Machine Head

For all their achievements in a career spanning two decades and counting, perhaps the greatest feat accomplished by heavy metal greats Machine Head was successfully making a name for themselves in the thick of the alternative rock revolution, which dominated the mid-1990s and killed off countless numbers of their peers. But then, Machine Head was evidently made of sterner stuff, beginning with their leader, vocalist and guitarist Robb Flynn, who had already survived the mostly disappointing careers of two products of the 1980s Bay Area thrash metal scene, Forbidden and Vio-Lence, before launching Machine Head in 1991. Together with second guitarist Logan Mader, bassist Adam Duce, and drummer Chris Kontos, Flynn delivered Machine Head’s impressive debut album, ‘Burn My Eyes,’ through Roadrunner Records in 1994, and found his band immediately embraced by loyal metal fans, who themselves were weathering grunge’s fierce storm. 1997’s sophomore ‘The More Things Change…’ met with nearly as much acclaim and ensuing albums like ’99’s ‘The Burning Red’ and ’01’s ‘Supercharger’ saw Machine Head rolling with the punches of nu-metal trends, before coming back full circle to their original, thrash-and-groove-based sound on 2003’s ‘Through the Ashes of Empire.’ Throughout this period, the band had established itself as a globally popular concert draw, even while cycling through numerous lineup changes that saw Kontos re-placed by Dave McClain (ex-Sacred Reich) in 1995, and Mader substituted for Ahrue Luster in ’98 and then Flynn’s erstwhile Vio-lence band mate, Phil Demmel as of 2002. Then, after departing from Roadrunner in 2001, only to return under a more beneficial deal, Machine got back on track with the aforementioned ‘Empires’ before turning in what many consider their magnum opus in 2007’s stunning ‘The Blackening.’ Chosen by many publications as the year’s very best metal album, it ushered in the most prosperous era of Machine Head’s career, which continued through 2011’s ‘Unto the Locust,’ 2014’s ‘Bloodstone & Diamonds,’ and carries on, unto the present day, despite an acrimonious parting with Duce (replaced by Jared MacEachern) in 2013.


Load More Articles