Being quoted as “one of the most underrated bands in death metal history” (Dom
Lawson, Metal Hammer UK, March 2011), Dehumanized has undoubtedly established a
dominant, admirable position within the vast death metal spectrum. One cannot
chronicle the relevance and allure of this extreme music genre without mentioning these
NYC-born heavyweights of slam. Their indigenously unique method of combining
breakneck speed and devastating groove has inﬂuenced countless numbers of
successful death metal acts throughout the years.
George Torres (drums), Rich Nagasawa (guitar), and Mike Palacios (guitar)
formed Dehumanized in the Fall of 1995. Working at a feverish pace, this trio entered
the studio to record an EP titled, “Terminal Punishment”, after only 2 months of the
bandʼs inception. After providing the vocal tracks for this recording, Torres and
Nagasawa decided to recruit a lead vocalist and welcomed Mike Zuzio. Shortly after
“Terminal Punishment” was released, an immense following started to grow and this
fresh act was proving their worthiness, supporting national headliners including
Cannibal Corpse, Immolation, Brutal Truth, and Six Feet Under. During the process of
rapidly building a rabid fan base, Dave Zatuchney replaced Palacios on guitar, Jerry
Barco took over vocal duties for Zuzio, and Mike Chan ﬁlled the vacant bass player
In late 1997, after Tom Toscano relieved Zatuchney on guitar, Dehumanized
ventured to Raw Recording Studios to produce one of the most historic and legendary
death metal albums of all time. “Prophecies Foretold” was let loose on the public via
Pathos Productions in 1998 and perched Dehumanized alongside the elite titans of the
industry. It also cemented George Torresʼs spot amongst iconic extreme drummers and
projected Rich Nagasawa into the upper echelon of premiere shredders. But what
made this full-length so remarkable was the intangible chemistry between Torres and
Nagasawa that subtly made its presence known within each song. Catchy hooks and
riffs were scattered throughout this masterpiece, not common in such a style of music,
and were mainly represented through tracks like “Fade Into Obscurity”, “Inﬁnite Despair”
and the title track, “Prophecies Foretold”.
The fallout from this ferocious LPʼs release resulted in the band setting
attendance records at clubs where theyʼd perform as well as constant exposure through
radio and worldwide distribution. One evening while co-hosting a radio program for 89.5
WSOU, Dehumanized justiﬁed their acquired status by receiving death threats as a
backlash for their on-air opinions toward black metal.
The word was apparently out. With a revamped roster that listed newcomer
Sean Morelli on bass, these NYC upstarts found themselves being featured on major
festivals across the USA; most notably the Milwaukee Metalfest, Texas Grindfest, Ohio
Deathfest, and New Jersey Metalfest. The band proudly shared the stage with highly
touted acts Suffocation, Morbid Angel, Deicide, Obituary, Cryptopsy, Vader, Broken
Hope, Monstrosity, and Nile, to name a few.Dehumanized was able to ride the
monstrous wave birthed from “Prophecies Foretold”, replacing Barco on vocals with
Josh Pratt in the process, until the new millennium arrived. A temporary split was in
order. During this hiatus, Torres became drummer for Skinless and later on, Mortician.
However, during Dehumanizedʼs absence, the buzz surrounding the band had not
In 2004, Torres and Nagasawa reunited; giving their hardcore fans back the
chance to bear witness to their unparalleled brand of brutal death metal. Armed with
vocalist John Collett, guitarist Paul Tavora, and bassist Mike Hussey, Dehumanized had
returned with a vengeance. The bandʼs ﬁrst live performance in four years was at the
ʼ04 Maryland Deathfest. A 2-song EP comprised of newly written anthems, “Man vs
Man” & “His Burden”, gave fans a taste of what was to come. They seemed to pick up
right where they had prematurely left off. Gigs with more esteemed acts (Devourment,
Skinless, All Shall Perish, Internal Bleeding, Malignancy) soon followed. This solid
lineup reinvigorated fans of old and seduced unfamiliar listeners from venue to venue.
But by the time 2007 rolled around, the band decided to shut down operations once
again. Not surprisingly, their loyal followers did not write them off completely.
Helping to spark yet another return to power, a long time cohort band brought
NYCʼs hyper blasters back into the forefront in 2011. Marylandʼs-own Dying Fetus
released an EP of cover songs titled, “History Repeats...”, and slotted their rendition of
“Fade Into Obscurity” by Dehumanized as the opening salvo. This action, and the
response it received, helped to persuade Torres and Nagasawa to sound the horns of
war one more time. When asked to play a reunion show in Long Island, NY alongside
another fellow reunited band, Internal Bleeding, the return became ofﬁcial.
Paul Tavora was back on the squad. Joining him were local scene veterans
Michael Centrone on vocals, and Anthony Cossu on bass. This current version of
Dehumanized has grasped the reigns stronger than ever and has already set in motion
a followup to the timeless classic, “Prophecies Foretold”. Their ﬁrst album in nearly
ﬁfteen years, “Controlled Elite”, was recorded at Full Force Studio in May 2012, will be
released on Comatose Music worldwide on November 27th 2012, and will seat
Dehumanized back on their rightful throne as masters of the art of slam/death metal.
Since word spread of the return, appearances at the Goregrowlers Ball, Central Illinois
Metalfest, and New Jersey Deathfest materialized. Dehumanized also made their ﬁrst
appearance in Europe in September 2012, crushing it at the NRW Deathfest in
Germany. The fact cannot be denied that this NYC powerhouse is taking no prisoners
in their quest to ultimately liberate and motivate the dehumanized.