Florida's Morbid Angel played a significant part in the spread of death metal in the United States. Formed in the early 1980s, the band refined the metal sounds emerging from the west coast, playing a faster more sonically brutal version of that scene's thrash style. Morbid Angel was signed to the now legendary metal label Earache in the late '80s, and unlike that of their more politically minded counterparts in England, the band's subject matter stuck to the classic metal themes of Satanism, ritual gore, and occult mythology. With their signing to Giant Records in 1993, Morbid Angel are also significant for being the first death metal band to ink a major label deal. The band returned to Earache in the late 1990s, and continued to record and tour into the 2000s.