Culprit (band)

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Culprit band photo.jpg
(l to r) John DeVol, Jeff L'Heureux, Bud Burrill, Kjartan Kristoffersen, and Scott Earl(front)
Background information
Origin Seattle, Washington, USA
Genres Heavy metal
Years active 1982–1985, 2010-present
Labels Shrapnel Records, Hellion Records
Associated acts TKO
Members Saul Ashley
John DeVol
Scott Earl
Tim Kleiman
Steve Nations
Past members Bud Burrill
Kjartan Kristoffersen
Scott Bringedahl
Jeff L'Heureux

Culprit is a heavy metal band first formed in Seattle, Washington in 1981 by vocalist Jeff L'Heureux, guitarists John DeVol and Kjartan Kristoffersen, bassist Scott Earl, and drummer Bud Burrill.[1] Their debut album Guilty as Charged was first released through Shrapnel Records in 1983 and later again through Hellion Records in 2000.[1][2] The band broke up in 1985 and each of its members moved on to other endeavors.[1]

In 2010, Scott Earl announced that he and John DeVol were reuniting the band with a new lineup. Since then, they have announced plans to release a long-awaited second studio album as well as a live rendition of their debut album simply titled Guilty as Charged...Live.


Formation (1981-1982)[edit]

Culprit was the result of a merger between two Seattle area bands named Orpheus and Amethyst in 1981.[1] Guitarist John DeVol, bassist Scott Earl, and drummer Bud Burrill played in Orpheus while vocalist Jeff L’Heureux and guitarist Kjartan Kristoffersen were in Amethyst. These five musicians first came together when their respective bands played at a mutual gig according to their MySpace page. They later got together with plans on forming a new band, which they ultimately named Culprit.

Guilty as Charged (1982-1985)[edit]

This new band got their first taste of success in 1982 when their debut song “Players” was selected on Shrapnel Records’ U.S. Metal, Vol. 2 compilation.[1] Shortly afterward, Culprit signed a proper recording contract with Shrapnel and began work on their debut album. In 1983, Culprit released their first and only album thus far Guilty as Charged to much critical acclaim. Eduardo Rivadavia of Allmusic gave the album four and a half stars, calling it “a lost gem of American metal from the 1980s, and well worth seeking out for fans of other bands from the period.” [2] Scott Earl left the band in 1984 and was replaced by bassist Scott Bringedahl. The band broke up in late 1985 due to a lack of management and no major record deal according to their MySpace page.

Post-break-up and reunion (1986-present)[edit]

Following the break-up, L’Heureux became lead vocalist for the band Mistrust[1][3] while Kristoffersen and Earl joined the band TKO, appearing on their third album Below the Belt.[1][4]

In 2000, Guilty as Charged was re-released on CD for the first time through Hellion Records. The original lineup has reunited on various occasions for one-off shows, most recently in 2001.[1] In 2005, they released a compilation album of rarities titled Innocent ‘Til Proven Guilty.[5]

In 2010, Scott Earl announced plans to reunite the band on their official website:



Studio albums
Year Album details
1983 Guilty as Charged
  • Released: 1983
  • Label: Shrapnel Records
    Hellion Records
Compilation albums
Year Album details
2005 Innocent ‘Til Proven Guilty
  • Released: 2005
  • Label: Rare Steel Entertainment
Other appearances
Year Song Title Label
1982 “Players” U.S. Metal, Vol. 2 Shrapnel Records


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Rivadavia, Eduardo. "Allmusic bio". Retrieved 2012-01-10. 
  2. ^ a b Rivadavia, Eduardo. "Guilty as Charged Allmusic review". Retrieved 2012-01-10. 
  3. ^ Mistrust at Encyclopaedia Metallum Retrieved on 27 April 2011.
  4. ^ Below the Belt - TKO
  5. ^ "Innocent ‘Til Proven Guilty at Encyclopaedia Metallum". 2011-06-25. Retrieved 2012-01-11. 

External links[edit]