Incoming: Debauchery

Debauchery is a German Groove/Death Metal band that started in 2000 and released six albums so far, played with some of the biggest bands of the Death genre and made frontman Thomas Gurrath lose his day job.

Meet Debauchery, a band that still gets unfairly called a Six Feet Under rip-off, after the jump.

Debauchery - Kill Maim Burn

Debauchery was started in 2000 in Stuttgart, Germany, under the name Maggotcunt but changed their name to Debauchery some time in 2003 before the release of their first album ‘Kill Maim Burn’.

This first album, released in 2003, features Groove Death Metal in the vein of Six Feet Under, Obituary and Bolt Thrower. From the early days on, Debauchery gets called a Six Feet Under rip-off, mainly because SFU were at the time, and still are, one of the most popular Death Metal outfits in Germany. At first, the band take the comparison as a compliment because they were and are big fans of Chris Barnes and co. but over the past couple of years, the band grew tired of the comparison and thematized it in later songs, but more on that later.

Debauchery - Rage of the Bloodbeast

In 2004, Debauchery released their second album ‘Rage of the Bloodbeast’. Just like the first album, this album was recorded with only two members: Thomas Gurrath, who played guitars, bass and sang, and Dani Sandvoss, who played the drums and at times also played guitars.

The album features mainly the same style of Groove Death as the first album but this time, features more blast beats and technical drumming because Dani was a passionate Brutal Death Metal fan.

The band goes on to tour with bands like Napalm Death and at said tour, Debauchery got better crowd reactions than the headliner Napalm Death themselves. With this tour, they started making a name for themselves as a very energetic and fun live band.

Debauchery - Torture Pit

In keeping their one year, one album circle, Debauchery recorded and released their third album ‘Torture Pit’ in 2005. This album was the last to feature drummer Dani.

In my opinion, this album features the band’s best work, including the titlesong ‘Torture Pit,’ ‘Death Metal Warmachine’ and ‘Horrors of War’.

During this time, the band went on tour with Six Feet Under, while playing a cover of SFU’s ‘War is Coming’ live at each date, in an attempt to make fun of lots of Metalheads and reviewers calling them a SFU rip-off.

At a festival date in 2006, Thomas Gurrath was severely drunk and played with a toy chainsaw on the guitar he was playing, which belonged to drummer Dani. Dani jumped up from his drums and started a fist fight with Thomas. The crowd at the festival at first thought that this was part of the show but a couple of minutes later, Gurrath came back on stage to tell the audience that Debauchery had to stop their show because of a personal dispute. Shortly after that, Dani Sandvoss was kicked out of the band.

Debauchery - Back in Blood (NSFW)

In 2007, Debauchery released their first album without Dani. This time, Gurrath recorded most of the instruments himself and got studio musicians to do additional work, he couldn’t do himself.

‘Back in Blood’ is a 2CD album, with the second CD featuring cover songs of bands like Rammstein, Genesis, The Beatles and Manowar, among others. The band did this in further making fun of their critics, after Six Feet Under recorded a cover album of AC/DC’s ‘Back in Black’.

The band’s sound on this album shifted from Groove Death to Death’n’Roll, with most songs having a clear Hard Rock sound while Gurrath kept his death growls. The band already experimented with Hard Rock sounding songs on earlier albums but never, before nor after, to such an extend.

Debauchery - Continue to Kill

With ‘Continue to Kill,’ which was released in 2008, Debauchery released their heaviest and fastest album to date.

On this album, they openly talk about their critics in the song ‘King of Killing’.

In support of this album, Debauchery went on numerous headlining dates, including a tour in Asia, which was a first for the band.

After experimenting with loads of different styles on previous albums, this album showcases a more complete sound than on previous albums, with the band ultimately finding their signature sound. This album also features a cover of Slayer’s controversial ‘Angel of Death’ and a song with Destruction frontman Marcel “Schmier” Schirmer, called ‘Warfare’.

Debauchery - Rockers & War

‘Rockers & War,’ released in 2009, is Debauchery’s latest album at the moment. On this album, the band tried to make a clear cut between the Hard Rock and Death Metal songs and therefore divided the album into two sides, one being ‘Rockers’ and one being ‘War’.

On the ‘War’ side of the album, the band experimented with Symphonic Black Metal and the ‘Rockers’ side of the album finds Gurrath experimenting with his voice, resulting in high pitched vocals, à la Brian Johnson (AC/DC).

This is the first album, not to feature any Groove Death and therefore marks the album the most controversial in the band’s catalogue, with some critics calling the album the band’s best yet and almost as much critics calling the album the band’s worst.

On May 6th, 2010, the story broke that Thomas Gurrath was fired from his job as a high school philosophy teacher when school officials found out about his band and the associated theatrics. Officials in Stuttgart, Baden-Württemberg reportedly ordered Gurrath to either quit his job or keep his band, saying his “performances were a form of mental instability” and that he is not safe with children, also threatening to ban him from teaching the Baden-Württemberg state if he decided to stick with his band. Gurrath resigned from his job, staying with Debauchery. (Source: Metal-Archives)

As an answer to this, Debauchery recorded and released a cover of Alice Cooper’s ‘School’s Out’.

The upcoming album ‘Germany’s Next Death Metal’ (a pun on Heidi Klum’s German TV show ‘Germany’s Next Topmodel’) is slated to be released on March 25th, 2011.

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