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Origin Minneapolis, Minnesota, US
Genres Thrash metal, speed metal, power metal
Years active 1984–1990
Labels Reprise Records
Members Joel DuBay
Jeff Litke
Todd Haug
Dirk Verbeuren

Powermad are an American speed metal band, formed in Minneapolis in 1984. The group has been called "An innovative and often forgotten speed metal band...who infused progressive metal styles and European styles into abstract American speed metal." The band's intricate riff formulations were heavily influenced by thrash metal acts like Metallica and Testament. Vocalist Joel Dubay's mixture of singing and high screams was reminiscent of Mark Osegueda (Death Angel) and Eric A. Knudtsen (Flotsam and Jetsam).


Powermad formed in 1984 in Minneapolis and released an EP on Combat Records. They subsequently signed to Reprise Records and released The Madness Begins EP in 1988, a release distributed mainly via a promotional ad featured in some of the most popular metal magazines of the era. Readers were able to clip this ad and mail it off for a free copy of the EP. A video for the song "Terminator" was aired on MTV at this time.

Their first and only full length album to date, Absolute Power, was released in 1989. Other than a US tour opening for Overkill, a video featured on MTV of their single "Nice Dreams" and a strange cameo appearance in the David Lynch film Wild at Heart (where they go from playing their own music to Elvis Presley's with Nicolas Cage singing), Powermad never really achieved notable commercial success. Their albums, however, were critically acclaimed and are considered collector's items today by fans of thrash and speed metal music.

Powermad has resumed touring as of 2007 and are working on a new full-length CD to be released. On February 9, 2008 the band updated their blog on MySpace with a link to download The Madness Begins... and Absolute Power as unprotected mp3's. On June 23, 2011 Powermad updated their official website with a new design, and an announcement. A new song called Souls Descending has been released on their website, and it has been made available for download (music video, ogg and mp3) and on YouTube. In the same update it is announced that Dirk Verbeuren is now playing drums in Powermad.

Band members[edit]

Current members[edit]

  • Joel DuBay - vocals, guitar (1984-)
  • Todd Haug - guitar (1984-)
  • Jeff Litke - bass (1984-)
  • Dirk Verbeuren - drums (2011-)
  • Chase Tang - saxophone (1987-)
  • Raymond Slops - Kazoo (1989-)

Former members[edit]

  • Bill Hill - guitar (1984–87)
  • Adrian Liberty - drums (1984–90)
  • John Macaluso - drums


Year Title Label Other information
1986 Powermad Combat Records EP, Released as part of the Combat Boot Camp series that put bands' demos on vinyl
1988 The Madness Begins... Reprise Records EP, Recorded and mixed at Paisley Park Studios
1989 Absolute Power Reprise Records Full-length album
1999 Combat Boot Camp Century Media Records Compilation CD split with demos from Have Mercy and Napalm

External links[edit]