The Devil Wears Prada
Fit For A King, '68
4455 Paradise Road
Las Vegas, NV, 89169
The Devil Wears Prada
The Devil Wears Prada, formed in 2005 in Dayton, Ohio, started out riding high on Rise Records, releasing Dear Love: A Beautiful Discord which scanned over 50,000 copies and Plagues which has sold over 100,000 copies. In 2008, right before embarking on the Van's Warped Tour, The Devil Wears Prada announced their signing with Ferret. The band composed of Jeremy DePoyster (guitar/vocals), Daniel Williams (drums), Mike Hranica (vocals), Chris Rubey (guitar), Andy Trick (bass) and James Baney (keys) has been incredibly busy since the release of Plagues, including headlining multiple tours in the US and internationally and have also been featured on multiple festivals worldwide.
Fit For A King
There is a common phrase amongst sportscasters that certain athletes "play the game the right way" – their fundamentals are so sound, their skill set so honed that they could be considered a case study in the most proper way to approach the sport they represent.
Tyler, Texas based newcomers FIT FOR A KING just might represent how that metaphor applies to a band. By forging ahead on their own path, making music well beyond their years, making it from the heart, and laying nwaste to their peers in the process, FIT FOR A KING have created a thing to marvel at – an impressive independent campaign that exemplifies the way "the game" should be played by an upstart band.
The hotly tipped metalcore band has been elbowing its way onto the national scene as a full-time touring outfit, cultivating fans at an alarming clip with a crushingly heavy, artful take on the genre that gives subtle tips of the hat to bands as diverse as THE ACACIA STRAIN, CIRCA SURVIVE and LINKIN PARK. The band's passionate music, coupled with an explosive live show, has made FIT FOR A KING a sensation in the independent music scene.
Following several years of relentless DIY touring and a well-received, independently released album (2011's Descendents), FIT FOR A KING are reaping the benefits of their hard work. Last July the industrious group was signed by Solid State Records, who quickly ushered the band into the studio to record their label debut Creation/Destruction, and take their already surging career to new heights.
Recorded with esteemed producer Andreas Magnusson (OH, SLEEPER, HASTE THE DAY, BLACK DAHLIA MURDER), Creation/Destruction is at once the fulfillment of a longtime dream for FIT FOR A KING, and just the first step in what is sure to sure to be an incredible journey for a band with massive potential. "Words cannot even express how excited we are to join the Solid State family," vocalist Ryan Kirby says. "We grew up listening to Solid State bands and for us to actually be on this label is the best feeling we've had as a band. We'd been waiting and holding off on labels for so long until we felt we had the right one, and we absolutely do."
"We can definitely feel the momentum starting to build. Our fans were super excited for us and we have seen a big increase in the growth of our fan base in the past six months," Kirby continues. "Longtime fans can expect a more energetic, hard hitting album with the same passionate lyrics that we like to bring to the table. And what some fans may not expect is just how heavy and dark this album gets lyrically and musically."
Like a future-star athlete ready to prove his worth after a high draft position, FIT FOR A KING are ready to deliver with the release of Creation/Destruction . Sports metaphors notwithstanding – this is a band that knows how to play the game the right way and one that will be converting fans nightly.
Start filling out those Rookie of the Year ballots now.
In Humor and Sadness, the debut album from '68, demonstrates the loud beauty of alarming simplicity. A guy bashing his drums, another dude wielding a guitar like a percussive, blunt weapon while howling into a mic somehow manages to sound bigger and brasher than the computerized bombast of every six-piece metal band. A splash of roots, a soulful yearning for mid century Americana and the fiery passion of post punk ferocity rampages over a record of earnestly forceful tracks like a runaway locomotive.
Josh Scogin wasn't out of elementary school when the Flat Duo Jets laid their first album down on two tracks in a garage. But the scrappy band's spirit of raw power, punchy delivery, tried-and-true rhythms and urgent sense of immediacy is alive and well in '68.
Heralded by Alternative Press as one of 2014's Most Anticipated Albums, In Humor and Sadness is a snapshot of a fiery new beginning for one of modern Metalcore's most celebrated frontmen. Produced by longtime Scogin collaborator Matt Goldman (Underoath, Anberlin, The Devil Wears Prada), the first full offering from '68 is a broad reaching slab of ambitious showmanship delivered with few tools and fewer pretensions. The scratchy disharmonic pop of Nirvana's Bleach is in there, for sure. And while many associate the setup with The Black Keys, '68 is more like Black Keys on crack.
"I wanted it to be as loud and obnoxious as it can be," Scogin explains. "I want it to be in-your-face. I want people who hear us live to just be like, 'There's no way this is just two dudes!' That became sort of the subplot to our entire existence. 'How much noise can two guys make?' It's obviously very minimalistic, but in other ways, it's very big. I have as many amps onstage as a five piece band. Michael only has one cymbal and one tom on his kit, but he plays it like it's some kind of big '80s metal drum setup. It's minimalistic, but it's also overkill. We get as much as we can from as little as we can."
Like many pioneers, North Carolina's the Flat Duo Jet's blazed a trail for more commercially successful people. They played rootsy rockabilly but with a punk edge. Band leader Dexter Romweber's solo work was a fist-pounding celebration of audacity and disruption, which influenced the likes of The White Stripes, among other bands.
"I got excited when I thought about the distress, the chaos that this two-piece arrangement would create – one guy having to provide all of these sounds, with a bunch of pedals, with certain chords wigging out and missing notes here and there," he says with excitement. "That alone makes up for the chaos of having five people up there."
That idea of less is more, of building something big from something small, persists today at the top of the charts with The Black Keys, just as it's lived and breathed in the bass-player-less eclectic trio Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, the rule-breaking early '90s destruction of Washington D.C.'s Nation of Ulysses, and in the two man attack of '68.
"Jon Spencer's records always sound like he's kind of winging it and I love that," declares Scogin, letting out an affectionate laugh. "In my last band, that's how we tried to make our last record feel. The excitement and imperfection is something I love to draw from."
Before paring (and pairing) things down with friend and drummer Michael McClellan, Josh Scogin was the voice, founder and agitprop-style provocateur in The Chariot, who laid waste to convention across a brilliantly unhinged and defiantly unpolished catalog of Noisecore triumphs and dissonant art rock rage. Recorded live in the studio, overdub free, The Chariot's first album set the tone for a decade to come, owing more to a band like Unsane than whatever passes for "scene."
Scogin was the original singer for Norma Jean and left an influential imprint on the burgeoning Metalcore of the late 90s that persists today, despite having fronted the band for just one of six albums. Whether it's the genre-defining heft of Norma Jean's first album or the five records and stage destroying shows of The Chariot, there's a single constant at the heart of Josh Scogin's career: a familiarity with the unfamiliar.
A new Metalcore band would be a safe third act for the subculture lifer, but Scogin isn't comfortable unless he's making himself (and his audience) uncomfortable. "I definitely wanted to flip the script a bit," he freely confesses. "I've always wanted to play guitar and sing in a band, ever since I left Norma Jean. I needed the freedom of not having a guitar onstage, but now having done that for several years, I wanted the challenge."
Creative problem solving has long been the name of the game for Scogin, whether he was hand stamping ALL 30,000 CDs for The Chariot's Wars and Rumors of Wars album or figuring out how to pull off his '68 song title concept in the digital age of iTunes. Each song on In Humor and Sadness was to be titled with simply a single letter, which when put together vertically on the back of a vinyl LP or compact disc, would spell out a word. However, it's problematic to name more than one song with the same letter, which would have been necessary to spell out what he intended.
'68 is the forward thinking progress of an artist who finds satisfaction in the expression of dissatisfaction. There's progression in this regression. Tear apart all of the elements that have enveloped a singer's performance, strap a guitar on the guy and set him loose with nothing but a beat behind him? It's a recipe for inventive, fanciful mayhem.
After a raucous debut at South By Southwest, a full US tour supporting Chiodos and many more road gigs on the horizon, Scogin and McClellan are propelled by the excitement that comes along with the knowledge that '68 is truly just getting started.
"We've just broken the tip of the iceberg. We're really just exploring all the different things we can do," Scogin promises. "I'll get more pedals, we're try different auxiliary instruments, whatever – the goal is to challenge ourselves and challenge an audience."