With Steve Hunter, one of rock's great guitarists, added to the band's line-up of guitarists Damon Johnson and Tommy Henriksen, bassist Chuck Garric, and drummer Glen Sobel, Alice Cooper has been tearing up festivals across Europe and is on a roll. Last week, he was honoured with the Kerrang! Icon Award, this week he hosted Metal Hammer's Golden Gods and announced the UK October tour, extending his reign of terror to Sheffield, Bristol, Birmingham, London's Alexandra Palace, Manchester and Glasgow.
But the insatiable Alice wants more. In London, he is calling together the spectacular ghouls, depraved weirdos and the hottest fire starters. Last year, Alice took on the role of a sadistic Simon Cowell by judging the auditions for freaks who shocked and grossed out the fans in equal measure. This year, he is hunting down spectacular fire acts and VERY bizarre performance artists to bring that hellishly warm glow to the night. "It takes a lot to shock me," says Alice, "But last year even my stomach was churning, Britain really has got freaks. That's what's Halloween is all about. It's my favourite time of the year, bring on the gore!"
New album Welcome 2 My Nightmare, the sequel to 1975's classic Welcome To My Nightmare will be released prior to the gigs in September. Once again produced with Bob Ezrin, it will feature in the new shows. The original spawned a worldwide, full theatrical tour so expect Alice's comic book cruelty to be taken up a notch.
Alice Cooper has paved the way for many artists throughout his career, without him there may never have been the NY Dolls, KISS, Marilyn Manson, Nine Inch Nails, Motley Crue, Slipknot or Rob Zombie. This iconic hard rocker invented the concept of the rock concert as theatre.