Morbid Angel is an American death metal band based in Tampa, Florida. UK music magazine Terrorizer ranked Morbid Angel's 1989 debut Altars of Madness first in its list 'Top 40 greatest death metal albums'. Decibel Magazine also rated guitarist Trey Azagthoth as the number one 'death metal guitarist ever'. The band's songs are complex in arrangement, owing to the considerable technical skills of both Azagthoth and drummer Pete Sandoval, who also played in the grindcore band Terrorizer. According to Nielsen SoundScan, Morbid Angel is the third best-selling death metal band in the United States (after Cannibal Corpse and Deicide with sales of over 445,000, with their third album Covenant being the best-selling death metal album of all time with over 127,000 units sold.
For 20 years, Origin has engaged a full-blown sensory assault of tight, taut, and technical death metal amplified by flashes of grindcore and groove. However, 2017’s Unparalleled Universe [Nuclear Blast] sees the quartet—Paul Ryan [guitar, vocals], John Longstreth [drums], Mike Flores [bass, vocals], and Jason Keyser [vocals]—strengthens that blueprint with a handful of surprises…
“It feels like an Origin album, but it’s unparalleled to what you might expect if you haven’t heard us for 10 or 15 years,” says Ryan. “To me, it’s a true reflection of ourselves. I compare it to an action movie. Our earlier material is filled with action from beginning to end. Now, the idea is to add a little more depth and dynamics. You could say there are some twists in the plot musically.”
The band began compiling ideas for what would become Unparalleled Universe while touring in support of their 2014 sixth offering, Omnipresent. Along the way, the record snatched their highest position on the Billboard Heatseekers Chart, bowing in the Top 10. Meanwhile, it garnered acclaim from No Clean Singing and Metalsucks, building on a string of accolades that includes Ryan landing on Decibel’s “Top 20 Death Metal Guitarists of All-Time” list during 2008’s Antithesis, as well as that album’s finite amassing 1.6 million YouTube views, and successful tours with everyone from Hate Eternal and Cryptopsy to Decapitated and Candiria over the years. They’ve also shined on the Summer Slaughter Tour in 2009 & 2014. On the road with Belphegor last year, the members debuted a skeleton of the first single “Accident and Error” in front of packed crowds.
“We would ask the audience to give us title ideas, but we could never discern what they were actually saying” laughs Ryan. “Riffs typically start on tour, and I keep them in my back pocket. That’s the way it is.”
During January 2017, Ryan headed to Chapman Studios in Kansas City, KS to record alongside longtime collaborator and engineer Rob Rebeck [Tech N9ne]. In under a month, they emerged with the ten songs comprising Unparalleled Universe and an expanded sonic palette. “Invariance Under Transformation” tempers a trudging, doom-y groove with a dark hiss and brutal stomp and the dynamic “Cascading Failures and Diminishing Returns” bludgeons and burns, while “Accident And Error” barrels ahead on a double bass air raid with smart bomb precise sweeping arpeggios.
“There are different parts,” he goes on. “The slower moments feature a couple of classic circle pit speed metal riffs like on ‘Accident and Error.’ Then, ‘Invariance Under Transformation’ is the slowest tempo we’ve ever done. It’s new territory. As musicians, we all appreciate various things, and we’re trying to bring out unpredictable moods. We wanted to stir the pot a little.”
The opener “Infinitesimal To The Infinite” gallops forward on a steamrolling rush of riffage as Keyser’s screams take hold. “It retains the original Origin feel,” adds Ryan. “We try to come out of the gate like that.”
Rounding out Unparalleled Universe, the group heads south of the border via a murderous and malevolent cover of Brujeria’s “Revolución.”
“One of Brujeria’s albums always gets played on just about every tour we’re on,” he goes on. “The song meant something at the time right now—especially with everything going on politically. We put a lot of effort in to get the pronunciation right. It came out well for a bunch of gringos!”
Ultimately, Unparalleled Universe begins another era for Origin. “In the end, we’re still writing death metal songs, but we’re adding new dimensions,” he leaves off. “We’re still Origin.”
Hate Storm Annihilation
Hate Storm Annihilation was started in 2012 by Guitarist/Vocalist Craig Schmuhl and Drummer Konstantin Dermendjiev as an "Extreme Metal" project. Pushing tempos to the next level with blistering blast beats, intense riffage and guttural vocals.
HSA has performed around the Midwest opening for such acts as Cannibal Corpse, Morbid Angel, Hate Eternal, Deicide and many others. In 2013 HSA embarked on their first European Tour supporting Bloodsoaked and then returning to Europe to support Six Feet Under on their "Xmas in Hell" tour.
In 2014 HSA released their debut full length album "Storm of Flames". "Storm of Flames" received massive amounts of recognitiion throught the underground metal scene and even landing a couple spots in Decibel Magazine.
Also in 2014 HSA embarked on their first ever North American tour in support of Master on their "Witch Hunt" tour and then again tour North America with Master and Solstice in 2015 as part of the "Decimate the States" tour.
In 2016, Craig Schmuh (Guitarist/Vocalist) would then be excepted into Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts to study Jazz Guitar Performance/Composition. There he would meet fellow Berklee student, Spencer Metela, who would become the Bassist for HSA.
In 2017 HSA announced their new full length album "Following The Path To Eternal Fire". A 7 track, hour plus long Death Metal/Prog Fusion album consisting of a wide range of influences from Death Metal, 70's Progressive Rock and even Movie Scoring.