HYPOCRISY was formed in Ludvika, Stockholm by guitarist Peter Tägtgren in October 1991. As well as HYPOCRISY, Tägtgren has carved out a considerable and esteemed catalogue of work with other musical concerns such as the industrial solo concept PAIN, LOCKUP, THE ABYSS and BLOODBATH. He also does dual duty as a producer in constant demand, operating from his Abyss Studios base racking up recognition on the other side of the desk with acts such as CHILDREN OF BODOM, DIMMU BORGIR, THERION, CELTIC FROST, DARK FUNERAL, DESTRUCTION and IMMORTAL amongst many others.
HYPOCRISY were initially known as SEDITIOUS. Long before this venture, both Tägtgren and drummer Lars Szöke had previously been members of CONQUEST, an act dating back as far as 1984. HYPOCRISY was established when Tägtgren had returned from North America where he had put in tenures as a member of both MALEVOLENT CREATION and MELTDOWN.
SEDITIOUS was set to debut as a solo concern with the 1991 demo cassette ‘Rest In Pain’. This would not see distribution though as Tägtgren was unsatisfied with his vocal performance. A second attempt to re-cut the same tracks, adding ‘Nightmare’ and ‘Left To Rot’, emerged as the first public airing of HYPOCRISY.
HYPOCRISY’s line-up was augmented by bassist Mikael Hedlund, EPITAPHVOTARY vocalist Masse Broberg. As HYPOCRISY the band soon secured a deal with Germany’s Nuclear Blast Records issuing the debut ‘Penetralia’ album in 1992. Stylistically HYPOCRISY pursued a narrow path of Florida styled Death Metal, laden with ripping guitar chaos and uncompromisingly blasphemous subject matter. That same year Österberg and Szöke released the ‘Tranquility’ album from their other act EPITAPH. The following year US label Relapse Records put out the EP ‘Pleasure Of Molestation’, these four tracks then being re-recorded for the next album. By this stage HYPOCRISY were whittled down to a quartet, with Peter Tägtgren handling guitars. guitarist Jonas Österberg and erstwhile
For the second album, ‘Osculum Obscenum’ released again by Nuclear Blast during October 1993, HYPOCRISY covered VENOM’s seminal ‘Black Metal’. Tour dates included shows with DEICIDE and CANNIBAL CORPSE. However, on tour vocalist Masse Broberg was reported to have suffered a breakdown, necessitating Tägtgren taking over lead vocals. Subsequently, Broberg hooked up with DARK FUNERAL, taking the alter ego persona of Emperor Magus Caligula.
Following the dates HYPOCRISY decided to carry on as a trio, of Tägtgren, Hedlund and Szöke, releasing the ‘Inferior Devoties’ mini-album, which included the SLAYER cover ‘Black Magic’. This track also appeared on the SLAYER tribute compilation album ‘Slatanic Slaughter Volume One’.
In 1995 HYPOCRISY toured such far flung places as Mexico and Portugal promoting their ‘The Fourth Dimension’ album. This record had been laid down in March 1994 at Park Studios in Stockholm, observing a band exploring new directions, wresting themselves away from the Satanic lyrical content and replacing buzzsaw riffage with more melancholic chord patterns. ‘The Fourth Dimension’ was also the first Hypocrisy body of work to prominently highlight keyboards. Japanese versions added the ‘Inferior Devotees’ material.
During 1995 the band released the ‘Maximum Abduction’ chicken (!) shaped CD mini-album, which included a cover of KISS’ ‘Strange Ways’. In 1996 Tägtgren fulfilled duties as stand in guitarist for MARDUK on their European tour as well as working on a solo project PAIN. Tägtgren, Hedlund and Szöke, curiously all swapping instruments for the occasion, also pursued a side project act entitled THE ABYSS, releasing two albums; The Other Side’ and ‘Summon The Beast’.
The alien themed ‘Abducted’ album, recorded at Tägtgren’s own Abyss Studio complex, arrived in February 1996. A notable HYPOCRISY release would be the ‘Roswell 47’ 7″ single shared as a split release with MESHUGGAH. For concerts, the group expanded with the introduction of second guitarist Mathias Kamijo, known for his roles in PAIN, THE ABYSS and ABEMAL. Kamijo would regularly reprise this role on future tours.
The fifth album, October 1997’s ‘The Final Chapter’ included a cover version of ‘Evil Invaders’ originally by Canadian Thrashers RAZOR. As ‘The Final Chapter’ saw the light of day, Tägtgren announced that this would signal HYPOCRISY’s final fling, citing that he wished to concentrate on PAIN. However, this announcement combined with the resulting good reviews granted to ‘The Final Chapter’ persuaded Tägtgren to change his mind.
HYPOCRISY issued their first live album ‘Hypocrisy Destroys Wacken’ in March 1999, recorded as a quartet including second guitarist Matthias Kamijo. As well as the thundering live set captured on tape at the world famous German festival on August 8th 1998, the album closed out with four studio tracks, ‘Time Warp’, ‘Until The End’, ‘Fuck U’ and ‘Beginning Of The End’.
They followed up quickly with another critically acclaimed studio album in June, given a provisional name of ‘Cloned’ but eventually delivered simply titled ‘Hypocrisy’. This tour de force, which benefited enormously from an increased songwriting input from both Hedlund and Szöke, transported the trademark Hypocrisy rawness into all new vistas of sound, generating the most richly atmospheric outing to date. After summer festival shows, a European campaign in September took out running mates THE KOVENANT, GARDENIAN, DISMAL EUPHONY and DISBELIEF.
Peter Tägtgren also involved himself in the commercially successful LOCKUPNAPALM DEATH bassist Shane Embury and guitarist Jesse Pintado with DIMMU BORGIR drummer Nick Barker. Although the LOCKUP project with album sold spectacularly well in Germany Tägtgren backed out of the project before live work ensued.
2000 found Tägtgren busier than ever with a further PAIN album ‘Rebirth’, which garnered a healthy and lengthy placing in the national Swedish album charts, as well as a fresh HYPOCRISY effort, the retro flavoured ‘Into The Abyss’, released in August.
The band, installing a new second live guitarist in SCATTERED CORPSESVADER, CATASTROPHIC, DESTROYER 666, IMMORTAL, DISBELIEF, MALEVOLENT CREATIONOBSCENITY. member Andreas Holma and promoting the ‘Catch 22’ album, would figure as part of the gargantuan European ‘No Mercy’ touring festival package in March and April of 2002. Also on the billing would be and
HYPOCRISY cut a new album for 2004 release entitled ‘The Arrival’. Recording would not run smoothly though and upon completion the whole album would be remastered and remixed. Fan demand would persuade the band to re-record ‘The Abyss’ for this record, the song originally only included as a bonus track on ‘The Fourth Dimension’. A rare outside influence found Silenoz of DIMMU BORGIR co-credited as composer for the track ‘New World’ and a switch in drummers found the IMMORTAL, LOST AT LAST, PAIN and GRIMFIST
Peter Tägtgren donated a guest vocal appearance for the 2004 KATAKLYSMJAMES MURPHY in honour of the late DEATH mentor Chuck Schuldiner, and added to his roster of official projects by joining the Blackheim and DAN SWANÖ mentored BLOODBATH. album ‘Serenity In Fire’, appearing on the track ‘For All Our Sins’. He also contributed his services to a tribute album ‘Within The Mind’, assembled by guitarist
HYPOCRISY put in a run of co-headline gigs commencing 12th February in Houston, Texas that had the band traversing North America in league with EXHUMED, CANNIBAL CORPSE and VILE upfront of a run of South American gigs. They then formed up part of the 2004 European heavyweight ‘No Mercy’ festivals commencing 29th March, sharing billing with SPAWN OF POSSESSION, CANNIBAL CORPSE, KATAKLYSM, CARPATHIAN FOREST, VOMITORY, PREJUDICE and EXHUMED.
Horgh relinquished his GRIMFIST position in June in order to prioritise HYPOCRISY. The band performed an unusual concert dubbed the ’34’000 Ton Metal Cruise’ on 25th September, performing onboard the Münchenbryggeriet car ferry in Stockholm, Sweden alongside TANKARD, AMON AMARTH, SKYCLAD, TAD MOROSE, STORMWARRIOR and WOLF. US dates for January 2005 had the band packaged with DARK TRANQUILLITY and SOILWORK. In February Peter Tägtgren worked in the studio as producer for German Thrash Metal veterans DESTRUCTION. That August he would ensconce himself in Horus Sound Studios in Hannover, producing the ‘Monotheist’ comeback album for CELTIC FROST then engage in promotion for the HYPOCRISY ‘Virus’ record launched in September before getting back to work on a new record for PAIN.
‘Virus’ found HYPOCRISY engaging in a more technical direction and would prominently feature new guitarist Andreas Holma, a man with a Jazz background. Notably, Gary Holt of EXODUS guested on the track ‘Scrutinized’. European gigs that November, allied with EXODUS, saw support from KEEP OF KALESSIN. Live work breaking into 2006 saw the band teaming up with NILE, SOILENT GREEN, RAGING SPEEDHORN, DECAPITATED and WITH PASSION for a North American tour commencing in early January. The band joined the ‘Metal Hammer’ sponsored ‘European Neckbreaker’s Ball’ 2006 tour, also featuring SCAR SYMMETRY, SOILWORK and ONE MAN ARMY AND THE UNDEAD QUARTET, commencing 11th April in Denmark.
Guitarist Andreas Holma quit in September, the band claiming the musician was “not motivated anymore” as the cause. HYPOCRISY utilized the services of DARKANE’s Klas Ideberg as a session guitarist for its North American “Machines At War Tour” with FEAR FACTORY, SUFFOCATION and DECAPITATED kicking off on October 26th, 2006 in San Francisco, California.
In 2009 the band released ” A Taste Of Extreme Divinity”, followed by the live documentary “Hell Over Sofia- 20 Years Of Chaos And Confusion” in 2011.
The latest release “End Of Disclosure” is going to be released in the end of March 2013.