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This Or The Apocalypse

This Or The Apocalypse CD: Haunt What's Left
Record Label: Good Fight Music
Artist's Facebook
by Chris Fox
September 2010

Combine pure aggression, heavy grooves and lots of melodic musings, you have THIS OR THE APOCALYPSE. With their debut record release, “Haunt What’s Left”, released with the production blessing from Chris Adler, drummer of LAMB OF GOD, this band has come out with all guns blazing. Diversity is what drives the metal out of this band even though singer, Ricky Armelino, says, “we’re not exactly hardcore, not exactly metal,” but what they definitely are is heavy.

Being an educated guy, Armelino draws on lots of influences for their music. “The musical diversity in this group is so wide,” he explains, “the most amazing thing, I think, is making five people that listen to completely different genres… we actually make it work.” These guys truly have a passion for the music that they write, and strive to stay true to their unique sound. Armelino explains that he is influenced by “the authors that I respect. Civil rights authors,” but he draws from his wide literary spectrum, “my favorite was early on, when I would use Victorian era poetry and just scream it at these hardcore kids, and they loved it.” The influence of old murky literature and contemporary metal and hardcore artists like EVERY TIME I DIE creates the passionate spectrum that is THIS OR THE APOCALYPSE. “There is a lot of inbreeding in this genre of music,” Armelino explains, “and we just push to really create a new sound. We force ourselves to not rip anybody off and make our own brand.” Using contemporary breakdowns and soaring choruses at first glance these guys could be mistaken for another screamo band until they hit you with their brand of brutality. Driving songs that beg to have a mosh pit, draw you in, and the piercing lyrics will make your chest shake.

“This [heavy] music is going to go nowhere that anybody plans on it going,” Armelino says, and that is the glory of this heavy music; passionate and unpredictable. “Heavy music is never going to go where you want it to,” but it will always go. Using valuable studio time with one of the premier contemporary metal drummers, Chris Adler, THIS OR THE APOCALYPSE concentrated on making “something smarter. We could’ve put this thing out much earlier, but we wanted to do it right.” The studio certainly has a special place with these guys, “we started as more of a studio band, we didn’t get off on being on stage, but we started to love it,” Armelino explains, “being on stage is a chance to get rid of a lot of aggression I have. We don’t walk in trying to impress anybody, and that’s why we’ve never been part of a specific scene, but we do love live now.”

THIS OR THE APOCALYPSE is certainly part of the new breed of heavy music. They will melt your face with a melodic guitar solo just before they bludgeon you with centuries old poetry. “I like to do what I wanna do, when I wanna do it,” Armelino explains with true heavy metal gusto. These guys are sure to be one of the bands to carry the heavy banner into the new decade. THIS OR THE APOCALYPSE will be at the Rave in Milwaukee on 9/13 and at the Warehouse in La Crosse on 9/16.

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