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Xentrix – Headbangers Open Air 2014 01.jpg
Background information
Origin Preston, England
Genres Thrash metal
Years active 1985–1997, 2006, 2013–present
Labels Roadrunner Records
Heavy Metal Records
Website http://www.xentrix.co.uk/
Members Kristian Havard
Chris Astley
Chris Shires
Dennis Gasser
Past members Dacaw Hough
Sean Owens
Peter Hiller
Steve Hodgson
Mel Gasser
John Brennan
Dave Catchpole
Simon Gordon
Andy Rudd
Paul MacKenzie

Xentrix (pronounced "zen-trix") are a British thrash metal band of the 1980s hailing from Preston, Lancashire. Xentrix were one of the leading lights of the British Thrash movement. They had music videos for their cover of Ray Parker, Jr's "Ghostbusters", "For Whose Advantage?" and for their track "The Order of Chaos", which had regular air time on Headbangers Ball. Xentrix's biggest show was at Wembley in 1991, opening for Slayer. Xentrix never gained global notoriety, but had many underground performances with audiences of over 2,000 to 5,000 people in attendance. As of 2006 Xentrix had sold over 500,000 records worldwide.


Climbing the ladder and Shattered Existence[edit]

The band gained notoriety when its demo sparked interest with a 5 star rating from Kerrang magazine. Roadrunner Records then contacted the band asking them why they had not been sent a copy, and arranged an audition with the band. After the audition, the band was signed to the label and recorded their first album Shattered Existence in the summer of 1989 and toured with Sabbat to support the album.

For Whose Advantage[edit]

In 1990 the band faced a small bit of controversy/publicity surrounding the release of their cover of Ray Parker, Jr.'s "Ghostbusters" theme, in which the original artwork for the single had an unauthorized use of the Ghostbusters logo (with the ghost flicking a V Sign). The single was subsequently re-released using a different cover. The track was originally recorded for the BBC Radio One Friday Rock Show along with several others which remain unreleased.

The band also reached new heights when they opened for Bay Area Thrash metal band Testament. Later that year they recorded their second album For Whose Advantage? which gained them yet more interest and their first music video for the album's title track. The Sweden Rock magazine said that songs "For Whose Advantage" and "Questions" were Thrash metal classics.[citation needed] To promote For Whose Advantage? they toured with thrash metal band Sabbat.

Dilute to Taste[edit]

In 1991 the band released the Dilute to Taste EP which had two new tracks from the band as well as a live album. The rest of 1991 saw Xentrix headlining a United Kingdom tour, taking out the new band Skyclad and a return to Hammersmith, this time opening for Brazilian Thrash metal band Sepultura.

Kin and decline[edit]

In 1992 the band decided to take a different direction with their album Kin, adopting a more progressive style with their music, which was considered by many to be the band's biggest mistake. A music video was filmed for the album's opening track "Order of Chaos" and received some airplay on MTV, the band would later release an EP of the same name. After a European tour supporting German band Tankard, the band returned to the United Kingdom to play what would be their final tour with Chris Astley at the helm. Astley finally left the band after recording a demo of a number of new songs, some of which ended up on Scourge, released in 1996.

Astley's departure and Scourge[edit]

The band then reformed after a period of inactivity with a new vocalist, Simon Gordon, and guitarist, Andy Rudd. This line up released 1996's Scourge only before disbanding due to lack of interest from the United Kingdom's then dwindling metal scene.

2006 Reunion and end[edit]

The band briefly reformed with its classic line-up for a small number of dates in the UK in the early part of 2006. One of these shows included support from Onslaught and Evile. In September 2006 it was announced that the band was splitting up with no intention of reforming in the future.

2013 reunion and new material[edit]

On 4 February 2013 it was announced via Evile's Facebook page that a reunited Xentrix would be joining Kreator and Evile for a three-show UK tour in late April.[1] This was initially the full Shattered Existence line-up, but later in the year bassist Paul MacKenzie left, to be replaced by Chris Shires. On 15 February the band announced that they have new material in the works.[2] On 8 August 2013 Xentrix played the Sophie Lancaster Stage at the BloodStock Open Air Festival, and in December they played a three-date headline tour of the UK.

Select shows continued in early 2014 and at the Up The Hammers Festival in Athens, Greece on March 8 they played new song 'World of Mouth' for the first time, going on to include it in their set supporting Overkill on their UK tour, starting in London on 13 March.

Current line-up[edit]

  • Chris Astley – guitar/vocals, 1985–1994, 2006, 2013-
  • Kristian Havard - guitars, 1985–1997, 2006, 2013-
  • Chris Shires - bass, 2013-
  • Dennis Gasser – drums, 1985–1997, 2006, 2013-

Former members[edit]

  • Dacaw Hough - vocals, 1985
  • Sean Owens - vocals, 1985
  • John Brennan - drums,1985
  • Dave Catchpole - drums, 1986
  • Peter Hiller - bass, 1985
  • Steve Hodgson - bass, 1986–1987
  • Mel Gasser - bass, 1987
  • Simon Gordon– vocals, 1995–1997
  • Andy Rudd - guitars, 1995–1997
  • Carl Arnfield - keyboards, 1992
  • Paul MacKenzie - bass, 1985–1997, 2006, 2013


Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "2013 UK tour announcement". Retrieved 4 February 2013. 
  2. ^ "Reunited Xentrix Booking Shows, Preparing To Write New Music". Retrieved 15 February 2013. 

External links[edit]