Metal Church’s upcoming setlist to focus on first two albums along with new songs & Mike Howe era tracks

Metal Church’s upcoming setlist to focus on first two albums along with new songs & Mike Howe era tracks

Metal Church founder and guitarist Kurdt Vanderhoof was recently interviewed by Jimmy Kay for Canada’s The Metal Voice. Vanderhoof was promoting Metal Church‘s upcoming new album Congregation of Annihilation, which will be released via Rat Pak Records (America) and Reaper Entertainment (Europe) on May 26, 2023. Congregation of Annihilation will feature Metal Church‘s new singer Marc Lopes who is replacing Mike Howe who sadly passed away at the age of 55 back in late July 2021.

With respect to Metal Church‘s upcoming new album, Vanderhoof stated (as provided by The Metal Voice with slight edits):

“After the Covid stuff started lifting, I wrote a new album and sent it off to Mike [Howe] and we were going back and forth starting our process. So then it happened [Mike Howe passed away]. There were a few months there that I kind of figured that it was over. Both original singers are gone. Am I getting the message? But then after months, realizing I had an album sitting there that if nothing else, maybe we can put it out in honour of Mike. When we found Marc [Lopes], we took things step by step. We didn’t want to do a huge international search for a singer and make a big production of it, cause it might not have worked. We wanted to do everything under the radar. So as things worked out with Marc because of the way he sings, [the album] started taking on a more aggressive sound, much more thrashy, back to our roots kind of thing. So half of the songs off the new album I wrote with Mike [Howe] in mind and when we started seeing there was a new direction, then I wrote another batch of songs to fit in the more thrashy aggressive style.”

In terms of Metal Church‘s setlist for their upcoming shows, Vanderhoof indicated: “The setlist is going to be mostly the first two albums [1984’s Metal Church and 1986’s The Dark], with some Mike [Howe] era stuff. So now we are going to go back and do a lot of the older stuff and we are going to pull out a few deep tracks from that era with things that haven’t been played, which will be fun. And a couple of songs off the new album.”

You can listen to the interview with Kurdt Vanderhoof on The Metal Voice below:

Metal Church‘s “Watch The Children Pray” video (from The Dark album):

Metal Church‘s “Making Monsters” single (from upcoming Congregation of Annihilation album):