One of Chaosbreed's releases is titled Brutal, and that adjective is a perfect description of what they do. The Finnish band specializes in underground death metal/black metal that is, in fact, quite brutal, brutally ferocious, brutally intense and brutally merciless. Chaosbreed is anything but subtle; like so many other death metal/black metal outfits that have come from the Scandinavian countries (Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland) in the late '80s, '90s or 2000s, Chaosbreed thrives on density and harshness and believes in the take-no-prisoners approach to headbanging. And their sledgehammer recordings (some of which have hints of hardcore) draw on a combination of American and European influences; the death metallers who have affected Chaosbreed's sound include, among others, Obituary, Entombed, Dismember, Autopsy, Morbid Angel and the seminal Slayer. Chaosbreed's members have also cited Carcass, one of the earliest grindcore bands, as an influence; Chaosbreed, however, isn't grindcore in the strict sense. True grindcore is played at the same tempo (insanely fast) 100 percent of the time, and Chaosbreed has opted to pummel and batter their listeners at different tempos. The five-member band was formed in the spring of 2003, when lead vocalist Taneli Jarva joined forces with bassist Oppu Laine, drummer Nalle Österman and two guitarists: Esa Holopainen and Marko Tervonen. All five of them had belonged to other Finnish death metal/black metal bands in their pre-Chaosbreed days; while Tervonen had been with Moonsorrow and Jarva had been with Sentenced, Impaled Nazarene, and the Black League, Österman was an ex-member of Gandalf (which has a reputation for being one of Finland's more melodic death metal/black metal combos and should not to be confused with either the late-'60s psychedelic group Gandalf or the new age artist Gandalf). Holopainen and Laine, meanwhile, both had Amorphis on their resumes; Holopainen, in fact, had co-founded Amorphis (one of Finland's more enduring death metal acts) with drummer Jan Rechberger back in 1990. Laine was also a former member of the band Mannhai. The first thing that Chaosbreed recorded was a five-song demo EP titled Unleashed Carnage; three of the tracks were offered free of charge as MP3 downloads on the band's website, but after Chaosbreed started to create a buzz in Nordic extreme metal circles, Unleashed Carnage became commercially available. The EP was first released in Western Europe by the independent Rising Realm Records, and after that, Chaosbreed licensed Unleashed Carnage to the Phoenix, AZ-based Crash Music for release in the United States. Chaosbreed's first full-length album, Brutal, was released by Century Media in 2004. ~ Alex Henderson


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