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Denton heavy metal band Creeping Death ascends to first co-headliner tour

Denton heavy metal band Creeping Death ascends to first co-headliner tour

Denton heavy metal band Creeping Death ascends to first co-headliner tour
June 20
15:14 2019

Trey Pemberton and Reese Alavi of Creeping Death perform at Club Dada in Dallas, Texas on February 16, 2019. Photo by Zane Daniel

After signing with entertainment conglomerate eOne last year, Denton death metal band Creeping Death has embarked on its longest nationwide tour to date this summer alongside Boston-bred counterparts Fuming Mouth.

The band has been together since 2015. Trey Pemberton, lead guitarist and UNT alumnus, said the members’ collective passion for all sub-genres of metal led to Creeping Death’s formation.

“We’ve been playing and attending hardcore shows in DFW for a while and pretty much everyone I know from the scene has very diverse tastes,” Pemberton said. “A lot of us are into all types of metal, but especially death metal.”

Within the ensemble are bass player and UNT alum Rico Mejia, 22-year-old drummer Lincoln Mullins and 29-year-old vocalist Reese Alavi. Although they play heavy metal now, it wasn’t always the go-to genre for some members.

Pemberton said he was not exposed to metal music until his mother introduced him to bands like Rush, Metallica and Pantera at the age of 12. Before then, Pemberton said rap, R&B and pop consumed his music palette.

Mejia started listening to metal when he first learned to play the guitar at age 13. As for Alavi and Mullins, Pemberton said the two have always been “rockers.”

While this is not the group’s first try at life on the road, Creeping Death’s previous roles in past tours have been as an understudy to other groups. This time around, however, the band is featured as one of the main acts. Previously, the band had gone on smaller tours with bands like Homewrecker and Judiciary.

The excitement of visiting new places alongside Fuming Mouth is an opportunity Pemberton said is special.

“We’ve never played the Northeast or eastern Canada so hitting them both on the same tour is super dope,” Pemberton said. “Also getting to see the band Fuming Mouth every night has been a treat. They are one of our favorite bands and our good friends too.”

The relationship between the two bands is something Mark Whelan, vocalist and guitarist for Fuming Mouth, values.

“Working with them is incredible,” Whelan said. “They might seem like a crazy band, but they are extremely organized. It’s inspiring to see another band on the road to be able to focus on their music while being professional.”

Whelan also points out that, on many occasions, Creeping Death will fill in certain spots when their band members are working other jobs.

“That alone speaks volumes about our relationship,” Whelan said. “We love each other’s bands and we want to see them grow.”

Reese Alavi of the Denton death metal band Creeping Death screams into the mic during a performance at Phil Brandy’s Bar in Baton Rouge, New Orleans on March 9, 2019. Photo by Gabe Becerra

Prior to being signed, Pemberton said their goals were modest. Their original plan was to do whatever they could with whatever time they had away from their day jobs. However, things changed when they got a call from eOne, which has a music, television and movie division. They work with bands like The Lumineers and has partnerships with shows like “The Walking Dead” and movies like the third “John Wick” film.

“We were super stoked on anyone wanting to sign us at all,” Pemberton said. “We were pretty unfamiliar with eOne at first, but once we did our research we knew this was an opportunity we couldn’t pass up.”

Most of the members lived in Denton for a significant amount of time and would play shows locally. Pemberton said the Denton area and community has had a positive influence on the group, with countless memories of goofing off and hanging out with friends. Although they currently live in more metropolitan areas like Dallas and Fort Worth, the band met and came together in Denton, and they all share a mutual appreciation for it.

One person who has an appreciation for the work they do is recent UNT alumnus and metal fan Spencer Gerstenberg, who said he is optimistic about the band’s direction and believes Creeping Death has influenced other local bands such as I Am, Born A New, Unity-TX and Ballista.

“They put Denton on the map for heavy metal music,” Gerstenberg said. “Their style of death metal is more old school. They bring the older vibe back with a modern twist.”

As for the road ahead, Creeping Death plans on releasing an LP sometime this year, which is an album containing eight or more songs, as opposed to the EPs they have done in the past which contain three to five songs. They will also continue doing shows in the United States and abroad. The group’s main focus as of now is to continue to get better every day and to learn and grow as much as they can.

There is a lot for the group is excited for in the future, which Pemberton described simply.

“We are thankful for the opportunity,” Pemberton said.

Featured Image: Reese Alavi, Trey Pemberton, Lincoln Mullins and Rico Mejia of Denton death metal band, Creeping Death perform at The White Swan in Houston, Texas on March 7, 2019. Photo by Gabe Becerra.

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Richard Johndrow

Richard Johndrow

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