Front men have always been a bit bonkers. Whether it be Axl Rose and his refusal to turn up on stage at the designated time or the fact that Bruce Dickinson spends his days fencing and flying airplanes. It appears to take a certain kind of person to front a band. Yet recently a few people have taken that a bit too far. I’m not going to bother naming the horrible human being who instantly springs to mind, because quite frankly he is scum. However, the fact his old band mates have already moved on and started a new project, titled No Devotion, is something to celebrate. A similar thing can be said for Wovenwar.
Born from the ashes of As I lay Dying, who broke up following the arrest and conviction of front man, and well known Arnie impersonator, Tim Lambesis, for attempting to have his wife killed by an undercover detective. Pretty damn mental really. Now whatever the reasons for that, it left his old band mates in a bit of a bind. The As I Lay Dying name will forever be associated with a psychopath and in the music industry that kind of reputation is hard to shake. If Lostprophets had continued on under the same name could you imagine the reception they would have received? Even if those left over, had had nothing to do with the actions of one sick individual.
So enter Wovenwar, a combination of the Shane Blay and the former members of As I Lay Dying as they attempt a rise from the ashes. Their self-titled debut album is the first step in that attempt and is a perfectly good starting block on which to build. In saying that, there is no denying that the musical style hasn’t changed much, this is still metalcore like your granny used to make it and the only real difference, unsurprisingly, comes when the vocals hit in. Blay’s melodic style is a big change from the more macho vocals that Lambesis made his name with. Yet the combination worka. Tracks like the hook filled “Death to Rights” are set to be massive crowd favourites and even if there is a hint of the generic on this album, the sing along nature of a lot of it makes sure it never becomes dull.
There is something wonderful about seeing these bands come back from the death. It speaks to a fighting spirit that manages to get past the insanity of some of their members. Neither Lostprophets or As I Lay Dying are bands I can claim to have any real affection for. I was always more of a Linkin Park guy and As I Lay Dying are as by the numbers metalcore as you are likely to find. Yet, because these guys have stood up to adversity and come out the over side, I can’t help but want Wovenwar and No Devotion to succeed. It doesn’t matter how old and cynical you are, you can’t help but love a happy ending.