ELEGANT WEAPONS Feat. JUDAS PRIEST, PANTERA And RAINBOW Members: First European Shows Announced

ELEGANT WEAPONSthe new band featuring guitarist Richie Faulkner (JUDAS PRIEST), bassist Rex Brown (PANTERA, DOWN), drummer Scott Travis (JUDAS PRIEST) and singer Ronnie Romero (RAINBOW, MSG), has announced the following spring/summer 2023 European festival appearances so far:

June 16 – Clisson, France @ Hellfest
July 02 – Bologna, Italy @ The Return Of The Gods

ELEGANT WEAPONS‘ debut album, “Horns For A Halo”was produced by Andy Sneap and will arrive in spring 2023 via Nuclear Blast Records.

When ELEGANT WEAPONSdeal with Nuclear Blast was first announced last October, Faulkner said in a statement: “It’s exciting to be part of a label like Nuclear Blast that has such a rich history and level of respect among fans and the music industry. Monte Conner [Nuclear Blast VP A&R] knows Andy Sneap well, and Andy has always held Monte and label in very high regard. Monte has loved the record since the very early demo stages. It’s very valuable and important to me that the label I sign with understands and connects with the music. This record represents for me more of my DNA as a guitar player and a songwriter. Heavy, but moving slightly outside the realms of ‘heavy metal.’ Those roots are obvious, but I wanted to reach in a bit and see what else came out that wasn’t necessarily ‘expected’.”

Conner added: “I am such a huge fan of all the players involved, especially Richie. As a diehard PRIEST fan, I have enjoyed watching help breathe new life into the band and add to their incredible story and legacy. What an amazing player he is. People always focus on leads, and of course Richie is a master in that department, but I can listen to him play rhythm guitar all day long! His rhythm playing is just so tasteful and magical. I can’t wait for fans to hear this album and discover how multi-faceted he is.”

According to the guitarist, ELEGANT WEAPONS features his “dream lineup.” “I’ve always wanted to make a record with Scott outside of PRIEST. Add to that Rex Brown‘s unmistakable tone and attitude is something special. Having those guys as the rhythm section is a guitar player’s dream. The icing on the cake was Ronnie Romero. One of the new breed of instantly classic vocalists, Ronnie brought a character and a swagger to the songs that is instantly iconic, making these songs his own.”

As for the music, Richie described it as “a mix of Jimi Hendrix, PRIEST, [BLACK] SABBATHsolo Ozzy [Osbourne] and BLACK LABEL SOCIETY — heavy, catchy, and with melody. Sort of old school and modern at once if that makes any sense, and actually down-tuned a whole step. The Marshall Plexi basically does one thing, but you’ve got to crank it to 11 for it to have that distorted sound. It hasn’t got a lot of bells and whistles on it or different channels and effects. It basically does one thing and does it very well. But again down-tuning creates more of a modern sound, and by using the classic sound of the Marshall Plexi, you get that juxtaposition, that contrast. All told, there are a lot of guitar solos and the songs are on the heavier side. And even though there’s a lot of melody, it’s still going to shake your bones.”

Specific to the songs, Richie explained that “Me and acoustic don’t really get along, so there’s only one mellow song on it, a sort of smoky, haunted, New Orleans kind of tune called ‘Ghost Of You’, with de-tuned 1920s piano on it. That one is about a memory, or the ghost of a lost love. But that’s about as acoustic as it gets. I’m not really attracted to acoustic guitar in general. It’s mainly kind of heavy and full-on, really. There’s a song called ‘White Horse’plus ‘Horns For A Halo’which is like Tony Iommi crossed with ALICE IN CHAINS. That’s about the way we justify the bad things we do. When we turn on ‘Judgment Day’will the angels kind of confuse our horns for halos, if you know what I mean.”

Photo credit below: Claudio Bergamin

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