Scream Bloody Gore
(Combat) Released 1987

Chuck Schuldiner (vocals/guitar/bass)
Chris Reifert (drums)

Infernal Death, Zombie Ritual, Denial of Life, Sacrificial, Mutilation, Regurgitated Guts, Baptized in Blood, Torn to Pieces, Evil Dead, Scream Bloody Gore.

Magazine: Metal Hammer / UK
Article: Vault of Doom

Written by: Thomas Crabtree
Published: February 2003



THE YEAR of '87 was indeed a good one for extreme metal. Just as Slayer were tearing up venues with their lethal form of bombast in California, a Florida band were perfecting another with 'Scream Bloody Gore'. By then, of course, Metallica had already hit their creative peak with the previous year's 'Master of Puppets'album, but the West Coast band's success in a rapidly growing style of music was encouraging others to go out and break the stranglehold of commercial hard rock.

Death had formed four years earlier when guitarist/vocalist Chuck Schuldiner and future Massacre guitarist Rick Rozz were playing the heaviest music they could imagine. Though lacking a bassist, the pair changed the project's name from Mantas to Death and received underground respect for a demo called 'Infernal Death'. Numerous line-up changes followed, and by the time 'Scream Bloody Gore' emerged Schuldiner found himself doubling up on bass.

The debut was a landmark in death metal. The super-fast riffing style of tracks like 'Mutilation' and 'Zombie Ritual' were soon being deconstructed, examined and copied in all corners of the world. The relentless drum contribution of Chris Reifert (later of Autopsy, currently with Abscess) to such tracks as 'Denial of Life' was also pretty awe-inspiring. The graphic lyrical imagery of 'Regurgitated Guts' and 'Baptized in Blood' also took gore appreciation to another level that sadly only others would really exploit. Yes you guessed it, Death never really made the commercial breakthrough that their work deserved.

In later years, a more technical though no less intense style was adopted for such records as 1998's Megadeth/Dream Theater-like 'The Sound Of Perseverance'. The last word of that title proved important, and although Chuck developed a brain tumor that was to prove fatal, he continued to play for as long as he was able, even releasing an album called 'The Fragile Art of Existence' with new band Control Denied.

Star fans like Ozzy Osbourne, Napalm Death, Anthrax and even Dave Grohl all chipped in to help to raise funds for his treatment. Alas, Schuldiner finally succumbed to the inevitalbe in December '01, but although his passing generated little in the way of mainstream coverage, his legacy -and that of Death- remains undiminished.


to talks

EmptyWords-Published on April 2 2003