Born out of the West Coast Metal
scene of the 80's, Metal Church quickly became one of
the standout talents of the genre. After signing a deal
with Elektra records, they released two critically acclaimed
albums. Their self-titled release "Metal Church"
postured the band as one of the pioneers of the thrash/metal
scene. The All Music Guide had this to say about the
debut: "The band's incredibly tight musicianship
is a highlight all on it's own. This album remains an
overlooked classic of straight-ahead American-bred heavy
metal." With the heavy metal scene starting to
rise in the U.S., Metal Church set out on a very successful
tour with label mates Metallica.
Next came "The Dark,"
the fury of its opening track, "Ton of Bricks"
was championed as one of the premier metal releases
of the 80's. The Dark also led to one of a few
lineup changes with the departure of vocalist David
Wayne. However, more success was yet to come. With the
addition of former Heretic vocalist Mike Howe, and Metallica
guitar tech extraordinaire John Marshall, the riffing
became heavier and the subject matter deeper. They tackled
political and social issues of the day with the releases
of "Blessing In Disguise" and "The
Human Factor." At a time when heavy metal bands
moved from the underground and became part of the hair
band/pop fad, Metal Church stayed true to their roots.
During the mid 90's, the members of Metal
Church headed in their own directions. Kurdt Vanderhoof
worked on his namesake project, Vanderhoof, while Kirk
Arrington was playing on various sessions including
a recording with Sir Mix-A-Lot. 1999
led to a well-received reunion of the original Metal
Church lineup with the release of "Masterpeace".
The band went back to their classic sound and played
several festivals overseas.
2004 saw them back with new vocalist,
Ronny Munroe, whose style has been described as "Rob
Halford meets Dio", as well as Jay Reynolds (Malice)
on guitar and Steve Unger on bass. With
a new record "The Weight of the World"
and some new blood, heavy metal legends Metal Church
picked up where their aptly titled last release "Masterpeace"
In 2006, twenty years after their cult
album "The Dark", Metal Church presented
their brand new release, "A Light In The Dark",
forging a creative arch that skillfully links the band's
past with the present. Ten new tracks, (plus a new version
of the classic "Watch The Children Pray",
a tribute to original frontman David Wayne), document
the development of a band that, despite all innovation,
has never denied it's typical trademarks. The current
lineup consists of Kurdt Vanderhoof, Ronny Munroe, Jay
Reynolds, Steve Unger and new addition Jeff Plate on
drums. "Jeff is an incredibly dynamic and professional
drummer," Vanderhoof points out. "He has propelled
us to a musical level that surprised even ourselves."
Plate has replaced Kirk Arrington, who left the group
for health reasons, and proves a real stroke of luck
on "A Light In The Dark".
In 2008, guitarist Jay Reynolds was replaced
by Rottweiler guitar player Rick Van Zandt. This
Present Wasteland, Metal Church's ninth release,
is a return to their roots and contains some of their
strongest material to date.
Get ready to join the congregation!