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Tampa, Florida (1987 – 1993, 1999 – 2002)

Nocturnus was among the most technical and atmospheric outfit to rise from the legendary Tampa, Florida death metal scene. By adding synths to their music, they found an essential element to bring a new sound to the young death metal scene and were an huge impact upon the entire genre from this moment on.

The band formed in 1987 by singer/drummer Mike Browning, guitarists Mike Davis and Gino Marino, bassist Jeff Estes and keyboardist Louis Panzer. Following the demo Science of Horror, the group swapped Marino for guitarist Sean McNenney prior to recording its 1990 Earache label debut The Key. Vocalist Dan Izzo signed on for 1992’s Thresholds, which also saw bassist Chris Anderson substituting for Estes; Anderson himself was replaced by bassist Emo Mowery for Nocturnus’ third album, a self-titled 1993 release for the Moribund label — the record was also the first without Browning, who turned over his drumming duties to James Marcinek. The group soon dissolved in 1993, reforming in 1999 around a roster of Davis, McNenney, Panzer, Mowrey and drummer Rick Bazzaro to record the comeback effort Ethereal Tomb. They broke up for good in 2002.

In 2013 the band announced they will play Hellfest 2014 edition under the name Nocturnus AD.


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  • LoopZoop


    17 Jul 7:46pm Reply
  • estebanfuego

    The Key never disappoints no matter what mood you're in

    1 Jul 9:52am Reply
  • Idiots-Rule

    The question is if an FDR of The Key is really necessary. For marketing and sales, perhaps. The original pressing of The Key is good, both the CD and vinyl. I don't see how or why they would improve it, if not to remix it a bit and maybe "enhance" it sonically (while keeping it dynamic). So basically they could just re-release the original CD pressing and master without doing anything at all with it. I guess that is exactly what they did with "Thresholds", which in its own turn could've actually needed some audio refinement instead. As long as they re-issue The Key in a good dynamic format, wether it's the original mix or a new dynamic mix, and not like the remastered one, I'll be one happy customer. Especially if they would, maybe, include the Science Of Horror demo as bonus tracks. That would be neat!

    19 Jun 8:45pm Reply
  • PP667


    4 Apr 5:44pm Reply
  • versionfiv

    apparently century media just made some The Key vinyls for North America, but they have the CD master, so it's a waste of time. In addition to what Earache told me a couple months ago, tthe complete lack of any news, advertisement/banners, or posting about it led me to believe they were bootlegs... but they are real deal. anyway, I'll wait for the FDR version...

    9 Mar 5:59pm Reply
  • m0sherpt

    idk what you guys are talking about, my copy of The Key is probably one of the most dynamic and upfront sounding records I own. Everything stands out perfectly

    2 Feb 2:41pm Reply
  • GodLord0

    great band

    31 Jan 6:32pm Reply
  • iPowder

    wish they would've made more music [2]

    28 Jan 8:30pm Reply
  • versionfiv

    well Phil from Earache just got back to me and said there are no definite plans for The Key. I guess the date on the Relapse webshop is arbitrary. unfortunate! Still, I hope it happens this year... I probably needlessly mentioned Altars to him as well, since the recent reissues of that were not very good. And that is also unfortunate to hear about Thresholds, I didn't get that one.

    6 Jan 12:57pm Reply
  • Wacke666

    What they should do with The Key is remix the damn thing while keeping it dynamic. I don't understand why Tampa bands sounded so "light" on their albums back in the day. There is no punch in the music at all. The drums blast away and the riffs tear through flesh, but the production just sounds so thin that it's ridiculous. Add some balls to the masterpiece that is The Key, make the drums sound heavy, like the early Dismember and Grave records. That's what I say. The FDR remaster of Thresholds was worthless. It sounds exactly like the original pressing and just feels like an obvious cash-grab. At least I hope they'll actually do something with the FDR of The Key worthwhile a purchase. The FDR remaster they did of "Heartwork" was great, and with bonus tracks! That was a great purchase!

    12 Dec 2014 Reply
  • versionfiv

    that's irrelevant regarding the point that the cds are hard to find or not. their cds aren't hard to find, which is what i was replying to. back to the topic, i saw the EP was re-pressed by Moribund records. also The Key FDR remaster will be available by the end of January. Earache wanted to release that Godflesh/Carcass peel session compilation first ... for whatever reason.

    24 Nov 2014 Reply
  • unholydeath

    "there already exists a Cyclone Empire CD repress from last year" Except that Cyclone press is a remaster and more compressed.

    29 Oct 2014 Reply
  • knight_88

    Such a great band!

    26 Sep 2014 Reply
  • GodofDeathMetal

    Cool & creative band!

    19 Sep 2014 Reply
  • metalkillthekin

    The Key!

    18 Aug 2014 Reply
  • versionfiv

    The Key repress early september as part of Earache's full dynamic range remastered series. there already exists a Cyclone Empire CD repress from last year.

    15 Aug 2014 Reply
  • Blekman

    It should be considered criminal that CDs of their stuff is so hard to find.

    11 Aug 2014 Reply
  • bobo9390

    Good band

    9 Aug 2014 Reply
  • nlventura93

    wish they would've made more music

    7 Jun 2014 Reply
  • Wacke666

    I always loved "The Key", a masterpiece album! "The Science Of Horror" demo is great, too!

    13 May 2014 Reply
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