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The Obsessed

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The Obsessed
The Obsessed 1985
The Obsessed circa 1985.
Background information
Origin Potomac, Maryland, USA
Genres Doom Metal, Hard Rock, Punk Rock
Years active 1976 - 1978 (As Warhorse), 1978 - 1986, 1990 - 1995, 2012 - 2013, 2016 - Present
Labels Hellhound Records, Columbia, MeteorCity, Southern Lord Records, Roadburn Records, Relapse Records
Associated acts Spirit Caravan, Saint Vitus, Kyuss, Goatsnake, Melvins, Acid King, Bedemon, Pentagram, Unorthodox, Earthride, Arsantiqva, Armageddon, Ghost Ship Octavius, Rwake
Website Official Page via Wayback Archive

The Obsessed are a doom metal band originating from Potomac, Maryland. Active initially from 1978 - 1986 and then from 1990 - 1995, they are notable for being Wino's first major band and an iconic outfit in the Maryland doom metal scene and the early doom metal scene as a whole.

HistoryEdit

Early Career (1976 - 1986)Edit

The band formed originally under the name Warhorse in 1976 in Potomac, Maryland, led by Wino and Mark Laue. In the late 1970s they became known as The Obsessed, performing frequently in Maryland and Washington. One of their earliest performances was at the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C. as Wino recalled:

"One of the first shows we did at the 9:30 Club (opening for the Dead Boys), there was a fucking aisle -- the crowd was that divided. It was literally the skinheads, (on one side) and then the crowd we brought with us from the suburbs (on the other side). That's how much tension there was. The first thing Vance (Bockis, Obsessed lead singer) did... he pulls this bag out. He has this sculpture he did when he was a little kid. It's a sculpture of this guy with a bald head. And the symbolism was just all there.... There's all these skinheads giving us shit, like, 'Fuck you, go home!' and 1, 2, 3, boom! He smashes this bald head, and that was IT, it was fuckin on.... The tension was there.... Some people hated our guts and thought we were a bunch of long-haired faggots or whatever, but nobody was going to tell us that to our faces. The respect was there, too, you know."
 
— Scott "Wino" Weinrich, Spirit Caravan Official Page [1]

Later on the group moved into a band house in Rockville, Maryland where a lot of their material spanning through their existence had been written. Before the intended, original guitar player John Reese departed from the band. The band became a trio and remained that way until the early eighties (i.e., 1982) when Vance Bockis and later Norman Lawson joined the band. During this time they released the Sodden Jackal EP (Spring 1983) and had one track ("Concrete Cancer") featured on Metal Blade's "Metal Massacre VI" compilation. The Obsessed also managed to record their debut album in 1985 for Metal Blade, but it was never officially released. The Obsessed disbanded initially in 1986 when Wino joined Saint Vitus.

The-Obsessed 930 club27:59

The-Obsessed 930 club

Reformation and Dissolution (1990 - 1995)Edit

In 1990, Hellhound Records released The Obsessed, an album that The Obsessed had recorded in 1985, different from the intended Metal Blade album. This prompted Wino to leave Saint Vitus and reform The Obsessed with a new rhythm section consisting of Scott Reeder and Greg Rogers. The band was quickly signed to Hellhound Records and soon released Lunar Womb in 1991 with a sporadic handful of shows along with at least one string of European shows with this lineup. Scott Reeder later left to join Kyuss, whereupon he was replaced by Guy Pinhas.

The Obsessed - Documentary '9426:30

The Obsessed - Documentary '94

The Obsessed - live 94 part 110:02

The Obsessed - live 94 part 1

Columbia Records (With publishing from Hellhound) signed them for their third and final album, The Church Within. Despite receiving rave reviews, a large amount of promotion on behalf of Columbia Records (including a 25-minute documentary on the history of The Obsessed) and heavy touring throughout the USA and Europe to support The Church Within, the album did not sell as well as expected. Sometime in 1995 the Obsessed disbanded, with Wino eventually leaving Southern California and moving back to Maryland. Eventually, Wino would form Shine (Which would become Spirit Caravan while Greg Rogers and Guy Pinhas would become the rhythm section for Goatsnake. Wino spoke of the Obsessed's breakup in an archived interview with Hand of Doom zine:

“After The Obsessed left Columbia I was very disheartened. I fell into a wild lifestyle of living very fast. I had developed a very heavy speed addiction, and I was 100 proof alcohol all the time. I jammed and played guitar constantly, but I did nothing very productive. I contracted a wicked staph infection in my foot that finally forced me to lay down in L.A county hospital for 2 weeks with I.V. antibiotics. At this time (May 1996?) I decided to to return to my hometown in Maryland, and abandon my Southern Californian lifestyle. I rode a greyhound bus from California to Maryland (3000 miles) in a pair of shorts. That's all I had left.”

"The new band was not in my mind. But Gary and Sherman from Wretched, Iron Man and Unorthodox pulled me out of my funk. At this time after 25 years of drinking I quit alcohol. This enabled me to focus on my music again and the band surged forward."

 
— Scott "Wino" Weinrich, Hand of Doom Zine [2]

ReissuesEdit

Most of The Obsessed's music became out-of-print after the band's demise and not long after the demise of Hellhound Records. In 1999, Southern Lord Records would issue the Incarnate compilation, a collection of rare and unreleased recordings spanning the band's career. In 2000, Tolotta Records would reissue the self-titled album with a bonus live show from 1984 (Though this reissue is also out-of-print).

In 2006, MeteorCity would reissue Lunar Womb with liner notes and anecdotes about the album and the band at the time. In 2012 to coincide with the reunion a double 10" reissue of The Church Within was available exclusively at Roadburn Festival. TKO Records would also reissue Sodden Jackyl in 2012. In 2013, nearly twenty years after the initial release, Real Gone Music would reissue The Church Within with liner notes, rare photos and two bonus tracks.

In support of their 2016 reunion tour, The Obsessed self-released a reissue of Live at the Wax Museum on CD. Recorded in 1982, this live album was notably bootlegged and released by Doom Records in 1992 along with being commonly found among trading circles.

Second Reunion (2012 - 2013)Edit

The Obsessed - Live at Roadburn 2012 (Full Show - Audio)01:03:53

The Obsessed - Live at Roadburn 2012 (Full Show - Audio)

THE OBSESSED sound check entire set HELLFEST43:23

THE OBSESSED sound check entire set HELLFEST

In September 2011, Roadburn announced that The Church Within lineup (featuring Wino, Greg Rogers and Guy Pinhas) would be reuniting to perform at Roadburn Festival on April 14, 2012. Notably at the Roadburn Festival a double 10" edition reissue of The Church Within along with a live LP featuring a bonus 7" was released to honor their appearance at the festival.

Alongside the Roadburn set, The Obsessed also performed at Hellfest that year along with a short European tour.

In 2013, The Obsessed would perform another string of reunion dates with Reid Raley (Rwake, Nachtmystium) taking Guy Pinhas' place. Along with a full set on May 23 in Los Angeles[3], The Obsessed would also perform at Maryland Deathfest, Scion RockFest and Power of The Riff.

Third Reunion and Sacred (2016 - Present)Edit

On 28 February 2016, Wino made an announcement that the current lineup of Spirit Caravan will now be known as The Obsessed in a statement (Though they will still perform Spirit Caravan songs live):

“This is Wino. First, thanks to all out friends, fans and families everywhere for their tireless support we've received on this journey in making music we love.

All over the world I've listened to friends tell me to bring back The Obsessed so I have decided to resurrect The Obsessed.

I have been waiting for the right combination of Ability, Attitude and Personality to accomplish this goal. From this day forward The Obsessed is myself, Dave Sherman and Brian Constantino who have proven to be dedicated, fearless and unwavering in their love of music.

We are diligently writing and working on getting into the studio to record a new Obsessed out and have this out as soon as possible.”

 
— Scott "Wino" Weinrich, Spirit Caravan Facebook Page [4]

The current lineup of The Obsessed intend to record and release a new album sometime in the near future. The first announced performance of the Wino/Sherman/Costantino lineup of The Obsessed is set to be on 24 June 2016 at The Maryland Doom Fest in Fredrick, Maryland. Eventually a full tour of the United States was announced with Karma To Burn and The Atomic Bitchwax as direct support, with the first date being on Friday the 13th at the Black Cat in Washington D.C.

On May 24, 2016 it was announced that The Obsessed had signed with Relapse Records to release their forthcoming fourth album.[5]

On 31 October 2016 The Obsessed would announce a new four-piece lineup featuring Costantino, ex-Hidden Hand bassist Bruce Falkinburg and guitarist Sara Seraphim (Arsantiqva, ex-Armageddon, ex-Ghost Ship Octavius). It would be the first time the band would be a four-piece in 35 years.[6] The first show with this lineup would be on November 26, 2016 at Kung Fu Necktie in Philadelphia, PA. What would follow would be a strong of shows throughout the fall including a performance opening for Clutch on 27 December.

On 7 February 2017, Relapse Records and The Obsessed announced the release date for the band's fourth album entitled Sacred which would be released on 7 April 2017. The band's first date announced for 2017 was an appearance at Berserker Fest in Michigan.[7] The lineup would change again with Reid Raley re-joining on bass and later announcing a tour of the United States in the Spring.[8]

DiscographyEdit

AlbumsEdit

Live AlbumsEdit

Singles and SplitsEdit

CompilationsEdit

MembersEdit

Current LineupEdit

  • Scott Weinrich - Lead Guitar, Lead Vocals (1976 - 1986, 1990 - 1995, 2012 - 2013, 2016 - Present)
  • Brian Costantino - Drums, Vocals (2016 - Present)
  • Reid Raley - Bass, Vocals (2013, 2017 - Present)

Past MembersEdit

ToursEdit

External LinksEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. Spirit Caravan Official Page Still Obsessed After All These Years: Wino's Obsession With The Music, accessed 17th February 2016
  2. Spirit Caravan Official Page Hand of Doom E-Zine: Interview w/ Wino by: Gabriel Liliehook, accessed 17th February 2016
  3. Setlist.fm
  4. FacebookFacebook post February 28, 2016, accessed 28th February 2016
  5. BravewordsAccessed May 24, 2016
  6. FacebookAccessed 31 October 2016
  7. Ear Split CompoundAccessed 7 February 2017
  8. The Obsessed FacebookAccessed 9 March 2017
V·T·E The Obsessed
Current Members Scott WeinrichReid RaleyBrian Constantino
Past Members Johnny Reese • Norman Lawson • Mark LaueDave FloodVance BockisEd GulliGreg RogersScott ReederGuy PinhasDave Sherman • Sara Seraphim • Bruce Falkinburg
Studio Albums The ObsessedLunar WombThe Church WithinSacred
Extended Plays Sodden Jackal
Compilation Albums Incarnate
Live Albums Live at the Melkweg November 28th 1992Live Music Hall Köln December 29th 1992Live at the Wax Museum
Associated Bands, Artists, Etc. Spirit CaravanShrinebuilderThe Hidden HandKyussPremonition 13GoatsnakeAcid KingBedemonPentagramUnorthodoxEarthrideThe Obsessed (Unreleased Album)

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