The metal remains the same

Obituary are coming to perform in Tel Aviv.

After 19 years of blaring thrash, death-metal pioneers Obituary are finally heading to Israel. "We've never been there," said long-time bassist Frank Watkins in a late-night interview. "We just haven't been offered… and now we can't wait to get to Israel. We're totally psyched," Watkins exclaimed. Formed in 1985 amidst the sickening schlock of hair-bands like Poison and Great White, Obituary, then called Executioner, completely redefined their genre. Mixing whipping rhythms with slower, more melodic breakdowns Obituary innovated a ghostly soundtrack of reverberating chaos and doom. But while the band is notorious for their violent images and grotesque noises, Watkins sounds nothing like the abusive, grave-robbing monster that some believe him to be. "I've changed," he says. "We've been through everything under the sun - being ripped off, robbed... you name it we've done it." After a six-year hiatus beginning in 1999, the boys reunited for 2007's Executioner's Returns. And, while age may have matured the rockers it certainly hasn't affected their style. "It's weird man - I feel the same way I did as a kid. I don't feel like I've changed, but I am smarter," Watkins says of himself. But despite these Zen-like realizations, Watkins said the live shows are as brutal as ever. "It cuts through the crowd like a knife," he exclaimed. "It's always better live!" Obituary will charge the stage at Moadon Teatron in Tel Aviv this Friday, June 6 at 8:30 p.m. Tickets range in price from NIS 110-140 with more information at