Sometimes “super-groups” don’t live up to the hype. That has never been the case with death grinders LOCK UP, who feature within their ranks a rather impressive pedigree of extreme musicians. After two classic records within the genre, and enduring the tragic loss of Jesse Pintado (NAPALM DEATH), the band has bounced back stronger than ever. With the help of new guitarist Anton Reisenegger (CRIMINAL, PENTAGRAM) and a superb mix from Andy Sneap (MEGADETH, TESTAMENT, NEVERMORE, EXODUS, DIMMU BORGIR), LOCK UP are back and ready more than ever to show people the true meaning of extreme.
The concept of LOCK UP was conceived in the city of Birmigham, UK in 1998 by Nicholas Barker (ex-CRADLE OF FILTH, ex-DIMMU BORGIR) and Shane Embury (NAPALM DEATH). Nick was based in Birmingham at that time as he was laying down his drum tracks for the CRADLE OF FILTH album Cruelty and the Beast. Regularly after the days recordings he would meet Shane in the local rock pub to hangout, drink, listen to metal of all kinds, reminisce about their pasts growing up and how they got into the scene. Usually on many of these nights guitarist Jesse Pintado , also of NAPALM DEATH, would join in the celebrations. A bond formed between them as did the idea to make a band that embraced the spirit of old school death and thrash metal, but with the blast attack of late eighties grindcore bands like REPULSION and TERRORIZER (who Jesse coincidently was a founding
Shane demoed a bunch of ideas on an old 4-track recorder for the next few months, then the three piece at short notice entered Backstage Studios with a very young Andy Sneap and blasted out thirteen tracks in three days. The idea was to capture the spontaneity and spirit of those classic releases and the results were intense!
Now to find a singer…
Nick suggested Peter Tägtgren of HYPOCRISY as they were good friends and they had always talked about doing a project together. Peter’s voice had incredible range so this seemed like a great idea. Of course Peter had Abyss Studio’s (DIMMU BORGIR, CELTIC FROST, IMMORTAL, HYPOCRISY) so Nick and Shane travelled to Ludwicke, Sweden to lay down the vocals to the music. The debut album Pleasures Pave Sewers was born.
Unfortunately due to conflicting schedules, LOCK UP seemed to be cursed when trying to coordinate shows. Also, shortly after the albums release in December 1999, the band reluctantly parted company with Peter .
The band got an offer to play the Wacken festival in 2000, so Shane called his old friend Tomas Lindberg of AT THE GATES and asked if he would be into singing for LOCK UP. Tomas agreed and the band played a blinding set of songs to a great response, with PETER strangely enough coming onstage for a song as well.
Shortly after LOCK UP played five shows with DECAPITATED from Poland in the UK.
The band then concentrated on writing and recording the follow up album and went into a local Birmingham studio called Framework, with producer Russ Russell of NAPALM DEATH fame. In 2001, the band laid down sixteen furious blasts of grind and it seemed that the band had stepped up a gear from the debut, with the songs being shorter and faster.
Hate Breeds Suffering came out in early 2002 and received album of the month in Terrorizer Magazine. They travelled to Japan in July of 2002 to play the Extreme the Dojo festival with WILL HAVEN and CONVERGE. A live album from these shows was released on Toys Factory records in Japan in 2004 and on Shane’s FETO Records label in 2007.
In the year following, the initial release of the live album the band went into a hiatus. In August 2006, Shane, Nick and Thomas like so many people around the world, were hit with the unfortunate news that their best friend and guitarist Jesse Pintado had passed away. At the time, there did not seem much point carrying on after this.
A few years passed and the guys chatted here and there. Fans asked if there was ever to be another LOCK UP album but it wasn’t really until the UK Damnation festival approached the band in 2009 to headline their Terrorizer stage, that Nick and Shane seriously thought about bringing the band back.
Shane had been long time friends with guitar player Anton Reisenegger, who he had met in Chile in 1997 when NAPALM DEATH supported his band CRIMINAL. Anton was also the founding member of cult Chilean death metal band PENTAGRAM, who Shane was a fan of from the late eighties, so there was a mutual respect. Shane knew that if anyone was going to fill Jesse’s shoes it was going to be Anton.
Anton, who had recently moved to Spain, was into the idea of joining the band and so they asked Tomas if he was also into doing the Damnation festival. Everyone agreed. The band rehearsed in the UK and started to write songs at the same time, since the feeling was high to be doing something again. The show was a success and soon after other festivals approached the band for shows. This gave the band new incentive to play and record a new record.
For all of 2010, with the schedules of their other bands permitting, they wrote and demoed songs. Anton brought a new intense element into the band which took the music in other directions and complimented Shane’s style too. The band was finally developing their own sound.
In October of 2010, they recorded the music to Necropolis Transparent at HVR Studios in Ipswich with CRIMANAL bass player/producer Danny Biggin engineering the sessions.
January 2011 saw the band reunite with their friend Andy Sneap to mix the album, at his bigger and better than ever Backstage Studios near Derby in the UK. The song writing and production on the new recorded surpassing everything the band has done so far. Andy fired up the record beyond expectations in sound this time. The speed, riffing and intensity make this record more than just a grindcore album and see LOCK UP come into their own true identity. Prepare yourself for a milestone in grind and another classic album from one of the leaders of the genre!