Revocation (band)

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Also known as Cryptic Warning
Origin Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
Genres Technical death metal, thrash metal
Years active 2000–present
Labels Relapse, Scion A/V, Metal Blade
Associated acts Archspire, Argonauts, Artificial Brain, Biclops, Black Fast, Cannabis Corpse, Cyanide Breed, Angel Grinder, Day Without Dawn, East of the Wall, Hot on the Heels, Living Void, 3 Inches of Blood, Binary Code, The Postman Syndrome, Impending Doom
Members David Davidson
Brett Bamberger
Dan Gargiulo
Ash Pearson
Past members Anthony Buda
Phil Dubois-Coyne

Revocation is an American technical death metal band from Boston, Massachusetts, United States, founded by guitarist and vocalist David Davidson, bassist and vocalist Anthony Buda and drummer Phil Dubois-Coyne in 2000. Originally known as Cryptic Warning, the band changed its name to Revocation in 2006. Revocation has released six studio albums, Empire of the Obscene, Existence Is Futile, Chaos of Forms, Revocation, Deathless, and Great Is Our Sin, in 2008, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2014, and 2016, respectively. The band signed to Relapse Records after their first album, which was released independently. They have also released a free EP, Teratogenesis, with Scion A/V in 2012.


In 2000, guitarist/vocalist David Davidson, drummer Phil Dubois-Coyne and bassist Anthony Buda, who attended a high school in Boston, Massachusetts, formed Cryptic Warning, influenced by Guns N' Roses and Metallica. The band recorded its first demo in 2002 and gained an underground following in Boston, also performing outside of Massachusetts. A second demo, Internally Reviled, was recorded in 2004. In 2005, Cryptic Warning recorded its debut studio album, Sanity's Aberration, but was not content with the quality of the album's production. Remembering those recordings, Davidson said: "We didn't record the album with a metal guy, so we didn't get the sound we wanted. The heaviest reference in our producer's discography was The Cult. A lot of people still love that record—our old-school fans who used to show up for all of the shows—but to us, we weren't really satisfied with the production of that. We felt it was one of the mistakes we made."[1]

The band decided to change its name to Revocation in 2006; Davidson commented: "I think, looking a little deeper into it, we made a lot of mistakes with Cryptic Warning. We were younger and didn't really know what we were doing, so Revocation was us starting fresh with a clean slate and revoking our past mistakes." With a direction change, Revocation promptly recorded a three-song demo titled Summon the Spawn, and in 2008 they went back into the studio to record their first full-length album, Empire of the Obscene. The full length was self-released, and the band financed its own tour, attracting the interest of several record labels. Revocation subsequently signed to Relapse Records.[1]

The band did a number of regional shows before recording their second full-length album, Existence Is Futile, released on September 29, 2009. The album was described by Allmusic as "one of the best pure metal albums of 2009",[2] while Spin magazine named Revocation as one of the ten artists to watch in 2010.[3] In October 2009, the band performed for the Relapse showcase at CMJ Music Marathon.[4] On August 16, 2011, the band released their third full-length album, "Chaos Of Forms". Their fourth full-length studio release, self-titled Revocation, was released on August 5, 2013.

In early April 2014, it was announced that Revocation had made a deal with Metal Blade Records. In addition to the announcement of signing to Metal Blade, they announced that the recording of their fifth album had commenced.[5] On July 1, 2014, it was reported that their new album will be called Deathless and will be released in the fall of 2014. Revocation will embark on a fall tour in the U.S. with Crowbar, Havok, Fit For An Autopsy, and Armed for Apocalypse. Following the fall tour, they will trek across Europe with Cannibal Corpse and Aeon.[6]

In April 2014, the band confirmed that they had signed with Metal Blade Records, and released a new album, entitled Deathless, on October 14, 2014.[7][8]

In June 2015, the band's drummer, Phil Dubois-Coyne, announced that he was leaving the band. He was replaced by Ash Pearson, the former drummer of 3 Inches of Blood.

In September 2015, the band announced that Empire of the Obscene will be re-issued on November 13, 2015 via Metal Blade Records, with newly remixing and remastering, as well as include bonus tracks from their demo EP, Summon the Spawn.[9]

In May 2016, the band announced their sixth studio album, Great Is Our Sin, to be released in July of that same year. [10]

Style, influences and reception[edit]

The music of Revocation has been described by journalists as a fusion of technical death metal and thrash metal.[11][12] The characteristics that define Revocation's sound include a "complex guitar-bass interplay" of dissonant riffs, bass breaks and "shredding" guitar solos united to "galloping" double bass drums, death metal tempos, hard rock breakdowns and grooves.[12] Vocals ranged from death growls to grindcore screams,[1] while "still recognizable as a human voice".[2]

Music critics have pointed out that Davidson's guitar playing style is the prominent aspect of Revocation's sound.[1][13] Davidson developed his playing technique by attending the Berklee College of Music, where he focused on polyrhythm for jazz.[1] This musical education brought him an expertise in both playing and songwriting, while "some of the atonal aspects of jazz gave him a different perspective on composing and soloing."[14]

Recalling his earliest influences, Davidson cites Slash, Dimebag Darrell, and Marty Friedman.[15] Davidson says that as a band, Revocation have a wide range of influences,[16] and among these are groups such as Exhorder, Dark Angel, Megadeth, Pestilence, Atheist, Gorguts, Forbidden, Spastic Ink, Martyr, and Exodus.[14] Davidson has also cited the "raw energy" of the DIY metal shows in the Boston underground scene as an inspiration to get proactive and get the band working.[17]

Regarding the band's rhythm section, critics have different opinions; while stated that Buda and Dubois-Coyne "practice their own brutal brand of stop-on-a-dime precision with merciless intensity",[18] Decibel magazine felt that when Davidson is soloing, "the rest of band often fails to compensate."[13] In contrast Allmusic said: "Perhaps the most astonishing thing about Revocation, though, is that they're a trio."[2]




Revocation discography
Studio albums 6
Music videos 6
EPs 2

Studio albums[edit]

List of studio albums, with selected chart positions
Year Album details Peak chart positions


Hard Rock
2008 Empire of the Obscene
  • Released: February 2008
  • Label: independent
  • Format: CD, digital download
2009 Existence Is Futile
  • Released: September 29, 2009
  • Label: Relapse
  • Format: CD, digital download
2011 Chaos of Forms
  • Released: August 19, 2011
  • Label: Relapse
  • Format: CD, LP, digital download
2013 Revocation
  • Released: August 5, 2013
  • Label: Relapse
  • Format: CD, LP, digital download
159 4 35 44 15
2014 Deathless
  • Released: October 14, 2014
  • Label: Metal Blade
  • Format: CD, LP, digital download
124 1 25 39 10
2016 Great Is Our Sin
  • Released: July 22, 2016
  • Label: Metal Blade
  • Format: CD, LP, digital download
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart


List of EPs
Year Album details
2006 Summon the Spawn[24]
  • Released: September 2006
  • Label: independent
  • Format: unknown
2012 Teratogenesis
  • Released: September 25, 2012
  • Label: Scion A/V
  • Format: digital download

Music videos[edit]

Year Album Title Director
2009 Existence is Futile "Dismantle the Dictator" David Brodsky
2010 "ReaniManiac" Kevin Juliff
2011 Chaos of Forms "No Funeral" David Brodsky
2012 Teratogenesis "The Grip Tightens"
2013 Revocation "Invidious"
"Fracked" Madeline Quinn


  1. ^ a b c d e Mauck, Chrissy (October 30, 2009). "Revocation Changing the Metal Landscape". Jackson Guitars. Retrieved January 20, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c Freeman, Phil. "Existence Is Futile review". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved January 23, 2010. 
  3. ^ Staff (December 15, 2009). "10 Artists to Watch in 2010". Spin. Retrieved January 23, 2010. 
  4. ^ Kelly, Kim (October 13, 2009). "Relapse, BrooklynVegan Give CMJ All Kinds of Metal With 2009 Showcase". Noisecreep. AOL. Retrieved January 22, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Revocation signs with Metal Blade Records! | Metal Blade Records". 2014-04-09. Retrieved 2016-06-01. 
  6. ^ "Revocation new album title revealed; tour with Crowbar announced! | Metal Blade Records". 2014-07-01. Retrieved 2016-06-01. 
  7. ^ "REVOCATION Signs to Metal Blade, Is Definitely In The Studio". Metal Injection. 2014-04-10. Retrieved 2016-06-01. 
  8. ^ "REVOCATION Announce Details for Metal Blade Records Debut "Deathless" | Metal Blade Records". 2014-08-13. Retrieved 2016-06-01. 
  9. ^ "Revocation - To Reissue 'Empire Of The Obscene'". Metal Storm. Retrieved 2016-06-01. 
  10. ^ "Revocation To Release 'Great is Our Sin Album In July". Blabbermouth. Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  11. ^ Bennett, J. (November 2009). "Existence Is Futile review". Revolver. No. 86. p. 74. ISSN 1527-408X. 
  12. ^ a b Carman, Keith (November 2009). "Existence Is Futile review". Exclaim!. Retrieved 20 April 2010. 
  13. ^ a b Dick, Chris (December 2009). "Existence Is Futile review". Decibel. No. 62. pp. 98–100. ISSN 1557-2137. 
  14. ^ a b "Revocation interview". Lords of Metal. November 2009. Retrieved 23 April 2010. 
  15. ^ Stewart-Panko, Kevin (November 2009). "Tech-y death/thrashers organically worm their way to the 'top'". Decibel. No. 61. ISSN 1557-2137. Archived from the original on February 11, 2010. Retrieved April 20, 2010. 
  16. ^ Laban, Linda (February 1, 2010). "Revocation Are Into Jazz and Old Romantics". Noisecreep. AOL. Retrieved April 21, 2010. 
  17. ^ Tesser, Randy. "Sound Of Boston - Local Spotlight: Revocation". Sound of Boston. Retrieved 14 December 2013. 
  18. ^ Pacheco, George. "Existence Is Futile review". Retrieved April 28, 2010. 
  19. ^ "Revocation – Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved June 4, 2014. 
  20. ^ "Revocation – Chart History: Heatseekers Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved June 4, 2014. 
  21. ^ "Revocation – Chart History: Independent Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved June 4, 2014. 
  22. ^ "Revocation – Chart History: Top Rock Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved June 4, 2014. 
  23. ^ "Revocation – Chart History: Hard Rock Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved June 4, 2014. 
  24. ^ "Summon the Spawn Revocation". Encyclopaedia Metallum. Retrieved June 3, 2014. 

External links[edit]