"some music was meant to stay underground..."


Formed: 1983
From: San Francisco, CA, United States
Last Known Status: Regrouped

Latest Possessed News

Below is our complete Possessed news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.

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Five More Names Confirmed For Graspop 2012

The organisers of Belgium's largest heavy metal festival, Graspop Metal Meeting, has announced a further five bands for this year's edition of the event. American thrash metal legends Megadeth will be performing, as will stoner rock kings Kyuss Lives!, death metal pioneers Possessed, English alternative rock outfit Young Guns and, making their fourth appearance at the festival, Jon Olivia's Pain. Graspop will take place in the town of Dessel from June 22nd-24th and now features the following lineup:

Black Sabbath (Headliner)
Amon Amarth
August Burns Red
Children Of Bodom
Comeback Kid
Death Angel
Dimmu Borgir
Jon Olivia's Pain
Killswitch Engage
Kyuss Lives!
Lamb Of God
Paradise Lost
Sacred Reich
Sick Of It All
The Spudmonsters
Winds Of Plague
Young Guns

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Possessed Announces Short U.S. Tour For Feb/March

U.S. death metal pioneers Possessed have announced a string of shows in the U.S. for February 2012. The confirmed dates include:

02/24: Santa Ana, CA @ Galaxy Theater
02/25: Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
03/02: Richmond, VA @ Kingdom
03/03: West Springfield, VA @ Jaxx
03/04: New York, NY @ BB Kings

In addition, the band will join Exodus, Forbidden and Heathen on February 4, 2012 at the Oakland Metro Opera House in Oakland, CA for the 10th Anniversary of the passing of Paul Baloff, original vocalist of Exodus. The show is dubbed "Bonded By Baloff." A trailer for the show can be seen here:

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Possessed Forced To Cancel Show In Colombia

American death metal pioneers Possessed have announced that they have been forced to cancel their upcoming show in Bogota, Colombia, which was scheduled for November 12th. A statement from the band reads as follows:

"On an extremely personal level; We (Possessed) have been very much looking forward to playing for you all out in Colombia. We were told by the promoters over and over that they would fly us out there. To this day no tickets have been purchased by Ivan (Invoking Productions). This was supposed to be all settled by Nov 1st. So while Invoking Productions has no intentions of actually bringing Possessed out there on November 12th, they are still promoting this show as a "Possessed" show and trying to fool you into buying these tickets.

"To our fans; we apologize. We (Possessed) did everything in our power to come out and play this show for you all. In preparation for this show, we are all actually in Los Angeles this minute practicing for this show and have even made special t-shirts for this Colombian November 12th show. We are really disappointed that this is not going to happen the way it was supposed to, since the whole band was really excited to go to Colombia to give you a killer show."

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Sunday Old School: Possessed

Death metal is without question one of the most popular sub-genres in heavy metal, with thousands of bands emulating the likes of Morbid Angel, Cannibal Corpse and the like, but there was a band before the Florida based legends came along which pioneered, and some say invented death metal itself. Namely, San Francisco based, Possessed. Possessed was formed in 1983 by guitarist Mike Torraro and drummer Mike Sus, along with bass player Geoff Andrews and vocalist Barry Fisk. This original lineup was not to last long, and ended in tragic fashion when Fisk, who was homeless at the time, shot himself in front of his girlfriend, resulting in Andrews no longer wanting to be a part of the group. The group soon picked themselves up when they recruited Jeff Becerra from the Pinole based band Blizzard to handle both bass and vocal duties, as well as hiring another guitarist in the form of Brian Montana. Possessed got to work spreading their name in the Bay Area scene, performing with local titans such as Slayer and Exodus, the latter of which helped Possessed immensely when they gave the band’s three song demo, "Death Metal" to Metal Blade Records head, Brian Slagel.

Slagel agreed to put Possessed on his forthcoming compilation album, Metal Massacre 6, the same series of compilations that had previously helped Slayer and Metallica become noticed, including the song, "Swing Of The Axe" on the record. Metal Blade did not sign the group but the compilation found it’s way to Combat Records, home to such acts as Megadeth. Combat were able to sign Possessed, who had since replaced Montana with Becerra’s former Blizzard bandmate Larry LaLonde and in October of 1985, the band released it’s debut full length album, "Seven Churches" through the label, with Roadrunner Records handling European distribution. The album was an underground hit, owing to Becerra’s guttural vocals (something quite different for metal at the time) and it’s extreme lyrics which, along with frequent use of the word, "fuck," led to it becoming one of the first albums to receive the famous RIAA "Parental Advisory" sticker. It impacted many burgeoning musicians including Napalm Death drummer Mick Harris, who claimed that "Seven Churches" was his introduction to metal, and Death frontman Chuck Schuldiner, who reportedly told his bandmates that he wanted the band to base their sound on the album. More...

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Metalhit.com Completes Free Download Series

Between October 2010 and February 2011, Metalhit.com launched a series of six free monthly music samplers showcasing various genres of extreme metal: Thrash, Death, Folk, Gothic, Doom and Black Metal.

The "Metalhit Free Download Series" was made available exclusively in the USA via Amazon.com and to eMusic subscribers worldwide. Metalhit now has the compilations posted online and available for free download worldwide.

Some select artists featured on the samplers include:

Abominable Putridity, Asphyx, Behexen, Diathra, Doom:VS, Evoken, Hirax, Inquisition, Lifelover, Manegarm, Moonspell, Nunslaughter, Obtest, Ophis, Pathology, Possessed, Sacred Reich, Sig:Ar:Tyr, Sinister, Skepticism, Skyforger, The Howling Void, Urgehal, and many more.

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Toxic Holocaust & Marduk To Play Free Show Tonight

In a posting made through the official Toxic Holocaust twitter account the band announced that it, alongside European black metal act Marduk and Possessed, will be playing a free show in Minneapolis.
The show is set to take place at The Cabooze.

The full twitter posting reads:

"Free show with Possessed Toxic holocaust and Marduk in Minneapolis tonight @ the Cabooze !!! FREE!!!!"

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Locusta Announces November Shows

Ohio progressive black/death metallers LOCUSTA, who expanded their fan base with a successful US summer tour alongside Tennessee black/doom Argentinum Astrum, will perform two local shows this November opening for the likes of Possessed, Marduk, Withered, and Toxic Holocaust (11/5/10) and D.R.I., Deadsea and Salvage (11/18). Further info below.

Upcoming LOCUSTA shows are as follows:

11/5/10 Alrosa Villa – Columbus, OH w/ Possessed, Marduk, Withered, Toxic Holocaust
11/18/10 Newport Music Hall – Columbus, OH w/ D.R.I,, Deadsea, Salvage

Guitarist Dru Silver comments, "A big thanks to anyone that came out to see us on the west coast. Anyone who had a hand in putting the shows together, gave us food or shelter, or helped us in any way, your support was invaluable. A special thanks to those who took a chance on our band even though they may have been unfamiliar with us. We hope to see all of you again soon.”

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Withered Comments On "Blackest Of The Black" Tour

Atlanta's Withered has issued the following statement about appearing on the upcoming "Blackest of the Black" tour with Danzig, Possessed, Marduk, and Toxic Holocaust:

"Withered is bringing our brand of extreme music and expression to a new audience this fall. The Blackest Of The Black tour is an opportunity that we just couldn’t pass up. It is also a blessing for us after learning the unfortunate news about Behemoth & Nergal. This turn of events will allow us to offer a glimpse of unique perspective to a fresh crowd as we kick off our third album release. Whether these fans are ready for us or not, we are definitely ready for them and expect to expand their horizons as well as our own on this new path."

The currently announced dates are as follows:

10/25 - Albuquerque, NM - Sunshine Theatre
10/27 - Little Rock, AK - The Village
10/29 - San Antonio, TX - San Antonio Live
10/30 - Houston, TX - Warehouse
10/31 - Dallas, TX - Palladium
11/02 - Knoxville, TN - Valarium
11/03 - Louisville, KY - Expo Five
11/04 - Buffalo, NY - Town Ballroom
11/05 - Columbus, OH - Alrosa Villa (no DANZIG)
11/06 - Royal Oak, MI - Royal Oak Music Theater
11/07 - Chicago, IL - Congress Theater
11/09 - Minneapolis, MN - The Cabooze
11/10 - Fargo, ND - The Venue
11/12 - Denver, CO - Gothic Theater
11/14 - Spokane, WA - Knitting Factory Concert House
11/15 - Seattle, WA - Showbox SODO
11/16 - Portland, OR - Roseland Theater

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Danzig To Headline 2010 Blackest Of The Black Tour

Iconic metal/punk singer-songwriter Danzig has been announced as the headliner of the 2010 "Blackest Of The Black" tour. The "Blackest Of The Black" tour will hit select markets across the United States with support coming from Marduk, Possessed, Toxic Holocaust and Withered.

Here are the confirmed "Blackest Of The Black 2010" tour dates:

Oct. 25 - Albuquerque, NM - Sunshine Theatre
Oct. 27 - Little Rock, AK - The Village
Oct. 29 - San Antonio, TX - San Antonio Live
Oct. 30 - Houston, TX - Warehouse
Oct. 31 - Dallas, TX - Palladium

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Robb Flynn Records Tribute To Debbie Abono

MACHINE HEAD frontman Robb Flynn has recorded audio and video of an acoustic cover of BLACK SABBATH's "Die Young" song from the classic "Heaven and Hell" album for free download in tribute to the late Debbie Abono, who sadly passed away on the same day as legendary heavy metal singer Ronnie James Dio. In a statement made at the beginning of the video (which was recorded the day after Debbie's passing and which can be viewed at this location), Robb says, "I don't know why I recorded this song, it doesn't really have relevance to Debbie or Dio, but I was sad and depressed and it was the only thing that made sense in the world."

There are no plans to officially release Flynn's version of "Die Young," but an MP3 version of the track is available for free download at the MACHINE HEAD web site, www.machinehead1.com.

Debbie Abono, a well-respected and much-loved manager and promotional machine behind some of San Francisco Bay Area's strongest metal bands (POSSESSED, FORBIDDEN, EXODUS, VIO-LENCE, SKINLAB), passed away on May 16 at approximately 9:59 a.m. PST after a battle with cancer. She was 80 years old. More...

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Sigh Vocalist Appears In Heavy Metal Cookbook

Dr. Mikannibal of Japanese metallers Sigh is sharing her Habanero Gyudon recipe with the world in the new cookbook "Hellbent For Cooking: The Heavy Metal Cookbook." The book, which was put together by Annick "Morbid Chef" Giroux, is now available from Bazillion Points Books. "Hellbent For Cooking" features 101 entries from 32 countries and includes entries from bands such as Thin Lizzy, Anthrax, Destruction, Possessed, Obituary, Accept, Doro, Gwar, Toxic Holocaust, EyeHateGod, Saint Vitus, Amebix, Melechesh, Cauldron, Uriah Heep, and more. About 30% of the entries are vegetarian. More info on the cookbook can be found at this location.

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Video Interview With Possessed Available

Hellametal has posted a new video interview online with vocalist Jeff Becerra of California death metallers Possessed. The video, which can be viewed below, was shot on November 1st, 2009 at the DNA Lounge in San Francisco, California. More...

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Possessed Announces Tour Dates

Californian pioneers of death metal Possessed has announced some shows for next year.

The tour dates are as follows:

Apr. 19 - West Hollywood, CA @ House of Blues
Jun. 05 - San Marcos, CA @ Jumping Turtle
Jun. 06 - Seattle, WA @ Studio Seven

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Possessed Frontman Jeff Becerra Seriously Ill

Jeff Becerra, frontman of the legendary band Possessed, has been taken seriously ill while the band were on tour. Becerra has been in a wheelchair for over 18 years as a result from a street robbery where he was shot and subsequently paralyzed. Apparantly while the band was on tour, a pressure sore became infected which spread to his bones and he was left unable to move. He was rushed to a hospital in Helsinki, Finland where the band were touring at the time but was flown to Paris, France, only to be told that the French doctors did not want to deal with such a sick American and flew him to Los Angeles, California. Jeff is now recovering at his home after spending 20 days in the hospital on strong antibiotics.

If you would like to send any letters, cards etc. to help Jeff at this time, please send them to:

Jeff Becerra
c/o Dark Realm Records
8210 Firestone Blvd,
Downey, CA 90241

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Tyrant Scheduled For Hole In The Sky Festival

Swedish cult Metallers TYRANT are set to appear at the upcoming annual Hole In The Sky Festival happening from August 27th - 30th, 2008 in Bergen, Norway.

Here's the itinerary:

Wednesday 27/8 - Skinned Alive @ Garage
Toxic Holocaust

Thursday 28/8 - Metal Command @ Garage
3 Inches of Blood
Dead to This World
Lobotomized More...

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Possessed Announces Hollywood Show

Death metal legends Possessed have announced that they will be performing a show at Hollywood's House Of Blues Sunset Strip. Tickets are available at this location.

The band features original vocalist Jeff Becerra and is also comprised of members of Sadistic Intent.

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Possessed To Play Mexico In March

eactivated California death metal pioneers POSSESSED have scheduled two dates in Mexico in March:

March 14 - Monterrey, MEX @ Ibex Rock Bar
March 15 - Mexico City, MEX @ Circo Volador

As has been the case with all of POSSESSED's recent appearances, the group's lineup for the Mexican shows will consist of sole original member Jeff Becerra (vocals) backed by members of California's SADISTIC INTENT.

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Possessed Add Mokena Show

POSSESSED, featuring sole original member Jeff Becerra (vocals) backed by members of California's SADISTIC INTENT, has scheduled the following dates:

Feb. 29 - Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
Mar. 02 - West Hollywood, CA @ House of Blues
Apr. 11 - Mokena, IL @ The Pearl Room

Tickets for the Mokena show can be purchased through EnterTheVault.com exclusively until December 28, at which point they will become available via all usual ticketing outlets.

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Possessed Announce More US Tour Dates

San Francisco Bay Area death metal legends POSSESSED, featuring original vocalist Jeff Becerra alongside members of SADISTIC INTENT, have announced the following U.S. tour dates:

Nov. 24 - Springfield, VA - Jaxx
Nov. 25 - New York, NY - B.B. King Blues Club
Feb. 29 - Seattle, WA - El Corazon
Mar. 02 - Hollywood, CA - House of Blues

Tickets for the Seattle and Hollywood shows are available exclusively through EnterTheVault.com until October 18 at which point they will be sold through normal ticketing outlets.

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Possessed Announce US Tour Dates

San Francisco Bay Area metal legends POSSESSED have scheduled the following U.S. dates in November:

Nov. 24 - West Springfield, VA @ Jaxx
Nov. 25 - New York, NY @ B.B. King Blues Club & Grill

The Internet pre-sale started today (July 23) exclusively through EnterTheVault.com and will run until August 17 at which point tickets will be available through all normal ticketing services.

POSSESSED's lineup for the above-listed dates is expected to consist of sole original member Jeff Becerra (vocals) backed by members of California's SADISTIC INTENT.

Some time after POSSESSED's last release in 1989, Jeff Becerra was left paralyzed from the waist down in a shooting incident. In a 2002 interview with Battle Helm, Becerra was asked about the many different reports that had circulated about what happened to him — ranging from punishment from God to a carjacking. "That's all bullshit," he replied. "Firstly I don't believe in God. What happened is that a couple of crackheads robbed me when I was coming home from work and they shot me with a 9mm in the chest and a 21 in the hand. In some ways it was kinda stupid because I could've given them the money but it was the way they asked me and I told 'em to get fucked. They were caught that night and at their trial one of them said that the only reason they didn't finish me off was because they ran outta bullets. They went to prison but one of them somehow got released later and he managed to kill five more people..."

A limited-edition POSSESSED seven-inch single on multi-colored vinyl was released last year on Boneless Records in association with B.A.D.M./N.Y.D.M. Entitled "Ashes from Hell", the first 100 copies of the single came with a collector's pick.

Formed in the early '80s, POSSESSED released "Seven Churches" via Combat Records in 1985. They would follow with "Beyond the Gates" and the five-song EP "The Eyes of Horror" before disbanding several years later. A "best-of" collection, "Victims of Death", was released in 1993.

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