DEATH

Death Metal / Technical Death Metal • United States
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Death was an influential death metal band founded by guitarist and vocalist Chuck Schuldiner in Orlando in 1983. They released several demos as Mantas before changing their name in 1984.

Death is widely considered one of the most influential bands in the genre. The band’s debut, "Scream Bloody Gore", has been described as “death metal’s first archetypal document,” and Schuldiner himself as the “father of death metal". However, Schuldiner dismissed such attributions in an interview with Metal-Rules.com, stating, “I don’t think I should take the credit for this death metal stuff. I’m just a guy from a band, and I think Death is a metal band.”

As of 2008, Death has sold over 1.5 million albums worldwide, with 368,184 albums having been sold in the US alone (not counting sales prior to the Soundscan era), making them one of the top-selling death metal bands of all time. Their best-selling album, "Human",
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DEATH Discography

DEATH albums / top albums

DEATH Scream Bloody Gore album cover 3.36 | 74 ratings
Scream Bloody Gore
Death Metal 1987
DEATH Leprosy album cover 3.95 | 79 ratings
Leprosy
Death Metal 1988
DEATH Spiritual Healing album cover 3.80 | 72 ratings
Spiritual Healing
Death Metal 1990
DEATH Human album cover 4.21 | 129 ratings
Human
Technical Death Metal 1991
DEATH Individual Thought Patterns album cover 4.34 | 125 ratings
Individual Thought Patterns
Technical Death Metal 1993
DEATH Symbolic album cover 4.47 | 177 ratings
Symbolic
Technical Death Metal 1995
DEATH The Sound of Perseverance album cover 4.43 | 134 ratings
The Sound of Perseverance
Technical Death Metal 1998

DEATH EPs & splits

DEATH Ultimate Revenge 2 album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Ultimate Revenge 2
Death Metal 1989
DEATH Chuck Schuldiner: Zero Tolerance album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Chuck Schuldiner: Zero Tolerance
Death Metal 2004

DEATH live albums

DEATH Live in L.A. (Death & Raw) album cover 4.42 | 13 ratings
Live in L.A. (Death & Raw)
Technical Death Metal 2001
DEATH Live in Eindhoven '98 album cover 4.31 | 8 ratings
Live in Eindhoven '98
Technical Death Metal 2001
DEATH Vivus! album cover 3.22 | 5 ratings
Vivus!
Technical Death Metal 2012
DEATH Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Montreal 06.22.1995 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Montreal 06.22.1995
Death Metal 2020
DEATH Non​​:Analog - On​​:Stage Series - Chicago, IL 01.21.1988 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Non​​:Analog - On​​:Stage Series - Chicago, IL 01.21.1988
Death Metal 2020
DEATH Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Tijuana 10.06.1990 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Tijuana 10.06.1990
Death Metal 2020
DEATH Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Showcase Theater, CA 07.14.1995 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Showcase Theater, CA 07.14.1995
Death Metal 2020
DEATH Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Live 1990, 1991 Unknown album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Live 1990, 1991 Unknown
Death Metal 2020
DEATH Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Tampa, FL 02.10.1989 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Tampa, FL 02.10.1989
Death Metal 2020
DEATH Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Belgium 12.23.1991 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Belgium 12.23.1991
Death Metal 2020
DEATH Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Detroit, MI 1993 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - Detroit, MI 1993
Death Metal 2020
DEATH Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - New Rochelle, NY 12.03.1988 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Non:Analog - On:Stage Series - New Rochelle, NY 12.03.1988
Death Metal 2020

DEATH demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

DEATH Death by Metal album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Death by Metal
Death Metal 1984
DEATH Reign of Terror album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Reign of Terror
Death Metal 1984
DEATH Live Tape #2 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live Tape #2
Death Metal 1984
DEATH Total Zombie Death (Live Tape #3) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Total Zombie Death (Live Tape #3)
Death Metal 1984
DEATH Live Tape #4 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live Tape #4
Death Metal 1984
DEATH Infernal Live (Live tape #5) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Infernal Live (Live tape #5)
Death Metal 1984
DEATH Rehearsal tape #1 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #1
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rehearsal tape #2 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #2
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rehearsal tape #4 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #4
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rehearsal tape #6 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #6
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rehearsal tape #5 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #5
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Infernal Death album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Infernal Death
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Infernal Live (Live tape #6) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Infernal Live (Live tape #6)
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rigor Mortis album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rigor Mortis
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rehearsal tape #7 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #7
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rehearsal tape #8 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #8
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rehearsal tape #9 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #9
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rehearsal tape #11 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #11
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Back from the Dead album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Back from the Dead
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rehearsal tape #12 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #12
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Live tape #7 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live tape #7
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Live tape #8 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live tape #8
Death Metal 1985
DEATH Rehearsal tape #10 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #10
Death Metal 1986
DEATH Rehearsal tape #13 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rehearsal tape #13
Death Metal 1986
DEATH Mutilation album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Mutilation
Death Metal 1986
DEATH Scream Bloody Gore Aborted Sessions album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Scream Bloody Gore Aborted Sessions
Death Metal 1986
DEATH Leprosy Demos album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Leprosy Demos
Death Metal 1987

DEATH re-issues & compilations

DEATH Fate: The Best of Death album cover 1.78 | 5 ratings
Fate: The Best of Death
Death Metal 1992
DEATH Death album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Death
Death Metal 1999
DEATH Victims of Death - The Best of Decade of Chaos album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Victims of Death - The Best of Decade of Chaos
Death Metal 1999
DEATH Chuck Schuldiner: Zero Tolerance II album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Chuck Schuldiner: Zero Tolerance II
Death Metal 2004
DEATH Chuck Schuldiner: Zero Tolerance / Zero Tolerance II album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Chuck Schuldiner: Zero Tolerance / Zero Tolerance II
Death Metal 2005

DEATH singles (0)

DEATH movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Ultimate Revenge 2
Death Metal 1989
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Live in L.A. (Death & Raw)
Death Metal 2001
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Live in Eindhoven '98
Death Metal 2001
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Live in Cottbus '98
Death Metal 2005
.. Album Cover
4.50 | 2 ratings
Live In Japan
Technical Death Metal 2010
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Death by Metal
Death Metal 2018

DEATH Reviews

DEATH Symbolic

Album · 1995 · Technical Death Metal
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SilentScream213
Symbolic is considered to be not only the magnum opus of Death, but perhaps the greatest Death Metal record of all time, and by extension among the best releases in extreme music. Death not only managed to up their game and change styles ever so slightly between albums, but also consistently release nothing but the highest quality material.

Symbolic is an album I have been anticipating for some time now, knowing its reputation well, and it managed to meet every expectation. The songs here are probably the most identifiable in Death’s catalogue, each having insanely memorable guitar leads and mind blowing solos that do not sacrifice a strong melody for technical prowess. Musically, it is near-perfect as far as Tech-Death goes, placing the emphasis on brilliant songwriting and fantastic riffage first and foremost, and weaving their intricate technical abilities within the songs rather than using the songs as a means to show off. Production is great, rhythm section is great, vocals are intelligible… it’s the total package.

One weakness to me; the lyrics go a bit too far. By that, I mean at this point in his career, it seems Chuck was obsessed with the spiritual and abstract, and honestly half the songs don’t even sound like they are about anything, just philosophical ramblings without explicit meaning. Not for me, in any case…

Barring that, it’s about as great as Tech Death gets, which is kind of a sad thought in itself. To think that the genre would never pass a release from its early inception is a pity, but you would be incredibly hard pressed to find anything better than this in its entirety. Deservedly reigns as possibly the best Extreme Metal record of all time.

DEATH Symbolic

Album · 1995 · Technical Death Metal
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Necrotica
I remember when I first heard the phrase “adventure metal”; guitarist Chris Letchford used it to describe his band Scale the Summit. And it’s not like I can’t see where he’s coming from, either. Scale the Summit use atmosphere and shifts in mood to take you on a journey, an expedition of sorts. At the same time, though, it’s not like they were the first band to come up with such a concept; countless acts, from Opeth to Gojira, have gone great lengths to make their music feel more like an excursion than mere tracklists. But today, we’re going to talk about a band who had to evolve to get to this point: the almighty metal giants Death. To put it simply, it’s hard to believe that the same band that wrote such a primal display of death metal fury as Scream Bloody Gore could come up with an incredible mixture of aggression and sophistication. Despite this, Symbolic proved to be the pinnacle of Death’s steady evolution into the realm of progressive extreme metal. With a new lineup of guitarist Bobby Koelble, bassist Kelly Conlon, and returning drummer Gene Hoglan, Chuck was ready to redefine metal once again… this time achieving the strongest results.

From the opening notes of the title track, Symbolic sounds like a daunting undertaking, as if you’re actually scaling a mountain. Those monumental octave-jumping riffs, combined with the classically-inclined melodies arched above, show just how much Chuck Schuldiner had grown as a songwriter over the years. It’s not enough anymore to just have meaty, brutal riffs, but now they’re all embellished with little ornaments that flesh out the atmosphere and diversity of the recording. That melodic opening riff in “Without Judgment” sounds pretty cool; what more could they add? Well, some intricate and progressive drum fills courtesy of Gene Hoglan should do the trick. That chunky Drop-D intro to “Crystal Mountain” is aggressive and driving; how about that one? Get Schuldiner and Bobby Koelble to bring in some classical harmonies straight out of a Dream Theater album to round it out! Despite the progressive influences, however, the technicality and ambition never get overbearing to the point that they get in the way of a good riff or a good groove. On top of that, songs like “Misanthrope” and “1,000 Eyes” still pay respect to the band’s thrash-driven past with harsh and relentless arrangements that round out the variety on Symbolic.

Now, let’s get back to that first statement I made: the one regarding “adventure metal.” That may sound like a really stupid term (and, to be honest, I’d agree), but it’s still a great way to describe Symbolic. The way each song shifts and adjusts to each change in mood and tone is ridiculously natural, and gives off the true sense of embarking on a journey. “Perennial Quest” is probably the best example, especially in how it concludes the record with a soft acoustic portion that somehow doesn’t sound out-of-place on a Death album (then again, there’s also “Voice of the Soul”...). Many of the riffs and melodies here are adorned with an emotional punch that’s lacking in a lot of today’s technical metal; just listen to the quiet introduction to “Empty Words” and the subtle melancholy it wrings out of the clean guitar progression. On a similar note, check out the beautiful clean section of “Sacred Serenity,” which provides a nice contemplative break from the metal frenzy without breaking too far away from the band’s signature style. The lyrics are equally thought-provoking too, touching on themes of religion, hypocrisy, deceit, misanthropy, as well as many depictions of inner contemplation and soul-searching. The poetry on the record brings nice accompaniment to the more advanced musical arrangements, to say the least.

Death’s followup The Sound of Perseverance might be even more adventurous, and Individual Thought Patterns might have been more technical, but neither of them pulled these qualities together as meaningfully as Symbolic did. If you were to ask me why Symbolic works so well, I could answer that in just a few words: songwriting and storytelling. They sound like simple ingredients, but Death elevated them to such lofty heights that very few death metal or progressive metal bands could keep up with the sheer ambition and focus of this epic. Symbolic is beautiful, immersive, elaborate, brutal, and a stunning testament to just how emotionally and artistically accomplished heavy metal can be.

DEATH Individual Thought Patterns

Album · 1993 · Technical Death Metal
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SilentScream213
It’s truly astounding how consistent Death are at crafting top quality Death Metal, not only album to album, but song to song. Every Death release so far has been a fantastic showcase of new ideas and progression on top of all the classic traits that make it unmistakably Death. Individual Thought Patterns did not fail to exceed my expectations despite the legendary precursor Human.

This album has got to by Death’s most melodic, technical and progressive so far. The riffs are incredibly melodic and memorable, with multiple guitar melodies often playing wonderfully off each other. This of course does not take away from the brutality of the album; it borders on melodeath at times, but at the core is still classic OSDM. The album doesn’t sound incredibly evil compared to other Death Metal, but this is fitting with Chuck’s desire to focus on more philosophical subjects. As the album title suggests, this record is total brainfood, fortunately the kind where the riffs get stuck in your head.

What really blew me away on this one was the rhythm section. The drumming here in on another level, and so many patterns here were totally fresh. As I suspected, this is where Gene Hoglan made his debut in Death. His creativity with the kit is monstrous, and goes far beyond progressive or technical. He manages to craft entirely original beats in every song, and knows exactly when to go all out and when to serve the music with something slower or simpler. The basswork of Steve DiGiorgio is similarly praiseworthy, and thank god the production made it clear and audible. I was fairly certain it was fretless bass based upon the sound, and it seems he is possibly the first to bring fretless bass to extreme metal.

5 albums in, and Death is still at the forefront of the genre they helped create, leading it in new directions and maintaining their status as the best of the best.

DEATH The Sound of Perseverance

Album · 1998 · Technical Death Metal
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siLLy puPPy
After “Symbolic,” Chuck Schuldiner decided to disband DEATH in favor of forming a progressive power metal band called Control Denied and spent a great deal of energy finding the right lineup and began to work on material for the debut album but once the trajectory was launched there was a sudden demand for a new DEATH album and when all was said and done Schuldiner opted to kick the Control Denied project down the road a bit longer and craft DEATH’s seventh and final album THE SOUND OF PERSEVERANCE. Guitarist Shannon Hamm and newbie drummer Richard Christy who were scouted out for the Control Denied project were included in this final DEATH lineup and along with bassist Scott Clendenin, Schuldiner unleashed his most ambitious album yet, one that was more technical, more progressive, more melodic and best of all more ferocious with Schuldiner’s vocal shrieks entering true realm of demonic splendor.

While the majority of the lineup was picked up to craft a power metal album, not a death metal album, the overall compositional style of THE SOUND OF PERSEVERANCE comes across very much as a power death metal hybrid only with some of the most progressive twists and turns in the entire DEATH canon. One of the advantages of having a completely different lineup is that each album exudes a completely different stylistic approach yet Schuldiner’s distinct songwriting prowess accompanied by his classic death shrieks and guitar playing remained the constant and although a totally new cast of musicians can be a hindrance, the new to the scene members on THE SOUND OF PERSEVERANCE were more than up to the task and performed like seasoned veterans despite never been in any significant bands prior. At an hour’s length DEATH’s final swan song focused on melodic death metal hooks, stampeding guitar bombast and hairpin turns which contrasted tempos, dynamics and moods without losing a beat much less the emotional rawness.

At just over 56 minutes with nine tracks, THE SOUND OF PERSEVERANCE achieved the unthinkable and reached the perfection of its predecessor “Symbolic” but took things even further into the world of experimentation with not only more technically infused chops but even featured the all instrumental “Voice Of The Soul” which used acoustic guitars as the backbone with melodic electric guitar soloing over it. Schuldiner’s voice took on a higher pitch which allowed his vocals to sound a bit more like Rob Halford made all the more evident by the closing cover tune of Judas Priest's “Painkiller” which surprisingly not only worked well as a tag on to the final DEATH album but also signified the passing of the baton from the death metal world to the progressive world of power metal. While faithful to the original, the track featured a complete reworking of the guitar solos which is perhaps the only small part of the album that i don’t find perfect but hardly disturbing enough to impact the overall perfection of this magnificent metal masterpiece.

THE SOUND OF PERSEVERANCE is truly one of those perfect albums from beginning to end that i can put on replay and never grow tired of. Everything DEATH had inculcated into its sound on the six albums prior expands horizons on this final chapter with an intensity that shows the truth resilience of Schuldiner’s metal god status. Right from the very first double-bass kick pedal drumming of “Scavenger Of Human Sorrow,” the new DEATH delivered a uniform intensity throughout the album which allowed each chug-festing track to excel at maximum decibelage in a fast and furious sonic attack that allowed each musician to deliver a cacophonous roar of metal excellence. This more intense nature of the album necessitated the acoustic intermission “Voice Of The Soul” to allow a moment of catching your breath in order to unleash the second dose of caustic ramping metal madness that closes the final chapter of the DEATH universe with a major bang. Of the latter tracks which excludes the “Painkiller” cover, the notable “A Moment Of Clarity” cranks out a near 7 1/2 minute running time with some of the most progressive elements on the entire album.

While this band lineup would go on create the only Control Denied album along with another ex-DEATH member Steve DiGiorgio and could possibly be considered a DEATH album in its own right, this was the official end of the line for the powerhouse metal monster that has only grown in magnitude as the decades elapsed. THE SOUND OF PERSEVERANCE is unblemished by nine ridiculously perfect tracks that deftly balance the technical aspects with the melodic hooks as well as providing just enough respite from the incessant brutality. This grande finale is also a testament to Schuldiner’s creative spirit as it seemed impossible to take the DEATH brand anywhere logically relevant past the perfection of “Symbolic” yet that’s exactly what Schuldiner did on this magical display of this second molten metal masterpiece in a row. Could DEATH have come back and delivered an equally unthinkable followup to this album? We’ll never know because shortly after the release of the Control Denied album Schuldiner would succumb to cancer only leaving a legendary metal god in the aftermath. All i can say is that if you have to go out on a high note, it couldn’t get much higher than this one.

DEATH Symbolic

Album · 1995 · Technical Death Metal
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siLLy puPPy
In only a decade Chuck Schuldiner transmogrified his proto-death metal Mantas into the real deal by delivering the first fully agreed upon death metal album in the form of 1987’s “Scream Bloody Gore” with the more familiar moniker DEATH. However this was one artist who was never content to rest on his laurels and continued to evolve DEATH’s sound with each following album which subtly became more sophisticated and employed ever more experimental and technical aspects of progressive rock into his unique brand until it’s difficult to even consider DEATH a death metal band at all at least in the old school traditional sense.

By the time Schuldiner got to his sixth and most revered album, the band had gone through a ridiculous number of lineup changes but despite the rotating cast members each album continued to raise the bar closer to perfection. Well on SYMBOLIC that pinnacle of metal masterpiece material was finally achieved. This album featured two new members on the team. Guitarist Bobby Koelbe replaced Andy LaRoque and Kelly Conlon took over Steve Di Giorgio’s bass duties however unlike “Individual Thought Patterns,” SYMBOLIC featured a standard fretted bass instead of the fretless. While only Schuldiner and drummer Gene Hoglan remained from the previous album, the band at this point was a well-oiled machine capable of metal magic that has catapulted this album to the top of every “best of” metal list.

Virtually every aspect of SYMBOLIC is an improvement over what came before. Withe the very first heavy guitar riffs of the opening title track it’s clear that the band had reached the apex of excellence with dueling twin guitar attacks, fiery fueled compositions that exhibited more hairpin turns and diverse dynamics and best of all Schuldiner’s unique snarling vocal style that featured a wider range and more controlled precision unlike previous albums. Hoglan’s drumming dynamism took on new heights as well with precise technical chops infused with blitzkrieg speed attacks that showcased bouts of psychotic savagery. The album also featured stronger melodic sensibilities that kept DEATH uniquely in that happy place between the thrash metal world of Exodus, Forbidden, Overkill, Megadeath and the death metal 90s bands like Morbid Angel, Obituary and Autopsy.

While not the first tech death band DEATH nevertheless was in the forefront following Atheist, Cynic and Nocturnus. Having moved on from the shock and gore old school death metal themes a few albums back, SYMBOLIC featured more advanced lyrical themes that was instrumental in ushering in a new era of the more “mature” brand of death metal that explored more expansive themes and featured exhilarating changes of dynamics in the musical procession. This is basically where DEATH found the perfect balance of all the elements that had made the band stand out from its contemporaries. If that wasn’t enough SYMBOLIC also benefited from a better production and mixing job with each instrument finding its proper space to fully unleash its potential. The guitar sounds are perfectly placed and while the bass may not dominate, it provides an essential backdrop that allows the explosive drumming wizardry to stand out.

For the first time listener it may be a difficult task to understand what makes SYMBOLIC stand out amongst the previous albums. DEATH was not an in-yer-face kind of band that changed things drastically from album to album. The basic elements were pretty much retained and simply refined into a sleeker production. SYMBOLIC seems to be the point where all of the DEATH-isms simply aligned in the right places where chaos and melody intertwined, fiery virtuosity danced with traditional cyclical grooves and atmospheric dynamics such as clean guitar intros and off-kilter breaks offered a contrast to the incessant bombastic barrage of the twin guitar riffing and snarling growling vocal style of Schuldiner. Each track excelled in standing out from the rest and the album doesn’t offer one weak moment.

SYMBOLIC remains as stunningly fresh sounding as it must have some quarter of a century ago when it first stunned the world with its brash new interpretation of the fairly new kid on the block in the metal universe. This sixth album by DEATH is simply one of the best tightrope acts of walking the line between the melodic world of extreme thrash metal and the grittier filth of death metal all the while adding technical wizardry that added a sense of highbrow sophistication. Despite SYMBOLIC’s status as metal masterpiece that always ranks high on classic metal albums lists, DEATH wasn’t exactly met with admiration by the masses as it was a little too ahead of the game. Due to tensions with Roadrunner Records, Schuldiner actually broke up DEATH after SYMBOLIC and focused on the clean vocal splinter band Control Denied but eventually returned to the studio to craft one last metal masterpiece under the DEATH moniker with “The Sound of Perseverance.” As far as the core sounds of DEATH go, most consider this the pinnacle of the band’s existence and i cannot find any arguments against that myself.

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