Screamo/metal bands to blast Pipeline
|Audio: Hear a sample of Story of the Year's "We Don't Care Anymore" from the album "In the Wake of Determination"|
|Audio: Hear a sample of As I Lay Dying's "Meaning in Tragedy" from the album "Shadows Are Security"|
|Reader poll: What's Story of the Year's best album?|
By Derek Paiva
Advertiser Entertainment Writer
By Derek Paiva
Story of the Year and As I Lay Dying aren't exactly what one might call zeitgeist bands.
"Shadows Are Security," the second CD from San Diego-based hard-core metalheads As I Lay Dying, peaked at No. 35 on Billboard's Top 200 album chart in July 2005. "In the Wake of Determination," the sophomore disc from so-called "screamo" band Story of the Year, peaked at No. 19 on the same chart in October. The St. Louis-grown quintet is still mostly known for its modest 2003 hit "Anthem of Our Dying Day," which made it to No. 10 on Billboard's modern rock singles chart.
Still, tickets for a Wednesday show at Pipeline Cafe featuring both bands are just about all snapped up.
Don't know anything about these bands besides the fact that their monikers are kind of lame? We provide five bits of ephemera for each below.
STORY OF THE YEAR
The sound: Screamo. All of the heart-on-sleeve lyrical angst of emo, mixed with punk, post-grunge instrumentalism.
1. Once called Big Blue Monkey, suddenly, Story of the Year sounds like a way-genius name.
2. The band typically takes the stage accompanied by the theme from "Star Wars." Help us, Obi-Wan Kenobi. You're our only hope.
3. They largely jettisoned much of the emo whine of their 2003 debut CD "Page Avenue" for a more aggressively metallic, mature (and ultimately weaker-selling) hard-core sound on "In the Wake of Determination." Sales of "Page Avenue": almost 1 million. Sales of "Wake": barely 200,000. Lead vocalist Dan Marsala has blamed the lower sales on the lack of radio support for the band's new, closer-to-its-musical-heart sound.
4. They got their record contract thanks to Goldfinger guitarist/vocalist John Feldmann in 2002. Feldmann had an A&R job with Maverick Records and was impressed by a video of their acrobatics onstage, if not their musical skills. Feldmann went on to produce "Page Avenue."
5. You can see them in concert on DVD before heading for Pipeline Cafe. The 2005 DVD/CD set "Live From the Lou"/"Bassassins" captures performances from the band's November 2004 homecoming shows in St. Louis. There are clips of the band's life on the road, too.
AS I LAY DYING
The sound: 24-hour hard-core metal people. Find a lyric that isn't growled and get your money back.
1. They were the first hard-core band signed to powerhouse heavy-metal indie label Metal Blade Records in 2003. Our favorite Metal Blade band names? Bolt Thrower, Cradle of Filth and Cattle Decapitation.
2. They are devout Christians. Writes vocalist Tim Lambesis on the band's web site (www.asilaydying.com): "Many of our songs are about life, struggles, mistakes, relationships and other issues that don't fit entirely in the spiritual category. However, all of these topics are written about through my perspective as a Christian."
3. The band took its name from William Faulkner's college-reading-list-approved classic "As I Lay Dying" but not its lyrical inspiration. That said, Faulkner's famous "My mother is a fish" chapter goes down amazingly well with "Control is Dead" from "Shadows Are Security" played loud in the background.
4. They were influenced by Swedish metal. Or according to the band's official bio, the marriage of "the punch-press rhythms, snarling vocals and melancholy riffs of seminal Swedish bands like At the Gate — with the chugging heartbeat of modern hard-core."
5. They will be headlining this summer's nationwide Sounds of the Underground tour. Other metal charmers filling the tour bill: In Flames, Cannibal Corpse, GWAR, Terror, The Black Dahlia Murder, Behemoth and Through the Eyes of the Dead. Sadly, Honolulu is nowhere on the tour sheet.
Reach Derek Paiva at email@example.com.