Crack Up is a German metal quartet making headway into the U.S. market via Nuclear Blast Records. They mix a sense of humor with a penchant for gloomy, speed-driven songs that feature snarling vocals and crashing rhythms. Their first foothold came with a demo release, Forsaken Dreams (1994; due for reissue in 1998), which sold more than a thousand copies via gigs and word of mouth. In 1996, We Bite issued Blood Is Life. Linking up with Nuclear Blast and EastWest resulted in the release of From the Ground in 1997. Early 1998 gigs were played without guitarist Helvin Pour, who was suffering from an overload of personal problems. Pour was replaced for live work by Torben Voigt of Crestfallen, although it seems likely that Crack Up will temporarily operate as a trio for at least part of 1998, due to Voigt's duties with his own band.