Destruction (band)

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Destruction and guests at the Wacken Festival in 2007
Destruction and guests at the Wacken Festival in 2007
Background information
Also known asKnight of Demon (1982–1984)
OriginWeil am Rhein, Germany
Years active1982 (1982)–present
Associated acts
Past members
  • Tommy Sandmann
  • Harry Wilkens
  • André Grieder
  • Oliver Kaiser
  • Thomas Rosenmerkel
  • Christian Engler
  • Michael Piranio
  • Sven Vormann
  • Marc Reign
  • Wawrzyniec Dramowicz

Destruction is a German thrash metal band formed in 1982. They are often credited as one of the "Big Four" of the German thrash metal scene, the others being Kreator, Sodom and Tankard. In addition to helping pioneer black metal by containing several elements of what was to become the genre, Destruction was part of the second wave of thrash metal in the mid-to-late 1980s, along with American bands like Testament, Sacred Reich, Death Angel and Dark Angel.[2] For most of the 1990s, the band was not signed to a record label and was forced to self-produce their albums until they signed a contract with Nuclear Blast in the early 2000s.


Inspired by Iron Maiden, Mercyful Fate, Motörhead and Venom, Destruction were formed as Knight of Demon in 1982. The original line-up featured guitarist Mike Sifringer, vocalist and bassist Schmier, and drummer Tommy Sandmann. They soon changed their name to Destruction and released a demo album titled Bestial Invasion of Hell in 1984. After this the group signed with Steamhammer Records and released an EP titled Sentence of Death later that year.

Destruction released their first full-length album titled Infernal Overkill in 1985, followed a year later by Eternal Devastation. The trio then added a second guitarist, Harry Wilkens, and released the EP Mad Butcher (1987), their full-length album Release from Agony in 1988, and then a live recording Live Without Sense in 1989. By the early 1990s, Destruction had enjoyed considerable popularity, both in and outside of their native Germany, having toured relentlessly in Europe and North America and played with such bands as Venom, Slayer, Kreator, Sodom, Celtic Frost, Motörhead, King Diamond, Voivod, Exodus, Testament, Overkill, Death Angel, Possessed, Sacred Reich, The Cro-Mags, Tankard, Flotsam and Jetsam, Artillery, Rage, Coroner, Assassin, Candlemass, Prong, Accu§er, Iron Angel, Wolfsbane and Girlschool.[3]

In 1989, during the initial recording sessions of their fourth studio album Cracked Brain, Schmier was fired from the band, and was replaced by Poltergeist frontman André Grieder.[4] Mike Sifringer continued to release albums under the moniker of "Neo-Destruction". In 1999, Schmier rejoined, and things began to look up for the band as they signed a record deal with Nuclear Blast. They then released three more albums: All Hell Breaks Loose in 2000, The Antichrist in 2001, and Metal Discharge in 2003. The band would then sign with AFM Records and release Inventor of Evil in 2005. That album was followed two years later by the compilation of re-recorded songs Thrash Anthems (2007), and then a year later by D.E.V.O.L.U.T.I.O.N. (2008). In February 2011, Destruction released Day of Reckoning.

A European tour with Overkill was scheduled for March 2011. Headlining dates in South America and North America were being planned for April and May.

The band's thirteenth studio album, Spiritual Genocide, was released on 23 November 2012.[5] Their next album, Under Attack, was released on 13 May 2016.[6]

Through an exclusive PledgeMusic campaign, Destruction recorded a sequel to Thrash Anthems titled Thrash Anthems II. Like its predecessor, this album is a compilation of more re-recordings of classic songs by the band. The band released a full download of the album through PledgeMusic for free to accompany all purchases of the physical copies of the album on 18 July 2017. The exclusive CDs/Vinyls were shipped in August 2017 and once sold out, Nuclear Blast will release a more widely available version at the end of the year.

On 23 January 2018, it was announced that Vaaver had left Destruction "for family reasons", according to Schmier. He took time off in 2015 to be with his family following the birth of his second child. Drummer Randy Black would temporarily replace him until the band finds a "worthy successor".[7][8] He was later announced as the band's new drummer.[9] On 28 February 2019, it was announced that Swiss guitar player Damir Eskic had joined the band.[10] This new lineup recorded Destruction's fifteenth studio album Born to Perish, which was released on 9 August 2019.[11][12] It is rooted in their traditional style of thrash metal and received good reviews.[13] The band is currently working on a new album, which is expected to be released in early 2022.[14][15][16][17]



  • Mike Sifringer – rhythm guitar (1982–1989, 1990–present), lead guitar (1982–1987, 1990–1993, 1999–2019), bass (1989–1993)
  • Marcel "Schmier" Schirmer – bass (1982–1989, 1999–present), lead vocals (1984–1989, 1999–present)
  • Randy Black – drums (2018–present)
  • Damir Eskic – lead guitar,[18] backing vocals (2019–present)


  • Ulf – vocals (1982–1984)
  • Tommy Sandmann – drums (1982–1987)
  • Harry Wilkens – lead guitar (1987–1990), rhythm guitar (1989–1990)
  • André Grieder – lead vocals (1989–1990)
  • Oliver "Olly" Kaiser – drums (1987–1999)
  • Thomas Rosenmerkel – vocals (1993–1999)
  • Michael "Ano" Piranio – lead guitar (1993–1999)
  • Christian Engler – bass (1993–1999)
  • Sven Vormann – drums (1999–2001[19])
  • Marc Reign – drums, backing vocals (2001[20]–2010[21])
  • Wawrzyniec "Vaaver" Dramowicz – drums, backing vocals (2010[22]–2018)




  1. ^ Lahdenpera, Eda (1995). "Northern Black Metal Legends". Kill Yourself!!! (4): 44. Archived from the original on 7 February 2012. Retrieved 15 September 2012.
  2. ^ "Sacred Reich announces "30 Years of Ignorance" USA tour with Byzantine as support". 1 May 2017. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  3. ^ "Destruction Tour Dates". Retrieved 6 June 2021.
  4. ^ "DESTRUCTION - Cracked Brain LP". Retrieved 7 February 2018.
  5. ^ "Destruction – 'Spiritual Genocide' Out Now!". 23 September 2012. Retrieved 18 April 2013.
  6. ^ "DESTRUCTION To Release 'Under Attack' Album In May". 15 January 2016. Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  7. ^ "DESTRUCTION Parts Ways With Drummer WAWRZYNIEC 'VAAVER' DRAMOWICZ". 23 January 2018. Retrieved 23 January 2018.
  8. ^ "DESTRUCTION Drummer VAAVER Explains His Decision To Leave". 26 January 2018. Retrieved 26 January 2018.
  9. ^ "DESTRUCTION Officially Welcomes New Drummer RANDY BLACK". 19 July 2018. Retrieved 19 July 2018.
  10. ^ Destruction (28 February 2019). "YES WE ARE A FOUR PIECE AGAIN!…". Retrieved 28 February 2019.
  11. ^ "DESTRUCTION Recruits Second Guitarist DAMIR ESKIC". 28 February 2019. Retrieved 10 March 2019.
  12. ^ "DESTRUCTION To Release 'Born To Perish' Album In August". 25 April 2019. Retrieved 4 May 2019.
  13. ^ Blabbermouth (31 August 2019). "Born To Perish - DESTRUCTION". BLABBERMOUTH.NET. Retrieved 27 August 2020.
  14. ^ "INTERVIEW: Schmier – Destruction". The Rockpit. 8 May 2020. Retrieved 24 May 2020.
  15. ^ "DESTRUCTION - Intervista al frontman Schmier" (in Italian). Retrieved 24 May 2020.
  16. ^ "Destruction - 15th Studio Album In The Works". Metal Storm. 5 February 2021. Retrieved 5 February 2021.
  17. ^ "DESTRUCTION - New Album Due "Early In 2022"". Brave Words & Bloody Knuckles. 27 March 2021. Retrieved 29 March 2021.
  18. ^ "Destruction - Born To Perish". 12 September 2019. Retrieved 14 November 2019.
  19. ^ " > News > Sven leaves the Band!". 26 October 2001. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  20. ^ " > News > New Drummer found!!!". 26 October 2001. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  21. ^ " > News > Destruction and drummer Marc will go separate way in the future!". 9 March 2010. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  22. ^ " > News > New drummer officially announced!". 22 November 2010. Retrieved 25 December 2014.

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