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Decapitated (band)

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Decapitated (band)

Origin Krosno, Poland
Genres Technical death metal
Years active 1996–2007, 2009–present
Labels Earache, Nuclear Blast, Metal Mind, Riffs Factory, Mystic[1]
Associated acts Vader, Lux Occulta, Masachist
Members Wacław Kiełtyka
Rafał Piotrowski
Paweł Pasek
Michał Łysejko
Past members Witold Kiełtyka
Marcin Rygiel
Wojciech Wąsowicz
Adrian Kowanek
Filip Hałucha
Kerim Lechner

Decapitated is a Polish death metal band formed in Krosno in 1996. The group comprises guitarist, founder and composer Wacław "Vogg" Kiełtyka, vocalist Rafał Piotrowski, bassist Paweł Pasek, and drummer Michał Łysejko. Decapitated have gained recognition as one of the genre's most widely respected bands[2] and one of the finest exponents of technical death metal. The band earned an international fan base in the underground music community,[3] and became an innovating act in the modern death metal genre.[4]

Vogg and his younger brother, drummer Adrian "Covan" Kowanek.

In late 2007, the band was involved in an automobile accident. Vitek died at the age of 23 on November 2, 2007 of the injuries he suffered from the accident and Covan survived, but he slipped into a coma as a result. After a period of disbandment, Vogg reformed Decapitated and in 2011 released the fifth album, Carnival Is Forever. The latest album, Blood Mantra, was released in 2014.


Winds of Creation, Nihility and The Negation (1996–2004)

Vitek in 2006. He was 15 years old during the recording sessions of Winds of Creation.

Decapitated was founded in Krosno, Poland in 1996, by guitarist Wacław "Vogg" Kiełtyka, who was 15 at the time, his brother drummer Witold "Vitek" Kiełtyka, who was 12 years old, and vocalist Wojciech "Sauron" Wąsowicz, who was 16. One year later, bassist Marcin "Martin" Rygiel, 13, joined the band. Decapitated released its first demo, Cemeterial Gardens, in 1997 and its second demo, The Eye of Horus, in 1998. After signing to Earache Records subsidiary Wicked World, the band released its debut album, Winds of Creation, which included a cover version of Slayer's "Mandatory Suicide", and was produced by Piotr Wiwczarek from the Polish band Vader,[5] in April 2000. The band toured with Vader in early 2001 in the United Kingdom.[6] Allmusic states that "Decapitated have quickly gained recognition as one of Poland's, and even Europe's, finest exponents of ultra-technical death metal."[3]

Decapitated's self-produced[7] second album, Nihility, which was released in February 2002,[8] fulfilled the high expectations that followed the well-received debut album.[9][10] Nihility also included a cover version of Napalm Death's "Suffer the Children". Decapitated was chosen to perform at the Polish Ozzfest event in late May and toured in North America and Europe in August.[5] Sławek and Wojtek Wiesławscy produced the band's next album, The Negation,[11] which was released in February 2004. The album received a positive response from the critics[12][13] and was followed by a tour in Europe and the United States throughout 2004.[14][15]

Organic Hallucinosis and hiatus (2005–2008)

In mid-2005, Sauron announced his withdrawal from Decapitated, stating: "It was not an easy decision. However, I could reconcile the welfare of the band with my personal plans, and hence quitting appeared to be the best solution not hampering the evolution of Decapitated.(...) Moreover, another reason that contributed to my decision have been some health complications."[16] The band chose [17]

During the following tour in December 2005, Martin could not perform with the band due to military conscription issues and was shortly substituted by Richard Gulczynski, but joined again in February 2006. During the year, Decapitated toured with American bands Suffocation, Six Feet Under, Fear Factory, and others.[5][18][19] In June and July 2007, Decapitated played with Cephalic Carnage and others in the Summer Slaughter trek across the US.[20] Later on, Martin departed from Decapitated to live with his family and to move to California.[21]

On October 28, 2007 the band members were involved in an automobile accident that injured Vitek and Covan. Their tour bus collided with a truck carrying wood in Gomel, near the border from Russia to Belarus.[22][23] Vitek died on November 2, 2007 at the age of 23 in a Russian hospital from the injuries. Covan slipped into a coma and was later moved to Poland.[24][25] In 2008, Metal Mind Productions released the concert DVD Human's Dust.[26][27]

Reformation and Carnival Is Forever (2009–2013)

Guitarist Vogg in 2009

On March 8, 2009, after a period of disbandment, Vogg announced he was planning to continue the band and was searching for a new drummer and vocalist.[28][29] Covan was unable to continue with Decapitated due to the slow improvement of his condition.[30] In early 2009, Vogg participated on recording of the guitars for Vader's album Necropolis and continued with the band on a tour in support of the album, starting in September.[31]

In mid-2009 Vogg stated: "It has been the hardest thing for me to move on without Vitek by my side, but he would have wanted me to continue with the band. Finally, I have found some great musicians who can continue the work of Vitek and Covan."[30] "There's no sense in stopping this amazing thing we built up so many years ago together with Vitek, Sauron, Martin and Covan."[32]

On July 31, 2009, the Austrian drummer Kerim "Krimh" Lechner of Thorns of Ivy joined Decapitated.[33][34] On November 20, 2009, the new line-up was completed with the vocalist Rafał Piotrowski of the band Ketha and bassist Filip "Heinrich" Hałucha of Vesania and Masachist.[32][35] Decapitated continued with support of Nuclear Blast record label and Hard Impact Music management. The band toured in United Kingdom in February 2010 as well as in April and May in Australia, New Zealand and European festivals and the Summer Slaughter tour in United States in mid-2010.[30][36][37]

The band entered RG Studio in Gdańsk on February 9, to begin recording their fifth studio album entitled Carnival Is Forever. The album was produced by Vogg; while mixing and drums production was done by Swedish producer Daniel Bergstrand, who previously worked with Behemoth and Meshuggah among others.[38][39][40] Heinrich departed from Decapitated after the recording in order to concentrate on Vesania,[41] and Carnival Is Forever was released on July 12, 2011.[42]

On November 1, 2011, the band was on board LOT Polish Airlines Flight 16 when the crew were unable to extend the landing gear and were forced to land the aircraft on its belly. Everyone aboard the flight survived.[43] Lechner left the band in September 2012 and was replaced by former Vader drummer Paweł Jaroszewicz.[44]

In late 2012, Decapitated played concerts in Nepal,[45] Japan,[46] and Thailand,[47] among others.

Blood Mantra (2014–present)

Piotrowski in 2014

On March 13, 2014, the band announced the addition of drummer Michał Łysejko to its lineup, who had been touring with Decapitated since January 2014. Decapitated recorded Blood Mantra during March in Hertz Studio in Poland, and released the album in September.[48] During a tour in United States in October, the band was involved in serious van accident on the way to a show in New Orleans, Louisiana. Nobody was seriously injured and the band continued on tour.[49]

Musical style and critical reception

Decapitated's music is composed by the "mastermind" of the band, Vogg, who co-worked with Vitek while writing prior to his death.[50][51] Decapitated became known for its songwriting and technical instrumental approach at an extraordinarily young age and earned an international fan base in the underground music community.[3][6] In the review of Decapitated's debut album, Allmusic said "the band has a seemingly effortless understanding and command of ... their instruments and ... the songwriting is extremely solid; even in the first listen."[6] The characteristics of Nihility and Negation are "powerful, blastbeat-filled drumming, dissonant yet memorable guitar riffs, and inventive guitar solos" and substantially high production quality.[52] In the review of The Negation, [53] A notable element of groove is present in Decapitated's death metal sound.[54][55]

Decapitated's releases are some of death metal's most significant albums of the early 21st century.[8][52] Winds of Creation was "responsible for re-igniting a stagnating death metal scene"[4][6][9] and Organic Hallucinosis proved to be substantially influential in the subsequent development of the genre.[4] According to Kerrang!, Decapitated have released "classic albums; (...) that have turned these youthful Poles into one of the genre's most widely respected bands.[2] Tomas Haake, the drummer of the Swedish band Meshuggah, commented the death of Vitek: "The metal community has lost one of the most talented and skillful drummers of our time! [...] Vitek was a true talent and drummer genius."[56]

Band members



Studio albums

Title Album details Peak chart positions Sales
US Heat
Winds of Creation
  • Released: April 11, 2000
  • Label: Wicked World/Earache Records
  • Formats: CD, CD+DVD, LP, CS, digital download
  • Released: February 19, 2002
  • Label: Earache Records
  • Formats: CD, LP, CS, digital download
The Negation
  • Released: March 9, 2004
  • Label: Earache Records
  • Formats: CD, LP, digital download
Organic Hallucinosis
  • Released: February 7, 2006
  • Label: Earache Records, Teichiku Records
  • Formats: CD, 2 CD, DualDisc, LP, digital download
Carnival Is Forever
  • Released: July 12, 2011
  • Label: Nuclear Blast, Riffs Factory/Mystic Production
  • Formats: CD, CD+DVD, LP, digital download
Blood Mantra
  • Released: September 22, 2014
  • Label: Nuclear Blast, Mystic Production
  • Formats: CD, CD+DVD, LP, digital download
11 5
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.


Title Album details
The First Damned
  • Released: November 20, 2000
  • Label: Metal Mind Productions
  • Formats: CD, CS


Title Album details
Cemeterial Gardens
  • Released: July 1997
  • Label: Self-released
  • Formats: CS
The Eye of Horus
  • Released: November 1998
  • Label: Self-released
  • Formats: CS

Split album

Title Album details Note
Polish Assault
  • Released: October 31, 2000
  • Label: Relapse Records
  • Formats: CD
  • split with Yattering, Damnable, and Lost Soul

Video album

Title Album details
Human's Dust
  • Released: June 9, 2008 (Europe), June 10, 2008 (United States)
  • Label: Metal Mind Productions
  • Formats: DVD

Music videos

Year Title Directed Album
2000 "Winds of Creation" Adam Kuc, Selani Studio Winds of Creation
2002 "Spheres of Madness" Dave Bone Nihility
2006 "Day 69" Szymon Jakubowski, Patryk Jordanowicz, Magdalena Jakubowska Organic Hallucinosis
2012 "Pest" Grupa 13, Dariusz Szermanowicz Carnival is Forever
"Homo Sum" Marcin Halerz, Redpig Productions
2013 "Carnival is Forever" Decapitated, Marcin Halerz, Redpig Productions
"404" Anthony Dubois
2014 "Instinct" Red Pig Productions Blood Mantra


  1. ^ Between 2000–2004 Decapitated toured occasionally as quintet, with addition of second guitarist Jacek Hiro.


  1. ^ "DECAPITATED w Mystic Production!" (in Polish). Retrieved 2014-06-27. 
  2. ^ a b Lawson, Dom (February 2006). "Heads Above The Rest" [Polish Destroyers Deliver The Death Metal Goods Again].  
  3. ^ a b c Eduardo Rivadavia. "Decapitated Biography".  
  4. ^ a b c Decapitated's 'Winds Of Creation', 'Organic Hallucinosis' Released On Vinyl For First Time - July 20, 2010,
  5. ^ a b c "Decapitated Biography".  
  6. ^ a b c d Matthias Sheaks. "Winds of Creation".  
  7. ^ Everley, Dave (February 2002). "Pole Position" [Decapitated: Eastern Europeans make a bold bid for the death metal Crown].  
  8. ^ a b Jason D. Taylor. "Nihility".  
  9. ^ a b Lawson, Dom (March 2002). "Death Becomes Them".  
  10. ^ Ling, Dave (December 2002). "Slice And Dice".  
  11. ^ a b Dome, Malcolm (February 2004). "The Negation review".  
  12. ^ Lawson, Dom (March 2004). "Heads Will Roll" [Decapitated Decimate The Competition... Again].  
  13. ^ Geist, Brandon (March 2004). "The Negation review".  
  14. ^ Decapitated, Rotting Christ, Thus Defiled To Tour The U.K. - Jan. 22, 2004,
  15. ^ Decapitated To Tour U.S. With Cannibal Corpse - Apr. 29, 2004,
  16. ^ Decapitated Part Ways With Singer, Announce Replacement - July 4, 2005,
  17. ^ a b Eduardo Rivadavia. "Organic Halucinosis".  
  18. ^ Decapitated: Bassist Martin Rejoins The Fold - Feb. 20, 2006,
  19. ^ Decapitated Announce New Bassist - Jan. 9, 2006,
  20. ^ Cephalic Carnage Completes Work On New Video - May 16, 2007,
  21. ^ Former Decapitated Bassist: 'My Thoughts Are With The Guys And Their Families' - Oct. 30, 2007, Blabbermouth
  22. ^ Bonazelli, Andrew (September 2006). "Stop Loss".  
  23. ^ Update: Decapitated Vocalist, Drummer Injured In Road Crash - Oct. 30, 2007,
  24. ^ "Decapitated Singer Moved To Polish Hospital, Is In 'Stable' Condition - Nov. 6, 2007". Retrieved 2009-04-26. 
  25. ^ "Decapitated Guitarist: 'We Are On Indefinite Hiatus For Now' - Aug. 12, 2008". Retrieved 2009-04-26. 
  26. ^ Greg Pratt. "Human's Dust review".  
  27. ^ Decapitated: First-Ever DVD Due In June, Mar. 14, 2008; Blabbermouth
  28. ^ Decapitated Guitarist: 'We Are On Indefinite Hiatus For Now' - Aug. 12, 2008,
  29. ^ "Decapitated's Vogg Seeking New Drummer, Singer - Mar. 9, 2009". Retrieved 2009-04-26. 
  30. ^ a b c Decapitated Announces First Shows In Three Years - Oct. 20, 2009,
  31. ^ "Vader: New Album Track Listing Revealed - Apr. 16, 2009". Retrieved 2009-04-26. 
  32. ^ a b Decapitated: New Lineup Announced - Nov. 20, 2009, Blabbermouth
  33. ^ Decapitated: New Drummer Announced - July 30, 2009, Blabbermouth
  34. ^ New member in the band, Decapitated at MySpace
  35. ^ Exclusive rebirth UK tour, announce new members, Decapitated at MySpace
  36. ^ Decapitated, The Faceless, All Shall Perish Confirmed For Summer Slaughter Tour - Apr. 15, 2010, Blabbermouth
  37. ^ UK Tour 2010!, Decapitated at MySpace
  38. ^ Decapitated To Enter Studio Next Month - Jan. 21, 2011,
  39. ^ Decapitated Recording New Album; Photos, Report Available - Feb. 14, 2011,
  40. ^ Eksperymenty Decapitated. Wkrótce nowy album!. January 21, 2011. (Polish)
    Decapitated: Poważny cios. February 14, 2011. (Polish)
    Decapitated w studiu: "Naprawdę świetnie". February 20, 2011. (Polish)
    Decapitated jak czarne burzowe chmury. February 28, 2011. (Polish)
    Decapitated: Przestrzeń, głębia i pszczoły szatana. March 14, 2011. (Polish)
  41. ^ Decapitated podany ze July 4, 2011. (Polish)
  42. ^ Decapitated: 'Carnival Is Forever' Track Listing Unveiled - May 13, 2011, Blabbermouth
  43. ^ Decapitated Survives Plane Crash Landing (Video) - Nov. 3, 2011,
  44. ^
  45. ^ Decapitated Interviewed In Nepal (Video) - Oct. 23, 2012
  46. ^ Decapitated Guitarist Interviewed By SIGH's Mirai Kawashima (Video) - Nov. 11, 2012
  47. ^ Decapitated - Spheres of Madness (Live) The Rock Pub, Bangkok 11th September 2012.
  48. ^ a b "Decapitated Announces New Drummer, Begins Recording Next Album".  
  49. ^ Decapitated Involved In 'Serious' Van Accident. October 25, 2014.
  50. ^ Decapitated Interview, Metal Injection, April 15, 2008
  51. ^ Decapitated Guitarist: 'It Wasn't An Easy Decision To Continue The Band Without My Brother' - Nov. 21, 2009,
  52. ^ a b William York. "Negation".  
  53. ^ Jill Mikkelson. "Organic Halucinosis".  
  54. ^ Geist, Brandon (May 2004). "Decapitated".  
  55. ^ Land, Pippa (March 2004). "Nihility review".  
  56. ^ "Meshuggah's Haake: The Future Will Be A Sadder Place Without Vitek's Drumming - Nov. 4, 2007". Retrieved 2009-04-26. 
  57. ^ "Decapitated z nowym basistą w trasie" (in Polish). Retrieved 2014-06-27. 
  58. ^ "Oficjalna lista sprzedaży :: OLIS - Official Retail Sales Chart".  
  59. ^ "Decapitated Billboard Chart History". Retrieved June 30, 2014. 
  61. ^ "Metal By Numbers 10/8: The Return Trip". Retrieved October 10, 2014. 
    Brown, Matt. "Metal By Numbers 10/23: Charts are pretty witchin’". Retrieved October 25, 2014. 

External links

Media related to at Wikimedia Commons

  • Official website
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