When a band has had as storied and, at times, controversial a first decade in the limelight as Escape The Fate, there is often
a temptation to focus on that past, rather than concentrating on the future. Yet as they stand on the cusp of releasing their
fifth, and arguably most significant studio album to date, the upcoming chapters of the Vegas quartets career not only
look bright, but are set to resolutely be their best yet.
This new album is, without any question in my mind, the best thing that has ever borne the Escape The Fate name by a
distance, enthuses frontman Craig Mabbitt with no hint of hesitation. A remarkable statement given the last two ETF
records gatecrashed the Billboard top 30. Sonically weve always been a diverse band who have everything
from ballads to really heavy songs - and our fans expect that - but I think on this album weve gone full force with
it. The heaviest songs are the heaviest weve ever written, and the poppy songs are the poppiest weve ever done.
We came to this kind of Who cares what people think of us realization this time around - were amplifying
everything that we love about this band in all directions and it has been incredibly liberating.
Indeed, with the group (completed by drummer Robert Ortiz and guitarists Thomas "TJ" Bell and Kevin "Thrasher" Gruft) now
blessed with the most stable and creatively fertile line up theyve enjoyed in years, Escape The Fate are gearing up
to show the world the scale of the talents that, in truth, they have long possessed. We wrote probably 50 or so
songs in total, explains Thrasher. There are songs on this record that Ive worked on in private for years
but have only just come to fruition. Theres probably half a decades work wrapped up in this thing! It
has bee a real team effort this time around, continues Mabbitt. We have all worked on lyrics, all contributed
to the songwriting process. Were the most unified as a team I think weve ever been, certainly in my history in
the band. I actually wish we hadnt done a self-titled album already because I think this is our most definitive statement
A significant part of fine-tuning statement has been the introduction of Grammy nominated producer Howard Benson (Papa Roach,
My Chemical Romance, Mötörhead) to proceedings. He pushed us incredibly hard to expand ideas beyond where we initially
thought they could go, says TJ. Hes a master at looking at a song and picking out the smallest details of
what could be improved but doing so in a way which makes sense for the overall tone of the record. He challenged
me more than anyone ever has in a studio environment, concurs Thrasher. From technique to tone he fine tuned everything
we were doing and made sure we were giving 110%. I wont lie, it was stressful at times but he is a great producer -
you only need to look at his track record to see that!
Indeed, for new new blood Thrasher - both playing and writing extensively on his first Escape The Fate album, it has been
an opportunity to really earn his stripes. I wanted to show exactly what I can do, explains the axe-man. Having
been a session player for years but always loving this bands output, there was a responsibility on my shoulders to prove
myself. I tried to take everything Id learnt over all the years of playing and pour it all into these songs. And whats
great is that the guys gave me all the support I needed - its been one of the most free and enjoyable writing environments
Ive ever enjoyed.
The end result of this hard fought creative battle is a collection of songs spilling over with stadium-wrecking hooks, as
well as significant slice of the jackhammer punch fans of the band have come to know and love. Perhaps most crucially though,
there is an abiding sense that this is Escape The Fate at their most bruisingly motivated. Lyrically, a lot of these
tracks are based around the hate weve received over the years and just embracing that and using it to our own advantage,
says Mabbitt. Ive had to step up to the plate lately, for the fans as much as anything else, because they take
the name Escape The Fate very seriously and I owe them something for that, for all the support theyve shown us over
the years. Its very humbling for me to be able to listen to this collection of songs and think about where weve
come from and what weve been through to get to this point.
To that end, first single, the anthemic Alive, comes replete with a lead-heavy dual guitar attack and a sky-scraping
solo, underpinned with a soul-baring vocal performance that underlines, emboldens and italicises both the bands survival
instinct and their indefatigable determination to emerge victorious. From there, the lung-bursting chorus of Remember
Every Scar, serves as a powerful lament to life at the bottom of the bottle while the likes of Breaking Me Down
and Let Me Be revel in a dynamic rise and fall which sees the band on taking their sound to a place that is sure
to raise the eyebrows of both fans and critics alike. Naturally, those with a penchant for the heavier stuff are amply catered
for too, Just A Memorys thrash and burn a circle-pit starting sonic landmine to match anything in the bands
catalogue to date: truly, this is a group at their most diverse and powerfully self-assured. Like I say, smiles
Thrasher, I think there genuinely is something in there for everyone.
And so, what we are about to witness is a re-incarnated, reborn, rejuvenated Escape The Fate firing on all cylinders once
more. With a stint on this summers Warped Tour already under their belts and the promise of a global touring schedule
to come, this is a band who, after a ten year tenure, are still as hungry as theyve ever been. Its the start
of a new era for us, confirms Mabbitt. Were getting back on our feet, putting our middle finger up to the
world and proving ourselves individually and collectively. Everyone in this band now wants the same thing: we want to play
our music for as many people as possible and be a unit, a gang. Weve been envious of bands who have always had that
but now we have that and its a wonderful feeling.
The message from the Escape The Fate camp is louder and clearer than it has even been in the past: Were coming
for everyone and we arent taking any prisoners, concludes Mabbitt.