Formed in late 1979, Inner Sanctum surfaced at the time of the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal but also predated the rise of Metallica, Anthrax and thrash metal by combining traditional hard rock postures with the dark imagery of Black Sabbath. The band’s early material, such as ‘Streets And Alleys’ and ‘The Butcher’, provided a discernible influence on prototype thrash metal outfits Hellhammer, Testament and Coroner. Over the years the core membership of Inner Sanctum remained two sets of brothers: Mick Pendergast (vocals), Rick Pendergast (guitar), Eric Barbasso (bass) and Adam Barbasso (guitar). The position of drummer was never quite as secure, however. On the debut, Mike Portnoy, later of Dream Theater, was the drummer. Two further drummers also recorded with the band, including Jed Hawkins, who together with fellow Inner Sanctum part-timer Dave Ray joined Skyclad in the mid-90s. 12 A.M. comprised a selection of the 28 tracks the band had been perfecting since their formation, and was re-released as an undiscovered classic by Rock The Nation Records in 1994.
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