2003 - Rock The Block
2003 / 2004 / 2005
Marc Storace - Vocals
Fernando Von Arb - Lead Guitar
Dominique Favez - Rhythm Guitar
Tony Castell - Bass
Patrick Aeby - Drums
Mandy Meyer - Lead Guitar ("live" only)
Fernando and Marc Storace join forces and the band announces the return of Storace in 2002. And the musical carrusel continues. Dave Stettler is replaced by Dominique Favez, who recorded with Storace on "DC World". Marcel Kopp is replaced by Patrick Aeby, who had played the live circuit with "AC/CD" (along with Dominique Favez and Tony Castell).
The new band line-up enthusiastically starts working on a pre-production for a new album. They only leave the recording studio briefly to rock a few Swiss Festivals that in turn help to reestablish that gritty "live" feeling to their new songs!
The new studio album "Rock The Block" is released in Switzerland January of 2003, with all international territories following in spring. Backed by a new recording contract with WEA Switzerland, new management and a team of highly motivated and talented musicians, KROKUS`s brand new CD soars straight to No.1 in the Swiss charts, and reaches Platinum status within a few weeks. Sheer proof that hard rock in Switzerland is surely back on the rise! The album is recorded and produced by the band members themselves at Soundlake Studios in Lausanne/Switzerland, next to the legendary music mecca of Montreux on the shores of Lake Geneva. And yes, there was "smoke on the water"!
The tour that follows in support of the CD release takes the lads on Krokus's longest European stretch since 1988, covering Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Holland and for the first time rocking Sweden!
During the late summer of 2003, Marc Storace is invited to act as guest lead vocalist for veteran Californian Heavy Metal band "Warrior" for their "The Wars Of Gods And Men" release.
In the same year, Chris Von Rohr releases a CD with his spoken words of his 1987 book release of "Hunde, Wollt Ihr Ewig Rocken?". He also releases his second book called "Bananenflanke" in 2003. And he produces a #1 Platinum awarded album for Swiss band "Patent Ochsner" as well.
2004 the second "live" album is released (see separate story). The KROKUS documentary "As Long As We Live" is shown in movie theatres all over Switzerland, mainly narrated by Fernando Von Arb and Chris Von Rohr with excerpts of their musical career sprinkled in between the interviews. Soon thereafter the DVD is released.
Taking time out from KROKUS activities, Marc Storace forms with China guitarist Claudio Matteo and Charlie Preissel (he will contribute the song "Justice" to 2006 "Hellraiser" release) a side project called "Acoustical Mountain" and plays his first gig with that formation at the Verbier Xtreme Snowboarding competition in March. Marc also participates in his homeland of Malta at the "Music Marathon" at Simon's Pub in Sliema, a yearly event held in aid of local children's charities.
"Round 13" vocalist Carl Sentance re-emerges fronting "Whole Lotta Metal", alongside co-vocalist Tony Martin of Black Sabbath repute, a seasoned cast of Britsh Metal session musicians assembled for a touring cast of cover versions.
Meanwhile, Chris Von Rohr is involved in various TV shows, amongst them as a judge for the Swiss equivalent of "American Idol". He represents the counterpart of Simon Cowell and is brutally honest in his assessment of young talent. By now he writes for over 40 different publications across the country. And he earns another Platinum Record Award for his work as producer of the latest "Lovebugs" album.
Marc Storace stays busy and guest vocals on the German Ralf "Doc" Hayne's studio project "BISS", which was recorded between December 2004 and February 2005. It will be realeased under the title "Face-Off".
In mid 2005, longtime lead guitarist Fernando von Arb decides to leave the band after continuing wrist problems that eventually require surgery. Mandy Meyer, who had played with the band in the mid-1980's on the "live" circuit all across Europe and North America, replaces Von Arb in the current lineup. The bandleader role shifts to Marc Storace. 17 years after they last played the United States, KROKUS embark in September and October on their first US club tour.
After their return back to Switzerland, drummer Patrick Aeby is released of his services. Marc Storace's composition "Hellraiser" is recorded with a session drummer as contribution to the soundtrack of Martin Rima's film "Handyman".