Along with San Francisco's Possessed and Florida's Death, Ohio's Necrophagia were one of the pioneering death metal bands of the mid-'80s. Formed in 1983 by vocalist Killjoy -- whose love of Venom only barely exceeded his passion for slasher movies -- Necrophagia first made waves with their Death Is Fun demo of 1985. Two years later, they hooked up with the New Renaissance label and unleashed their unnaturally coarse, but very influential debut, 1987's Season of the Dead. But shortly after its release, the remaining bandmembers, guitarist Larry Madison, bassist Bill James, and drummer Joe Blazer, fell out with Killjoy over matters of musical direction, spelling Necrophagia's premature breakup. Over the next few years, Killjoy remained busy with a number of projects, including the death metal supergroup Ravenous (featuring Nuclear Assault's Danny Lilker and Autopsy's Chris Reifert, among others), the raw black metal outfit Viking Crown (with Pantera's Phil Anselmo), and even a thrash-gore band named after himself. Eventually, he also decided to resurrect the Necrophagia name with the help of guitarist Anton Crowley (aka Anselmo yet again), bassist Dustin Havnen, and drummer Wayne Fabra for 1998's Holocausto de la Morte, 1999's Black Blood Vomitorium EP, and 2000's Legacy of Horror, Gore and Sickness collection. This sudden flurry of activity persisted into a new deal with Season of Mist Records, which issued the Cannibal Holocaust EP in 2001 and the Divine Art of Torture album in 2003.
by Eduardo Rivadavia