Inspired by the burgeoning American thrash metal revival of the mid-2000s, Denver, Colorado's Havok emerged in 2004 with an aggressive, neck-snapping style that evoked Bay Area thrash legends like Exodus, Metallica, and Testament. They broke into the Billboard 200 in 2013 with their acclaimed third full-length effort, Unnatural Selection, and continued to refine their uncompromising sound on future endeavors like Conformicide (2017) and V (2020).
Havok assembled in 2004 and proceeded to ply their retro-fitted classic thrash trade via a series of self-financed releases: a 2005 demo, a 2006 single, and a 2007 EP, curiously named Pwn 'em All. These efforts duly got them signed to Candlelight Records, which released Havok's debut album, Burn, in 2009 and then sent them off to tour with bands like Exodus, Anthrax, Destruction, Primal Fear, and Hammerfall. All of this roadwork only tightened up the group's impressive chops, and prepared members David Sanchez (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Reece Scruggs (lead guitar), Jessie de los Santos (bass, backing vocals), and Pete Webber (drums) for the recording of their sophomore album, Time Is Up (produced by thrash stalwart James Murphy: Death, Obituary, Disincarnate, Testament, etc.), which was released in early 2011.
Michael Leon replaced de los Santos on bass for 2013's Unnatural Selection, which earned positive reviews and saw Havok make their Billboard debut. The band toured steadily during the rest of the year, and they switched labels from Candlelight to Century Media. Leon left the group after three years to join Soulfly and was replaced by Nick Schendzielos of Cephalic Carnage, who made his studio debut on Havok's fourth album, Conformicide, which was released in March 2017. Three years later, the band returned with new bassist Brandon Bruce in tow and issued their aptly named fifth long-player, V. ~ Eduardo Rivadavia