SHADOWS FALL drummer Jason Bittner has issued the following update:
“As some of you may know, last week I had one of my longtime dreams come true when I was asked to fill in for Charlie Benante and ANTHRAX for the last two shows of their tour! Charlie and his wife Sandra were expecting their first child (initially due Feb. 14) and lo and behold, two weeks ago on the 18th her water broke!!!! Obviously Charlie was on the first plane back to Chicago… meanwhile giving me the phone call of a lifetime! ‘Hey dude, can you do me a favor?’ DUHHHHH!!! Does a bear shit in the woods?? So anyhow, at this point I was in San Diego on my way to Anaheim for the NAMM show… I talked with Scott (Ian) he gave me a setlist (most of which I’d been playing in my basement since 1987)… and then he and Frankie (Bello) came to Anaheim to get together for our one rehearsal! Talk about pressure! The next day I did my NAMM signings and then my wife and I hopped on a plane to San Francisco for the first show. I got to the gig literally 90 minutes prior to going on stage. Went and moved a few little things on Charlie‘s kit (I wanted to keep it as ANTHRAX as possible), warmed up, and it was showtime!! From the moment I heard the intro to ‘Among the Living’, I was literally shaking… Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, this was an OUTSIDE gig!!! 50 degrees in January! Whose brilliant idea was that?? But I was still shaking from my nerves… something that Frankie helped me calm by feeding me shots of Crown during the show!!
“So a few mistakes here and there, nothing TOO dramatic (thankfully), but we made it through, and it rocked!!! Everyone had a great time. It was also good to share the night in San Francisco with my good friends in GOD FORBID, SWORN ENEMY, and SOILENT GREEN!! They all definitely helped me with the moral support!!! And for all you SHAD DVD owners… our good friend ‘Sweetdick’ Willie Gee was also teching for ANTHRAX, and I always love giving him shit!!!! CRAP!!!! CRAP!!! (For those of you who don’t know, go out and pick up a copy of our DVD ‘The Art of Touring’ on Century Media!!)
“So then we hopped on the busí¢äå_ Jeez I really didn’t think I was gonna be back in a bus THIS SOON!!!! And were off to Los Angeles. All of us had signings at NAMM on Saturday, I got to the gig around 5, checked over the kit, and was ready to go. I was a LOT more relaxed for this show considering we had already gotten one out of the way…. but just in case… Frankie still made sure with that bottle of Crown again!!! This time the show was amazing… the little mistakes I made the night before were gone, and we totally crushed it… sold out, 3000 people… so many of my friends there to route me on… Paul Bostaph, John Tempesta, my web guy Ray, Chad Lee, Roy Mayorga, Yael, Dino, and most importantly my own bandmate Paul Romanko!!
“So it was back to NAMM the next day… EXHAUSTED!!! I think I’m still recuperating! But it was an experience I will NEVER forget!!
“Okay, so on to the SHAD… As of late, we’ve been putting the finishing touches on ‘Fallout from the War’ (full details on this record coming soon) which will be released on Century Media in the spring sometime!! It’s coming out awesome, and we’re pretty psyched about it. We just went down to NYC to freeze our asses off at an OUTDOOR photo shoot with Bryan Helm for this record. On top of a rooftop in JANUARY 2 blocks from the East River!!! If we look like we’re freezing í¢äåäó we were!!
“In other news, we have begun the writing process for the next full-length album for Atlantic Records and we have almost two songs completed… slow and steady wins the race!!! Next week we head back out to L.A. for the Grammys… Should be interesting… SOURCE: BLABBERMOUTH.NET