A Long History of Pride, Perseverance — and Metal.
After the breakup of his original band Autumn Reign, guitarist Chris Pervelis went on to found the first INTERNAL BLEEDING lineup in early 1991. That winter, a case of 300 blank tapes were "found" at a local university and provided the impetus to set up a 4-track recorder and record their first demo — the infamous One Dollar Demo. It was a crude recording, but underneath all the noise and hiss lay the seeds of a new genre of death metal.
In the winter of 1992, the band released their now classic Invocation of Evil demo. This recording got them closer to their goal of creating crushing death metal with grooves and hooks that stayed with the listener long after the stop button was hit. Critics and fans responded, and Invocation of Evil was eventually released on Wild Rags Records selling more than 5000 copies — the label's highest selling CD at the time. Relentless self-financed touring and promotion followed.
Pressure started to build from Wild Rags, fans, and the band themselves and Internal Bleeding returned to the studio to record another demo in early 1994. The result of all that pressure is what can be considered today a masterpiece of underground music — Perpetual Degradation. The band had finally solidified their sound and even coined a description for it — Total Fucking Slam. As with Invocation of Evil, Perpetual Degradation broke Wild Rags' sales records once again — topping off at 6200 copies. They immediately hit the road with a vengeance, promoting themselves and their music shamelessly.
All that self-promotion and tireless dedication was to bear fruit at that year's Milwaukee Metalfest, where the band's captivating performance caught the eyes and ears of Pavement Music. They signed with Pavement and in 1995 released their debut album, Voracious Contempt — a sonic tour-de-force that truly highlighted the band's unique approach to death metal. Once again, the band hit the road, this time around with world-renowned acts Immolation and Six Feet Under. Album sales were impressive and the group kept busy throughout 1995 and 1996.
By the time 1997 arrived, the constant touring and hard work had taken a terrible toll on the band and financial troubles plagued Pavement Music. Oddly enough, it was one of the band's most creative periods, and it was during this time that the group's second album The Extinction of Benevolence was released. Although the band thought it was their heaviest release to date, little support in both advertising and touring from the label saw the album's true potential cut short.
In late 1998, they regrouped, re-focused and began writing music that pushed their talents to the limit. Pavement Music picked up the finances and 1999 saw the band in the studio recording and releasing Driven to Conquer with ace producer Brian Griffin. Standout songs such as "Falling Down" and the title track became permanently enshrined in the band's live set, complimenting classics from their previous releases.
The band decided to part ways with Pavement Music in 2000 due to lack of support and soon struck a deal with Olympic Recordings. A compilation of their early demos titled Alien Breed soon followed. After seeing the departure of the band's founder Chris Pervelis, Internal Bleeding released Onward to Mecca; a very well produced, punishing slab of pure heaviness that perfectly fused their death metal roots with NY style hardcore. After the release, two small tours followed and the band seemed to fall into a state of disarray and literally vanished from the music scene.
In early 2011, Chris Pervelis decided to pick up the pieces and went about getting Internal Bleeding back together. With the primary original core of the group in tact, plus the addition of Jason Liff on bass and legendary front man Keith DeVito (Pyrexia, Suffocation and Obituary) handling the vocals, the band set out to devastate everyone in their path, playing high-profile festivals in both Switzerland and Holland, as well as touring across the continental US. Due to demand and renewed interest in the band, in mid-2012 they released Heritage of Sickness — another compilation of their sought-after demos, plus live tracks featuring Keith DeVito.
In 2013, they released an industry only teaser cd, which garnered plenty of label interest and early in March of 2014 the band signed a deal with Unique Leader Records to put out their album, Imperium, which was released on September 30th 2014 to great critical acclaim.
The band followed up Imperium with US and European tours and are currently writing their next album. Due to health and family issues, vocalist Keith DeVito was replaced Joe Marchese, and the band welcomed in new bass player Shaun Kennedy.
2017 was a difficult year for the band, as founding member, drummer and New York City Firefighter Bill Tolley died tragically in an on the job accident. Determined to continue and dedicate their future to Bill, the band recruited upstate NY drum legend Kyle Eddy to replace Bill on the drum throne. Needless to say, Mr. Eddy has huge shoes to fill.
Photos above by Pawel Streit and MV Photography.