Founded by ex-Violence frontman Robb Flynn (vocals/guitar), Logan Mader (guitar), Adam Duce (bass/vocals) and Chris Kontos (drums), Machine Head helped to bring Heavy Metal into the 1990s kicking and screaming, as usual. With a vocal style alternating between Chris Cornell (ex-Soundgarden) and James Hetfield (of Metallica) they hit 25 in the U.K. with Roadrunner' with their debut Burn My Eyes (1994), especially since Kerrang! magazine declared them the best since Rage Against The Machine, with the Old track becoming a top 50 on the same charts onit's own. Covers of Poison Idea and Cro-Mags further bolstered the album.
Proving that no-frills, heavy-duty Heavy Metal was still a valuable commodity their follow-up The More Things Change (1997) made 16 in the U.K., an album that featured Dave McCain (ex-Sacred Reich) replacing Kontos.
With Logan Mader replaced by Ahrue Luster, The Burning Red (1999) proved to be their best to date, getting 13 U.K./88 U.S., despite their cover of the Police's Message In A Bottle; the band's attempts to expand their sound met with mixed critical and fan reaction. The follow-up EP Year Of The Dragon (2000) failed to do as well. Edging more into the so-called Nu-Metal direction, reaction to 2001's Supercharger was mixed and sales were disappointing (the unfortunate timing of the release, amidst the events of 9/11, contributed to a declinein sales). Hellalive (2003) saw Luster leave with no replacement, but their success was improving little, in turn leaving their career at a crossroads. Through The Ashes Of Empires followed in 2003 with a membership change with Phil Demmel (ex-Technocracy/ex-Torque/ex-Vio-lence) added on guitar; the album overall, an attempt to reverse their style to that of old and regain their lost ground.