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Former Roadrunner A&R VP Monte Connor Joins Forces With Nuclear Blast

Huge news behind the scenes in the metal world today! A few weeks ago, we reported that amass the huge Roadrunner layoffs a few months ago, one of the more shocking names was Senior Vice President of Artists and Relations, Monte Connor. Connor was at Roadrunner for the majority of their successes, having signed all the big metal acts from Type O Negative to Sepultura to Slipknot. But it seemed like his services were not needed anymore, so he went looking for work elsewhere.

He, and fellow Roadrunner firee, UK director  Mark Palmer have announced they are now working with Nuclear Blast. Connor will oversee Nuclear Blast America, a new label using NB's already existing North American resources, while Palmer will open and oversee a new UK branch of the Nuclear Blast offices. This is a huge deal for NB and their artists, as these two brings years and years of major label experience to their new offices. Here is the full official statement on the matter: 

Nuclear Blast owner Markus Staiger has joined forces with former Roadrunner Records A&R chief Monte Conner in the formation of a new U.S. partnership –Nuclear Blast Entertainment.

The new record label, which will share most major operations with the existing U.S. branch of Nuclear Blast, will announce its first signings in the coming months.

Conner recently departed Roadrunner after a 25-year run that saw him sign most of the successful hard rock and metal bands on the label, including SlipknotSepultura,Machine HeadTriviumFear FactoryStone SourType O NegativeSoulflyCoal ChamberLife Of AgonyBiohazardDevilDriverDeicide and most recently, Rushand Gojira.

Plans are also underway to expand Nuclear Blast‘s strength in the UK market and the label has now paired with former Roadrunner UK Managing Director, Mark Palmer.Palmer will open Nuclear Blast‘s first UK office. Palmer had been with Roadrunneralmost from the start and had built the UK branch of Roadrunner into one of the most respected and successful local record company teams the metal world has ever seen.

Says Conner: “What Markus Staiger and his incredibly dedicated staff have built over the last 25 years is quite an achievement, and it has all happened almost concurrently with my time at Roadrunner Records. I am very pleased to align myself with a team of loyal, hard-working people and am looking forward to playing my part in the continued evolution and dominance of this worldwide metal powerhouse. I hope to both complement as well as expand on all the great things already happening at Nuclear Blast, especially when it comes to the U.S. market and Nuclear Blast Entertainment. I feel Markus and I can be an unstoppable force in metal and beyond, and with my long-term colleague Mark Palmer also now aboard in the UK, this already feels like home to me.”

Palmer adds: “I am really excited at the prospect of working with the amazing staff at Nuclear Blast and putting together a new team to strongly develop their business and profile in the UK.”

States Staiger: “I am absolutely thrilled to welcome metal veterans Monte Connerand Mark Palmer to the Nuclear Blast team. I am continually striving to strengthenNuclear Blast on all fronts as a worldwide force, and with the addition of Monte andMark I feel we just took major steps in two key territories.”

Nuclear Blast was founded by Staiger in Donzdorf, Germany in 1987. With offices in Donzdorf and Los Angeles and a worldwide staff of 150 people (including a thriving mail order business), Nuclear Blast is one of the biggest independent labels in the world. Some of the label’s current artists are MeshuggahTestamentNightwish(Europe-only), Children Of BodomAnthrax (Europe-only), Dimmu BorgirAll Shall PerishEpicaExodus and Accept.”

Congrats to all involved in this deal, and we look forward to the output from the label.

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