Ex-DEATH and MASSACRE guitarist Rick Roz castigated his former bandmate Kam Lee as a “narcissistic reviewer” over comments the singer made about the ending DEATH leader Chuck Schuldiner.
In a recent interview with the “That Metal Interview” podcast, Leewho was a member of an early version of DEATH as well as the pre-DEATH bandaged MANTAS next to Schuldin and Rozweighed in on the endless debate over who can claim to be the first “real” death metal band: DEATH Where POSSESSES. He said in part (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “I’ll admit it, and I’ll say it outright, because I know there’s an argument all the time, who was first – was it DEATH Where was it POSSESSES? Well I’ll tell you POSSESSES was the first, and I’ll tell you why. Because Mandrel heard what I f [ Becerra, POSSESSED frontman] did and Mandrel wanted to imitate I f. I was there – I was there at the beginning.
“There were times when we lived here in Florida before Mandrel moved to California, and Mandrel and I both started out as tapetraders at the time”, Kam continued. “And I remember, if you go back before we’re DEATHwe were called MANTAS. If you look at some of the hand drawn logos of MANTASthe MANTAS logo, there is the logo with the devil’s tail on it, on the ‘M’. It’s completely stolen from the original POSSESSES logo, the devil’s tail.
“I’ll say it now, because [former DEATH manager] Eric Greif died, he died, but those are the things he didn’t want me to tell people,” Lee added. “That’s why I was denied ever having been interviewed for the DEATH movie, the DEATH documentary [‘Death By Metal’]. They refused me, because they didn’t want me to say certain things, because how are you going to sell a documentary on DEATH if I come and say to everyone, ‘Nah, it’s not really like that’? So they didn’t want me there — they absolutely refused to talk to me there. They didn’t want me to come and say, ‘Oh, yeah, I is the one who drew DEATH logo, not Mandrel.’ They did not want me tell everyone I am whoever created this. And they didn’t want me to tell everybody, ‘Oh, well, Mandrel scammed POSSESSES.’ They wanted to sell it as Mandrel created, because they were selling a product. And if you have someone coming to you and saying, “Well, that’s not exactly how this product works. A bit like the [fast food chicken restaurant chain] KFC. I’m sorry, but it wasn’t [KFC founder] Col. Sander who came up with a special recipe; another guy invented it. So that was really it.”
Earlier today, Roz taken to his Facebook page to share a link to the BLABBERMOUTH.NET story about Leeand it included the following message: “SORRY CAN’T LET THIS ONE SLIP MY FRIENDS, HMMM…RESIZE THE DEAD, HOW LOW CAN YOU GO? NARCISSIST, REVISIONIST WAS NOT INCLUDED IN DEATH BY THE METAL DOCUMENT IS… IN A PRINTED INTERVIEW, HE WARNS CHUCK HE BETTER BE CAREFUL OR HIS MOTHER WILL STILL BE WIRELESS, ENOUGH REASON? OH… YEAH… AND AT LEAST, CHUCK IS NOT NOT TAKEN ON STAGE AT SHOWBIZ PIZZA IN WHITE SPANDEX WITH LEPPARD SPOTS LIP DROP IN I WANT TO BE SOMEBODY BY WASP IT’S REALLY DEATH METAL BARNEY, TRUE COLORS THROUGHOUT THE END.”
Although DEATH is considered one of the most important and influential death metal bands of all time, the Florida-based band did not release their debut album, “Scream Bloody Gore”until 1987 — two years after the arrival of “Seven Churches” by California POSSESSESincluding bassist/vocalist, the aforesaid Becerrais credited by some with originally coining the term “death metal” in 1983.
Becerra Told Anti-hero in 2017 that Schuldin cited POSSESSES as a “main influence” in “countless” magazine interviews. But even if DEATH was inspired by POSSESSES“they ran with it and went in their own direction and created their own vibe,” I f said. ” For further : Mandrel used [’80s death/thrash producer] Randy Burnswho has “Seven Churches” TO DO ‘Scream Bloody Gore’, his first album. He also did a cover of [POSSESSED‘s] ‘The Exorcist’.”
In 2008, Lee was toying with the idea of re-recording some of the early classics of DEATH and MANTAS with various guest musicians. At the time, he wrote in a social media post: “Like it or not…I’m as much a part of this story as Mandrel was, and I wouldn’t think of doing anything to downplay his involvement in those songs. The simple truth is that most songs on MANTAS/DEATHit is “Death by Metal” demo ’83/’84, DEATHit is “Reign of Terror” demo ’84 and DEATHit is “Infernal Death” demo ’85 – and many rehearsal tapes released at that time – we are both written with lyrics for me and sung by me. Yes both Mandrel and grinding wheel I wrote the guitar riffs, but I wrote the drum patterns for those songs and the lyrics for most of those songs. It’s the plain truth!”
The current range of MASSACREwith Lee and bassist Mike Bordersreleased their fourth full album, “Recurrence”last october via Nuclear explosion. He scored MASSACREthe first LP to feature Bordersas well as the band’s first recording in 25 years to feature Lee.
MASSACRE separated from Roz and drummer Mike Mazzonetto in September 2019. At the time, Lee and Borders blamed the split on “violations of breach of contract”, “poor performance, incompetence and lack of professionalism”.
In September 2020, drummer Jeremiah Kling (VENOM INC., ABSENCE, GOREGANG) and guitarist Taylor Nordberg (ABSENCE, GOREGANG) announced their departure from MASSACRE. Shortly after, kling and Nordberg said in a statement that “what was presented as a democracy turned out to be a dictatorship with an atrocious lack of communication”.