[Orlando, FL] Fans of the genre known as death metal will soon be treated to a pulse-pounding package by one of the musical style’s founding fathers. On Feb. 28, Relapse Records will release Vivus!, a new 2CD live recording from Orlando-area bruisers Death, which ceased to exist (in physical form) in 2001 (R.I.P.).
Vivus! contains not one, but two full concerts featuring the group’s formidable 1998 line-up performing at the infamous Whisky A Go-Go in Los Angeles and at the (no longer active) Dynamo Open Air festival in Holland.
For a preview track of “Zero Tolerance” from Vivus! click here.
It is all part of Relapse’s reissue campaign of Death’s latter-day material, which has already included multi-disc versions of Individual Though Patterns, The Sound of Perseverance and Human. Each release has contained extensive liner notes from previous members and never-before-seen photos of the band.
New, wearable band merchandise is also available.
Formed in 1983 by guitarist-vocalist Chuck Schuldiner out of the ashes of Mantis, Death went on to establish the sound and vision of death metal worldwide through groundbreaking demo recordings, official studio releases and skull-crushing live shows.
(L-R) 1989 Death “Spiritual Healing” line-up, early Mantis band photo
The band’s debut 1987 splatter platter, Scream Bloody Gore, is considered to be “death metal’s first archetypal document” as well as “the first true death metal record”. Death had sold over 2 million albums worldwide, which doesn’t include the sales before SoundScan became the industry-tracking standard.
Yes, that makes Death the top-selling death metal band on planet Earth.
Massacre’s Kam Lee and Rick Rozz (later a member of Death again) were members of the group during the group’s legend-solidifying demo phases.
In 1988, Massacre members Rozz (guitarist for the reincarnated Massacre), drummer Bill Andrews and bassist Terry Butler (currently with Tampa’s Obituary and also in the revived Massacre) recorded Death’s second studio effort Leprosy to critical and fan acclaim.
Each subsequent album introduced an increasingly complex style and tweaked sound for the band – as well as a new line-up.
Although Schuldiner passed away from cancer in 2001, Relapse, the Schuldiner family and Perseverance Holdings Ltd. – run by his former manager and Eric Grief – carry on Death’s legacy of recorded brutality. Listen to a Feb. 2012 Relapse podcast featuring Grief here.
And for Death fans looking to complete their collections, last month it was announced that Perseverance Holdings has struck a deal with Roadrunner Records to allow Death’s entire catalog to be part of a “monster” 14-disc box set due sometime in 2013, according to the official band website.
This be-all, end-all collection would include even more bonus material than what has been emerging on the most recent slate of 2- and-3-CD set re-issues.
Death line-up during the Symbolic recording
Vivus! Track Listing:
Disc 1 – Live In L.A. – 1998
1. The Philosopher
2. Spirit Crusher
3. Trapped In A Corner
4. Scavenger Of Human Sorrow
5. Crystal Mountain
6. Flesh And The Power It Holds
7. Zero Tolerance
8. Zombie Ritual
9. Suicide Machine
10. Together As One
11. Empty Words
13. Pull The Plug
Disc 2 – Live In Eindhoven – 1998
1. The Philosopher
2. Trapped in a Corner
3. Crystal Mountain
4. Suicide Machine
5. Together As One
6. Zero Tolerance
7. Lack Of Comprehension
8. Flesh and the Power It Holds
9. Flattening of Emotions
10. Spirit Crusher
11. Pull the Plug
By: Mark Christopher/Sunshine Slate
Images: Relapse Records