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Killer Be Killed

Metal supergroup Killer Be Killed emerged in the early 2010s with a roster that includes Dillinger Escape Plan vocalist Greg Puciato, Soulfly frontman Max Cavalera, Mastodon bassist Troy Sanders, and former Mars Volta drummer Dave Elitch. Their aggressive yet melodic blend of sludgy metal and hardcore punk, combined with Elitch's expansive drumming skills (he was jazz-trained and had played with everyone from Miley Cyrus to M83), made them a big hit with fans of the bandmembers' parent groups. The band released their searing eponymous debut in 2014, with their sophomore effort, Reluctant Hero, arriving in 2020. Puciato and Cavalera had met at an L.A. benefit gig for the late Deftones bassist Chi Cheng. Having worked together on a Soulfly song ("Rise of the Fallen"), they had become friends and had often talked about recording an album together in the vein of Cavalera's earlier Nailbomb project with Fudge Tunnel's Alex Newport, but it was not until 2011 that they finally got together to make a demo. Excited with the results, Puciato approached his longtime friends Elitch and Sanders about playing on the record, and Killer Be Killed was born. Having chosen a name, they hammered out material in several lengthy rehearsal studio jam sessions during 2013 before entering the studio to record with producer Josh Wilbur. Signing to Nuclear Blast, the group released their debut album, Killer Be Killed, in May 2014. Combining the raw hardcore and thrash influences of Soulfly with the progressive sludge and doom tendencies of Mastodon, the record was not only popular with their existing fans but also attracted acclaim from other sectors of the metal world and beyond. The bandmembers spent the next few years tending to their myriad other projects, but they returned in 2020 with their second album, the punishing Reluctant Hero.
© John D. Buchanan /TiVo
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