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Category 7 is:

John Bush – Vocals

Phil Demmel – Guitar

Mike Orlando – Guitar

Jack Gibson – Bass

Jason Bittner – Drums

“In Stitches” video credits: Director: Tom Flynn & Mike Watts Producer: Jay Tavernese Grip/PA: Vlad Rudnick

CATEGORY 7, the new heavy metal outfit boasting the all-star lineup of John Bush (Armored Saint, Anthrax), Mike Orlando (Adrenaline Mob, Sonic Universe, Noturnall), Phil Demmel (Machine Head, Kerry King, Vio-Lence), Jack Gibson (Exodus), and Jason Bittner (Shadows Fall, Overkill), will release their self-titled debut full-length on July 26th through Metal Blade Records.

With veteran musicians from so many legendary bands, it’s hard not to think of CATEGORY 7 as a supergroup. “I think we’re pretty super,” jokes guitarist Phil Demmel, who has earned mega-metal cred over the decades as a member of Machine Head, Vio-Lence, Kerry King, and has also played as a fill-in road guitarist for Slayer, Lamb of God, Overkill, and others. “Really, I feel like this is a band, not a side project. And I feel like we have written this incredible piece of music, and we’re not done. I’m so proud of the way this came together and the people who were involved. And I think we all feel super positive about this and what else we can do with it going forward.”

CATEGORY 7 has created an album that is fresh and familiar. The mixture of NWOBHM, thrash, punk-metal, and traditional metal is cohesive and sonically rewarding, establishing an eclectic musical backdrop for vocalist John Bush’s instantly identifiable vocals. At the same time, the diversity of styles creates its own template that’s ideal for headbanging, moshing, and voluble sing-alongs.

“It’s all about big verses and big songs, and it has a lot of the elements we’ve explored in our other bands,” explains guitarist and main songwriter Mike Orlando. Take lead single, the upbeat album opener, “In Stitches,” which commences with piledriving double-bass drums, a feral thrash passage, and a fiery lead before toning down just enough for the distinctive vocals to stand out. “It gets heavy, it’s thrashy at times, but it opens up in the verses, and then the double-bass drums come in and knock you off your chair, but in a great way,” Orlando says. Bush further elaborates, “I read an article on an unhoused pregnant woman named Stitches who resided in Los Angeles obviously living a very difficult life that was compounded by mental illness and drug abuse. The encampment situation in my beloved city drives me bats. I balance between serious empathy and complete anger. The combination of imagining her life as well as my own internal turmoil led me to an almost humorous insanity state while writing this scathing album opener.” 

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