Los Angeles, 1989… A 19 year old me went out with some friends to see some bands playing on the strip in Hollywood, a somewhat regular occurrence. On this particular night there was a band from the town I was living in (Tujunga) so we made haste to the venue to see what all the fuss was about.
Thrash and speed metal was the topic of the night and the all the bands delivered but one band stood out from the crowd… Civil Defiance. The band started their young career as a thrash/speed metal band but even then had a unique sound and often experimented with their music. I found myself fascinated with this band and attended nearly every show they played. Songs like “Storming Normandy”, “Bondage” and “One, Number One Son” had the crowds circling in a frenzy.
As time passed, the band became more and more experimental, often jumping genres into jazz and utilizing classical instruments. Eventually, in 1996, the band signed to Dream Circle Records to record “The Fishers For Souls” album and later, in 1999, they released “Circus Of Fear” on Grind Syndicate Media. That was the last we heard of them. Later, guitarist and vocalist Gerry Nestler went on to form the more widely known band Philm with then ex-Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo.
Present day… There is a reason why I’m writing this article. Recently there has been talk of Civil Defiance reuniting and rehearsals are under way. For me, as a long time dedicated fan, this is exciting news. However, this band is not as known as it should be so I set out to deliver to you some information about them. If you are into bands like Death and Voivod, you will most likely dig Civil D. But make no mistake, there is really no comparison to the sound of Civil Defiance and I urge you to take a listen for yourself. I for one, have waited a very long time for some new music from these guys.
Gerry Nestler – Guitar, Vocals, Piano
Mike Kinney – Guitar
Jenk Kent – Bass
Brad Hornbacher – Lyrics
(drummer to be announced). R.I.P. 2005 Mike Kent – Drums