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PESTILENCE

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal • Netherlands


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Pestilence picture
Pestilence biography
Pestilence are a Death metal band originating from the Netherlands.

They started off in 1986 as a thrash metal band in 1986 before moving into death metal territory in 1989 with their classic death metal release 'Consuming Impulse' drawing critical acclaim.

The album that helped reshape the death metal genre, though, was their seminal 1993 album "Spheres", melding elements of jazz fusion, death metal and prog they created a unique brand of progressive metal.

After the release of spheres the band were unable to agree on which direction their music should take and broke up shortly after in 1994 so the members could focus on their own bands.

Recently, there has been a live release from the band in 2006, "Chronicles of the Scourge".

(Thanks to Richard (FruMp) for the artist information and bio.)





Why this artist must be listed in www.progarchives.com :
PESTILENCE incorporated jazz/fusion elements to their highly technical brand of death/thrash metal, very much in the same vein as bands like CYNIC.



Discography:
Malleus Malleficarum, studio album (1988)
Consuming Impulse, studio album (1989)
Testimony of the Ancients, studio album (1991)
Spheres, studio album (1993)
Mind Reflections, compilation (1994)
Chronicles of the Scourge, live (2006)
...

PESTILENCE Videos (YouTube and more)


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Buy PESTILENCE Music


Testimony Of The AncientsTestimony Of The Ancients
HAMMERHEART RECORDS 2018
$13.62
$17.15 (used)
Consuming ImpulseConsuming Impulse
HAMMERHEART RECORDS 2018
$11.60
$17.15 (used)
HadeonHadeon
HAMMERHEART RECORDS 2018
$11.12
$17.15 (used)
Consuming ImpulseConsuming Impulse
HAMMERHEART RECORDS 2018
$26.20
$33.76 (used)
Malleus MaleficarumMalleus Maleficarum
HAMMERHEART RECORDS 2018
$11.48
$17.15 (used)
SpheresSpheres
HAMMERHEART RECORDS 2018
$8.99
$15.31 (used)
ObsideoObsideo
CANDLELIGHT RECORDS 2015
$5.99
$4.48 (used)
Resurrection MacabreResurrection Macabre
Mascot 2009
$7.53
$8.73 (used)
Reflections Of The MindReflections Of The Mind
Vic 2016
$10.88
$13.62 (used)
Consuming Impulse/Testimony Of The AncientsConsuming Impulse/Testimony Of The Ancients
Roadrunner Records 2003
$45.00
$34.99 (used)
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PESTILENCE discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

PESTILENCE top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.94 | 24 ratings
Malleus Maleficarum
1988
3.14 | 41 ratings
Consuming Impulse
1989
3.76 | 53 ratings
Testimony of the Ancients
1991
4.10 | 98 ratings
Spheres
1993
1.94 | 24 ratings
Resurrection Macabre
2009
2.71 | 16 ratings
Doctrine
2011
3.71 | 16 ratings
Obsideo
2013
3.14 | 7 ratings
Hadeon
2018

PESTILENCE Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

1.00 | 1 ratings
Chronicles of the Scourge
2006

PESTILENCE Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

PESTILENCE Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.63 | 4 ratings
Mind Reflections
1994
4.00 | 1 ratings
Two from the Vault
2003
3.02 | 3 ratings
The Dysentery Penance
2015

PESTILENCE Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

2.51 | 5 ratings
Dysentery (Demo)
1987
2.98 | 5 ratings
The Penance (Demo)
1987

PESTILENCE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Spheres by PESTILENCE album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.10 | 98 ratings

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Spheres
Pestilence Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Ovidiu

5 stars YES and YES again!This album is a milestone in thrash music!It's very complex,it's innovative,courageous and rich in it's musical expression!That's the ultimate prove how thrash/death music can be enriched with new ways of expression by some very competent musicians which have the purpose to explore new territories in music!It's something that can be called jazzy fusion death thrash metal wit a twist!The sound is very unusual,it's like space metal with great intermezzos and an totally bizarre approach for thrash/death metal in that times!Young ambitious bands like CYNIC...ATHEIST....DEATH were trying to bring in music the technical aspect,combining the impressive technical skills of the musicians with the brutality of the music made!The vocals are still a difficult to dig aspect of the music,but the music itself is brilliant ,amazing sometimes!That's the king of album which will never sound old and dusty!It's atemporal and timeless and will be forever considered like a milestone album in the history of music,for it's innovative aspect!5 stars for the originality and courage to break musical barriers!
 Consuming Impulse by PESTILENCE album cover Studio Album, 1989
3.14 | 41 ratings

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Consuming Impulse
Pestilence Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Whereas their debut album had offered a death-tinged take on thrash metal, Pestilence's followup Consuming Impulse showcases them playing a thrashy style of death metal. Those who are especially fond of Pestilence's more technical or progressive takes on the genre, as on Testimony of the Ancients or Spheres, ought to be aware that you really won't find many hints of that here, since this is much more of a straight-ahead death metal album.

To an extent Pestilence could be accused of having followed various bandwagons, at least for the early phases of their career; they debuted with thrash metal in an era when thrash was king, then here they put out some death metal to tie in with the rise of that, then they went technical because that's what was getting fashionable in death metal circles, then they followed Cynic and Atheist into the jazz-death realm, and so on. Certainly, there is no shortage of death metal albums which sound a bit like this one, but it's still a reasonably good example of that style.

 Spheres by PESTILENCE album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.10 | 98 ratings

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Spheres
Pestilence Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Pestilence radically changed up their sound on this release, launching themselves into the deep end of the sort of technical jazz death metal that Cynic and Atheist were also experimenting in at the time. They actually acquit themselves rather well, though I can see how this may be a jarring release for some people - even though the preceding Testimony of the Ancients was quite technical, it was nowhere near as avant-garde as this, and that may put off some listeners. Still, it's entirely worth it to get another entry in this small little jazz-death subgenre, and in retrospect Pestilence should be glad they undertook this experiment.
 The Dysentery Penance by PESTILENCE album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2015
3.02 | 3 ratings

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The Dysentery Penance
Pestilence Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

3 stars

PESTILENCE - The Dysentery Penance

OK, class! It's time to do some math today. What do we get when we add:

PESTILENCE - The Dysentery (Demo)

and

PESTILENCE - The Penance (Demo)

Well, PESTILENCE - THE DYSENTERY PENANCE, of course

This album is as simple as that. This is nothing more than a remastered compilation of the band's first two demos PLUS two live tracks which includes "Before The Penance" and "Fight The Plague."

See reviews for the two demos separately. The two live tracks are of inferior quality and don't warrant investigation unless you're a diehard collector who wants to own everything the band has done. While not essential by any means, this is the only way to obtain the band's two demos in a remastered form and on CD. Decent but not OMG brilliant at this point

 The Penance (Demo) by PESTILENCE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1987
2.98 | 5 ratings

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The Penance (Demo)
Pestilence Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

3 stars THE PENANCE is the second demo by Dutch thrash masters PESTILENCE released shortly after their first. While the instrumentalists remained the same, the band found a new member exclusively dedicated to vocal duties. Martin van Drunen helps the band step it up a little bit beyond the generic sounding "Dysentery." Sounding a little more seasoned THE PENANCE is still very much rooted in late 80s thrash metal. It has the classic Metallica influenced guitar riffing. In fact "Before The Penance" at times sounds waaaaaaay too close to "For Whom The Bells Toll." Well, at least they had great heroes to worship. That said, the band deliver a more brutal approach to thrash metal on THE PENANCE and an obvious gateway to death metal.

Once again though, despite the progress in their development, PESTILENCE still sounds like an odd mix of early Metallica songwriting, Motorhead inspired punk attitude and some Exodus features as in the vocal phrasings, Slayer and Possessed type brutality. Yes, they stand out a bit with the new singer but ultimately this still sounds like a hodgepodge of metal ingredients sewn together and not properly boiled down into a broth. Pretty much for enthusiasts and not something that will make your stars aligned if you haven't experienced the thrash metal universe as of yet. Still though, not a bad demo. The production is much better than "Dysentery."

 Dysentery (Demo) by PESTILENCE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1987
2.51 | 5 ratings

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Dysentery (Demo)
Pestilence Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

2 stars Raw and unfettered Dutch thrash masters PESTILENCE hit the ground running in 1986 and recorded a couple demos and caught the attention of Roadrunner Records. DYSTENTERY is the first of these demos. Up to date only Patrick Mameli (guitar and vocals sometimes) has been in the band telling me that this is his creation and for better and worse has continued on throughout the thrash history of the last few decades. DYSENTERY is a fast and furious brutal thrash release from the era. It incorporates the speed demon worship of Possessed and a dirty hellish sound of early Sepultura. There is also the inevitable thrash influences from early Metallica in the riff department. I'm also detecting a rather early Exodus vocal delivery system.

Unfortunately i became acquainted with the magic world of PESTILENCE groundbreaking progressive metal album "Spheres" and nothing before quite measures up. This sounds like very generic thrash metal in its infancy, well in PESTILENCE's infancy. Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer had already produced much better metal concoctions at this point. This is a great one for the hardcore fans but not really something anyone else would seek out unless you're totally curious as have been i. In short, well played filthy raw thrash metal demo quality material from the 80s. Nothing more. Oh yeah, the production sucks too if you care about that crap.

 Testimony of the Ancients  by PESTILENCE album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.76 | 53 ratings

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Testimony of the Ancients
Pestilence Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Not quite as progressive as some of the material they would produce later, Pestilence's Testimony of the Ancients is still a technical metal tour de force which manages to hit a fine balance between brutality and technical finesse. Alternating between more developed pieces and brief, curious little instrumentals, the album offers up a somewhat more pristine and clean-sounding production than is typical for death metal of this era, but I think that really brings out the more subtle nuances of what Pestilence are trying to do here. The overall impression given is less of a brutal, aggressive bellow of rage and more like a panicked rant, which fits the lyrical themes nicely.
 The Dysentery Penance by PESTILENCE album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2015
3.02 | 3 ratings

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The Dysentery Penance
Pestilence Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars "The Dysentery Penance" is a compilation album by Dutch death/thrash metal act Pestilence. The compilation was released through Vic Records in November 2015. Itīs a compilation of the material from the bandīs two pre-album demo cassette tapes "Dysentery" and "The Penance" (both originally released in 1987), and two live tracks recorded in Eibergen in 1988. Both live tracks appear in their studio version on "The Penance" demo. The material on the 10 track, 41:35 minutes long demo has been remastered by Dan Swanö at Unisound Studios.

Pestilence is mostly known as a death metal act, and later a technical/progressive death metal act, but on these early demos they played a raw type of thrash metal, which sounds like itīs greatly influenced by "Hell Awaits (1985)"-era Slayer and artists like Sodom and Kreator. So basically old school thrash metal in the brutal and aggressive end of the scale.

The 4 tracks from the "Dysentery" demo are relatively simple, predominantly fast-paced, and aggressive thrash metal tracks, while the 4 tracks (one is a short intro) from "The Penance" demo are slightly more advanced, but still old school raw and aggressive thrash metal. While itīs both raw, brutal, and aggressive there are only few nods toward death metal on the demos. The death metal elements are mostly heard on the tracks from "The Penance". The two live tracks feature a raw bootleg type sound quality and are not the most interesting material on the compilation. The material from both studio demos is relatively well produced considering that itīs thrash metal demo material from 1987. The remaster sound is a little more "polished" and well defined, than the sound on the original cassette tape demos.

So "The Dysentery Penance" is a bit of a mixed bag but if youīre interested in the early beginnings of death metal and raw 80s thrash metal in general Iīve heard worse releases in the genre. Especially the material from "The Penance" is worth a listen. A 3 star (60%) rating is warranted.

 Testimony of the Ancients  by PESTILENCE album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.76 | 53 ratings

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Testimony of the Ancients
Pestilence Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by VOTOMS

5 stars Review n' 234

Behold... Pestilence found a keyboardist!!!

The late 80s/early 90s were very important to the acceptance of the extreme metal music towards the progressive rock fans, adding technical, progressive and fusion tendencies to the most brutal bands. There were a wide range of bands already playing progressive metal without a 10-20 minutes epic (ex. Monstrosity), but, as you can see/hear, most of death metal bands uses technical riffage and unusual/complex song structure, bearing the "progressive" in it's meaning without being recognized as prog if the tracks aren't lenghty enough. Fortunatelly there were some records to apply the lacking fanservice elements to a regular prog listener, like Pestilence did with Testimony of The Ancients: similar to Edge of Sanity early releases, this album is still pure death metal (different than the next record Spheres, which felt down into proggy prog metal), although it had the power to be called progressive. For me, everything starts with Dan Seagrave cover art, a master of dark surreal/sci-fi area. Well, some could say the band was following the steps by Death and Atheist. It doesn't change the relevance of the album. Kent Smith symphonic keyboards addition to Pestilence here is epic. After every standard track there's a short instrumental/symphonic segue summoning a dreamy fear, as a catastrophical nightmare. The sound keeps aggressive but isn't so brutal. The guitar solos are melodic and catchty, while the musical chords were well chosen and the surreal atmosphere evokes deep feelings.

No they weren't a group of rebel kids just playing hateful music without meaning. At least not anymore.

 Two from the Vault by PESTILENCE album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2003
4.00 | 1 ratings

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Two from the Vault
Pestilence Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

— First review of this album —
4 stars "Two From The Vault" is a boxset release by Dutch death metal act Pestilence. The boxset was released through Roadrunner Records in September 2003. "Two From The Vault" is a concept Roadrunner Records invented to give people a chance to purchase two albums for the price of one and also to reissue some out of print albums. Other than Pestilence, releases by artists like King Diamond, Suffocation and Gorguts, have also been given the same treatment.

This particular "Two From The Vault" box set features Pestilence 2nd and 3rd full- length studio albums "Consuming Impulse (1989)" and "Testimony Of The Ancients (1991)". Both "classic" death metal albums by one of the greatest Dutch death metal acts from the late eighties/early nineties. Although both albums were released under the Pestilence monicker, they are actually very different in style. "Consuming Impulse (1989)" is relentlessly raw and brutal death metal while "Testimony Of The Ancients (1991)" is generally a lot more sophisticated and at times even semi-progressive. Both were groundbreaking releases when they were originally released though. Few albums from 1989 sounded as raw and brutal as "Consuming Impulse (1989)" and few death metal albums from 1991 sounded as sophisticated as "Testimony Of The Ancients (1991)". A shift on the lead vocalist spot between the two albums is one of the explanations behind the very different sounding albums, but overall itīs actually just the first sign that Pestilence were never a band to make the same album twice...

Both albums are high quality death metal releases and definitely worth a purchase. Both because of historical value, but certainly also because of the high quality songwriting, musicianship, and sound productions contained within. If you can get a hold of this "Two From The Vault" version, I can definitely recommend a purchase. A 4 star (80%) rating is deserved.

Thanks to The T for the artist addition.

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