Well, this is the most metal thing I've heard all morning. Sir Christopher Lee, the 90-year-old actor famous for portraying Saruman in all of Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings films, is turning 91 on Memorial Day, and to celebrate, he's doing the world a big fat favor and dropping Charlemagne: The Omens of Death, a seriously brutal metal record that he made with Richie Faulkner from Judas Priest.
This is interesting for two reasons. First, it means that Sir Christopher Lee is alive. Second, it means that his commanding baritone (which can be used to soil the drawers of a hundred quivering halflings at a time) is going to be set atop a churning sea of brutal riffage.
This isn't the first time that Lee has dabbled in the black arts. Back in 2010, he dropped Charlemagne: By The Sword and the Cross.
Before we go any further, you should watch this video of Lee discussing the record, perched in a wingback easy chair that matches his turtleneck and pocket square:
Can you believe that? Christopher Lee is a direct descendent of Charlemagne, the first Holy Roman Emperor. Lee's family bears 80-90% of his coat of arms, and his series of concept records are partially meant to clear Charlemagne's name, who is generally referred to as the brutal conquerer of the Saxons in Northwest Germany back in the eighth century. Considering that one of the tracks on the record is called "Massacre Of The Saxons," he may not be doing such a great job.
He also overuses the word metal, telling us that "the first Charlemagne album is metal, of course, but what I sang was more symphonic. Now, on the second one, The Omens of Death, it is one-hundred percent heavy metal. I've done my bits and pieces and they are heavy metal. I'm not screaming or anything like that, but it is definitely heavy metal."
Here's his video for "The Bloody Verdict of Verden," from his first record:
Noisey will be in the front row for his first New York show, whenever that happens.