Live metal thrives with Mayhem, Metallica tours

Fri Aug 7, 2009 8:58pm EDT
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By Ray Waddell

NASHVILLE (Billboard) - Judging from the upcoming touring schedule, death metal is, er, alive and well. So are other subgenres of hard rock that still inspire passion from fans.

Because traditional windows of exposure like radio and TV are seldom open to them, metal bands have to tour to build followings.

Tim Borror, an agent at the Agency Group specializing in hard rock, knows this well. His client Lamb of God will support Metallica for the third time on that band's upcoming fall tour. He says Lamb of God is maximizing its time on the road by adding dates surrounding the trek.

"There are a lot of days off on that tour, so we weaved a second tour in between the off days on the Metallica tour, with Lamb of God headlining and Job for a Cowboy as support," Borror says. "It's interesting because we're booking a tour around a tour that's already booked."

Metallica has already put up huge numbers in the first part of the year, ranking ninth among all touring acts in the Billboard Boxscore midyear charts with $45.5 million in gross ticket sales and 740,917 in attendance.

The band could restrict Lamb of God's side gigs but doesn't, Borror says.

"Metallica is one of those bands that's pretty righteous with the way they carry themselves and do their business," Borror says. "They've been real cool about where we play on off days, and we try to be respectful and stay away from their shows anyway and play alternative cities."

Borror, who previously launched the Sounds of the Underground tour, is also the responsible agent for Five Finger Death Punch, which will release its new album, "War Is the Answer," September 22 on the Prospect Park label and tour in September and October with Shadows Fall, Otep and Two Cents.   Continued...

<p>Drummer Lars Ulrich of heavy metal band Metallica poses for the media in Mexico City June 4, 2009. REUTERS/Eliana Aponte</p>