Ahhh… Death, the OG’s of death metal. Death was one of the first American bands to play (what would come to be called), Death Metal. They are known as one of the most influential bands that pioneered the genre. Today, they would be classified as the “old school,” traditional type of death metal, but when Death hit the scene back in 1987 with their debut release, Scream Bloody Gore, this sound was new, heavy, and groovy. This record is regarded to be the first death metal record. My dad used to play Death all the time when I was a little girl, he loves Death and always plays air drums, air guitar, and vocals when they come on. We love a one man show!! By listening to Death at a young age, it influenced me to lean more towards death metal and the heavier style of metal. And I’m not complaining about it!
Death was an American death metal band from Altamonte Springs, Florida, that formed in 1983 by guitarist and vocalist, Chuck Schuldiner (RIP). The original name of the band was Mantas but a year later, Schuldiner changed the name to Death. In an interview in 2010, Tim Aymar states that the renaming of the band happened because it allowed Schuldiner to turn his brother’s death into “something positive” (Aymar, Tim Speaks Out) Rehearsal tapes circulated around quickly and established the band’s entrance into the realm of heavy music. Death’s albums were very popular amongst the metal crowd and received positive criticism. Their 1991 release, Human is their best-selling album.
In 1994, Death left Relativity and signed with Roadrunner Records. They released Symbolic in 1995. After the release of Symbolic, Schuldiner broke up Death after tension with Roadrunner Records and focused on his other band, Control Denied. The seventh (and final) Death release, The Sound of Perseverance (1998), was released on Nuclear Blast.
After Schuldiner finished Control Denied’s debut album, he was diagnosed with brain cancer. His condition improved during the process of recoding on Control Denied second release, but the tumor impacted him negatively, leaving him in a vulnerable state. He contracted pneumonia and an hour after being released from the hospital on December 13, 2001, he passed away.
Perseverance Holdings Ltd. Partnered with Relapse Records to re-master and re-issue the Death and Control Denied releases, along with Schuldiner’s earlier work in Mantas. Symbolic was the only record not a part of Relapse’s deal because the rights are still retained by Roadrunner Records as of 2008 (Sobti, K. Navjot, Relapse Records To Reissue All Chuck Schuldiner Material).
The lineup of Death has changed many, many, many, many times throughout the years, and it is hard to keep track. Chuck Schuldiner has remained the sole original member of Death throughout their album releases.
Scream Bloody Gore (1987)
Spiritual Healing (1990)
Individual Thought Patterns (1993)
The Sound of Perseverance (1998)
Low Life, Pull the Plug, Symbolic, Voice of the Soul, The Philosopher, Scream Bloody Gore, and Living Monstrosity.
What are some of your favorite Death songs?