The roots of Azazel can be traced back to 1994 in the garages of Sanger when “Tricky” Nick Cantú, Ric Hard, Chris Muñoz and other friends started picking up instruments and jamming on their favorite songs. They eventually began writing their own songs as a band under various names such as Dirty Sanchez, Dirty Sancho, and Death Inhaled before settling on Azazel.
Fast forward a few years to 2009, the lineup finally stabilizes with Tricky on lead vocals and guitar, Chris on guitars, Ric Hard on drums and Mario Reyes (a.k.a. Hellmask) on bass. As a four piece band, Azazel starts taking the show out of the garage and onto the stage, playing their first shows at places such as The Venue, Zapp’s Park, The Wizard’s Pub, slaughtering crowds with their energetic and uncompromising brand of thrash metal. October of the same year saw personnel and configuration changes with the addition of Pierce May of Trumpet Solo fame on guitar and Armando Jiménez of Red Castle Army fame on bass, allowing Tricky to focus on doing vocals only.
In early 2010, a revamped Azazel once again started bringing the heavy metal thunder to the masses across Fresno, building a following and a reputation for the sheer aggression and musicianship exhibited onstage. Toward the end of the year, Azazel played their final shows for the year (among them Fresno’s FUSE Festival, their first out of town show being in Visalia, and even a birthday party!) and commenced recording on their self-titled demo/EP at Sweet Sea Studios in San Francisco.
2011 saw the introduction of Tommy Nuñez on bass, having brought on the brutal with bands such as Tenth Key and Lying In Wait. The band also released a self-titled four song demo/EP that year to coincide with more metal madness on different stages throughout the state.
2012 was a relatively quiet year, focused more on songwriting.
2013 marked another era with the addition of Chris Camarena (CC) of Descend Factor and 9th Level fame on bass. In the time since then, AZAZEL has continued to play shows, including the opportunity to open for the mighty SOULFLY at Strummer’s, and is coming for you next!