GOD

U.K. musician and writer Kevin Martin started God, one of his many musical projects, thanks to an unlikely but inspired source -- Mark E. Smith. The Fall frontman contacted Martin in 1987 to ask him for a submission for Disparate Cognescenti, a compilation Smith was then planning for release on the Cog Sinister label. Initially, Martin's main musical partner was Shane Rogan, who handled guitar while Martin concentrated on tenor sax and vocals. There was no set God lineup or even a particular musical style for the remainder of the '80s, with the two working with a variety of players while Martin's energy went in part to running London's Mule Club, where God often performed alongside bands like Napalm Death and Godflesh. Guitarist Justin Broadrick, veteran of the former and leader of the latter, soon befriended Martin, helping to produce the band's debut release, Breach Birth, a 1990 EP on Situation Two Records. Broadrick soon formally joined God as part of his regular musical partnership with Martin, which included such projects as Techno-Animal and Ice, while God themselves expanded to a more or less regular nine-person roster. Loco, God's next major release, was a live album appearing on Martin's own Pathological label in 1991, demonstrating the band's newfound focus on combining numerous free jazz inspirations from the '70s and '80s with amp-bursting heavy metal. Possession followed in 1992, the group's formal, album-length studio debut, which surprisingly turned up on Virgin Records; 1993 saw another live album, Consumed, which appeared on the likely more amenable label Sentrax. 1994 wrapped up God's existence with two more albums, the final studio effort The Anatomy of Addiction and a subsequent remix album, Appeal to Human Greed. Martin and Broadrick then pursued their other joint efforts, but God went permanently on ice. ~ Ned Raggett

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