HELLWITCH arose from the depths of HELL in October 1984. Formed
by guitarist Patrick Ranieri and drummer/vocalist, Harry Tiyler.
An inaugural recording session, conducted in the living room of
their apartment in Gainesville, FL. produced the immortal 1984 'Nosferatu'
demo. The project expanded into a full band set up in February of
1985 with the introduction of current PRECIPICE drummer Dave Silverthrash
(Silverstein), replacing Tiyler, and Andy Adcock on bass/guitar.
That July, HELLWITCH played it's first show ever with local Punk
band ROACH MOTEL. This signaled an intensive live campaign spanning
the next three years, which saw HELLWITCH sharing the stage with
such heavies as CORROSION OF CONFORMITY, G.B.H., CORONER, DARK ANGEL,
KREATOR, DEICIDE, DEATH, MORBID ANGEL, ATHEIST, AGNOSTIC FRONT,
D.R.I., ANTHRAX, NUCLEAR ASSAULT and many others.
The first official studio demo, 'Transgressive Sentience', was recorded
in January 1986. Taken from this recording was a remixed version
of the track 'Torture Chamber' which appeared on the compilation
album 'Thrash Metal Attack', released by New Renaissance Records
in July of 1987. The band's second studio demo, 'Mordirivial Disemanation',
was released in June of 1987.
In July of 1988 Pat relocated to Fort Lauderdale and reformed HELLWITCH,
drafting Frank Watkins on bass and Steve Rincon on drums. This trio
recorded a three track rehearsal/demo in March of 1989. This effort
included a cover version of DEATH's 'Archangel'. This line up was
the band's weakest, so new members were sought in mid 1989. Pat
then enrolled bassist Jesse Trevino and Joe "Witch" Schnessel
on drums. That June, Flight 19 Records (Switzerland) issued two
cuts from the 'Mordirivial Disemanation' demo as a limited edition
7". That August, Trevino was replaced by bassist Tommy Mouser.
October of 1989 brought about a contract with Wild Rags Rec. for
the debut album 'Syzygial Miscreancy', recorded at the renown Morrisound
Studios with veteran Thrash producer Scott Burns. Released in March
1990 the album sold strongly and made a sizable impact on the international
underground Metal media. In mid 1990 HELLWITCH acquired Jim Nickles
as the band's first ever second guitarist and undertook a successful
tour of the East Coast, culminating in an appearance at the 'Milwaukee
Metal Fest' . In February of 1991, Jesse Trevino returned to the
band, re-debuting for a Texas tour. Further changes in 1991 found
Craig Shattuck as replacing Nickles as second guitarist.
In August of 1991 HELLWITCH entered Morrisound Studios once again
to cut the three track EP 'Terraasymmetry' for Lethal Records. Schnessel
left the ranks in mid 1992, returning fleetingly the following year
before departing once again. With Trevino relocating to Texas, Shattuck
was switched to the bass role. Pulling in drummer Joel Suarez in
early 1994 HELLWITCH laid down the 'Anthropophagi' demo as a 2 piece
band with Pat playing all stringed instruments and vocals. In late
1994 J.P. Brown joined as second guitarist. The following year Gabe
Lewandowski took over drum duties and in 1996 the band signed to
Nazgul's Eyrie Productions. No end product was forthcoming though
and HELLWITCH folded after a Halloween show with Deicide in 1998.
Progressive Arts Records issued the 2003 release, 'Final Approach'.
This release featured bonus cuts from previous demos and 1998 rehearsal
The band broke a six year hiatus by playing a comeback gig at the
Culture Club in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on July 24, 2004 alongside
MALEVOLENT CREATION and DIVINE EMPIRE. The line-up for this show
was comprised of vocalist / guitarist Pat Ranieri and drummer Joe
Schnessel with bass player Craig Shattuck.
In 2005 HELLWITCH came back to cut a new promotional CD, featuring
Pat Ranieri, JP Brown, Craig Shattuck and Joe Schnessel. The EP
was comprised of tracks 'Final Approach' and 'Epitome of Disgrace',
(both originally found on the 'Final Approach' CD) and two new songs
'Opiatic Luminance' and 'Mythologicalies'. This CD would lead the
band to sign a deal with Spanish label Xtreem Music in February
2006 for the release of their long awaited sophomore album 'Omnipotent
Convocation'. With the existing line up from 2005’s ‘Epitome
of Disgrace’ EP, Hellwitch begun recording in mid 2008. It
took much longer than expected, spanning over 9 months. This new
album marks the second coming for HELLWITCH. At the same time the
band's debut album was being re-reissued along with all their pre-'Syzygial..."
demos through Displeased Rec. The second full length CD, 'Omnipotent
Convocation' , came out in August 2009 on Xtreem Music. This new
album marks the second coming for HELLWITCH. The band will be embarking
on a U.S. tour in June 2014 with fellow thrash legends, SOLSTICE.
After 30 YEARS, Hellwitch continues to leave a blood soaked, decimated
path of debauchery in it's path...
new album marks the second coming for HELLWITCH. The band completed
a successful, full length, 30th Anniversary U.S. tour, in June 2014
with fellow thrash legends, SOLSTICE. This was followed in November
by another tour of the N.E. U.S.. Finally, to round out the busiest
year the band has ever seen, HELLWITCH played December 7th with
Death, Obituary, and Massacre. Continuing the furor, the band co-headlined
the April 2015 NYDM Spring Bash in Milwaukee with such bands as
Whiplash, Deceased, Artillery and many others! This appearance marked
the explosive debut of the newest Witch, Brian Wilson, on drums.
With Brian behind the kit, the band hit the studio in August and
recorded 2 new songs with veteran producer Dennis Munoz (Solstice,
Demolition Hammer). In October, "Syzygial Miscreancy"
was re-issued on the band's own, Seismic Slaughter Records! This
new edition also features the legendary "Terraasymmetry"
EP as a bonus! By November the band was on the road again doing
a headlining tour of the Midwest. Based on that success, 2016 has
the band doing another Midwest tour as well as shows in Texas and
throughout Florida. Also, watch for the belated release of the 30th
Anniversary, 10-LP (!) box set, coming out on Iron Bonehead Records
in the spring! So clean the blood out of your ears prepare for more