Remember when- Yes it’s that type of article. A list of bands, whose past material blew me and many others away, that haven’t been active in the studio in recent years. Some have come back from a hiatus or split. While others have just been touring constantly, or have just been silent in regards to their future plans. Whatever the reason, these are all bands that I’m confident the metal community would really appreciate a comeback, specifically a new record from.
Necrophagist – Last album: Epitaph (2004)
Let’s begin with the obvious. The German Tech-Death outfit’s debut Onset Of Putrefaction was a great start, but what really opened doors for this band was their sophomore release Epitaph. It was the first to feature actual drums. It also featured frontman Muhammed Suicmez adding classical influence to the lead guitar tracks, incorporating renditions of Beethoven’s “Für Elise” and Prokofiev’s “Romeo And Juliet Suite No. 2”. Touring was constant upon the release of the album. 2007 was the year that saw Necrophagist headlining their first Summer Slaughter Tour in the U.S. As a matter of fact they are the 3rd most occurring band on Summer Slaughter line-ups, falling only behind The Faceless and Dying Fetus. Since 2008, live appearances have ceased, while fans await the fabled 3rd studio album, commonly referred to as “The Chinese Democracy of Metal”. Possible titles are limited to only rumors, but Muhammed has stated that it would feature 7-string guitars, including a custom Ibanez 7-string with 27 frets! Talk about suspense. The latest statement concerning album number 3 was made in 2013 by drummer Romain Goulon;
“Necrophagist is definitely not dead !!! There will be a new album. I’m aware that people are crazy about it, but if you ask me for a date, I’m afraid I can’t help… I think we’re close to get all the required “ingredients” to go back to work.”
Given that no release date was given, and that Goulon is a relatively new member, I’m going to take these updates with a grain of salt, at least until we receive an update by Muhammed.
UnSun – Last album: Clinic For Dolls (2010)
Formed by a Polish couple in 2006, which includes a former guitarist for Vader and Dies Irae, UnSun brought us a new type of female-fronted Gothic Metal. This band brought to the table a heavier, more downtuned guitar tone (pervasive in modern death metal), to go along with singer Anna Stefanowicz melodic vocals and the keyboards that gave their music a Gothic overtone. In 2012, a Facebook statement by a source only listed as “The Victims Of Public Health Service”, revealed that Anna had been suffering for over a year from a throat condition so severe it hurt her to even speak. In 2014, Anna stated that she was able to sing again and that the writing process for album 3 was almost finished. Obviously we cannot rush this band due to the ordeal Anna has gone and is going through. We can only wish her the best of luck. Until the next album, or rather next update, I would fill the void of UnSun’s heavy gothic sound with the music of Mechina.
Sleep – Last album: Dopesmoker (2003)
The legendary stoner metal trio have been re-gigging since 2009. First with live performances at the All Tomorrow’s Parties Festivals in the U.K. and U.S., and then sporadic short tours and festival appearances. One can argue that the most limiting factor for longer tours is guitarist Matt Pike’s commitment to his band High On Fire, who are currently confirmed for a new studio album. By late 2012 as a result of their spot on Maryland Deathfest, the band stated that they considered themselves a “full, reunited band”. In July of last year the trio graced us with a new song through Adult Swim’s Singles Program entitled “The Clarity”. Pike has been pretty secretive about whether or not this would manifest into a new full-length album for Sleep. So what do you think? If Sleep put out a new full-length, would you like it to be an hour-long single song like “Jerusalem” or “Dopesmoker”, or to be more conventional like Volume 1 and Holy Mountain. Personally I’d prefer the latter for two reasons.
1. It would be easier to market
2. See below statement from their Facebook page;
One year after the release of Defiance, Australian/Dutch Blackened Thrashers Deströyer 666 announced ‘SIEGE’ as their follow-up record. They released a compilation album with a new 7 inch EP in 2011 and since then they’ve had a few hiccups. Dropping off a U.S. tour with Destruction as well as line-up changes, including the loss of long-time guitarist Shrapnel.
Cerebral Bore – Last album: Maniacal Miscreation (2011)
Named after a weapon in the Turok video game series, armed with samples from the movie Trainspotting, they are the death metal pride of Scotland. In 2012 their loyal fans voted for them the grand opportunity to be the opening band on The Summer Slaughter Tour (headlined by Cannibal Corpse that year). Months later, just 24 hours before a U.S. tour with Dying Fetus, singer Simone Pluijmers left the band. Shawn Whitaker (Insidious Decrepancy) filled in for that tour, and ended up staying the vocalist for more shows after that. They’ve made a few more sporadic appearances, and some members ended up managing the 2014 Summer Slaughter Tour. No news of a sophomore album, a tour, or permanent vocalist though.
Dååth – Last album: Dååth (2010)
This is a very interesting death metal band with influences of industrial metal and gypsy jazz. Their breakthrough record, The Hinderers, was released on Roadrunner Records. The two albums that followed were released on Century Media. The band’s inactivity since 2011 can be explained by the fact that 2 (and then eventually 3) members went to fill vacant spots in the band Chimaira, which has been ended as of last year, but not before the Dååth members quit. Now lies more time to devote to a new Dååth album.
Into Eternity – Last album: The Incurable Tragedy (2008)
This progressive metal outfit from Saskatchewan faced a questionable line-up when vocalist Stu Block joined Iced Earth in 2011, which I was fortunate enough to see. In February of 2012, singer of The Order of Chaos, Amanda Kiernan joined, and Into Eternity began demoing new material with both singers. By late 2013 it was confirmed that Stu Block had permanently left Into Eternity in favor of Iced Earth. Hence Amanda is now the band’s full-time singer. I unfortunately passed on the opportunity to see Into Eternity with their new singer. Big mistake. About a year ago a new album was reported almost mixed. No greater details have been released about the album though.
Vital Remains – Last album: Icons Of Evil (2007)
The Rhode Island death metal band has been on a roll with their recordings since 2003. The latest 2 albums, Dechristianize and Icons Of Evil, featured vocals from Glen Benton (Deicide), and some amazing lead guitar work from Dave Suzuki. Those two members have been absent from the bands line-up since 2009. Vital’s long-time rhythm guitarist, Tony Lazaro, has stated in several interviews that he has 2 albums worth of material written. Originally intended for a 2012 release, constant touring and line-up changes have pushed the release of the follow-up to Icons Of Evil even further. Lazaro has stated in interviews that this new album would take a more old school death metal approach, straying from the epic 6-minute average-length songs of the last two albums
“The longest song, I think, is four and a half minutes. It’s everything you’d expect from Vital Remains, but just in a shorter package.”
The band’s current vocalist is Brian Werner (ex-Monstrosity), and their current lead guitarist is Dean Arnold (Primal Frost).
Psyopus – Last Album: Odd Senses (2009)
This mathcore band from Rochester NY, is known for having a guitarist with techniques so unorthodox, that they have failed to receive endorsements.
“Mesa Boogie has not done very much to sponsor me because I do too much of this…” *yanks guitar by the whammy bar and shakes it furiously up and down* – Christopher Arp
Their hiatus began in 2010. Then in 2012 it was announced that the band would reunite with three of the four original members. They’ve done some gigging since then, and in 2014 the Soundcloud page for Headbang ’n Buttonmash released the band’s interesting (to say the least) cover of The Grateful Dead’s “Touch of Grey”. No plans for the future have been announced publicly yet though.
Sadist – Last album: Season In Silence (2010)
Sadist are a progressive death metal band from Italy that put out a WTF?! release in 2000 entitled “Lego”. The negative response discouraged them into breaking up for 5 years. Since their return, they’ve released 2 more albums with their signature sound from the 90s. With their weak grasp on social media you would think they’re only huge in their home country, but they have indeed played headlining shows and metal festivals around the world. Still, this entry is more personal than anything for me to appeal for a new album from the quartet.
Priestess – Last Album: Prior To The Fire (2009)
First off, this band has nothing to do with Judas Priest. They are hard rock/heavy metal band from Montreal associated with the “retro rock” movement, influenced by AC/DC and Black Sabbath. Their debut album, Hello Master took the world by storm. Several of the tracks were marketed by other forms of media.
- “I Am the Night, Colour Me Black” was used as a track in Need For Speed Carbon
- “Lay Down” was used as a track in Guitar Hero 3: Legends Of Rock
- “The Shakes” was placed in a compilation CD by Metal Hammer Magazine
- “No Real Pain” was used as a track in Tony Hawk’s Downhill Jam
- An Instrumental version of “Run Home” was used in the soundtrack for Surf’s Up
Unfortunately, album 2 did not receive the same reception. The band took a more progressive and natural-sounding route when writing and recording respectively. They were dropped from RCA as a result of their refusal to write more songs along the lines of the Hello Master sessions. Hence, Prior To The Fire did not get as much exposure. 2012 saw a tough year for the band. After a cancelled European tour and a lack satisfaction with new material, the band decided to take a hiatus and engage in other musical projects. Lead vocalist Mikey Heppner has stated that it is best to let the material for album 3 “happen naturally”. So unlike other entries, this band is still on hold. While I certainly don’t want to rush album 3, I still believe the band is due for a comeback.
Brain Drill – Last Album: Quantum Catastrophe (2010)
You damn kids with your Rings Of Saturn! Don’t you know there’s a death metal band with the same kind of technical skill? We almost didn’t have a second album by this band due to a line-up hiccup, but it came to fruition. In 2014 a Facebook statement was made that the band is at work on a third album. No details were revealed for the now-approaching 5-year wait though.