|To see past the secure foundations of convention and into an entirely new state of being demands the strength, conviction and true sense of purpose possessed only by a chosen few. They are the innovators, the leaders, the ones who transcend perceived limitations. In their decade-plus reign as death metal's leading creative force, MORBID ANGEL have consistently succeeded in shattering the musical, spiritual and ideological boundaries of extreme music while unquestionably retaining their core element of brutal and inspirational excellence.
With their seventh offering, the band that shaped an entire genre has re-defined it yet again. 'Gateways To Annihilation' marks the opening of a new door for MORBID ANGEL - a new path and a new state of mind. Musically enveloping itself within the natural rhythms of the universe, the album flows with the enduring spirit of infinite possibility. The luminous virtuosity of guitarist, founder and song writer Trey Azagthoth, the astonishing battery of legendary percussionist Pete Sandoval and devastating bassist/vocalist/song writer Steve Tucker, along with the classically-inspired workmanship of guitarist Erik Rutan, combine to weave sinuous, striking, and dark grooves around timeless truths and questions that have been asked since the dawn of consciousness and shall be asked forever more. Produced by MORBID ANGEL and Jim Morris at Morrisound Studios in Tampa, FL, 'Gateways To Annihilation' will become another indispensable landmark on the heavy metal landscape. The standards have been raised and exceeded, but that is what MORBID ANGEL have done since their inception.
The world was introduced to the furious intensity of the Tampa natives in 1989 with the release of 'Altars Of Madness.' The album was a revolutionary and unprecedented statement in extreme metal at the time, its strong song writing, finely tuned musical firewinds and uncontrollable lyrical rage finding so many eager ears that it catapulted to #1 on the UK Independent chart. Their debut has gone on to be unequivocally acknowledged as one of the most influential death metal albums ever recorded, a whirling vortex of searing anger and unstoppable energy. 1991's 'Blessed Are The Sick' cemented MORBID ANGEL's (and songwriter Azagthoth's in particular) reputation as truly innovative and visionary composers, infusing prevalent classical undercurrents within their exceedingly powerful material. 'Blessed...' retained the devastating windstorm of sound that had become their trademark and took it to another dimension. With two already-classic albums behind them and a relentless global touring schedule, the band had become a force destined for recognition further outside of the growing death metal community.
In 1993, they reached a milestone within that community by becoming the first and only death metal band to be signed to a major label. 'Covenant' proved that a band as uncompromisingly brutal as MORBID ANGEL could not only release an album within the major label system, but thrive in that world as well. 1995's 'Domination' further proved that point, with it's slime-ridden guitar mastery providing a statement to what the band had become: an ever-expanding organic machine, fueled by an unquenchable thirst for evolution and driven by an unstoppable will.
1997 signaled a major turning point for the band as Steve Tucker joined as bassist and vocalist. His passion, expert musicianship and true death metal vibe helped to make 1998's 'Formulas Fatal To The Flesh' a grand return for MORBID ANGEL and ushered in a new prosperous era for the entire death metal movement. Their exhaustive touring of nearly every continent saw Tucker quickly become an integral part of the band and also proved that, in this day and age, supreme music can still create a supreme response. With 'Formulas...', the continued resonance of the first two classics, two major label triumphs that have sold a half million albums worldwide and a heralded live album ('Entangled In Chaos'), the masters have set the stage for themselves once again.
In the year 2000, another death metal masterpiece has been given to the world. Emanating strength with its dynamic and sweeping passages, intensely dark melodicism and intricate percussive flair, 'Gateways To Annihilation' represents all of what was, is and will be - in both death metal and beyond. It is the mirror of the true self. It is the rhythm of existence.