Machine Head Observes the Anniversary of “Through the Ashes of Empires”


In a message to fans, Machine Head has posted a tribute to their album Through The Ashes of Empires (Roadrunner) which eventually put them back on the map after several years being an unsigned band and almost breaking up. Eight months later they were resigned to Roadrunner and re-released the album. The band reminisced about the struggles to make the album and the eventual triumph. Read Ghost Cult’s retrospective of the album and read the bands’ memories below.

At 16 years of age, our 5th album is officially old enough to drink beer and smoke weed!

That’s right, 16 years ago today “Through The Ashes Of Empires” was released. It wasn’t the easiest of births, the mighty Machine Head had decided to ask to be released from their unreasonable record contract and eventually Roadrunner Records complied. They remained unsigned for year and a half, were rejected by 35 different labels, but undaunted, continued to tour heavily, and eventually Roadrunner Europe came back on board, with the plan to have Roadrunner America released to record simultaneously. But on the last day of recording the album, RR US would pass on the album.

Until then, that fact had been kept under wraps, but Robb took to the internet and in typical frankness explained the situation. Fans took it in stride.

The album would come out on Oct 28th, but with the proliferation of torrent sites, was released two full months before that. By the time Roadrunner US got back on board to release the album on April 20, 2004 in the United States, it had been available for eight months online!

Regardless, it remains an indomitable statement of intent, and would prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that Machine Head were here to stay. Many songs from the album remain in the set list today, including “Bite The Bullet”, “Descend The Shades Of Night” and ferocious opening track “Imperium” which even 16 years later, continues to open many Machine Head shows. They toured 20 months behind the album, including 3 US Tours, 3 European tours, as well as their first Australian headliner in 10 years

Did you see us on this tour?

Do you have any memories of this album?

How did TTAOE stand the test of time for you?

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