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Metalocalypse's animated Dethklok straddles line between reality and fantasy

for Journal Register Newspapers

Posted: Saturday, November 10, 2012

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A fictional, animated, virtual band seems like the kind of idea that can pull off one album. But Dethklok -- the heavy metal band created by Brendon Small and Tommy Blacha for Adult Swim's "Metalocalypse" program, released its third last month, which Small says is as satisfying as it is surprising.

"It's what you want out of a job, isn't it? You want it to have a little bit of a life to it," says Small, 37, who writes and produces Dethklok's material and also leads the live incarnation of the group. "TV is so different than music, two totally different things. In music, if you have your own band, it's yours forever; you can't cancel AC/DC, but a TV show can be canceled.

"So it's nice that people buy these (Dethklok) records...And the TV show performs really well and the network likes it, so when we talk about the future it's not like we're walking on egg shells, waiting to be canceled. If anything the TV show fuels the music right now."

Small and the rest of the Dethklok team have been busy putting together the new live show to support "Dethalbum III," and they've tweaked it after a planned run with Lamb of God was canceled due to that band's legal issues overseas. Small says there will be fresh animation and videos for the new material to blend with "pre-existing animation for our other songs," as well as comedy sketches for in-between the live performances.

"At the end of the day we can't be a band that shows up and plays songs," Small notes. "We have to have production. We want it to be fun and ridiculous and epic and ride the line between taking itself dead seriously and having the audience take it seriously and also have laughter and silliness be part of it.

"So we get a budget somewhere -- but there's no pryo. That would be fun, but our budget goes into the animation. One day, though (pyro) would be awesome."

Dethklok, Machine head, All That Remains and Black Dahlia Murder perform Saturday, Nov. 10, at the Fillmore Detroit, 2115 Woodward Ave. Doors open at 5 p.m. Tickets are $35-$49.50 with a $101 four-pack. Call 313-961-5450 or visit www.livenation.com.

Web Site: www.livenation.com

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