Fans that have seen Metal Church live at their recent shows in the United States, UK and Europe may have noticed a new face on stage. The guy behind the kit has been none other than Stet Howland (ex-WASP) and now that transitionary process is complete, Metal Church are happy to announce the addition of Stet Howland as the band’s permanent new drummer!
Vocalist Mike Howe commented:
“I am overwhelmed and grateful that Stet has found his way into the fold and I look forward to many successful and joyful performances together.”
Guitarist Kurdt Vanderhoof added:
“We are extremely happy to have Stet as our new engine. He is a fantastic drummer and a great guy to work with. But the hazing shall continue relentlessly!”
Stet Howland shares his excitement about joining Metal Church:
“After being home for only a few days from possibly the best tour of my life, I received a conference call from Kurdt and Mike, for a split second I thought to myself ‘Oh shit, what did I do?’ But my concern quickly turned to an un-removable smile when they asked if I would be interested in being a permanent member of Metal Church.
It’s no secret that Metal Church have always been one of my favourite metal bands and that, in my opinion, they are on the strongest ascent of any band in their genre! And given that the band kicks ass live, has an incredible record label, a rabid fan base, relevant new music, recent Billboard chart positions and first week CD sales that rival multi-platinum acts, my answer was an unwavering “YES”!
On my maiden journey I was blown away by Mike Howe’s consistent crowd destruction, Kurdt’s ridiculously heavy riffs, Rick Van Zandt’s refusal to make even one mistake and my glue-like bond with Steve (it’s a well-known fact that Metal Church bass player Steve Unger is one of my closest friends and it was Steve who initially suggested me to the band).
There is understanding, mutual respect and camaraderie present here that is missing in so many “famous” acts. I am honoured to be a member of such a group of people and will do my best to deliver strong performances both live and in the studio.”
METAL CHURCH – Summer shows 2017:
1st Aug (NO) Oslo – Sentrum Scene (w/ MEGADETH)
2nd Aug (DK) Copenhagen – Store Vega (w/ MEGADETH)
4th Aug (CH) Zurich – Dynamo (w/ GONOREAS, BURNING WITCHES)
5th Aug (FR) Saint-Maurice-De-Gourdans – Sylak Open Air
6th Aug (IT) Cusano Milanino – Blues Rose Fest Open Air
8th Aug (SK) Bratislava – Majestic Music Club
9th Aug (CZ) Jaromer – Brutal Assault
10th Aug (DE) Nuremberg – Hirsch
11th Aug (NL) Leeuwarden – Into the Grave
12th Aug (PL) Vagos – Vagos Metal Fest
7th Sept (USA) Atlanta, GA – ProgPower USA XVIII
Metal Church’s latest album and 11th studio release XI was released in March 2016, and it marked the return of legendary vocalist and front man Mike Howe!
‘XI’ was produced by Kurdt Vanderhoof and co-produced by Chris ‘The Wizard’ Collier.
Worship Metal’s Review of XI:
With XI, the classic Metal Church sound was back, fronted once again by the leather-lunged Mike Howe and powered by those instantly recognisable power/thrash riffs of Kurdt Vanderhoof.
Harnessing the blue-collar mentality that prevailed through their finer works, XI proved to be a worthy companion to The Human Factor and Hanging In The Balance and looks to have reset the Metal Church clock back to year dot.
This beloved band has a real future again and if Mike Howe’s timeless vocals remain at the helm, there may very well be a lot more to come from these thrash pioneers!
You need to hear: “Killing Your Time”, a chugging riff-fest of melody and muscle; Metal Church delivering the goods the old fashioned way!
The reunion between Mike Howe and Metal Church started in July of 2014 when Mike started working with Kurdt Vanderhoof on a side project he was forming with Nigel Glockler from Saxon. Through these initial conversations, Kurdt convinced Mike to ultimately return to Metal Church. The idea was to see if they could recapture some of the magic from the three albums they released in the late 80’s: The Human Factor, Blessing In Disguise and Hanging In The Balance. Out of those sessions, XI was born and captures the sound that made the band fan favourites in the 80‘s and mixes it with a new, invigorated sound for 2016.