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PAINKILLER

RIO/Avant-Prog • United States


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Painkiller biography
Painkiller was formed in 1991 when NYC Downtown giants John Zorn (Naked City, Masada) & Bill Laswell (Massacre, Material, Praxis) teamed up with death metal drummer Mick Harris (Napalm Death, Scorn). Their music explores territory previously charted by avant-garde group Last Exit (in which Laswell was also a member) with a decided soft spot for ambiance & dub.

In '91 & '92 Painkiller released their first brutal assault on the world in the form of two controvercial EP's 'Guts of a Virgin' & 'Buried Secrets'. Both EP's featured artwork of an extremely obsene nature, the former even having been banned by the UK for violating the Obscene Publications Act. In 1994 Painkiller released their first LP 'Execution Ground' which came with a bonus disc featuring dub versions of two tracks from the album. A series of compilations & live albums were released throughout 2005 with a continual rotation of guest musicians contributing.

-Danial 'Captain Capricorn'

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Buy PAINKILLER Music


The ProphecyThe Prophecy
Tzadik 2013
Audio CD$9.28
$15.73 (used)
Collected WorksCollected Works
Box set
Tzadik 1998
Audio CD$25.00
$18.99 (used)
Execution GroundExecution Ground
Subharmonic 2001
Audio CD$9.00
$4.98 (used)
50th Birthday Celebration 1250th Birthday Celebration 12
Tzadik 2005
Audio CD$8.99
$8.77 (used)
Buried SecretsBuried Secrets
Red Distribution, in 1992
Audio CD$35.95
$0.95 (used)
Buried Secrets/Guts of a VirgiBuried Secrets/Guts of a Virgi
Earache Records/Emi 1998
Audio CD$20.00
$14.98 (used)
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More places to buy PAINKILLER music online Buy PAINKILLER & Prog Rock Digital Music online:
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PAINKILLER shows & tickets


  • TZN Xenna + Painkiller + Cela Nr 3 at W Starym Kinie, Poznan on 4 Oct 2014
  • Cela Nr 3 + Painkiller + TZN Xenna at W Starym Kinie, Poznan on 4 Oct 2014

PAINKILLER discography


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

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

2.25 | 4 ratings
Guts Of A Virgin
1991
2.75 | 4 ratings
Buried Secrets
1992
3.91 | 4 ratings
Execution Ground
1994

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

1.00 | 1 ratings
Rituals - Live in Japan
1993
1.00 | 1 ratings
Talisman - Live in Nagoya
2002
3.00 | 3 ratings
50th Birthday Celebration Volume 12: Painkiller
2005

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

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

0.00 | 0 ratings
Collected Works (The Complete Studio Recordings 1991-1994)
1997
0.00 | 0 ratings
Guts Of A Virgin & Buried Secrets
1998

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

PAINKILLER Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Execution Ground by PAINKILLER album cover Studio Album, 1994
3.91 | 4 ratings

BUY
Execution Ground
Painkiller RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars First full-size (even 2 x CD) Painkillers studio album. John Zorn's one of most hardcore project Painkiller existed in early 90-s as John excurse to dark world of radical free-form avant-jazz hardcore. You can imagine the atmosphere of Painkiller's music just from albums cover pictures.

Just a trio (with bassist Bill Laswell and metal drummer Mick Harris , plus samples), but it was more than enough of them for building of nervous soundscapes. Very ambient back-up sounds are filled with almost unmusical screams of sax, tribal drumming and strange sounds you will hardly believe of bass guitar origin. Cold, dark, in part industrial atmosphere filling all the space. Don't expect melodies or structures, it's all about sounds and nerves.

First CD contains three improvs, with Zorn's extreme sax screaming. Second CD contains ambient versions of two compositions from the first CD. Noise, doom, dark ambient and free jazz - what is all you fill find there. Great shamanism, danger in air. Far from beauty of all sorts, but monument to cold nervous world of strange voices.

Excellent work for those searching for shocking beauty of darkness. Hardly acceptable for all others.

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