The Boulder Theater Presents
CROWN THE EMPIRE - RAGE FEST WITH ATTILA
Veil of Maya, Gideon, Hawk, Life Right Now
Tue Jul 30
Doors: 8:30 pm / Show: 9:00 pm
$25.00 - $28.00
This event is all ages
Ages 15+ without a parent
All tickets are non-exchangeable and non-refundable following purchase
Listed price does not include tax and service charge
Price is the same online, over the phone, or in the Box Office.
All tickets are General Admission (GA) seats. If you require accessible seating or other accommodations, please purchase your GA tickets and reach out to Daniel@z2ent.com to help us make your visit as enjoyable as possible.https://www.bouldertheater.com/event/1866661/
It's from these gritty essential ingredients, the "biscuits" of Southern-fried metal like Pantera and the "gravy" of hip-hop like Lil Jon, that Attila was born. Each of these seemingly disparate genres are united in aggressive force; in a shared authenticity; by a determination to keep it real, and with loud dedication to stay true to the game.
A cursory glance at something as simple as the titles of each of Attila's seven albums reveals much of the band's creative vision, each reading like a statement of intent. These are records called Fallacy, Soundtrack to a Party, Rage, Outlawed, and About That Life. As their singer's devious Slim-Shady styled alter-ego/persona Lord Fronzilla dishes out verbal beat down after beat down, with powerful bark and playful prose, his "zero f-bombs given" attitude is backed in kind by the bludgeoning rhythms dealt by guitarist Chris Linck, bassist Kalan Blehm and drummer/cofounder Heenan. To the legions of fans enraptured by the boisterous bravado of Fronz and his effortless charisma, Attila is the ultimate Guilty Pleasure, just as their 2014 album was named. Attila is beautiful Chaos.
The first result of their partnership with SharpTone Records, the company formed by Nuclear Blast owner Markus Staiger and Shawn Keith, Chaos arrives armed with many of the key elements of Attila's signature sound, including steel-toed Southern stomp, shredding solos, and Fronz's instantly recognizable voice. But what "Ignite," "Bulletproof," "All Hail Rock And Roll" and the rest of the eleven tracks on Chaos collectively represent is Attila's most finely honed, focused and dynamic offering yet. Simply put, Chaos is the biggest album they've ever made.
Attila's latest musical manifesto ranges from heavy moshpit invocations to metallic groove; from an EDM track (made in collaboration with rising EDM star Ookay) to ready-made Active Rock radio hits, akin to Linkin Park or the recent work of fellow deathcore-kingpins-turned-transformative-anthem-makers Bring Me The Horizon. Chaos is truly a form of organized chaos. Attila are their own ringmasters, setting their carnival ablaze.
"Attila has grown up with this album, but we're still ourselves, because it's not boring dad rock or something," the band's colorful frontman observes. "It's still offensive. It's still edgy. It's still in your face. We knew going into making this record that we'd be combining different ideas while still keeping our signature sound. Every song has purpose and it's something you can feel when you're listening to the entire album."
Atlanta is a city that's given the world the savage metalcore of Norma Jean and The Chariot; the heady thinking-man's metal of Mastodon; the soaring Active Rock of Sevendust, and the n?-metal/pop-core mash-up of Attila's pals in the band Issues. Atlanta was rather famously the place where the Sex Pistols performed in America for the first time. Then there's the massively influential Atlanta hip-hop and R&B scenes. Local production trio Organized Noize alone is responsible for huge hits by hometown heroes like TLC, Ludacris, Goodie Mob and the badass ATLiens themselves, Outkast.
To move forward, Attila wisely looked backward to their roots. The band's album making process could rightly be called "back to the future," as they reexamined their original intentions and methodology to fully form their band's future. Fronz remembers feeling uninspired by the monotone delivery of many extreme music vocalists and opted for more diversity from day one. On Chaos, he ups the ante further, adding a new dimension with tuneful scream/singing in addition to his guttural growls and rapping.
The band spent more time writing and recording Chaos than any other album. Which isn't to say the record is overproduced. In fact, it's far from it. Attila teamed up with Erik Ron, who has been in the studio with Panic! At The Disco, Foxy Shazam, and Crown The Empire. But first and most importantly, Chaos was born in the practice room.
"We sat down in a room together and asked, 'What did we do when we wrote the first few albums that we don't do anymore?' We realized the thing we'd stopped doing was getting together and jamming in a basement," Fronz recalls. "It's so easy for bands to sit around a computer and create music. It's too easy to forget to jam the songs in person, on real instruments. Everything about Chaos is real, because we all met up in Georgia, right near the basement where we used to meet up when we were living off Taco Bell."
Every member of the band was very involved in every phase of the album's creation, from the earliest songwriting through the duration of the time in the studio. "It began with four dudes jamming out in a basement, rocking out in a basement, writing music that we love for the feel of it. There is a lot of feeling, a lot of realness on this album."
Fitting, of course, that the sometimes controversial and always incredible champions of Warped Tour chose to name their boldest effort yet after the number one thing Attila will always conjure: Chaos. After all, these are the guys who costarred on the hilariously tongue-in-cheek named Supervillains Tour, alongside Ronnie Radke's Falling In Reverse and Metro Station, featuring pop culture firebrand Trace Cyrus. Nothing Attila does is by accident and by far, Chaos is their most confident and self-assured album yet.
Make no mistake, Attila is still absolutely nuts and completely in-your-face. Chaos will introduce that craziness to a much bigger portion of the unsuspecting masses.
"Part of me wants to scream from a mountain top about how great this album is," admits Fronz. "But I know that this record is going to get out there to people and they'll know it for themselves. It's as heavy as Attila has always been, but it's even more digestible. We're not trying to hold back. We're not trying to limit ourselves. We want to be the biggest band in the world, but without ever sacrificing who we truly are. "
“The whole album is told from a first-person perspective,” Lukas explains. “You’re following this character who’s not the nicest man. He rises to power though. You’ll have to listen in order to find out how it ends. The storyline is very dark.”
“It felt more like we were making a movie or a TV series,” adds Marc. “Lukas actually had a storyboard idea that we talked about before even starting. It’s almost like we were providing the soundtrack in Veil of Maya’s template.”
The seeds for this widescreen ambition can be traced back to 2015’s Matriarch. The album bowed at #2 on the Billboard US Hard Rock Chart and spawned the band’s biggest hit to date, “Mikasa”—which racked up over 5.2 million YouTube views and 5.1 million Spotify streams. Meanwhile, “Leeloo,” “Ellie,” and “Aeris” each cracked the 1-million mark on Spotify. Matriarch earned acclaim from Billboard, Alternative Press, New Noise Magazine, and more as the guys hit the road with the likes of Animals As Leaders, Upon A Burning Body, Volumes, Chelsea Grin, Oceans Ate Alaska, and other heavy hitters in addition to a stint on the Vans Warped Tour. Late 2016 saw the musicians head to Los Angeles in order to record what would become False Idol. Marc worked with producer Max Schad in one studio, while Lukas teamed with vocal producer Brandon Paddock in another.
“Two studios working at the same time was a new approach for us,” continues Marc. “In the past, we completed all of the instrumentals for Lukas to marinate on. Everything was done by the time he joined the band. This is the first time we got to write with his voice in mind. Another change, he was writing on the spot. It brought a different energy and ended up really cool. Max made a big difference too.”
That difference stands out in Veil of Maya’s marked sonic evolution. Every element is amplified: it’s heavier, it’s more hypnotic, and it hits even harder.
“The overall vibe is darker and heavier,” reveals Lukas. “with the story, the demeanor got pretty sinister. That’s an element that I don’t think anybody was expecting.”
The first single “Overthrow” revs up from a crushing tidal wave of riffing into a soaring and striking clean refrain. It taps into the expansive energy of signature fan favorites, while elevating the group to a new level.
“It’s got some of that ‘Mikasa’ spirit,” smiles Marc. “We thought that couldn’t hurt!”
“We show references to the beginning of the main character’s life at this point in terms of the content,” says Lukas. “It was a more compelling way to tell the story. All of the songs stand alone. They represent their own pieces of the story.”
Whether it’s the pulverizing power of “Overthrow” and “Doublespeak” or knockout send-off of “Tyrant” and “Livestream,” False Idol exorcises an unforgettable narrative in the landscape of Veil of Maya’s most definitive work to date.
“We wanted to create something refreshing,” Lukas leaves off. “We didn’t recycle the same old thing. It’s a new beginning.”
“I hope the record is something people want to go back to and study again,” concludes Marc. “It’s worth more than one listen.”
Cold earned Gideon their best album debut to date, finding impressive spots on multiple Billboard Charts including: No. 5 on Top Hard Music, No. 15 on Independent Record Label, No. 23 on Top Rock, No. 86 on Top Digital and No. 87 on Top Current. Cold was recorded in Belleville, NJ with producer Will Putney (Northlane, Stray From The Path, Counterparts) and follows Calloused (2014, Facedown Records).
Gideon has just wrapped up a North American tour with Chelsea Grin and a recent run of album release headline shows with support from Ghost Key and Invent, Animate. The band will next head out as direct support to Wage War, with several headline shows planned throughout.
The band has toured and shared stages with the likes of Motionless In White, The Ghost Inside, Memphis May Fire and Being As An Ocean; And has performed at festivals and tours such as Vans Warped Tour, Bamboozle, Heavy Montreal, South By So What and Never Say Never.
This or the Apocalypse made some moves about 4 or 5 years ago to make a new album under a new name. We put our all into the record- self produced big chunks of it, worked with different producers, then spent enough to put years of debt ahead of us. The album wasn’t released and there are no hurt feelings; we gained more than we lost.
TOTA became Hawk years ago and kept it off the internet. I guess we finally started to agree with some of the A&R reps in the inbox- there was a phone call with a few of us in the team regarding a contract offer contingent on a name change and it lasted a couple of minutes. I just said “How about we call it Hawk”, a couple of us said “Yeah that’s cool”. It wasn’t a hard decision to make. We were preparing to lose to one of the last remaining “founding” members of the band and filling his slot felt like the last step out of what we were doing, emotionally at least. TOTA toured between 32-35 times across the US alone, I’m not even including all of the international tours. We gained the perspective/understanding that a lot of musicians don’t get because people are just really transparent and honest with a band that comes through 3 or 4 times a year without popping. We were playing for promoters that I regularly texted jokes to, our booking agents and managers were personal friends who sugar coated nothing. It wasn’t emotional, we embraced the change and got to work. For a lot of different reasons that don’t belong here, the brakes locked on the whole thing and we ended up rebuilding our whole business from the ground up.
I made a studio for us to spend years trying stuff out in. My mentality was that musicians needed to be in control of their own material and the quality of it to not be helpless. We wrote for, produced, played on, and mixed over 30 records in there. We genuinely care about every single band that stepped in there. I’m so proud of everything that we accomplished in it. Then we could bring what we were working on back to our band. We just wanted to be “worth” entertaining others, not guys who felt as if they were owed something for showing up and getting on a stage. This whole time everybody’s been asking where we’ve been and it’s funny because we’ve never been more productive. We weren’t going to come out swinging on everyone until we were truly ready to do it.
So yeah, Hawk. Pronounce it however you want. Say it like you’re getting something out of your throat if you want, we don’t care. We are playing new music now and it’s all material we had a hand in producing.
Mileage is the first of about 20 songs on deck. Every member produced their own performance, I mixed it, Andreas Magnusson, head producer of Dead Years, joined in when we did the live drums down in Richmond and he mastered the track as well. Spencer Charnas from Ice Nine Kills sang some harmonies on the chorus- We didn’t even ask him to. I just sent him the song and he immediately sent me a bunch of unsolicited audio files of his voice. We put a video together to tell a story about mental illness with the help of videographer Eric Dicarlo and a group of our best friends playing different monsters. We spent a lot of evenings after rehearsals gathering everything we wanted to use in the scenes and it’s full pop culture references and nods to our favorite movies. It’s also every type of weird that’s out there.
The band is myself and the only other “original” founding member of TOTA Jack Esbenshade. We have played together for about 15 years. Adam Reed stepped up from assisting and editing all of the tracks at the studio for 3 and a half years to our full time drummer. I think people are going to be shocked by how tight he is. He also conducted the whole “teaser” video with me and edited the whole thing (Spencer Charnas also did some voice acting as the old woman working at the post office). Bern Stabley is hands down the best bassist I’ve worked with and bringing him into the mix was criminally easy.
Good to be back. Sup. ”
— RICKY ARMELLINO
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Boulder, CO, 80302