Unsatisfied with current trends and the overdone “core” music that was being heard throughout Portland, EXCRUCIATOR was formed to help revive the spirit and values of true heavy metal, long-since lost in the Pacific Northwest. Initially starting as a side project, the concept was hatched when guitarist/vocalist Chris Birkle proposed the idea of starting a faster, heavier, traditional metal band to long-time friend and fellow guitarist Josh Kay. The two agreed and during the winter of 2008 convinced the destroyer of strings, Craig Bridenbeck, to join on bass. Not content to sit idle while searching for a drummer, the trio began writing original material and recorded a rough one song demo using a drum machine. The demo reached the ears of drummer Marcus Hartford who quickly convinced the band with his thunderous beats that he was the right man for the job. The four found instantaneous cohesion and continued writing new material while rehearsing frequently.
Within a few months EXCRUCIATOR had built a solid repertoire of original songs and by the summer of 2009 the band entered the studio to record their fi rst proper demo. The eight-track demo quickly gained favor amongst the Portland metal crowd and this growing notoriety allowed the four to acquire gigs with national acts such acts a Forbidden, Cauldron, Enforcer, Ensiferum, Witchaven, Powerglove and Last Empire.Frequent gigging throughout the Portland area also put EXCRUCIATOR face to face with other like-minded young Portland bands with whom to carry on the fight such as compadres and future label mates Spellcaster.
Opportunity arose for EXCRUCIATOR when the band opened for Vektor during their summer 2010 tour. Thoroughly impressed with the songwriting, musicianship and vicious live performance displayed by EXCRUCIATOR, Vektor reported the news to their label, New York-based Heavy Artillery Records. The band was offered a deal and promptly joined the ranks of such beer bashing bangers as Enforcer, Vindicator, Spellcaster and Exmortus.
After their debut album release of Devouring they toured shortly after. Upon returning and through the acquisition of Heavy Artillery Records by Earache they experienced several lineup changes. Due to so many changes the members decided to take an extended break.
Several years later Chris the Beast and several like minded friends found that it was time to make their return as the ultimate force in Thrash Metal. Excruciator was reborn during the year 2015. They recorded their first songs since the hiatus with fellow comrades in arms Toxic Witch and released the CHAOS FORCE RECORDS split EP. EXCRUCIATOR VS TOXIC WITCH only available from CHAOS FORCE RECORDS.
In light of the momentum Excruciator will be entering the studio to records their long awaited sophomore album!