Scott Ian (guitar), Dan Lilker (bass), Charlie Benante (drums), and Billy Milano (vocals)
Stormtroopers of Death, better known as S.O.D., was a crossover thrash band formed in New York in 1985. They are commonly credited as being among the first bands to fuse hardcore punk with thrash metal into a style sometimes called "crossover thrash." The song "March of the S.O.D.," from their 1985 debut album, was the Headbanger's Ball intro anthem for many years.
They have also been a subject of controversy due to their politically-incorrect lyrics. S.O.D. member Dan Lilker has stated: "The lyrics were never intended to be serious, just to piss people off."
After finishing his guitar tracks on the Anthrax album Spreading the Disease, Scott Ian would draw pictures of the face of a character known as "Sargent D." The pictures would be accompanied by slogans such as "I'm not racist; I hate everyone" and "Speak English or Die," and Ian would write lyrics about this character. He decided to form a hardcore band based on Sargent D, so he recruited Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante, ex-Anthrax bassist Dan Lilker, and Psychos bassist Billy Milano on vocals.
They recorded a 63-song demo called Crab Society North and set to work on an album for Johnny Zazula's Megaforce Records. The record, titled Speak English or Die, was recorded and mixed over three days and has since been recognized as a landmark recording. They toured in support of the record in 1985, opening for, among others, Motörhead and The Plasmatics. Their planned follow-up, USA For S.O.D., was never recorded.
After the tour finished, Lilker carried on with the band Nuclear Assault while Benante and Ian continued with Anthrax. Milano formed the spin-off band Method of Destruction, more popularly known as M.O.D. The band's first album, U.S.A. for M.O.D., featured many lyrics written by Scott Ian, as well as an altered version of "Aren't You Hungry," an unrecorded S.O.D. song from the 1985 tour.
Their music also served as the theme of the 80's incarnation of Mtv's Headbangers Ball.
S.O.D. reformed for a one-off gig in New York City in 1992, released as the live album Live at Budokan. The record featured most of the studio album, a few songs from the demo and covers of Ministry, Nirvana and American hardcore punk band Fear.
In 1997, S.O.D. reunited again to play the Milwaukee Metal Fest. They played their first European gig at the With Full Force festival in Germany, and in 1999 the second studio album was released. Bigger Than the Devil, with its hardcore metal and black humor, was welcomed by fans and the band toured again in the late 90s. Bigger Than the Devil also featured the original S.O.D. version of "Aren't You Hungry."
In 2001, the DVD/video Speak English or Live was released. It added to the original Live at Budokan video by including a gig from a German metal festival and footage of the band recording overdubs for live tracks recorded in Japan. These would be included on the platinum reissue of the debut, along with two new studio tracks, to celebrate sales of one million for Speak English or Die.
In 2002, the tour movie Kill Yourself: The Movie was released on DVD. Metal magazines reported in 2003 that the band had split up due to disagreements between Ian and Milano.
In 2007, apparently despite those earlier reports, S.O.D. released its third album, Rise of the Infidels. The album consists of previously recorded material.
According to singer Milano, the 24-song extended "EP" of live and unreleased material called Rise Of The Infidels, released in August 2007 on Megaforce Records, is the final release by the band. Said Milano, "(the EP) will finally be the last of S.O.D.," laying to rest rumors of another S.O.D. reunion.
Source: Wikipedia 2011