Obituary is an American death metal band formed in 1985 in Tampa, Florida under the name Xecutioner and later renamed to Obituary. The band comprises vocalist John Tardy, drummer Donald Tardy, guitarists Trevor Peres and Ralph Santolla and bassist Terry Butler. The band is a fundamental act in the development of death metal music and one of the most successful bands in its genre.
Obituary is one of the pioneering bands of the death metal genre. Founded as Xecutioner in Seffner, Florida during 1985. At the time the band was composed of John Tardy (vocals), Allen West (lead guitar), Trevor Peres (guitar), Jerome Grable (bass) & Donald Tardy (drums). The band released demos in 1986. They made their vinyl debut in 1987 with two tracks (Find The Arise & Like The Dead) on the Raging Death compilation. Not long after its release Grable was replaced with bassist Daniel Tucker. Shortly before the release of its first album the following year, Slowly We Rot, they changed their name to Obituary. The band still remains an influential piece of the Florida death metal movement that arose in the late 1980s. Obituary is listed by Nielsen Soundscan as the fifth best-selling death metal band of all time and its albums have sold 368,185 copies; their 1992 release The End Complete has sold more than 103,378 copies in the United States alone.
After 1997's Back from the Dead album, the band had grown tired of touring, which led to the band disbanding. During the hiatus, Donald Tardy played in Andrew W.K.'s touring band (during W.K.'s appearance on Saturday Night Live Tardy wore an Obituary shirt). Allen West focused on his two projects, Lowbrow and Six Feet Under while not playing in Obituary. Trevor Peres formed Catastrophic in 2001, which released one album, The Cleansing, in that same year. Obituary reformed in 2003 and Catastrophic continued to exist alongside the reformed Obituary. A reunion album, Frozen in Time, was released in 2005. The band's first live DVD, Frozen Alive, was released in January 2007.
Obituary is currently signed with Candlelight Records for its next two albums, Xecutioner's Return (2007) and Darkest Day (2009), as well as the EP Left to Die (2008). A concert DVD release was also announced for January 2010. As of April 2010, according to frontman John Tardy, Obituary has begun work on new material for their next album. This will be the first Obituary album not to be recorded with longtime bassist Frank Watkins since their 1989 debut Slowly We Rot.
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