV Superstore in Toronto on Monday for an autograph session. ...

Day-glow greasepaint manufacturers rejoice: Twisted Sister are getting back together for a reunion tour of military bases. The band will hit one Air Force base and two Army bases in South Korea next month for the tour, presented by the USO. ...

When Candiria take the stage at New York's legendary CBGB's on May 5, it will mark the jazz-metal-hardcore band's first appearance since being sidelined by an auto accident nearly eight months ago. The newly reinvigorated band will be joined by Start The End, Locked in a Vacancy and Most Precious Blood. ... Chimaira also returned to the road this week after a minor bus accident that forced the band to cancel a show in Virginia. The band's bus hit a construction barricade outside of Pittsburgh on Monday, and no one was injured in the crash. The band's new album, The Impossibility of Reason, is due on May 13. …

After their stint opening for Motörhead and the Dwarves this month, High on Fire will gear up for a summer headlining tour. ... Speaking of the almighty Motörhead, the band has tapped New York's HavocHate to open its upcoming tour with Anthrax and Erase the Gray. The tour kicks off on May 7 in Norfolk, Virginia. … Elsewhere on the road, Kataklysm will join The Haunted and Shai Hulud on a full North American tour launching in May. …

Dysrhythmia are set to unveil their Relapse Records debut, Pretest, on May 13. The album was produced by noise master Steve Albini (Helmet, Nirvana, Killdozer, Pixies). ...

Poison the Well have decided to call their major-label debut You Come Before You. Converge vocalist Jacob Bannon, who handled the artwork for last year's Tear From the Red, will return to work on the forthcoming album, which is due in stores June 1. ... Meanwhile, Converge's "The Long Road Home" DVD will arrive in stores on May 20. ...

Stoner rock band Stonerwitch have broken up due to "irreconcilable differences". ... Madball return on June 20 when they team up with Most Precious Blood for a tour that runs through July 12. …

Black metal heroes Impaled Nazarene will start work on their eighth album, titled All That You Fear, on July 1. The album will mark the recording debut of new guitarist Tuomo Louhio. ...

Progressive metal masterminds King's X return to record stores on May 20 with Black Like Sunday. For the album, the band dug up 14 songs written in its earliest days (prior to adopting the name King's X) and recorded them recently for the first time. None of the songs have been recorded before.

—Compiled by Iann Robinson, Ryan Downey, Jon Wiederhorn and Robert Mancini