Formed by former Forbidden Evil and Vio-lence thrashing guitarist Rob Flynn and Adam Duce in 1992, Machine Head was certainly one of the fathers of the much maligned mallcore genre and one of the first to infuse hip hop into its groove ”˜n thrash. The band’s sound, ingredients and on-stage persona and image had as much to do with hardcore crossover thrash than with rap and vice-versa.
Upon forming his new band Flynn - here on guitars and vocals - received a major push through the marketing machine of Roadrunner Records, which soon did what it had done for Fear Factory a couple of years earlier: give the band and its debut a multi-pronged tour/merchandise/album push. Strangely, Flynn would insist he had never heard or heard of the Deep Purple album Machine Head - a story that perhaps has as much credibility as Lenny Wolf’s insistence that he had never heard Led Zeppelin before forming Kingdom Come. The debut was a major hit and the band’s logo soon became a staple on many a merchandise. Colin Richardson (Carcass, etc.) produced burn My Eyes. The band opened for Napalm Death and Obituary - where its hip hop hops were sharply seen as out of place - and separately for Slayer.
Two drummers came and went before following The More Things Change guitarist Mader was also replaced by Luster, an incident the band would relate to drug use. With an even more inclination for commercial waters The Burning Red was marketed even heavier and soon entered the US Billboard charts. A strange turn of events occurred when the band was dropped following Supercharger. Apparently, the band and label disagreed regarding the band’s treatment with the relationship having soured. Machine Head played a secret San Francisco show billed as Ten Ton Hammer in November. The group was dressed up as Mötley Crüe and even covered songs like Shout At The Devil and Live Wire. Costanza, in the meanwhile, would join Crowbar. Luster was then replaced by former Vio-lence man Demmel. A live album was of course soon out to reap a little more revenue from the band’s contract. Through The Ashes of The Empire was produced by Flynn perhaps a gutsy move given the list of names previously turning the knobs for the band: Richardson, Ross Robinson and Johnny K. The Weapons Of Mass Destruction tour with Arch Enemy ended up with a public war of words between the bands when the Swedes dropped off the line-up after just one show. Oddly enough, the bands would tour with one another a couple of years later in a display of business sense.
The band continued heavy touring and a DVD was issued. In 2007 the band was fortunate enough to grab the opening slot for the Heaven And Hell tour. According to Rob Flynn, he briefly quit the band in 2008 in France whilst the band was on tour with Slipknot. Flynn had had a running interpersonal difference with bassist Adam Duce. Machine Head guitarist Phil Demmel collapsed on stage on Saturday, July 25th, 2009 during the finale to the band's show at the Sonisphere festival in Finland. He suffered from cardiogenic syncope, thus occasionally being deprived of blood in his brain. Demmel, however, believes his collapse was due to simple fatigue.
Machine Head picked Unto The Locust as the title for its next album, due in late September through Roadrunner Records. The band was touring Europe with Devildriver and Darkest Hour. Drummer Dave McClain admitted that the band nearly broke up during the Slipknot tour. Singer and guitarist Robb Flynn and bassist Adam Duce were the cause of the serious friction. They underwent therapy. Machine Head parted ways with bassist Adam Duce in the winter of 2013. No reason was offered. Adam Duce filed a 2014 lawsuit against his former band-mates claiming trademark infringement, breach of partnership agreement in which he holds 25% and defamation, among other things. He was fired on February 11, 2013 just before the band signed with Nuclear Blast. In the summer of 2014, Machine Head and former bassist Adam Duce settled the latter’s lawsuit against the band, its label and management out of court. The original claim was for $1.8 million (US), but terms of the settlement were not announced. Machine Head would release a new album, Bloodstone & Diamonds, in November of 2014 through Nuclear Blast Entertainment. It was partially recorded at Green Day's JingleTown Recording studio. Machine Head would tour immediately in support of its Catharsis album, which was expected in January 2017.
The band fell apart in September 2018. Phil Demmel (guitar), Jared MacEachern (bass) and Dave McClain (drums) dumped Robb Flynn apparently over musical and interpersonal differences.