OCTOBER 6th 2013
DEATH ANGEL: STILL RELENTLESS

If you’re a thrash metal fan there’s a pretty good chance that you saw Death Angel as the trekked across the planet promoting their last record ‘Relentless Retribution.’  Death Angel toured hard and relentlessly behind the record both headlining and as a support act. No question Death Angel’s biggest accomplishment was landing the support role on the Anthrax tour alongside fellow bay area thrashers Testament. Fast forward to October of 2013 singer Mark Osegueda and Co. are on the verge of unleashing their latest opus ‘The Dream Calls for Blood’ which picks up where ‘Relentless’ left off. MetalTitans caught up with an ecstatic Osegueda who is eagerly awaiting to hit the road and perform some new material.

By Ruben Mosqueda

MetalTitans: Death Angel has been on a huge roll having toured extensively for the last album and completed all three legs of the Anthrax North American Tour.

Osegueda: I can’t begin to tell you how amazing that was. I have to say that it was a plan of ours---when we got the new lineup together for the ‘Relentless Retribution’ record.  The previous lineup that recorded ‘Art of Dying’ and ‘Killing Season’ couldn’t tour like we needed to tour. When they left the band Rob (Cavestany) and I sat down to discuss how we could make this happen. Listen, I know we had a fair amount of naysayers when the other guys left the band. I think what made people believers was the great music we released and the amount of touring that we did behind that album. We got two members (drummer) Will Carroll and (bassist) Damien Sisson and we said we’d tour like we’d never toured before so people would know we meant business. I think we won a lot of people over; a lot of them being new fans, a lot of naysayers and a lot of people who didn’t know we still existed. It’s been one of the most gratifying things that we’ve done. I think all that touring helped us go in with the dire energy that you hear on the new record ‘The Dream Calls for Blood.’

MetalTitans: I would agree about the progression and I witnessed your guys tighten things up. I remember doing the last interview with you on the bus prior to your headlining show at The Hawthorne Theater in October of 2011. You were geeked about the amount of touring that you were planning on doing. I caught you again in January in L.A. with Anthrax and Testament then again in September of 2012. You guys were flawless.

Osegueda: Thank you! (laughs) At this point we’ll be damned if we’re going to let it go. We’re very hungry. We went in with that same attitude when we went in to record the new record. The new stuff is going to kill live. The response to the record has been fantastic having said that I think we’re definitely on the right track.

MetalTitans: I want to go back into the recent past. I don’t want to go all the way to the early beginnings of the band because we did that last time. If we go back to ‘The Art of Dying’ and ‘Killing Season’ those records to me seem to be linked. The artwork is along the same lines, the music is more melodic for the average thrash fan’s taste. Definitely ‘Relentless’ and ‘The Dream Calls for Blood’ are linked not only by the artwork with the wolves but with the ferocious thrash that you’ve created. Was that done by design on the two sets of records?

Osegueda: That was done by design on the two previous records. When we went into the writing process of ‘The Dream Calls for Blood’ we knew it and ‘Relentless’ would be sister records. We wanted the same producer, same artist to do the album cover and we knew we wanted to keep the intensity level high and kick it up a notch. Rob and I sat down and discussed that we wanted the two albums to be wicked step-sisters and we wanted this record to be the more wicked record of the two. As you can hear we have found our footing and we have a team that we really like working with. With it being mainly Rob and I as far as the songwriting our vision is more concise than when there was four of us. We have trimmed the fat and the guys that we have in the band see exactly where we’re coming from and it works.

MetalTitans: No doubt you hit the mark with ‘Relentless’ but on the new album you dialed things up. I’m assuming it’s going to be a very difficult task to draft a set list? As a fan I love the classic stuff don’t get me wrong but I’d be perfectly okay if Death Angel simply played stuff from ‘Relentless’ and ‘The Dream Calls for Blood’ records.


Osegueda: (laughs) That’s great to hear! We’ve been hearing that a lot from the people that have heard the new album. That’s really gratifying for us because it makes the work that we’ve done making these records not in vain. You can hear that we’re doing it for all the right reasons and we have grown as songwriters. With every release it makes the set list more and more difficult for sure. You don’t want to let people down but you have to cut something out to put something new in. The upcoming tour will be heavy on the last two releases.

MetalTitans: You’ve used the wolves on the last two album covers. They have worked great. They look great on the cover and looks fantastic on a t-shirt. Whose idea was that and could this be the band mascot?

Osegueda: It is right now! (laughs) You never know what we’ll be doing next. We have aptly dubbed him ‘Wolfie’ he come out of the ‘Relentless Retribution’ song writing sessions. It was as a result of losing the two original members. It depicts how people’s true colors eventually surface--basically a wolf in sheep’s clothing. That was the theme and that is what you see on the last album cover. On this one we’re looking at it from the standpoint of the wolf being the sole survivor which illustrates the last three years of touring. The wolf is ravaged from all the battles or non-stop touring. He battered, still standing and to an extent still unrelenting.

MetalTitans: Last one if I asked you to compose an opening support set list of 6-7 songs what would they be? I don’t want to ask for a headlining set because I’d have you on the line all afternoon.

Osegueda: Oh! Wow. I’d have to go with a triple shot of the first three songs of the new record. (Note: “Left for Dead,” “Son of the Morning,” and “Fallen.”) I’d hit them hard with that. If we’re doing seven songs I’d have to go with “Seemingly Endless Time” and then jump back with “Relentless Revolution.” That leaves me two more; I’d have to go with “Castor of Shame” and then end with “Thrown to the Wolves.”