Genre: Technical Grindcore/Death Metal
Origin: United States
Formed in Denver, Colorado in 1992, Cephalic Carnage set out to break down musical barriers by raising both the expectations and standards of extremity in heavy music. A unique musical hybrid, Cephalic Carnage thrives on integrating various experimental aspects into their unique, forward-thinking musical style.
In 1993, founding members Lenzig (vocals) and Zac Joe (guitar) recorded and released their first demo, Scrape My Lungs. Although the recording was well-circulated in the underground, the band split up soon afterwards. In 1996, Cephalic Carnage reformed and added members John Merryman (drums) and Steve Goldberg (guitar). The infusion of new blood into the Cephalic ranks kicked things into high gear for the band and only two months after the new lineup had been together, a second demo, titled Fortuitous Oddity, was recorded and released. A four-piece at the time of the recording, the band was stronger than ever as the duel-guitar onslaught merged effortlessly with extremely technical drumming and Lenzig's wildly schizophrenic vocal attack. The word was out, and Cephalic Carnage were making a name for themselves. The band hit the road for a self-financed U.S. tour in the fall of 1997, alerting many to the unbelievable intensity of the Cephalic Carnage live show.
In 1998, Cephalic released their debut album, Conforming To Abnormality. Conforming... unveiled a style of extreme music that was completely original in its makeup: blending mind-melting guitar technicality with inhuman drumming, varied vocal assaults, smatterings of jazz sensibilities and devastating sub-bass drops. The level of musicianship displayed on Conforming To Abnormality was critically-acclaimed upon the album's release. Cephalic Carnage then added bassist Jawsh Mullen to the fold and hit the road in support of the album. A crushing set at the 1998 Milwaukee Metalfest cemented the band's name in the minds of music fans and journalists and verified all accounts of their (now) legendary live performances as the band laid waste to Metalfest attendees with one of the best sets of the entire festival.
Soon following, Cephalic joined the Relapse Records family. The band's initiation consisted of joining label-mates Soilent Green, Today Is The Day, Exhumed and Morgion on the Relapse 1999 Contamination Tour . In December, 1999, Cephalic entered New Orleans' Festival Studios with producer Keith Falgout (Soilent Green, Crowbar, Acid Bath) and recorded their Relapse debut, Exploiting Dysfunction. Destroying parameters, Cephalic Carnage stupefied and astounded with Exploiting Dysfunction, blending and configuring styles of music with surgical precision. Shortly after the mastering of Exploiting... a U.S. tour with label-mates The Dillinger Escape Plan, showcased two of extreme music's most forward-thinking and jaw-dropping live acts. Cephalic then lit up the crowd at the 2002 SXSW Festival in Austin, TX (alongside label-mates Mastodon, High On Fire and Alabama Thunderpussy), debuting new material in front of a crowd of unsuspecting music fans.
In 2002, Cephalic Carnage unveiled Lucid Interval, a high-impact dose of unique sound(s) combining various styles of heavy music with elements of jazz-fusion and an ultra-keen sense of progression. Bending genres with wild counter-rhythms, exceptional musicianship and hairpin twists and turns, Cephalic Carnage accelerated their creativity while delivering a thought-provoking eye-opening to the musical status quo. Press accolades poured in upon the album's release and the band hit the tour trail yet again.
Cephalic hit the road as part of the 2003 Relapse Records Contamination Tour (with labelmates Mastodon) before joining up with Shadows Fall, Unearth, and Hatebreed for U.S. treks. Cephalic finished off the Lucid Interval World Tour with European runs with Exhumed and Macabre.
Upon returning home, Cephalic Carnage began writing for what would become the Anomalies album. Anomalies showed Cephalic's skill for intermixing spine-tingling passages of hypersonic grindcore, slow motion doom metal and far-out rock and roll, beckoning listeners to enter their outlandish musical world.
With Anomalies, Cephalic once-again made an impression upon the press world with terms such as "progressive and pulverizing" (Revolver), "challenging" (Rock Sound), and "inventive" (Decibel) swirling around the album's release in March of 2005.
Anomalies was backed by endless touring from the band. Touring that included headlining North American and European tours and appearances at Independence D Fest (Japan), SXSW, New England Metal and Hardcore Fest, and many more. Cephalic was in the company of the up-n-coming metal-elite during these tours including Mastodon, Shadows Fall, High On Fire, Origin, Strapping Young Lad, The Black Dahlia Murder and more.
The first music video from Anomalies, for the track "Dying Will Be The Death Of Me", also exposed the band in the TV medium for the first time ever. Appearances on worldwide music television shows, including MTV2's "Headbanger's Ball", the FUSE network's "Metal Asylum", and more, exposed the band to legions of new fans.
Winter of 2006 saw the band completing work on their own Denver based recording studio, creating a very nurturing home to incubate ideas for their brand new full-length, Xenosapien. To record Xenosapien, the band called upon Dave Otero once again to produce and engineer the record. Xenosapien's mind-bending, technical insanity/mastery collides head on with the band's brutal metal roots to form their most immediate, hard-hitting, and finest album to date.
The band recorded its next studio album between November and December 2006, and its release was set for May 2007 under the title Xenosapien.
Cephalic Carnage began recording their new album, Misled By Certainty, in May 2010. It was released August 31, 2010 by Relapse Records. Cephalic Carnage is reissuing Lucid Interval with a planned release date of September 13, 2011.
- Conforming to Abnormality (1998)
- Exploiting Dysfunction (2000)
- Lucid Interval (2002)
- Anomalies (2005)
- Xenosapien (2007)
- Misled by Certainty (2010)
- Scrape My Lungs (1994)
- Fortuitous Oddity (1996)
- Promo 1997 (1997)
- Halls of Amenti (2002)
- Digital Carnage (2005)
- Cephalic Carnage / Deprayved (1994)
- Cephalic Carnage / Adnauseam (1998)
- Impaled / Cephalic Carnage (1999)
- Perversion... and the Guilt After / Version 5.Obese (2002)
- HF Seveninches Collection Vol. 1 (2008)
- Double Impact (2009)
Nick Schendzielos - Bass, Vocals (additional)
Leonard "Lenzig" Leal - Vocals (1992-present)
John Merryman - Drums (1996-present)
Steve Goldberg - Guitars (1996-present)
Brian Hopp - Guitars (2009-present)
Dirk Trujillo - Bass
Patrick Russell - Bass
Alex Marquez - Drums
Jawsh Mullen - Vocals, Bass (1999-2006)
Zac Joe - Guitars (1992-2009)
Doug Williams - Bass (1996-1999)