You can’t help but appreciate the irony when the band ART OF DYING released its 4th studio album, NEVERMORE, on September 2nd, 2016 and the band referred the album as a “resurrection”. This Vancouver-based rock band formed in 2004 and is made up of Jonny Hetherington (lead vocals), Tavis Stanley (guitars), Cale Gontier (bass), and Cody Watkins (drums). The bands 2008 self titled debut saw them hit the road with DISTURBED followed by the 2011 release VICES AND VIRTUES and a tour with STONE SOUR, SHINEDOWN, and AVENGED SEVENFOLD, and then came the 2015 release RISE UP and a tour with BREAKING BENJAMIN and OF MICE AND MEN. Who knows where the 2016 EP NEVERMORE will take the band, but the future only seems brighter for the Vancouver boys as more and more fans around the world get introduced to the band. The EP NEVERMORE features only six songs, so here is a look at each.
“All or Nothing”: This is a great choice for an opening track and I believe a nod to Heatherington’s past history of playing on the streets. The rhythms on this track are really what fuels this song, but it also contains a stunning solo.
“Torn Down”: The opening on this song is definitely different and complex, but this is what makes it stand apart and show the band’s versatility. The chorus of this song which states “I’m sick of getting torn down, I’m sick of getting back up, I’m sick of getting torn dorn, I know I’m stronger” dares you not to get the words stuck in your head.
“Nevermore”: This is a nice track. It is the closest thing you will find to a true ballad on the release based on the courage it takes to leave an abusive relationship. It is also interesting how this song ends on a sweeping guitar solo.
“Seen This Coming”: If Nevermore was the closest song to a ballad, then Seen This Coming is the furthest away on this release. If you like hard driving bass licks, Gontier has just the thing for you on this track.
“Paradise”: Another example the band’s versatility is shown on this track. This track is by far the biggest departure from the rest of the tracks on the EP. This song has that 90’s almost grunge feel with heart-felt depression in the lyrics.
“Cages”: There is a simple yet driving drum beat throughout this song that seems to set the stage. Once again, you just can’t help but notice how Heatherington’s vocal style is put on full display during the chorus to this track.
When I first heard that ART OF DYING’S fourth major release was going to be only a six song EP, I found it odd coming from a band so obviously on the rise in the rock world. After listening to the EP you begin to understand exactly why this was a perfect choice for this time. This release is hard driving, sort of short and sweet, and makes you excited for the chance to see the band live in your town. This band may not have needed a resurrection, but NEVERMIND provides one none the less.
Here’s what Jonny said when he spoke to Volume 11 Music a couple months ago.