Info: Northern California-based crossover veterans CONDEMNED? will release their brand new album, "Condemned 2 Death", on February 11, 2011 in Europe and March 8, 2011 in North America via Nuclear Blast Records. The CD was recorded at Prairie Sun Recording Studios with producer Billy Anderson (NEUROSIS, MR. BUNGLE, CATTLE DECAPITATION, CATHEDRAL, EYEHATEGOD). As an added bonus, the effort will contain a second disc of rarities, including the band's long-out-of-print Nuclear Blast release "Humanoid or Biomechanoid?".
Condemned? Bio: Melbourne Prog.Punk-Metal band CONDEMNED? would go down in Metal history by being the first act to have a CD produced, in 1987, by the then newly established Nuclear Blast label.
Rocking out after a hefty hiatus for a release on Nuclear Blast Records, CONDEMNED? is proving that although the years may have passed, they can still thrash with the best of them.
Among various BBQing sessions and copious joking around, they produced some of the most brutal old-school crossover metal/punk to hit the public since its inception in the 1980’s.
CONDEMNED? originally started out as Condemned2Death in the spring of 1983. Keith Chatham got a hot tip about a band that was practicing in the old abandoned Hamms Brewery (aka “The Vats”) in San Francisco needed a bassist. In conclusion, Condemned2Death was born and soon recorded their demo tape.
Later that year, they recorded and release a self titled 7”. They followed that up in August of the next year with the Diary of a Love Monster LP. After Diary of a Love Monster, the band encountered a few lineup changes until Keith left for Australia to play in Death Sentence and Vicious Circle.
After a few incarnations (Condemned Attitude, Condemned?) and many side projects for all musicians involved (Attitude Adjustment, Black Mackerel, Mercenary), CONDEMNED? was reborn, sporting a great line up of musicians. Keith Chatham returns on bass. Joining him are fellow past Condemned Attitude member Rick Strahl and B. Scott Clayton of Black Mackerel on guitars. Also from Black Mackerel is “Rotten” Scotty Gardner on lead vocals. Slade Anderson returns on drums from the days when they were known as Condemned Attitude.
Joining the band in the studio was producer Billy Anderson. Billy has worked with quite an impressive number of bands, including: Neurosis, Mr. Bungle, The Melvins, Jawbreaker, Sick Of It All, Eyehategod and Cathedral (just to name a few).
Bringing 20 years of “engine-earing” to the table, Billy kept the vibe alive and the tunes pouring out. CONDEMNED? and Billy Anderson are a killer combo in the studio. This record is set to tear the face off of anyone brave enough to listen!
*** CONDEMNED? “Condemned 2 Death” – (So back in 1987, this cult crossover act called Condemned? wound up signing to some fledgling punk label and the album, entitled “Humanoid or Biomechanoid?” ended up being the second release issued by this start-up label known as Nuclear Blast. Now, 24 years later, Nuclear Blast is a massive conglomeration, and just when you thought Condemned? were resigned to be a historic footnote, they have reunited and have re-recorded most of the classic tracks from the “Humanoid or Biomechanoid?” album and a track from one of the post-Condemned? bands – Condemned/Attitude. CD one consists of these new recordings and for once, these new versions sound BETTER than the originals! Heavier and crustier, Condemned? have kept it old school but with gruffer vocals and a bottom end that was lacking a bit on the original recordings, this is sick! My favorites are “Big Time Game Hunting”, “Aggressive System”, “Anti-Social”, “Cleansing Pool”, “Save Thy Brother” and the brilliant “D-Day”. The bonus cd features the original “Humanoid or Biomechanoid?” full-length, which features such classics as “Big Time Game Hunting”, “Humanoid or Biomechanoid?” and “Emotional Blurr”. Also included are eps and recordings spanning 1983 – 1993 of the pre-Condemned? band Condemned 2 Death and latter projects like Condemned/Attitude and Something Scaley. The Condemned 2 Death EP “Death Sentence” features such classics as “Blood River” and “Media Control” whereas the Condemned/Attitude recordings feature the single “Homeless Crew”, as well as “D-Day”, “3rd World Child”, “Deadly Euphoria” and “Big Time” cause you cannot get enough of the game-hunting. All these projects are classic crossover in the State of Confusion meets Broken Bones vein, but the latter project, Something Scaley is something … else. Something Scaley were a psychedelic mix of fuzzy acid rock and post-hardcore weirdness, think Roky Erickson and the Aliens gone hardcore(!!!) and you get a good idea of what Something Scaley was up to on tracks like “River of Life”, “Fool’s Fable” and the godly “Movement”. This double cd is worth purchasing for these three songs alone cause Something Scaley SHOULD have been the biggest band in the world! Pick this up as Condemned? are back and better than ever. Now maybe they can hit the road with Broken Bones and Impulse Manslaughter…)
*** Born-again crossover agents Condemned joined a long list of unlikely reunions mitigated by the Nuclear Blast label with 2011's Condemned 2 Death CD, their first release in almost two decades! You see, once upon a time in the mid-'80s, the San Francisco natives figured alongside D.R.I., the Dicks, M.D.C., and other fledgling groups in the now legendary Vat's scene, so there's no questioning Condemned's credentials -- just the wisdom of their return, should it go pear-shaped. Yet, by and large, those worries evaporate just as soon as Condemned 2 Death gets underway, launched by a Motцrhead-like bassline from band lynchpin Keith Chatham on "Big Time Game Hunting," which paves the way for a rarely surprising but consistently engaging and oftentimes euphoric collection of timeless hardcore anthems. Purists looking to simply pump their fists and shout along need look no further than infectious calls-to-arms like "Aggressive System" and "Anti-Social"; crossover fans looking to satisfy their metallic speed-riffing kinks can dive into "Thoughts of Equality" and "Emotional Blurr"; attention-deficit-disorder listeners will get just what they crave in sub-minute blasts like "Practicing for War" and "D-Day"; then everyone can catch their breath during slower numbers like "Thoughts of Equality," "Crucified," and "Cleansing Pool." The lyrics, like the music, also stick with the classic hardcore program (socio-political messages, railing against the system, etc.), harking back to simpler times and familiar hallmarks rather than experimenting with new millennium chicanery. But one feels this is ultimately for the better, and the authentic results show Condemned validating their belated comeback by remembering where they come from, and their fans surely wouldn't want it any other way. ~ Eduardo Rivadavia
Line-up: “Rotten” Scotty Gardner (vocals) Keith Chatham (bass) Rick Strahl (guitars) B.Scott Clayton (guitars) Slade Anderson (drums)