Danzig (band)

Danzig (band)

Danzig at Sweden Rock Festival 2010
Background information
Origin Lodi, New Jersey, United States
Genres Heavy metal, blues rock, hard rock, doom metal
Years active 1987–present
Labels Def American/American, Hollywood, E-Magine, Spitfire, Evilive, Megaforce, Restless, The End
Associated acts The Misfits, Samhain
Website www.danzig-verotik.com
Glenn Danzig
Tommy Victor
Johnny Kelly
Steve Zing
Past members
see Former members

Danzig is an American heavy metal band, formed in 1987 in Lodi, New Jersey. The band serves as a musical outlet for the singer/songwriter Glenn Danzig. Danzig can be seen as the third stage in Glenn Danzig's musical career, preceded by the horror punk bands The Misfits and Samhain. They primarily play in a bluesy heavy metal style that is influenced by the early sound of Black Sabbath.



Beginnings (1986–1987)

On July 14, 1986, Samhain performed what was to be their final show, at The Ritz in New York. In attendance was Rick Rubin, who was scouting for potential bands to sign to his record label, Def American. Upon viewing Samhain's performance, Rubin was impressed with Glenn Danzig's powerful stage persona and vocal abilities. He met him after the show and propositioned him. At first, he wished only to sign Danzig, with the intent of making him the vocalist for a hard rock supergroup that Rubin envisioned. However, Danzig refused to sign to Rubin's label without Samhain's bassist, Eerie Von, with whom Danzig had become friends. In 1987, the band evolved into a solid hard rock act, with the addition of John Christ on guitar and Chuck Biscuits (ex-Black Flag) on drums.[1] To reflect the change in musical direction, and to avoid having to ever start anew in the event of future lineup changes, Danzig decided to change the name of Samhain to his own surname, Danzig.[2]

"Classic" original lineup-era (1987–1994)

Having formed and begun recording as Danzig the previous year, in 1988 the band released its eponymous first album on Rick Rubin's newly formed label Def American (later renamed to American Recordings).[1]

In 1990, Danzig released their second album, Danzig II: Lucifuge. By 1992, Rubin's involvement with the band had waned and Danzig himself took credit for co-producing the third album, Danzig III: How the Gods Kill. The following year the band released the Thrall: Demonsweatlive EP, which contained several live tracks from the band's 1992 Halloween show, as well as three new studio tracks. The EP provided a hit for the band when the live version of "Mother" (a song from the first Danzig album) became popular on hard rock radio stations. A new version of the "Mother" music video was created using live footage, and the video became a hit on MTV as well, pushing Danzig into the mainstream.[1]

On October 4, 1994 Danzig 4 was released, and while the album sold well, it did not contain a hit on par with the "Mother" single. The album's second single, "Cantspeak", was also a staple in MTV's rotation, and it charted on the rock charts, although (unlike "Mother") it failed to appear on the Billboard Hot 100. "Cantspeak" is the band's only single other than "Mother" to chart on Billboard, thus making the band a two-hit wonder of the mainstream scene. Amid accusations of unpaid royalties and broken promises, Danzig's relationship with Rubin deteriorated, and the band left the record label.

Around this time, the band's lineup began to dissolve as well. First, Chuck Biscuits left the band in the summer of 1994 due to royalty disagreements. After he was rejected upon asking to return, and - according to a special issue of Kerrang!, former Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl turned down an approach from them, he was replaced by Joey Castillo, who made his first public appearance as a member of Danzig at an in-store signing the day of the fourth album's release. Coincidentally, Castillo would later replace Grohl in Queens of the Stone Age. Though the band had toured successfully with its new drummer during the fall and winter of 1994-95, by the spring of 1995 Danzig was actively seeking a new guitarist, with Pepper Keenan and Dez Cadena being considered as a possible replacement.[3] John Christ resigned his position on July 5, 1995, and Eerie Von resigned the same day.

Post-original lineup-era (1995–1999)

In October 1996, Danzig 5: Blackacidevil was released. The album was mostly a solo effort by Danzig, although Jerry Cantrell of Alice in Chains played lead guitar on three of the album's tracks, and drum duties were handled by Joey Castillo, the sole member still in the band from the 4p Tour (Castillo would record on two more Danzig albums, making him the longest-standing member outside of the original lineup).

The next couple years saw Danzig tied up in a legal battle with Rubin, over the rights to the unreleased material the band produced under American Recordings. In November 1999, Danzig 6:66 Satan's Child was released.

Later years (2000–2005)

By 2000, Danzig's line up had stabilized with the addition of guitarist Todd Youth and bassist Howie Pyro, both veterans of the New York City punk scene. In 2002, this line up released the album Danzig 777: I Luciferi. In 2004, Danzig released their eighth studio album, Circle of Snakes, with the line up featuring Tommy Victor of Prong on guitar, who had toured as a member of Danzig years earlier.

Soon after the album's release, Danzig undertook the Blackest of the Black tour across the United States, replacing Circle of Snakes drummer Bevan Davies with Johnny Kelly (of Type O Negative).

Recent activity (2006–present)

Throughout 2006, Glenn Danzig stated in several interviews that he had grown tired of the touring cycle, and did not expect to partake in any more large scale tours. Instead, Danzig would go on small, localized tours, such as the ten west coast dates they played for the 2006 Blackest of the Black tour. This tour debuted Kenny Hickey (of Type O Negative) as the band's new guitarist, while the East Coast dates saw the addition of former Samhain member, Steve Zing on bass.

In October 2006, Glenn Danzig released Black Aria II, the follow-up to his solo classical album, Black Aria. Black Aria was re-released by Evilive in May 2007. He spent the rest of the year completing the production and packaging of The Lost Tracks of Danzig, a double CD containing twenty-six unreleased songs that span the entire Danzig catalog, which was released on July 10, 2007. Danzig has also stated that he plans to record a dark blues album with either Jerry Cantrell or Hank Williams III.[4]

In August 2008, Glenn Danzig announced that Danzig (the band) would do a 20th anniversary tour, celebrating the release of their self-titled debut album. This was the band's first full US tour in three years, which also included stops in Canada and Mexico. Also asked in August 2008 if the ninth Danzig album was planned, Glenn Danzig replied:

I have been in the studio here and there working on new songs but don't know when they will come out. I was thinking of putting one up on the Danzig site so the fans could check it out. Even thought about doing one on this tour.
— Glenn Danzig, August 2008

On December 26, 2009, Danzig performed at the Starland Ballroom in New Jersey. The show was notable for featuring a special appearance by Michale Graves who, along with Doyle and Dr. Chud, performed several songs by the reformed version of the Misfits.[6]

On March 10, 2010, a Danzig lyric book was released, titled Hidden Lyrics of the Left Hand.[7] The book contains unreleased song lyrics combined with illustrations by Simon Bisley.[7]

Danzig released Deth Red Sabaoth, their ninth studio album, on June 22, 2010.[8] It is the band's first proper studio album in six years, since 2004's Circle of Snakes. Both Tommy Victor and Johnny Kelly appeared on the record.[9]

In 2009, movie director Todd Phillips chose Danzig's song "Thirteen" to open his film The Hangover. Danzig later recorded a new song, "Black Hell", to appear in the 2011 sequel, The Hangover: Part II.

In January 2011, Danzig were announced for the 2011 Download Festival in Donnington Park alongside bands that include Rob Zombie, Alice Cooper, and System of a Down.

On June 12, 2011, Danzig played at the Nova Rock Festival.

On October 25th, 2011, a greatest hits album entitled The Essential Danzig will be released through Sony BMG.[10]





  1. ^ a b c d Strong, Martin C. (2000). The Great Rock Discography (5th ed.). Edinburgh: Mojo Books. p. 241. ISBN 1-84195-017-3. 
  2. ^ Cipollini, Christian. "Glenn Danzig - Horror Business". Penny Blood. http://www.pennyblood.com/danzig.html. Retrieved 2010-04-16. 
  3. ^ Blush, Steven (October 1997). "Glenn Danzig". Seconds. http://misfitscentral.com/display.php?t=marticle&f=seconds.97. Retrieved 2009-10-03. 
  4. ^ "Glenn Danzig Talks 20th Anniversary Tour, Future Plans | News @". Ultimate-guitar.com. http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/news/interviews/glenn_danzig_talks_20th_anniversary_tour_future_plans.html. Retrieved 2011-07-20. 
  5. ^ "Glenn Danzig talks 20th anniversary tour, future plans". Punknews.org. Punknews.org. August 22, 2008. http://www.punknews.org/article/30182. Retrieved 2008-08-22. 
  6. ^ Evans, Morgan. "DANZIG GORGEOUS FRANKENSTEIN WITH MICHALE GRAVES". Crusher Magazine. http://www.crushermagazine.com/features1_10/featdanziglive.htm. Retrieved 2010-01-31. 
  7. ^ a b "DANZIG Lyric Book Available Now". danzig-verotik.com. http://www.danzig-verotik.com/danzig/danzig_news.html. Retrieved 2010-03-09. 
  8. ^ Sciaretto, Amy (March 31, 2010). "Danzig, 'Deth Red Sabaoth' -- New Album Exclusive". Noisecreep. http://www.noisecreep.com/2010/03/31/danzig-deth-red-sabaoth-new-album-exclusive/. Retrieved 2010-03-31. 
  9. ^ "::: Danzig :::". Danzig-verotik.com. http://www.danzig-verotik.com/danzig/danzig_news.html. Retrieved 2011-07-20. 
  10. ^ "Danzig to release 'The Essential Danzig'". Punknews.org. Punknews.org. August 30, 2011. http://www.punknews.org/releasedetail/5276. Retrieved 2011-08-30. 

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