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GORGUTS

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal • Canada


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Gorguts biography
See also:

- Negativa

GORGUTS is a Canadian progressive/ technical death metal act formed in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada in 1989. The band released their debut demo tape ...And Then Comes Lividity in 1990. GORGUTS was then signed to Roadrunner Records and released their debut album "Considered Dead" in 1991. They returned in 1993 with their second album "The Erosion of Sanity" which proved to be more technical and experimental than their debut. Unfortunately the band were then dropped by Roadrunner Records and went into a five year hiatus before bandleader/ guitarist and vocalist LUC LEMAY, as the only remaining member from the original lineup, opted to continue the band with a new lineup.

GORGUTS was signed to Olympic Records and released their so far most experimental/ avant garde album "Obscura" (1998) which is widely considered a seminal progressive technical death metal album. The album features complex riffs and multi-layered dissonant harmonies and have influenced several other progressive death metal artists.

GORGUTS released their fourth full-length studio album "From Wisdom to Hate" in 2001. The lineup features new guitarist DANIEL MONGRAIN ( MARTYR, CAPHARNAUM, QUO VADIS, VOIVOD) and new drummer STEVE MACDONALD. While the album still holds experimental elements itīs a more straight forward technical death metal album compared to "Obscura." Drummer STEVE MACDONALD unfortunately comitted suicide in 2002 as he hung himself. The drummer had a history of recurrent depression. The death of STEVE MACDONALD was one of the reasons for yet another break-up of GORGUTS in 2005.

LUC LEMAY and former GORGUTS guitarist STEEVE HURDLE formed the band NEGATIVA in 2005 and released a self-titled EP in 2006. LUC LEMAY left NEGATIVA in 2008 and re-formed GORGUTS with new guitarist KEVIN HUFNAGEL (DYSRHYTHMIA, WHILE HEAVEN WEPT, BYLA, EUCLID STREET, THE FIFTH SEASON, GREY DIVISION BLUE), bassist COLIN MARSTON (DYSRHYTHMIA, BEHOLD... THE ARCTOPUS, BYLA, KRALLICE, INDRICOTHERE) and drummer JOHN LONGSTRETH (DIM MAK, ORIGIN, THE RED CHORD, SKINLESS, POSSESSION, ANGELCORPSE).

The new lineup is currently working on a new album. GORGUTS inclusion in the Prog Archives database was approved by the Progressive Metal Team on the grounds that "Obscura" is widely considered a seminal progressive technical death metal alb...
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Buy GORGUTS Music


Colored SandsColored Sands
Season of Mist 2013
Audio CD$9.20
$9.73 (used)
Considered Dead / Erosion of SanityConsidered Dead / Erosion of Sanity
Roadrunner Records 2004
Audio CD$12.49
$15.96 (used)
From Wisdom to HateFrom Wisdom to Hate
Deluxe Edition
Deepsend Records 2010
Audio CD$13.84
$60.26 (used)
ObscuraObscura
Slip Disc 1998
Audio CD$193.77
$217.62 (used)
And Then Come Lividity/Demo AnthologyAnd Then Come Lividity/Demo Anthology
Galy Records/Lumberjack 1999
Audio CD$13.97
$40.34 (used)
Considered DeadConsidered Dead
Import · Limited Edition · Remastered
Massacre Germany 2006
Audio CD$618.34
$49.99 (used)
Considered Dead / Erosion of Sanity by Gorguts (2004) Audio CDConsidered Dead / Erosion of Sanity by Gorguts (2004) Audio CD
Roadrunner Records
Audio CD$39.86
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More places to buy GORGUTS music online Buy GORGUTS & Prog Rock Digital Music online:
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GORGUTS shows & tickets


  • SWR BARROSELAS METALFEST XVII on 23 Apr 2014
  • Gorguts + Misery Index at Shoko, Madrid on 25 Apr 2014
  • Gorguts + Misery Index at Nuevo Garaje Tía María, Murcia on 26 Apr 2014
  • Gorguts + Misery Index at Razzmatazz 3, Barcelona on 27 Apr 2014
  • Gorguts + Misery Index at La Dynamo, Toulouse on 28 Apr 2014
  • Gorguts + Misery Index at Circolo Colony, Brescia on 29 Apr 2014
  • Gorguts + Misery Index at Escape, Wien on 30 Apr 2014
  • 10 Years of New Evil Music Fest - Day 2 on 1 May 2014
  • Gorguts + Misery Index + Fleshless + more at Kulturfabrik Lyss, Lyss on 2 May 2014
  • Neurotic Deathfest 2014 on 2 May 2014
  • Gorguts + Misery Index + Resistance + more at Magasin 4, Brussels on 3 May 2014
  • Maryland Deathfest XII on 22 May 2014
  • Copenhell 2014 on 11 Jun 2014
  • Metalfest Loreley on 19 Jun 2014
  • Metalfest Loreley on 19 Jun 2014
  • Hellfest 2014 on 20 Jun 2014
  • Death: DTA on 22 Jun 2014
  • Death: DTA on 23 Jun 2014
  • Death: DTA on 24 Jun 2014
  • Death: DTA on 25 Jun 2014
  • Death: DTA on 26 Jun 2014
  • Inferno Metal Festival Switzerland 2014 on 27 Jun 2014
  • Brutal Assault XIX on 6 Aug 2014
  • Ieperfest 2014 on 8 Aug 2014
  • Into The Grave 2014 on 9 Aug 2014
  • Gothoom Open Air Fest 5 on 13 Aug 2014
  • Noctis VII Metal Fest on 19 Sep 2014
  • Extreme Metal Over Japan vol. 3 on 6 Nov 2014
  • Extreme Metal Over Japan vol. 3 on 7 Nov 2014
  • Extreme Metal Over Japan vol. 3 on 8 Nov 2014

GORGUTS discography


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

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

3.08 | 23 ratings
Considered Dead
1991
3.52 | 30 ratings
The Erosion of Sanity
1993
4.38 | 88 ratings
Obscura
1998
3.56 | 23 ratings
From Wisdom To Hate
2001
4.16 | 45 ratings
Colored Sands
2013

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

1.00 | 2 ratings
Live in Rotterdam
2006

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

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

1.00 | 1 ratings
Demo Anthology
2003
2.86 | 5 ratings
Considered Dead/The Erosion Of Sanity
2004

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

2.91 | 3 ratings
...And Then Comes Lividity
1990

GORGUTS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Colored Sands by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.16 | 45 ratings

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Colored Sands
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by FruMp
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Album of the year 2013.

I'm always super wary of legendary bands reuniting to record new material a decade or more after their last release. I was particularly wary of this reunion having recently listened to the latest mediocre Atheist and Pestilence albums, also truth be told Lemay's other band Negativa and pretty much everything he did after Obscura was lost on me.

However real talent and innovation often surprises you and challenges your expectations. When it comes to 'reunions' it takes on a different meaning when there is one principal songwriter and continuous member, basically Gorguts is Luc Lemay's band and everyone else follows his lead, this is crucially important as to why this album not only doesn't suck but is incredible. All the time that has passed doesn't really matter. The reason why reunions so often blow is the politics and democratic processes of writing songs in a group context is entirely irrelevant. This completely bypasses all the usual stumbling blocks of people who have changed tastes and had kids and settled down and maybe dont drink and party anymore - or maybe just lost the spark of youthful creativity. So yes, in retrospect in this case my cynicism may have been misplaced and this paragraph is here to tell you that yours may be too (coincidentally Cynic's comeback Traced in Air is the one other exception that proved great).

I remember listening to Obscura the for the first time and being befuddled by the strange sounds and tonal complexity the band created by playing their instruments unconventionally. I was confused equally by the glowing superlative reviews it garnered, so I listened about 10 more times and it started to make a bit of sense. The riffs and timing clicked and became extremely addictive. Coloured Sands is the follow up to Obscura I always wanted but interestingly given my familiarity with the band I didn't actually think much of the album on first or second listen. I had to give it the benefit of the doubt though and sure enough after a dozen listens it kicked my ass and got stuck in my head and it has been enjoyed many dozens of times more.

The interplay of the instruments is sublime. You couldn't get a better fit for this band than bass lord Colin Marston of Behold the Arctopus and Krallice fame and once you become familiar with the songs and you peel back the layers and hear the way his bass counterpoints with Lemay's guitar - it's simply intoxicating. The compositions are long and dynamically complex, there are a lot of quieter sections with weird harmonics that juxtapose well with the brutal trademark Gorguts guitar sound akin to cavemen punching guitars but somehow shredding at the same time (don't ask me how that metaphor makes sense, it just does). On an album scale the pacing is fantastic as well. The first song is a zinger and you slowly toboggan along until the classical 'intermission' - 'the battle of chamdo' (fantastic in its own right) and are then punched in the face by the double kicking, polyrhythming, heavy riffing assault of standout track 'enemies of compassion'. After this shake up its a bit of a slower dark ride to the end laden with some catchy riffs (drum riffs included!).

Crucially like with all the greatest albums featured on this website, at the end of it you feel like you have been on a journey of sorts, you certainly ended up in a different place to where you started. Hearing interviews with the band and reading up a bit about the album it turns out that its a concept album about Tibetan Buddhism.

A brutal technical death metal album about... Tibetan Buddhism? Like all things Gorguts, it shouldn't make sense - but it makes perfect sense.

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 Considered Dead by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.08 | 23 ratings

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Considered Dead
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy

4 stars It's always interesting to hear debut albums by bands that will go on to redefine a genre's boundaries. Especially after you've heard the later works first. GORGUTS started off as a no-nonsense full-on death metal band with little of the progressive heights that would take off ten years later.

The truth is listening to this now, you can already hear the blueprints for the technical death metal that would come later. Stephane Provencher's drumming already shows signs of irregular progressive timings and even though he would depart the band, the seeds had been sown.

Don't worry though, if old school death metal is what you crave, CONSIDERED DEAD is a healthy dose of morbid brutality that should scratch that itch. Although I don't forsee this reaching masterpiece status anytime soon, I really enjoyed this more than I thought I would. 3.5 stars rounded up to 4

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 The Erosion of Sanity by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 1993
3.52 | 30 ratings

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The Erosion of Sanity
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy

4 stars A sudden leap into the progressive world of death metal makes GORGUTS' 2nd release a somewhat more interesting listen. Slightly more progressive than CONSIDERED DEAD but still firmly rooted in brutal death metal with some unconventional riffs and structures that would be fully realized on OBSCURA.

This album is a brutal beast save the occasional tinkling of beautiful pianos or classical guitar and if you're in the mood for no compromise brutality with slight progressive leanings than this is the album for you. I didn't hear this album at the time it came out so my affection for it isn't as strong as other's seem to have but it's by no means a bad album and is short enough to warrant a listen now and again. 3.5 stars rounded up to 4

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 Obscura by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 1998
4.38 | 88 ratings

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Obscura
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy

5 stars Very unique, and a hard listen. Is it possible to get this on the first spin? I can't say this music is pleasing on the same level that we typically associate music namely, harmony, melody, familiar structure etc. What this delivers is intrigue and obscuration, hence the title OBSCURA. Although not familiar ones, there are patterns and structure to this perceived madness.

It makes me think of an alternate universe where the existence of square roots of negative numbers embedded in the fabric of space-time produce ugly, mangled and monstrous creations. This would surely be the soundtrack of tortured beasts shrieking and grunting in pain with a cacophonous accompaniment of aggression. A place where no benevolent nature exists and pain is all one can experience.

The reputation that this release has gotten over the years since it has been released is well-founded. I can't think of a stranger piece of music that invites me in to experience it again and again finding new ways to experience the somewhat familiar sounds of death metal but twisted into strange new concoctions. 4.5 stars rounded up

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 Colored Sands by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.16 | 45 ratings

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Colored Sands
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars "Colored Sands" is the 5th full-length studio album by Canadian experimental/progressive extreme metal act Gorguts. The album was released through Season of Mist in August 2013. Gorguts are one of the pioneers in using dominant dissonance in extreme metal music and their "Obscura (1998)" album is a seminal release, that has inspired prolific acts like Deathspell Omega and Ulcerate, just to mention a few. Of course there were acts that incorporated dissonance to their sound before "Obscura (1998)" came out (especially Voivod comes to mind), but it featured a chaotic darkness and dominant use of dissonance that was unheard of at the time. Their 4th full-length studio album "From Wisdom to Hate (2001)" toned down the dissonance a bit and made a slight return to the more "regular" US influenced death metal style of the bandīs first two studio albums, but still retained a dissonant element, that sets the album apart from most other releases in the genre.

The band were struck by tragedy though as drummer Steve MacDonald committed suicide in October 2002 and band leader Luc Lemay put Gorguts on hold until 2008 when he chose to ressurect the band again with a completely new lineup. On "Colored Sands" the lineup consists of Luc Lemay (Vocals, Guitar), Kevin Hufnagel (Guitar), Colin Marston (Bass), John Longstreth (Drums). These are all very seasoned musicians, having played with acts like (among others) Behold the Arctopus, Krallice, Dysrhythmia, Dim Mak, Angelcorpse, Origin, Vaura and The Red Chord and as a consequence the musicianship on "Colored Sands" is top notch. And that is exploited to the full on "Colored Sands". All four guys are very active and audible in the soundscape. Great interplay between the two guitarists, very skillfully played drumming (and varied too) and busy adventurous bass playing. The vocals are mostly growling and pretty low in the mix and along with the atmospheric sections this give off a strong post rock/metal vibe.

The lyrics on "Colored Sands" are politically motivated. Itīs a concept album describing the Tibetan culture and later the Chinese invastion of Tibet in 1950 and the following oppression of the Tibetan people by the Chinese occupation. I think we can safely establish that Luc Lemay is not going to travel to China anytime soon after this...

The music on the 9 tracks, 62:49 minutes long album is, except for the intrumental classical chamber piece "The Battle of Chamdo", a chaotic sounding, dark and twisted but also atmospheric type of extreme metal, with nods toward both death metal, post rock/metal, avant garde metal and progressive metal. although there are familiar elements in the bandīs sound Gorguts continue to challenge conventions. Dissonance and tempo- and time signature changes are dominant elements in the bandīs sound and sometimes those elements make for an almost nauseating listen. The way the band sometimes combine fast paced drumming with slow dragging dissonant riffing (not completely unlike the atmospheric doom/death of Disembowelment) has the effect on me, that I feel like Iīm being torn apart inside. Iīm not sure if I should headbang like a madman to the complex rythms or just sit there drenched in the feeling of despair that the music so vividly convey. Somehow thatīs a wonderful ambiguous feeling.

The same can be said about the sound production which in many ways is strong, as it is both powerful, detailed and relatively raw. At the same time it features a drum sound that may put some people off. Especially the bass drums feature quite an odd clicky sound. Personally Iīve formed the opinion that I think they fit the music well and provide it with another otherworldly and alien element to add to the rest of them. This is in every way possible a very unique and innovative sounding release by Gorguts, which might draw on some of the same elements as their groundbreaking "Obscura (1998)" album did, but at the same time adds a lot of atmosphere to those elements and therefore ultimately sounds very little like that album. Thereīs no arguing that "Colored Sands" is an incredible comeback album by Gorguts and to my ears maybe their strongest release to date. A 5 star (100%) rating is deserved.

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 Colored Sands by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.16 | 45 ratings

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Colored Sands
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by J-Man
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Gorguts may have only released four albums in its original run, but with those four albums, the band made an insurmountable impact on death metal. Particularly with 1998's Obscura, Luc Lemay's brainchild pioneered one of the most experimental approaches to technical death metal ever recorded - to this day, I've yet to hear any other band explore death metal in such a chaotic, yet darkly atmospheric light. Gorguts is one of the few bands in death metal with a completely unique voice, and even after twelve years between albums, that statement rings as true as ever.

2013's Colored Sands shows Gorguts once again residing in experimental tech-death land, but this time with a slightly different spin. Although the album features plenty of zany technical workouts and dissonant harmonic phrasing, it also showcases some straightforward death metal riffs and an epic approach to songwriting that was never present before in Gorguts' music. The result is an observation that sounds as daring and experimental as anything else out there, but also feels more accessible than the densest works from Gorguts. There's a reason why Colored Sands has received so much hype from the death metal community, and the only way to understand is to hear it for yourself. We're glad to have you back, Luc!

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 Colored Sands by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.16 | 45 ratings

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Colored Sands
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Returning for their first new studio album in 12 yesrs - 12 years during which the legend and reputation of the mighty Obscura grew and grew - Gorguts come back with a confident album which displays their command of technical death metal but doesn't rely on pure technicality to get the job done. Yes, their progressive and technical instincts are still intact - this is a serious- minded concept album about the effect of Chinese rule on the Tibetan people after all - but that doesn't mean they don't break out some raw and dirty death metal workouts alongside their more technical excursions. Hitting a deft balance between accessibility and technicality, it's perhaps my favourite Gorguts album to date.

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 Colored Sands by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 2013
4.16 | 45 ratings

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Colored Sands
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Prog Sothoth
Collaborator Prog Metal Team

4 stars This album is a conceptual piece concerning practices and the historical timeline before and after occupation in regards to Tibetan culture by musicians under the banner of a name which co-joins "gore" and "guts" into a single word. Gorguts!! It's sorta fun to say.

Being one of the pioneers of the more abrasive and dissonant brands of extreme metal, Colored Sands is Gorguts' first release in over a decade, and unlike a lot of bands that awaken from long and ancient slumbers to release half-hearted new tripe while relying on their "legendary" early stuff for touring purposes, this is some pretty amazing stuff. The overall production is massive and almost punishing with a truly fat guitar sound leading the charge.

Skill-wise the band is on fire, and I especially dig the eclectic drumming of John Longstreth, which doesn't eschew blast-beats yet never relies on them either, preferring more jazzy shape- shifting patterns and no shortage of tribal and slow passages. Musically it's more coherent than their prior two releases, but still uncanny and difficult to absorb with the numerous bizarre chord progressions and lurches into deliberate atonality. One notable feature I must also mention are the guitar solos, which are rather brilliant and often melodic, which is quite a feat considering the churning miasmic riffs these solos ride upon. Lemay's vocals are ferocious bellowing growls that occasionally veer into 'anguished' territory, but not to the same 'lance-up- buttocks' level that their Obscura album possesses.

Songwise, these behemoths can be a bit too much to deal with after awhile, as the blending of their own brand of chaotic metal with certain aspects of more recent acts such as Deathspell Omega and Ulcerate can lead to a sudden urge for extreme consonance (or in my case...a Norah Jones album), but individually these beasts are brutally entertaining. Let's not forget centerpiece "The Battle of Chamdo" though. A classical number composed by Lemay right when a break from the maelstrom is needed. And it's not just an oasis, but a damn fine musical piece on its own.

Like much of their catalog, this effort is not an easy feast to digest by any means, but the immense talent and craftsmanship towards making something so difficult for many to enjoy deserves accolades from the loonier sides of music fandom. It took a while, but it's nice to see them back again after so long.

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 Obscura by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 1998
4.38 | 88 ratings

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Obscura
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars One of the most downright bonkers technical death metal albums I have ever heard, Gorguts' Obscura finds the band eschewing the intricately structured jazz-death of Atheist or Cynic in favour of bizarre rhythms and dissonant avant-garde chaos. It's not quite free jazz death metal, but it's certainly downright peculiar, but I don't think it would be fair to write it off as merely being weird for weird's sake - there's a certain atmosphere the band establish here which is genuinely haunting, a sickening sense that the natural order of things has somehow gone completely wrong. I can't say this is for everyone, and many will walk away wondering what all the fuss is about, but on balance if you're into technical death metal you owe it to yourself to at least give it a chance, because good gravy you're not going to find much that compares to this.

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 Obscura by GORGUTS album cover Studio Album, 1998
4.38 | 88 ratings

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Obscura
Gorguts Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by irrelevant

4 stars For me, there's a slight problem with this album, and that is after you've given it the first full play, most of the other tech metal you've previously been listening to suddenly loses a bit of its impact, and for lack of a better word, greatness (well, in my experience anyway). And this all comes down to one simple but utterly crucial element - Emotion. While I'm not saying extremely complex metal has no emotion, there's something about the feelings of anguish and desperation that Obscura contains, that simply betters most of the albums in the same field. It's an entity with more than the height of a skyscraper.

The music itself is very dissonant and angular, and the drum parts roll unsteadily but splendidly over the fractured guitar lines, a bit like a death metal Trout Mask Replica, as it's often described. It's pretty relentless during its 60 minute runtime, probably what's holding it back from a five star rating for me. I also have to be in the right mood to give it a spin.

Gorguts created a completely unique and special album, and one that many will be listening to years and years ahead from now.

4.5 Stars

Favourite tracks: "Obscura", "Nostalgia", "Clouded", "La Vie Est Prelude? (La Morte Orgasme)", "Sweet Silence"

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