Repulsion - Biography



What kind of introduction could possibly do justice to the most influential grindcore / death metal band of all time? Repulsion is the band that introduced the world to insane blasting drums, bone jarring distorted bass, and the most vile lyrics imaginable.

Repulsion formed in 1985 under the name Genocide in Flint, Michigan. Originally influenced by bands such as Discharge, Celtic Frost / Hellhammer and NWOBHM music, the classic line up of Scott Carlson (vocals, bass), Aaron Freeman (guitar), Matt Olivo (guitar) and Dave Grave (drums) recorded the legendary Stench of Burning Death demo in January, 1986. Released to a tremendous response, Stench of Burning Death quickly spread throughout the underground, and helped gain Genocide / Repulsion a static following of fans of intense music with horror-inspired lyrics, a sub-genre of underground music that was still in its infancy. It was this foundation that ultimately became the basis of what is reknowned today as "grindcore". In every respect, Genocide were among the first wave true pioneers of this style of music, if not the innovators.

Shortly after the release of the demo, it became apparent that many other bands with the name "Genocide" existed the world over (at the time, the cult band from Massachusetts with Bobby Ebz as frontman and the classic heavy metal band from Japan were the most well-known). The band changed their name to Repulsion to avert any confusion and to avoid being mistaken for these other bands. In 1986, "Evil" Chuck Schuldiner of Florida Death Metal pioneers Death (who had just returned from a very brief and disastrous association with Canada's Slaughter) asked Scott and Matt to move to Florida to become members of Death. They agreed, and Repulsion was put on hold for a short time. In late 1986, Scott and Matt returned to Michigan (while Evil Chuck went to San Francisco, California... another story in itself!!) and Repulsion was reborn after a brief hiatus.

Upon their return, the band recorded their classic LP entitled Slaughter of the Innocent with Doug Earp in Flint, Michigan. The LP was originally intended to be released on Earp's own label, Wyatt Earp Records, but this never occurred, and the record was nearly fated to never see a vinyl release. Repulsion continued to spread mayhem and extreme thrash on a small scale during 198, when Matt Olivo joined the armed forces. Repulsion played their final show in January 1988.

It wasn't until 1989, when Carcass members Bill Steer and Jeff Walker (who at the time were starting their own label Necrosis Records) obtained permission to release the Slaughter of the Innocent LP on their own label. Changing the name of the LP to Horrified, the long-awaited release of the LP more than sealed Repulsion's fate as the undisputed masters of death / grind. With 18 classic tracks, fierce and raw production (including the advent of the often imitated, but never duplicated, "Scott Carlson double-track bass sound" and the well-abused "blast-beat"), and their inimitable style, refreshingly original even to this day, the LP was released to extreme popularity (bolstered by a licensing from Earache Records). Repulsion finally reunited as a three-piece (Matt was still in the Army), and in January of 1991, recorded a demo entitled Rebirth. Some months later, Relapse Records released two of the demo tracks as a 7" entitled Excruciation. This well-received release by the band led to a renewed interest, and, in 1992, Relapse obtained the rights to license and re-issue Horrified in 1992, with an extra track from the Genocide demo ("Black Nightmare") as a bonus track. The band continued to play occasional shows in the states, and in that same year Matt returned from the army and re-joined the band.

Horrified is a genre-pioneering masterpiece that has influenced almost every band playing death metal, most notably Napalm Death, Carcass, Entombed, Cannibal Corpse, etc. Horrified features eighteen pulsating rhapsodies guaranteed to scramble synapses and rupture eardrums. With this, the definitive Horrified re-issue, Repulsion will now see the recognition they deserve. Horrified '2002' includes the classic LP, the Excruciation 7", and the elusive Repulsion demos, plus a bonus disc replete with extremely rare demo material and a live radio broadcast from Genocide (Repulsion pre-1987). Fans of Repulsion, as well as anyone curious about the origin of the musical style known as grindcore / death metal, will find all answers here.

In 1993, Repulsion finally called it a day. A band of legendary stature, Repulsion will live forever as the true Godfathers of Grinding Death / Thrash, with many imitators, but no equal.