Influences And Recollections of a Musical Mind

Written By Braddon S. Williams

Death- Individual Thought Patterns

Today’s album pick is Individual Thought Patterns (1993) by Death. This one has caused me to do some deep thinking about what “influence” truly means. In most cases, I would consider the term to be an artist who has influenced my style of playing music, or who inspires me to play music in general. In the case of Death, I am influenced by Chuck Schuldiner, who was a pioneer in the genre of extreme music that just so happens to share the name of his band.

Chuck set out to create something in memory of a brother who passed away and to make it a positive thing. I find this to be massively inspirational.

Against astronomical odds, Schuldiner navigated his muse with an ever changing cast of musicians in pursuit of his personal mission, never compromising his integrity, and leaving behind a powerful legacy that has guided countless musicians and bands over the years.

On Individual Thought Patterns, Schuldiner shared guitar duties with Andy LaRocque from King Diamond’s band, and had the impossibly ferocious rhythm section of Steve DiGiorgio on bass and Gene Hoglan on drums.

I am embarrassed that I am just now really acquainting myself with Death, but everything I have heard is just phenomenal and I believe that is one of the beautiful things about music…the discovery.

Whether it is a new release or an old gem awaiting new sets of ears, music can always be brand new for someone searching for that ever elusive “influence.”

I salute the life of Chuck Schuldiner and thank him for his creative fearlessness and imagination. I look forward to delving deep into his catalog of treasures from this moment forward!

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