Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Pestilence & Horde of Torment demos

       Pestilence was one of the few local bands from the 80's that seemed to make a big splash outside the Las Vegas valley.  I heard talk about their demo making the rounds in tape trading circles at that time and people were really psyched on them all over the world.  Yet again another band that put out a classic demo that never made it to vinyl, but I think this was later released on vinyl.

        Pestilence is such a generic name it was a little surprising that Pestilence would later change their name so as not to be confused with any other Pestilenceses in the world.  I'm sure by now there have been hundreds of bands named Pestilence maybe thousands.  In point of fact there was a band from Holland who had the same name and they later took up the mantle of the one and true Pestilence once this Pestilence relinquished the name.  I heard  the Holland guys and wasn't impressed.  This Pestilence will always be the true Pestilence in my book.  American Metal reigns supreme over those Euro trash posin dirtheads!  Anyway, they later became Horde of Torment.  Which again is a pretty stupid fucking name.   

         It's quality Thrash Metal.  And no, it's not Death Metal, it's not Speed Metal, and it's not Crossover Hardcore.  It's impossible to describe these guys without making mention of Metallica or Exodus maybe even Slayer but they don't have the same brutality that Slayer exhibited.  It's Thrash.  Well put together with lot's of heart.  Great guitar licks and the singer does a good job spouting aggression with a snarl that keeps this squarely in the metal militia.

         I never did see them play live but I was among the throngs who heard this demo and was surprised they were from Vegas.  They later moved to So Cal?

         Since I'm not too schooled on their story I did a search and found a great interview with Horde of Torment conducted by Laurent Ramadier from Snakepit magazine which is full of stories about desert shows they played and other experiences in Sin City.  The pics you see here were taken from that site.

         On a side note I have to say Snakepit magazine is probably the best metal magazine I've ever read.  This guy Laurent from France appears to be completely obsessed with the "TRUE" Metal scene in it's entirety.  I read a review he gave of the recently reissued Papsmear discography and he drops Vegas names like Lethal, Substance D, and 5150, as well as other bands I didn't even know existed like Voluntary Manslaughter and Fallacy.  Pretty cool to think there's a weirdo out there who will still document and celebrate scenes as obscure as those that have remained dormant for as long as these have.   I can only imagine how many hours a day this guy listens to Metal. 

         Listening today these tracks still got power.  I remember how we felt a bit let down by their sound when they changed their name to Horde of Torment.  I'm still feeling that way.  Horde of Torment was more traditional metal sounding with less of the kick in the balls thrash sound that Pestilence had.  It's still good just not as out of control which is what I look for in this style.       

        Thanks again to Jeff Murphy for sending these demos along.  A few live tracks are included with Pestilence thrashing it out at The Club which was located on Valley View and Charleston.

       I'm really bad with names but Jeff Murphy clued me in: Pestilence was: Kevin Leonard: Bass/Vocals, Ahrue Luster: guitar, Scott Savich: guitar, and Joey Capabianco on drums.  Horde of Torment had the same line up with Tim Montijo on drums instead of Capabianco.     


  1. wow, the trip down memory lane... One of the first bands I saw after moving here from Hawaii was Horde Of Torment at the Elks lodge. They played with the Junkie Nuns & Area 51

  2. Laurent from Snakepit...Thanks for the mention...and HAPPY you like my work rager!

  3. I had more fun and fulfilment out of this band than anything I've done as a professional musician.