Music: Testament

Testament is a Thrash Metal band from San Francisco. Formed under the name Legacy in 1983, they took on their current name in 1986. They are generally held as one of the leading bands of the thrash scene, although they've never achieved the same mainstream recognition as the famous Big Four.

  • The Legacy (1987)
  • The New Order (1988)
  • Practice What You Preach (1989)
  • Souls of Black (1990)
  • The Ritual (1992)
  • Low (1994)
  • Demonic (1997)
  • The Gathering (1998)
  • First Strike Still Deadly (2001)
  • The Formation of Damnation (2008)
  • Dark Roots of Earth (2012)

  • Current:
    • Chuck Billy (Vocals; 1986-present)
    • Alex Skolnick (Guitar; 1983-1993, 2001, 2005-present)
    • Eric Peterson (Guitar; 1983-present)
    • Steve DiGiorgio (Bass; 1998-2004, 2014-present)
    • Gene Hoglan (Drums; 1997, 2011-present

  • Former:note 
    • Derrick Ramirez (Vocals and Guitar; 1983)(Bass; 1997)
    • Steve Souza (Vocals; 1983-1986)note 
    • Louie Clemente (Drums; 1983-1993, 2005)
    • Greg Christian (Bass; 1983-1996; 2004-2014)
    • Glen Alvelais (Guitar; 1993, 1997-1998)
    • Paul Bostaph (Drums; 1993, 2007-2011)
    • James Murphy (Guitar; 1994-1996, 1998-2000)
    • Dave Lombardo (Drums; 1998-1999)

This band provides examples of:

  • Apocalypse Wow: "Three Days In Darkness".
  • Badass Native: "Native Blood".
  • Big Fun / Fat Bastard: Chuck.
  • Cassandra Truth: "The Preacher" is about someone who frequently tells these.
  • Cover Version: Aerosmith’s "Nobody's Fault" on The New Order.
    • Also Queen's "Dragon Attack" and Iron Maiden's "Powerslave" on "Dark Roots of Earth"
  • Driven to Suicide: "Falling Fast" from Souls of Black.
  • Evil Overlooker: The cover of The New Order.
  • Genre Shift: From standard thrash to a more Death Metal sound during the 90's. Their recent material has fused the sounds of both eras.
  • Green Aesop: "Greenhouse Effect" on Practice What You Preach.
  • Guttural Growler: Chuck Billy, although not to the usual extent. While he's more than capable of the traditional death metal growl, he usually uses a very distinctive roar.
  • Heavy Meta: Averted by "Into the Pit". It's hard to say what it is about, but the lyrics certainly have nothing to do with moshing.
    • Subverted during the band's live performances, as it's usually dedicated to the people participating in the mosh pit.
  • He's Back: The Formation of Damnation served as this for Chuck and Alex - Chuck had recovered from cancer, and Alex had rejoined the band. True to this trope, the album kicks ass.
  • Iconic Item: Chuck's light-up, jeweled mic stand.
  • Jerk Ass: If Greg Christian's account of the circumstances leading to his departure is to be believed, Billy and Peterson are pretty shitty people.
  • Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Most of their stuff is about 8. The Ritual varies from about 6-8, while some of the songs on their later albums (Dog Faced Gods, most of the songs on Demonic, DNR: Do Not Resuscitate, The Formation Of Damnation, True American Hate, etc.) are a 9. Legions Of The Dead borders on a soft 10, while the band drops to a 4 with Return To Serenity.
  • The Remake: First Strike Still Deadly is a rerecording of some of their most well liked tracks. YMMV on whether the originals or the new versions are better.
  • Renaissance Man: Alex Skolnick has also found the time to play with Trans-Siberian Orchestra and create his own jazz fusion group.
  • Revolving Door Band: Eric Peterson is the only consistent member, and him and Chuck Billy are the only ones who have been present on all their albums.
  • Skunk Stripe: Alex has a natural one. Also doubles as Anime Hair.
  • Vocal Evolution: Chuck, to a degree.
  • We Are The Band: Billy and Peterson.
  • Word Salad Lyrics: Most of The Gathering seems to consist of this. While there are a few songs with obvious themes ("Three Days Of Darkness" is, for example, about The Rapture), most of the lyrics are utterly ridiculous.