Grave

ORIGIN: SwedenFORMED: 1988LABEL: Century Media Records
  • MEMBERS:
    • Ola Lindgren-Vocals, Guitars
    • Mika Lagrén-Guitars
    • Tobias Cristiansson-Bass
    • Ronnie Bergerstål - Drums

One of the longest-running Swedish death metal bands, GRAVE has created a sound and style which has been an inspiration on a number of the genre’s more promising younger outfits. Having started out as a band called Corpse in 1986, they released 3 official demos before their legendary 1991 debut.

Into the Grave” established GRAVE as one of death metal’s most brutal new hopes, and its release was ensued by a host of live performances across Europe and America. 

1992’s You’ll Never See...”, the band’s critically-acclaimed second release, showcased their growing musical talent with a cleaner, stronger sound which appealed to a wider audience while retaining the group’s trademark heaviness. After unsuccessfully trying to fill the slot after bassist Jonas Torndal’s departure, the group made a collective decision to revert to their original three-man line-up, with the guitarist Jörgen Sandström switching to bass.

In the late 1993, GRAVE released …And Here I Die…Satisfied“, a limited edition EP featuring brand new, rare and remixed tracks encompassing the band’s entire recording history. The EP paved the way for the release of the trio’s long-awaited third full-length offering.

Soulless was recorded during the early part of 1994 at Stockholm’s Sunlight Studios (just as all of the group’s previous releases had been) with producer Tomas Skogsberg. Manifesting a more mature musical stance than in the case of GRAVE’s previous efforts, Soulless pleased the band’s longtime followers while expanding the group’s appeal to non die hard death metal audiences.

In 1996, GRAVE came back with another attack of their relentlessly brutal yet catchy material in the shape of Hating Life. Produced, once again, by Skogsberg at his Sunlight facility, the album featured a vocal debut of the guitarist Ola Lindgren, who took over the function following the departure of Sandström. Proving that they haven’t softened their stance a bit or altered their focus on writing songs that hit hard and leave a lasting impression, Hating Life will surely please anyone who is into music that’s equally treacherous and tuneful. GRAVE toured both the US and Europe to promote this album.

After the last tour, the band had a hiatus until 1999, when they decided to play together again. Rehearsals went pretty slow at first, but after a while they got their old bass player, Jonas Torndal, to join the band once again, this time to grab the second guitar. The bass job went to an old friend of the band, Freddan Isaksson. GRAVE played their first live gig in 5 years at HardRock cafe in Stockholm. Following that gig, rehearsals continued and in the spring of 2002, the new album Back From The Grave was recorded at Sunlight studios in Stockholm. Released in September that same year, the album featured a bonus disc with 3 classic GRAVE demos from 1988-1989.

After touring with the likes of Immolation, Goatwhore and Crematorium through North America, a headlining European tour with The Forsaken and Disinter, then followed by a slot on the tour with Exodus, God Dethroned, Nuclear Assault and Agent Steel, it was time to set to work on the next album entitled Fiendish Regression. The sixth album in the history of GRAVE was recorded with Coercion member Pelle Ekegren on drums, adding a more vivid and relentless groove attack to the classic GRAVE song-structures. Two European tours followed: one headlining and one as part of “The Domination Tour”, alongside Cryptopsy and Aborted.

Back in Sweden, GRAVE entered the bands own Studio Soulless to record their newest malevolent creation As Rapture Comes. To cement the album’s mix, the band returned again to Peter Tägtgren’s Abyss Studio. The album delivers the band’s famous relentless death-groove in a well-elaborated combination with clearly increased aggressive bite and superior dynamics in their own songs. The album also includes a heavy cover version of Alice In Chains’ classic song “Them Bones“.

As Rapture Comes was released by Century Media records in July 2006. Featuring everything between the brutality of Into The Grave and the groove and heaviness of Soulless“, this one is certain to please anyone into true old school death metal.

The Enraptured Dvd was recorded in Poland in Aug of 2006, and features all 16 live tracks from that show. Bonus tracks are 2 songs filmed at Party-San festival in 2004 and also the Soulless videoclip, which at this time was the only video that GRAVE had ever produced. It also includes interviews, biographies, discographies, and tons of photos. “We really wanted to add a lot more bonus material from old gigs and tour rarities but unfortunately there were legal matters concerning the rights to that material which could not be solved in time for the release. However, we are already planning for another DVD,  which definitely will contain all of that stuff”

Two tours followed the release of As Rapture Comes. An East Coast US tour together with long time friends, Dismember and Vital Remains, and then a slot on the highly anticipated “Masters of Death” European tour which also featured Entombed, Unleashed and Dismember. In May 2007, another European tour was launched, this time together with Immolation and Krisiun. Summer festivals and also a revisit to Mexico after 14 years was completed before it was time to start the process for the 8th studio album scheduled for release in May 2008.

While Century Media and GRAVE parted ways after 7 albums with the release of 2006’s As Rapture Comes, the band has launched the two highly acclaimed albums “Dominium VIII” (2008) and “Burial Ground” (2010) on Regain Records. In 2010, the band’s 12CD+1DVD box-set “Death Unhallowed” (including all recordings from 1986 – 2006) was released in cooperation with Century Media and the early Corpse / Putrefaction / Grave demos have also most recently been released this year as a deluxe triple vinyl set entitled “Necropsy – The Complete Demo Recordings 1986-1991”

GRAVE have most recently finished their North American headline tour and also toured all across Europe together with acts like Misery Index and Obituary to promote their latest album Burial Ground. Special live sets for the 20th Anniversary of their Into The Grave debut album-release has been performed at selected festivals throughout 2011 and the final gig of the year took place in their hometown Stockholm November 12th.

This sold-out gig was recorded and filmed for a planned future release.

To be continued…

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