Dehumanation is a one-man blackened death metal band from Elkton, Maryland created by Matthew Kelly.
Originally conceived around 1995 as an industrial project that would introduce elements of death metal and black metal, years of experimental studio sessions and futile attempts at forming a band resulted in a total inversion of this plan. The concept of mixing industrial and metal seemed preposterous in 1995, especially to the metal community: music played on synthesizers was "fake", drums from a machine sounded "soul-less", and ambience coming from a sampler was "cheap". As a result, including these elements in metal would make the music… not metal. History tells us now that Kelly's movement was eventually embraced - however, it took over a decade to gain credibility.
Evolving through phases of industrial-metal, death metal, electronically-enhanced thrash and even doom metal, all the while being constantly plagued by failed lineups, as a last resort before calling it quits Kelly hesitantly embraced Trent Reznor's approach. Forced to use the industrial methodology of drum machines for rhythm and synthesizers for backing and textures - mostly due to a lack of local musicians who he hadn't already alienated or outright offended - the sound of Dehumanation evolved into a melange of black metal and death metal with only occasional, obvious industrial highlights.
With the Necrotech demo (2004) his vision became more focused. An obscure 5-song CD Kelly and friends handed out and left laying in record stores and music clubs, Necrotech featured a full-length background soundtrack consisting of WWII-era Nazi rallies, thunderstorms, horror movie murder-scenes and other intimidating or violent effects. Metal programs on local stations as well as internet radio stations picked up the demo within a few weeks, and the resulting underground buzz affirmed what Kelly had suspected: people were looking for something new in black metal, something unique in death metal, and something truly vicious in industrial.
With Orwellian, anti-utopian themes emerging as the central concept of "a nation dehumanized" (thus the name, "Dehumanation"), Kelly began recording what would become Dehumanation's first album. Volume I (2005) is the result of years of trial and error: a bastardized cross-breed of black metal and death metal melded with classical and industrial.
It's impossible to pin the sound down as a single genre, with unpredictable shifts between various styles - sometimes from one track to the next. Yet overall the sound remains firmly rooted in the more extreme metal subgenres that make up the foundation of Dehumanation's bizzare crossover theme.
A new EP ("Hallowed Black Divine") is in the works, as well as a split with Belgian black metal ("hell rock'n'roll") desecrator extraordinaire, Plaag. Kelly has stated that the EP will offer just a taste of what's to come on the next album musically while veering sharply into uncharted territory lyrically and conceptually.
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