Possessed is a death metal band from the San Francisco Bay Area. They are heavily credited as the first death metal band as well as the pioneers of death metal for Jeff Becerra’s guttural vocals, super-fast drumming, and guitar tremolo picking. Possessed has only released two studio albums Seven Churches (1985) and Beyond the Gates (1986) along with the EP, The Eyes of Horror (1987). Possessed is currently at work on their third album to be released by Nuclear Blast which hopefully means will get a release this year and would make their first studio album in almost 33 years. Possessed disbanded in 1987, but reformed in 2007 with Becerra still on vocals and with a new lineup and have been touring ever since. You’ll notice that Becerra performs in a wheelchair. This is due to him being shot at a robbery in 1989 which left him paralyzed from the chest down. Still, Possessed puts on one of the wildest performances seen from any death metal band. Possessed announced a short three-date tour with two of them being back to back at the legendary Whisky A Go Go in Hollywood and the third in Oakland. To no surprise, both shows at the Whisky were sold out and so it was set to be one for the books even on a Thursday night. After enduring six local opening acts, the Whisky was packed to what felt like over-capacity as LA’s metal scene was more than ready to put their bodies on the line for Possessed.
The lights went out and the sold out crowd went wild as the members of Possessed made their way to the stage as the demonic grunts over the speaker came on and Possessed started the show with the classic song, Pentagram. Right away, the mosh pits started and it was not a pretty sight to see the audience bashing into each other and leave each other feeling sore for the next few days. Becerra unleashed his evil guttural vocals onto the audience as the show continued with Beyond the Gates followed by The Eyes of Horror. Their music may be over 30 years old, but every note still hits you hard and is almost impossible to keep still and not headbang or raise your horns as Possessed played their brutal death metal and pounded everyone’s ears. Possessed played all their hits including Evil Warriors, Tribulation, Storm in My Mind, and Burning in Hell. Becerra took a quick break to talk to the audience about the new album coming out and thanking the audience for the support after all these years. Possessed continued to pulverize fan’s ears and the fans continued to mosh as the music intro to the film The Exorcist started which is also the intro to the next song, The Exorcist which is one of their most popular songs. The show was nearing the end and Possessed next played Fallen Angel, Death Metal, and ended with Seven Churches. Possessed was preparing to leave the stage, yet fans kept chanting, “one more song!”. Becerra asked, “you want one more!?” and the crowd cheered. Possessed listened and played Satan’s Curse as the shows finale. It was during this song where a couple of fans took a chance and broke the Whisky’s strict rules of no stage diving and crowd surfing. When it’s the last song, it’s best to go all out. Possessed finished the show, thanked the audience, and left the stage. Fans were satisfied by the performance seen sweating, drunk, and lots of smiles going around.