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Washington, D.C.'s Darkest Hour is a supporter of the death metal/hardcore merger, founded in the early '90s by such outfits as Carcass and Entombed. Comprised of members Mike Schleibaum (guitar), Billups Allen (bass), John Henry (vocals), Fred Ziomek (guitar), and Ryan Parrish (drums), the band formed in the mid-'90s, inking a deal with the New York-based underground metal label MIA Records in 1999. The quintet issued its debut recording a year later, The Mark of the Judas, and was ready to support the release when its label suddenly went out of business.
Label-less but not down and out, Darkest Hour quickly gained the interest of Victory Records, issuing a sophomore effort, So Sedated, So Secure, in July of 2001. It was followed by the release of Hidden Hands of a Sadist Nation in 2003, an album proclaimed by Revolver to be a "metalcore classic." Summer 2004 found Darkest Hour with a slot on Ozzfest's second stage. The following February, Darkest Hour released a DVD, Prison Scars and Party Bars: A Thrashography, which documented their first ten years as a band (1995-2005) with music videos, live footage, and interviews. Back on the album front, the well-received Undoing Ruin appeared in June 2005 before A-F Records issued the rarities collection Archives (which included their two earliest EPs, 1996's The Misanthrope and 1999's The Prophecy Fulfilled) that October. Deliver Us arrived in the summer of 2007 followed by Eternal Return in 2009.