The Formation Of Damnation
What do you mean, ‘Alcatraz doesn’t bill enough old school bands’? What’s all that ‘Alcatraz has abandoned its roots’ drivel? Alcatraz has always had a broad taste in music and legendary bands from back in the day will always be welcome on our stages, period!
With Testament we are proud to add one of those ‘old’ juggernauts to the long list of artists that have already been confirmed for this summer. Spawned in 1983 by the burgeoning thrash scene in and around the San Francisco Bay Area, Testament release one of the greatest thrash debuts ever with ’The Legacy’ (1987). The album is an instant classic and Testament spend the first half of their career trying to live up to that benchmark, with alternating success. After all, it’s never easy to emulate a classic album and in the second half of the eighties they are somewhat overshadowed by the success of that other Bay Area band whose name starts with an M. Still, the band around guitarist Eric Peterson and the imposing figure of Indian frontman Chuck Billy doesn’t wallow in self-pity like some other bands who can’t stop complaining how the advent of grunge has done them in. Instead Testament reinvent themselves in 1994 with the ‘Low’ album. They start writing heavier, death metal influenced material and strong albums such as ‘Demonic’ (1997) and ‘The Gathering’ (1999) help them survive what was a difficult decade for thrash music in general. Around the millennium Chuck Billy’s cancer diagnosis forces the band to take an extended break but in 2005 they strike back with a vengeance. The temporary reunion of the original line-up reinvigorates the band and every single record they’ve put out since then has been of the highest quality, with 2008’s ‘The Formation of Damnation’ as one of the highlights. Over the years Testament have started playing louder but also with almost surgical precision so we’re stoked to host them for the fourth time. We’re especially looking forward to tracks off their new album ‘Titans of Creation’ that comes out on 3 April on Nuclear Blast.