Devolved is a technical metal band originally from the Gold Coast, Australia but based in Los Angeles, California since 2005. Led by founding member John Sankey the band has so far released three full-length albums with a fourth studio album titled ‘Reprisal’ scheduled for release on November 20th 2012. In 2000, a demo titled Truth was recorded then in 2001 Devolved released their debut album Technologies via Brisbane based label Modern Music. The band’s live performances included a light show that featured heavy use of strobe lighting. After a fan suffered an epileptic seizure during a performance, Devolved was given a court order requiring a warning about the possible dangers of this effect to be included on all the band’s promotional material including advertising and even album artwork.
Shortly after the release of Technologies, Devolved was voted Australian Metal Band of the Year by both listeners and staff of radio network Triple J. Roadrunner Records affiliated magazine ‘Outsider’ also judged Technologies as the Australian metal album of the year and John Sankey as best metal drummer. In early 2002 the group then embarked on an extensive tour of the United Kingdom, Japan, and Europe. In 2002 Devolved released an EP entitled Automation 001. Devolved also toured and performed during this time with high profile bands such as Machine Head, Strapping Young Lad, Opeth, Arch Enemy, and Fear Factory.
During 2003 Devolved began work on a second album. At the same time John Sankey traveled to the USA and wrote and recorded songs with former Fear Factory guitarist Dino Cazares and became the original drummer for Divine Heresy. John Sankey also played with Melbourne based band Frankenbok for several months touring with Soilwork and Skinlab while their drummer recovered from an injury. Sankey also contributed drums to the debut album by death grind metal band Limb From Limb. Devolved’s second album ‘Calculated’ was released in September 2004 with numerous Australian tours following.
In early 2005, John Sankey relocated Devolved to Los Angeles due to his ongoing involvement with Divine Heresy and various other ongoing projects which included contributing a song to the Roadrunner All-Stars album co-written with Dino Cazares and Christian Machado of Ill Nino entitled ‘No Mas Control’. Sankey has since co-written various material with Cazares including the track ‘Designing The Enemy’ featured on the Fear Factory album ‘Mechanize’, as well as all the drums on the latest Fear Factory album ‘The Industrialist’. Since this time Devolved has embarked on various American tours then in early 2009 Legendary extreme metal Record Label Unique Leader re-released the Calculated album internationally on January 19, 2010.
Devolved’s third full-length LP ‘Oblivion’, was released world-wide on May 24, 2011. John Sankey continues to be the driving force behind the band, he recently announced he “decided to remove the other members of the bands line-up and wrote all the song structures for the forthcoming album ‘Reprisal’ with just drums and vocal arrangements”, and then recruited Florida-based guitarist Mark Hawkins who wrote and recorded all the guitar and bass tracks. Sankey also added Throne Of Ashes vocalist Mark Haggblad to the band, who performs all vocals on ‘Reprisal’. John Sankey stated, “It has been a renewed creative experience working with such focused and talented new members, and it has definitely allowed us to surpass anything the band has been capable of in the past. ‘Reprisal’ is without doubt the album I have always strived to create since the formation of Devolved!”
Dino Cazares (Fear Factory, Asesino, Divine, Heresy) recently posted this statement regarding the new Devolved material: “Systematic brutality at its best. Raising the bar once again with their intellectual song arrangements and insane drum patterns that would make any tech metal fan turn their heads. This band just keeps getting better and better. Welcome to the end of everything that you once knew and say hello to the future.”