With the neo-thrash movement showing no signs of slowing, it becomes very important to separate the wheat from the chaff. Hollywood, California’s Rattlehead are ‘one of the good ones’, as it happens, a young and energetic combo to which the business of thrashing is very, very good indeed, even though the band is currently unsigned.
Started sometime in late 2003, vocalist and guitarist Nick Baranov came together with some local Los Angeles musicians in what was the birth of the first lineup of Rattlehead, recording and self releasing their first LP the following year, entitled Responsible Moshing...?" Rigorously performing in the local southern California circuit, the band slowly started to build an underground following of thirsty thrashers and speed metal freaks. With time came changes, and none of the other members showed a drive big enough to conquer a worldwide metal scene of such proportions, all through blood sweat and tears.
As time went by, a new lineup was gradually built, featuring Nick Baranov on vocals and guitars, Francis Ausley on lead guitars, Shadow on bass, and AJ Stixx on drums. After performing for some time, the band set forth to the studio for their second effort. Cleverly entitled "Step Inside for the Slaughter" and released in May of 2008, this album received nationwide notice. As preorders poured in, and iTunes featuring the album, Rattlehead did two simultaneous headlining tours in support of the release, a 12 day West Coast tour in the fall of 2008, followed by "Slaughtering the Masses" - a goliath 47 day trek across the entire country in the summer of 2009, playing nearly every single night.
With media circulating about the hungry thrash quartet, Rattlehead dove in the studio for what would be their heaviest, fastest, and most raw album to date. Teaming up with producer John Ugarte, the band spent all of spring 2010 hammering out 10 monstrous thrash anthems, with the album finally hitting shelves July 2010. Tales From the Gutter is indeed a defiantly unique effort for a genre which—based so heavily upon heritage—has of late proved difficult for bands searching for a sound to call their own. Rattlehead’s secret is to forego blatant over-the-top thrash-isms in search of melody and songwriting; a decision which has ultimately led them to where they are today.
Landing features in publications such as Revolver Magazine, Decibel Magazine, CWG Mag, and Examiner, the only step left was to hit the road. Not wasting any time, Rattlehead set out on their third headlining nationwide tour in the summer of 2010, dubbed "Thrashed and DeToured 2010". Joined by fellow thrash metallers Hexen from Los Angeles, the band played a whopping 32 shows in just 34 days. With show attendances growing to as much as 400 people in some cities, the tour was inevitably the best one to date for the young thrashers, as they continue to hold true to their own and perform non stop, across the country - not a title many unsigned bands can hold.
Rattlehead has come thru the proverbial asshole of Rock N’ Roll with a destitution and booze fueled album of unapologetic “Get The Fuck Outta’ My Face” crushing fierceness. They’re out to Seek and Fuckin’ Destroy with a wall of their own distinct brand of groove with not a shudder of pretention. Stay tuned for the insanity...
"...best new thrash band i've heard in years!" - Sam Totman, DragonForce
"Rattlehead is a band that takes elements of 80's thrash and mixes it up with today's modern sound. Great energy, presence, and songwriting. Definitely a band to watch out for in the future." - Jason Bittner, Shadows Fall
"...If you like classic, gnarly thrash, then you are going to love rattlehead!" - Amy Sciarretto, AOL Noisecreep
"...a young and energetic combo, for which the business of thrashing is very, very good!" - George Pacheco, Examiner.com
"...a band with riffs more brutal than a wine hangover and attitude more fierce than a Vince Vaughan bender." - Lord Castaneda, ChordStruck Mag