Things That Rocked In 2011
Before we can ring in 2012, we must take a look back at events that shaped 2011 into a resurgence for the hard rock and heavy metal world. Here is a list of some of the things that helped make for a rockin' 2011.
Sometimes you can do nothing and still be a major news story. No one did that better this year than Van Halen. Speculation grew rampant throughout the year about what was going on with the reformation of the band. A new album? Pushed back. A possible tour? Nope. Rumors of a big announcement at the Grammy nominations show? Didn't happen. The rumors flew fast & furious but it was not until this past week that the band made the big announcement that their first album with Diamond David Lee Roth on vocals, their first since the legendary 1984, will be out early in 2012 with a subsequent tour to follow.
We were graced with some amazing tours this year. From Guns & Roses, to Judas Priest and of course, the Big 4.
Axl Rose made his triumphant return with Guns & Roses and has been nothing short of amazing. At least this time around Axl was nice enough to warn people that the majority of the shows that Guns would not be taking the stage until 11pm or so. It is heavy metal after all, folks.
Judas Priest was another band that hit the road in 2011 on their Epitaph Tour. Although they may have added a new piece to the puzzle in guitarist Richie Faulkner, they didn't miss a beat. This may be the band's farewell tour but the Metal Gods proved that they still have what it takes to rock the crowd.
Possibly the biggest shows of 2011 only happened twice. The Big 4, consisting of Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer & Anthrax, rocked the East & West coast. The first show took place in April in Indio, California and then the second took place at Yankees Stadium in September. The masters of trash metal took the stage together and did not disappoint with every heading banging electrifying moment during these two special shows.
There were some fantastic books that rocked the shelves this year. From Corey Taylor's deep look into his life and what really constitutes a 'sin' in 'Seven Deadly Sins' to Ozzy's 2nd book, 'Trust Me, I'm Dr Ozzy', we had our share of deep thinking as well as advice from the Lord of Darkness.
2011 also gave us a few amazing autobiographies including 'It's So Easy and Other Lies' from former Guns 'n Roses member Duff McKagan, 'Iron Man' from Black Sabbath's Tony Iommi and 'No Regrets' from former Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley. Each autobiography gave us an in depth look into three of the more talented (and sometimes notorious) musicians in the hard rock/heavy metal world.
What would 2011 have been without the mega announcement on 11/11/11 at 11:11am, that the Godfathers of Heavy Metal, Black Sabbath will be reuniting for a new album and tour in 2012? The band went back to their roots, announcing their reunion plans at the venue where they played their first ever US gig, the famed 'Whisky A Go Go' in Los Angeles, CA
2011 brought a host of great new albums by some of our favorite artists including a new album from legendary frontman Sebastian Bach with 'Kicking & Screaming.' Showing that they aren't a 'one-album-wonder' super rockers Chickenfoot put out their 2nd project entitled 'Chickenfoot III.' The best new music this year from the hard rock/heavy metal world may have very well come from the head banging thrashers Anthrax, with their new album 'Worship Music.' With former lead singer Joey Belladonna back in the fold, the band recaptured their sound that made them one of the best thrash band of the 80's
Forget the Royal wedding. The most eligible bachelor and rock royalty, Gene Simmons finally tied the knot with his long time girlfriend, Shannon Tweed. Prince William and Kate Middleton couldn't hold a candle to these two.