Last year the much-anticipated European debut of Violence filled a rare gap in our Bay Area track record. Formed in 1985, Vio-Lence release their full-length debut ‘Eternal Nightmare’ in 1987: a gem crammed with finger-licking riffs and Sean Killian’s unique vocal style as the standout features.
His acrimonious, repetitive vocals ooze punk attitude, a style that also characterises the band’s live gigs. Follow-up ‘Oppressing the Masses’ sounds more balanced overall. The songs still cut concrete but the songwriting is more mature; the vocals still sound perpetually enraged but the delivery is more rhythmic. Unfortunately, personnel changes halt the band’s momentum and they never cross the Atlantic. Rob Flynn goes on to become successful with his newly founded band Machine Head and apart from the 2001-2004 period Vio-Lence lies dormant. Then in early 2018 they perform at a benefit for the band’s vocalist Sean Killian, who was suffering from a serious health condition. He recovers and the reunion extends into 2019 with a memorable first-ever European gig right here at Alcatraz. Meanwhile a new album is in the pipeline and the Alcatraz inmates are looking forward to a repeat of last year’s soul-eviscerating thrash gig.