The American Death Metal band MORPHEUS DESCENDS was founded in Middletown, NY under the original moniker MORPHEUS in October of 1990. In an age when Death Metal was still underground and as previous Metal and Punk genres were fading into obscurity, MORPHEUS wanted to emulate their growing influences of European and American Death Metal. Things moved rather quickly for the band, playing with Morbid Angel (AoM Tour) and Prime Evil only after a few weeks of being together. The group was building momentum and within 3 months of formation they recorded their first demo "Accelerated Decrepitude" (1990). They played their first few shows with an impressive array of bands, like the Buffalo NY 1990 "Day of Death" show with Deceased, Suffocation, Goreaphobia, Nokturnel and more. The group was quickly gathering an audience in the NY/NJ area and in the growing Death Metal genre. Continuing to play local shows with friends like Suffocation, Cannibal Corpse, Ripping Corpse, Immolation, Mortician and many others, a sound and scene was developed that became known as "New York Death Metal" or "NYDM", a style now constantly emulated by countless bands. MORPHEUS DESCENDS though their longevity and popularity may have not been as long or large as some of their peers, however they are still hailed as one of these Cult NYDM bands of the era and their 3 EPs and 1 full length are considered highly regarded among the bands of their ilk. In 1991 approached by "infamous" Seraphic Decay Records, MORPHEUS was asked to release a double 7"EP of their first demo "Accelerated Decrepitude". The group agreed but titled the EP "Adipocere" and contacted legendary "Walking Dead" gore comic book artist "Jim Sommerville" for the artwork and was released in October 1991. Receiving much acclaim and interest from major metal publications, bands, fanzines and demo traders, the groups name quickly spread throughout the underground worldwide.
January 1992 gave unholy birth to "Corpse under Glass" a 3 song demo that is still referenced as an influence by later bands of the NYDM genre. The recording was also the debut of new front man Jeff Riemer, ex-singer of the NYDM band Decomposed. A deal with the label JL America and RED Distribution was then worked out to release the 1992 demo "Corpse under Glass" plus some new unreleased songs worldwide. "Ritual of Infinity" was released and the band also incorporated a name change to become MORPHEUS DESCENDS. Hailed as one of the only real contributions from this now defunct label, JL America and MORPHEUS DESCENDS parted ways with them in 1993. Continuing to play shows outside the NY area, MORPHEUS DESCENDS grew followings in cities like Chicago (IL), Cleveland (OH), Ft. Wayne (IN), Indianapolis (IN), Milwaukee (WI), Minneapolis (MN) and Detroit(MI) as well as in their home area of New York and New Jersey. Then the band saw the departures of both guitarist Steve Hanson, and later that year bassist Ken Faggio. MORPHEUS DESCENDS had become friends with an Indiana Death Metal band Subconscious as well as being impressed with the sincerity of band's main member bassist Andy Newton. After the news of MORPHEUS DESCENDS was looking for replacement members, Andy Newton and guitarist Brian Johnson both relocated to NY and joined the band.
In 1994 their self financed MCD "Chronicles of The Shadowed Ones" was released, and once again MORPHEUS DESCENDS returned to live shows in the US with bands like Malevolent Creation, Death, Mushroomhead and Nevermore. They also played memorable fests like the Michigan Death fest, Milwaukee Metal fest, NY's Death stock as well as countless other shows across the country. They also supported Incantation and Anal Cunt on their summer 1994 US tour. Receiving much press for their impressive performances at these shows in RIP, Metal Maniacs, Pit Magazine and Metal Edge, all were hailing MORPHEUS DESCENDS as a unique act worthy of recognition. "Chronicles of The Shadowed Ones" was their first release in almost two years and was praised as their finest release to date. Atmospheric songs with a quality production true to the sound of Classic Death Metal, is how most described their sound. The CD now through multiple pressing was distributed throughout the underground laying down the foundation for many valuable friends and contacts. The band also appeared on compilations for Pavement Records, Repulse Records and some others further penetrating the scene. Again on the road they supported Incantation, this time with Enslaved and ABSU for several US shows. Once again the trials and tribulations of a group took its toll again when MORPHEUS DESCENDS experienced some line up changes, the parting of ways with both Jeff Riemer and Brian Johnson.
In 1995 newest addition "Guitar God" Tom Stevens of Nokturnel, Ripping Corpse, OLD and Savage Death stepped in to front the band and play guitar. He helped the band reach technical heights not achieved before with previous members. Work began in 1996 on their follow up MCD release "The Horror of The Truth" on NY's Angel Dust Records. This recording was done in Cleveland with Brian Sekula (Mortician, Funeral Pyre, Terror). This became a must for anyone that has followed the band at any time, and was quite an awakening to someone who hadn't. Just when the band was re establishing itself playing shows with Cannibal Corpse and Immolation, there was fallout between longtime member Sam Inzerra and the rest of the band. The band then went on a long hiatus and in late 1996 Andy Newton returned home to Indiana.
Rob, Tom and Eric the drummer for Tom's own band Nokturnel, rehearsed and recorded what would be the last MORPHEUS DESCENDS recording to date entitled "Forbidden Path of Unthinkable Evil" in 1997. The two song demo to this day has not been released and is the band's most furious effort. During this time Rob and Tom also recorded a project under the name "Exile", a black thrash outfit that was the remnants of "Brimstone" a black metal project Rob, Andy and Tom had done two years earlier. In 1997 Rob Yench began a 4 year stint in Incantation on bass. Soon after Rob, Tom joined the Incantation lineup and became the vocalist/ guitarist replacement for Daniel Corchado on the Morbid Angel/ Nile/ Incantation 1998 tour. At that point the line-up was temporarily disbanded.
Over the last 7 years, the members have gone to form and perform in various bands such as Mausoleum, FOG, Typhus, Mortician, Incantation, Temple to Blackness, Deadspeak, Formaldehyde Sleep, Stormcrow, Dysperium, and others. Andy Newton also founded Dark Horizon Records, a US Black/ Death Metal label. Also recently, former vocalist Jeff Reimer sadly passed away after a heroin overdose on August 30th, 2005.
The reformation/ resurrection of MORPHEUS DESCENDS began in 2005 as well as the re issue of both classics "Rituals of Infinity" with "Adipocere" on one CD for Spain's premiere Metal label Xtreme Music (ex-Repulse Records). An upcoming second re-issue is in the works to contain "Chronicles of The Shadowed Ones", "Horror of The Truth" and "Forbidden Path of Unthinkable Evil" along with some other unreleased tracks from that era of the group. MORPHEUS DESCENDS is currently writing new material with plans to record a brand new full length CD and perform some live shows in 2006.
Ritual Of Infinity + Adipocere
XM 032 CD
Brutal Death Metal
If you run a zine, webzine or you need high quality graphic stuff about the band, you can download here a .ZIP file with: Pictures, Logos and Album cover.