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Headbangers Brawl: Should As I Lay Dying lay dormant?

Posted by on June 5, 2018

Photo: Luis Blanco/Wikimedia Commons

It’s been six years since As I Lay Dying released any new music … as a result of singer Tim Lambesis’ actions five years ago. But after posting a teaser video this past weekend, Lambesis appears to be fulfilling a promise he made shortly after his release from prison last year. It remains unclear whether Lambesis is reforming As I Lay Dying with new members or if the classic lineup is getting back together (though it appears to be the latter). Regardless of what As I Lay Dying will look like in 2018, we can’t help but ask …

Should As I Lay Dying return from the dead at all? Does the band have any chance at redemption following Lambesis’ actions? Should the band even get a chance at redemption?

Zach Shaw: My initial thought: there is no way ANYONE would embrace a reunited As I Lay Dying with open arms. It seems nearly impossible for Lambesis and As I Lay Dying to make a comeback following the damage his actions did to everyone around him (let alone to the legacy of the band).

BUT much to my surprise, more than 5,600 people have indicated in Metal Injection’s poll that they are still a fan and are looking forward to new music from AILD. That’s about 80% of the people who voted. So maybe there is a chance that the band could take back their metalcore crown despite everything that happened.

And yet I still feel really uncomfortable with the idea of As I Lay Dying returning. I’m not one to say that no one ever deserves a second chance, and I guess its nice that Lambesis and some of his members have reconciled. But I guess I just remember too vividly the exhaustive media coverage surrounding Lambesis’ actions and court hearings. No matter what AILD does, I simply won’t be able to forget the fact that what Lambesis did was downright horrific and inexcusable.

 

Bram: As I Lay Dying coming back – what a time to be alive! It’s really weird how quickly time passes. Five years ago we all thought we were done ever hearing about Tim Lambesis playing music again. Or at the very least, we could prepare ourselves for another round of beating a dead Schwarz (enegger). However, nostalgia is a weird thing, and AILD had a massive amount of fans that were legitimately bummed when he was carted off to jail.

What a roided-up Lambesis did back in the early part of the decade is inexcusable. However, he only plotted to do this, and there’s a big difference between an attempt and the completion, even though both are awful. It’ll take one hell of an apology tour, and many will never forgive him. However, if he’s humble and willing to suck it up for being an addict, there are enough people that might want to give him a second chance if the tunes are good enough. Even if the band lose 80% of their fans, that’d still mean they have 400,000 Facebook fans, or more than 50,000 that would potentially buy an album from a reunited AILD. Wovenwar was a pretty solid band, but no one’s begging for new music from them. 

Hell, they should reunite just for the comments sections on sites like this one and Metal Sucks? Internet memes have gotten so much better in the past five years! Seriously, they have a hook, and it’s a morbid/dark one, but who wouldn’t want to hear and see what a reformed steroid abuser that’s done jail time looked and sounded like? 


Matt:
Lambesis and company would really have to bring it in order for something like this to pay off. Sure, they have diehard fans who would be happy just to see them together again, but that’s not who Lambesis has to prove himself to. He has to prove himself to the skeptics, the disappointed fans, the people who wrote him off as over and done. Impossible? No. Others have made a comeback from worse. Difficult? Absolutely. Having the classic lineup back would definitely tip things in Lambesis’ favor as many will take it as an indication from the other members that he’s given them reason to think reforming the band could work. 
 
Speaking personally, I can’t say I care much. I like a few AILD tracks, but I don’t think their dissolution left a giant void in metal that desperately needed to be filled. If the other members see fit to get back with Lambesis’, good on them. If they knock it out of the park with a new record a tour, good on them. But if it’s just Lambesis and a whole new lineup, 1) they shouldn’t call it As I Lay Dying and 2) it’ll be even harder to make people forget/forgive his crimes. 
 
Jeff: Not gonna lie.  I have never seen this or heard this band.  Do they sound like Nirvana?
 
Matt: They sound like Nirvana in the sense that either band’s lead singer is mentioned in the same breath as the phrase “conspiracy to murder.”
 
Zenae: There’s a lot of hypocrisy going around. 2018, is the year when everyone is offended by everything. Now, I’m not defending people who have said horrible things, I’m only pointing out that people are forgetting what things such as comedy and punk rock are all about. There is dark, curt, and morbid humor out there. Look at Andrew Dice Clay for example, his jokes would make headlines if he started his career this year. With all of the controversy that’s happening between Roseanne, NOFX, Donald Trump, etc.. it shows that people are starting to censor the first amendment, or at least trying to, thanks to social media. There is an obvious division on what offensive comment is OK and not OK. And now, with As I Lay Dying, we have a band that has a frontman who attempted to get his wife killed. That isn’t an offensive tweet or decapitated head gesture, it’s an action. There’s that old phrase, action speaks louder than words. I believe what he actively tried to do, is disturbing and no one should praise that. Relationships can be tough, and that’s what divorces and breakups are for or, you can write an offensive song instead to get it out of your system. But let’s be honest, this isn’t the first band that has stuck around despite the controversy. Look at Mayhem or even Burzum. Hell, Burzum keeps me motivated when I write. Sometimes, it’s best to separate the art from the artist. So, if As I Lay Dying wants to return from the dead with Lambesis, so be it.

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Categorised in: Columns, Headbangers Brawl