Corrosion Of Conformity
riginally named No Labels, the hardcore punk/heavy metal crossover act Corrosion Of Conformity (often shortened to C.O.C.) was formed in 1982, by Reed Mullin (drums), Woody Weatherman (guitar), Mike Dean (bass/vocals) and Benji Shelton (vocals) and quickly became known primarily for their live shows.
Eye For An Eye (1984), their hardcore punk rock styled 20-track debut, would be the only album to feature the vocalist Eric Eycke and would be later re-released by 'Caroline Records' in 1989. The debut mixed Black Sabbath and Deep Purple power riffing with hardcore punk speed. It was their next release, Animosity (1985), which featured a more metallic style without loosing their hardcore punk or aggressive feel. It also saw the departure of Eycke. The Technocracy (1987) EP featured vocalist Simon Bob Sinister after the breakup of their fellow Carolina band and 'Death Records' label mates Ugly Americans replacing Aycke, and cash in on the rise of the thrash metal movement. Shortly later, however, the loss of Sinister and Dean would threaten to collapse the band.
The aptly titled, Six Songs With Mike Singing 1985 (1989), appeared to be their last, but an 11th hour reprise occurred when Mullin and Weatherman were joined by Karl Agell (ex-School Of Violence; vocals), Pepper Keenan (ex-Down/ex-Graveyard Rodeo; guitar/vocals) and Phil Swisher (bass). Tours with D.R.I. and Danzig got them a new record deal. A slower, more melodic feel was added to their still heavy style. Blind (1991) saw Corrosion Of Conformity adopt a more political attitude to their sound by challenging social, political and ecological issues. Success with the single for Vote With A Bullet, and live appearances with Soundgarden brought them of age and into their finest hour, 'Columbia' used major label muscle to push it into the US top 200 giving the album mainstream attention.
Deliverance (1994) saw Agell and Swisher leave, while Keenen took up vocals and Dean returned. Yet more diversity to their sound was added with southern rock and Thin-Lizzy like guitar harmonies. Although a strong, well received and radio played album, it saw the beginning of the softening of the band's sound. Because of its crossover appeal, however, the audience in the UK was now wide enough to grace them with a 43 chart position on their next effort, Wiseblood (1996). That new gained popularity came too late for 'Columbia' as they dropped them soon after release; the band then moved to 'Sanctuary Records'.
America's Volume Dealer (2000) and Live Volume (2001; a live effort) continued their recent southern rock style trend with Jimmy Bower (ex-Down/ex-Crowbar/ex-Eyehategod) on drums replacing Reed Mullen.
In April 2005, Corrosion Of Conformity released In the Arms of God to critical acclaim. The album performed much better than their previous effort by debuting at 108 on the Billboard 200 in the US without achieving one radio hit from the album.
Corrosion of Conformity went on hiatus from 2006 to 2010, while Keenen recorded and toured with Down.
The Animosity lineup would return to re-start the band to record a self-titled release in 2012, and IX (2014), with Keenan returning in 2015 for the recording of No Cross No Crown (2018).
Mullin died on January 27, 2020. His replacement would be John Green from Manchester, UK, who previously worked as the band's roadie and stepped in as a stand-in in 2019 for numerous shows.
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|City||Raleigh, North Carolina|
|Active Years||1982-2006, 2010-|
|RRCA File Code||REV00406|