Brutal, intense, unholy, violent. These are probably the best definitions for this Brazilian Death Metal cult, originated exactly two decades ago in a remote Autumn in the city of Salvador, Bahia, Northeast side of Brazil. Lots of things have already happened, several musicians crossed the band’s path, but HEADHUNTER D.C. continues its arduous battle and now is getting ready to take the worldwide Underground scene by assault once more, showing the world how it’s possible to improve without leaving the true essence behind. In that case, the word “essence” simply means true Death Metal.
HEADHUNTER D.C.’s saga of Death Metal devotion begins in May of 1987, when guitarist Paulo Lisboa decides to form a new band after the splitting up of his old group, TÚMULO, an Extreme Metal pioneer act in Bahia and surely one of the very first on this more brutal way of playing Heavy Metal in the whole Brazilian North/Northeast. Joining forces with him originally are: bassist Luciano, vocalist Eduardo “Falsão” and drummer Iaçanã Lima, who at that time played in legendary ThrashMassacre. Still before its first birthday, the band makes its debut live performance, now featuring Ualson Martins on the bass guitar.
In 1989 HEADHUNTER D.C. releases the first demo “Hell is Here”, which gets a great response in the Underground Metal scene, also being distributed in the USA through the label Wild Rags Records. Actually the tracks of this demo were taken from a never released 12” EP entitled “Noise”. The acceptance of “Hell is Here” is so strong that in the following year HEADHUNTER D.C. signs to the well known Brazilian label Cogumelo Records, the same from bands as SEPULTURA, SARCÓFAGO, MUTILATOR, HOLOCAUSTO, SEXTRASH and others. Before this, vocalist Falsão leaves the band, being replaced by Sérgio Baloff, who used to do the vocals in THRASHMASSACRE in its latest days.
1991 is the year of the classic debut album “Born...Suffer...Die”, which makes HEADHUNTER D.C.’s name nationally known. Soon came the first gigs in other states, and the band quickly becomes one of the greatest exponents of Brazilian Death Metal. At this time the band feels the need for a second guitar, and Simon Matos (former PUTREFACTION) is summoned to join the group. The band’s sound becomes more brutal and heavier, both live and in the studio.
Two years after the debut, HEADHUNTER D.C. releases “Punishment At Dawn”, also on Cogumelo Records. On this album, the band’s line-up registers another alteration: Túlio Constantin (former CALVARY DEATH) takes over the drumsticks in Iaçanã’s place. With a new line-up and a more developed musical & ideological posture, the band hits the road for its first tour, baptized as “Punishment Tour”. Between the years of ‘93 and ’94, HEADHUNTER D.C. plays in the states of Bahia, Sergipe, Ceará, Rio Grande do Norte, Minas Gerais, Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. At the same time, the album is distributed in Europe by the Dutch label Black Water Records.
Back in its hometown, the line-up changes again: Túlio and Ualson leave the band and are replaced by André Moysés (former SEPULCHRAL and MERCY KILLING) and Alberto Alpire (former KADDISH and OBLITERATION) respectively. HEADHUNTER D.C. begins a new phase then. With all these changes the band’s sound matures still more, but without ever leaving the old vein of fury and aggressiveness, the fundamental characteristics of the band’s songwritings. In other words, their loyalty to the old Death Metal traditions and to their own roots kept untouchable, just as it would come to be in their future releases.
Besides developing in their music, turning it more and more brutal, heavier and darker, HEADHUNTER D.C. also goes on some thematic changes. The new lyrics are deeper, much more introspective and defying, expressing the musicians’ discontentment before the world they live in. The dissatisfaction and the misfortune are portrayed through morbid metaphors, where death is a constant and the most beautiful dreams become terrible nightmares, symbolizing the imminent coming of a new Dark Age. Furthermore, the holy laws and dogmas are impetuously affronted through atheistic and antichristian topics. To show the work of that “new” HEADHUNTER D.C., a 3 track promo tape is released, and as well as their previous works, this promo gets a great response in the Death Metal scene, getting excellent reviews in several ‘zines and mags, inside and outside Brazil. Also in ’96, the band appears on the compilation CD “Omnisciens”, a tribute to the Brazilian cult act Dorsal Atlântica, released by Rock Shop Records, out of Fortaleza.
After the tribute album, HEADHUNTER D.C. has restructured its line-up again. Besides Paulo Lisboa’s memorable riffs and Sérgio Baloff’s unquestionable voice, Fábio Nosferatus (former INFAMOUS)’ ultra heavy guitar is introduced, along with Alex Mendonça (former CARNIFIED)’s remarkable bass works and Thiago Nogueira (Former SCRUPULOUS)’s devastating drumlines, and between August and September of 1998 HEADHUNTER D.C. finally records its ultra long awaited third album entitled “...And The Sky Turns To Black... (the dark age has come)”, featuring seven mayhemic hymns of the purest, most brutal, intense and heavy (yet technical) deathmetallic Art ever heard. This piece of brutality – also available on picture disc – is finally released in March 2000 by Mutilation Records, out of São Paulo. The album gets excellent response from the worldwide scene, also being mentioned by part of the international Underground press as one of the best South American Death Metal releases of all time, what has been leaving the bandmembers quite proud of all their arduous work. Still before the album release party, Alex is replaced by Paulo Alcântara (former BLACKNESS), and with a new bassist the band is invited to appear on other four tribute albums: to the ultimate gods of Death Metal, POSSESSED, on Polish Immortal Records (which would come to be released only 5 years later and not featuring the band on its line-up); to the mighty MORBID ANGEL, entitled “Scream Forth Blasphemy”, on Dwell Records (USA) and to the German Thrash/Death legends SODOM (never released for unknown reasons) and KREATOR, entitled “Under the Guillotine”, both on Dwell also.
The second semester of 2000 marks the return of bassman Alex Mendonça, which would come to be replaced again two years and a half later, giving continuity to a seemingly endless cycle of line-up changes in the band.
In early 2001 HEADHUNTER D.C. signs to the North American label Mercenary Musik, out of Los Angeles, CA, and in September this same year the “...And The Sky...” album is officially released in the USA, with massive distribution in the whole North America via World War III Records. The American issue features 2 bonus cover tracks: SEPULTURA’s “Morbid Visions” and POSSESSED’s “Twisted Minds”. Also a live tape entitled “Brazilian Deathkult Live Violence... 14 Years of Brutality!!!” was released in early 2002 through Eternal Fire Tapes (France), a kind of homage to the band for its then almost 15 years of existence extremely limited to 100 copies only, which has already become a collector’s item among the band fans around the world.
The month of October 2002 is especially marked by the long awaited re-release of the debut “Born...Suffer...Die” on CD format by legendary Cogumelo Records, 11 years after its original release. The CD features the classic “Hell is Here” demo and other rare recordings (live/studio) as bonus tracks, as well as unpublished photos (‘90 / ’92 period only) in its booklet. It is a landmark for the whole true Death Metal history in Brazil, besides being a great gift for the HEADHUNTER D.C. fans, followers and admirers of their hard work, as well as for all the true defenders of the old Brazilian Brutal Death Metal tradition.
In late 2002 Alex and Thiago left the band for different reasons, and after several months looking for new – and also confindable – members to complete the Death Cult again, the band has finally found bassplayer Zulbert Buery (former INOCULATION) and drummer Daniel Brandão, who also plays in a local band called INSAINTFICATION. With that new line-up the band follows up with bloody gigs around Brazil and testify, in the end of 2005, another re-issue of the “…And The Sky…” album through Dying Music, featuring 5 exclusive bonus tracks to Brazil, otherwise, after 2 and a half years of stability, the band suffers another alteration in its line up, this time with the dismissal of drummer Daniel a few days before the beginning of the new album recordings, that happen between January and February of 2006 at Casa das Máquinas Studio, Salvador, Bahia. Fortunately, the band counts on the precious support of its former drummer Thiago Nogueira, who recorded all the drum sessions and also signs the production of the new album.
In January 2007, counting on the support of Daniel on the drums and guitarist Igor Noblat, from the local Death Metal band INHERIT, replacing Fábio Nosferatus, the band goes on its first South American tour, the “Spreading The Death Cult… Tour 2007 (destruyendo Sudamerica)”, a kind of pre-release tour of the new album, which has reached Chile, Peru, Bolivia and more 6 cities from the South and Southeast sides of Brazil, totalizing 12 gigs in exactly 1 month on the road. So, after more than 7 years without offering a new studio album to the Underground universe, HEADHUNTER D.C.’s fourth opus of unholy brutality entitled “God’s Spreading Cancer…” is finally unleashed upon the metallic masses in May 2007, featuring 11 tracks of the purest and truest Unholy Old School Death Metal mayhem, among them such titles as “God is Dead”, “Stillborn Messiah”, “Black Miracle”, “Inner Demons Rise!”, “Long Live The Death Cult” and the title-track, besides a cover version for “Angelkiller” from their old scene partners and mate-band THRASHMASSACRE. Musically wise, it’s about an album with singular sonority, full of unholy atmospheres, abysmal heaviness, morbidly memorable riffs, alternated doomy, mid-tempo and full blasting speeds and a totally dark aura, performed by a HEADHUNTER D.C. still more engaged to the real essence of Death Metal music, while their texts vary from genuine attacks against all that is so-called “holy” – revealing, so, a band’s serious and intelligent antichristian conscientiousness – to the philosophy of chaos, the art of rebellion, the cult of death and their own saga on behalf of the old Death Metal roots, musical and ideologically wise. In South America the album release is in charge of Brazilian Dying Music, while in Europe it’s under responsibility of the German labels Obscure Domain Productions for the CD version and Evil Spell Records for the LP issue, this last one featuring a cover version for the classic “Slaughtered Remains” of NECROVORE as bonus track, limited to 500 handnumbered copies. Still in May comes out the not less awaited split 10” EP with their countrymates SANCTIFIER entitled “…In Deathmetallic Brotherhood” on French cult label Legion of Death Rekordz, another landmark for the Northeastern, Brazilian and South American scenes. A new tour around Brazil and shows in other South American countries to promote the new album – a continuation of “Spreading The Death Cult…” actually – is already being programmed for thus the band keep on spreading its Cult through live deathmetallic celebrations. Nothing is more fair to commemorate the 20 years of uninterrupted activities of this band in the Underground, a real Brazilian Death Metal monument who has always taken the path against the trends, raising high the flag of the true Metal of Death, the way it was meant to exist.
Tradition, essence, fidelity… forever!
LONG LIVE THE HUNTER! LONG LIVE THE DEATH CULT!!!