Sleeping with Sirens “Leave it All Behind” with New Single

Last week, Sleeping with Sirens returned with a new track, “Leave it All Behind”, their first new song since the release of Gossip in 2017. No longer signed to major label Warner Records, the band now resides with Sumerian and will release their new album How It Feels to Be Lost on September 6.

For a band that spent the past several years evolving toward a pop sound, cultivating in Gossip, “Leave It All Behind” feels like a course correction back to the sound that helped the band break through on earlier work like Let’s Cheers to This. While the band’s pop sensibilities are still present, vocalist Kellin Quinn allows his signature scream to return while the band sounds refreshingly aggressive once more.

While the accessibility of Gossip undoubtedly opened new doors for Sleeping with Sirens, its reception was mixed among critics and longtime fans. Apparently, the album cycle took a toll on the band as well, as Quinn recently revealed to Loudwire that felt directionless after the album and considered taking a hiatus. On a person level, Quinn admits, “I had a really hard time going on stage and believing the things I was saying.”

In many ways, it’s a tale as old as time, but if Sleeping with Sirens’ stint on a major label brought us back to a sound that feels honest and fresh, perhaps the brief exodus was worth it. Matt Good helmed the production for How It Feels to Be Lost, and Quinn communicated to Good early on in the recording process, “I want you to go back to the Heroine From First to Last days and just write something you wouldn’t expect Sleeping With Sirens to do.”

Given Good’s growing track record as a producer (The Word Alive, Asking Alexandria, Memphis May Fire), along with his own journey as primary songwriter, guitarist, and vocalist for From First to Last, this feels like the perfect match to capture a new spark for Sleeping With Sirens. Take a listen to “Leave it All Behind” below and be sure to preorder the album if you like what you hear!

by Kiel Hauck

kiel_hauckKiel Hauck is the editor in chief at It’s All Dead. Over the past decade, he has been a contributor for multiple online and print publications and was most recently an editor at PopMatters. Kiel currently resides in Indianapolis, IN with his wife and their imaginary pet, Hand Dog. You can follow him on Twitter.

10 Halloween Songs to Bump in the Night

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October is in full swing, and soon, we’ll all be clad in our favorite costumes, celebrating the spookiest of holidays. To get you ready for your next Halloween bash, we’ve put together a monstrous list of the most terrifying pop punk and post-hardcore songs to ever walk the earth.

Throughout the years, several bands from the scene have taken the opportunity to tell chilling tales set to the sounds of squealing guitars and drum fills. We think it all makes for the perfect brew – a frightening soundtrack of Halloween terror. So go ahead and listen, if you dare. These songs are so good, it’s scary.

Showbread – “Dead By Dawn”

What better way to indulge in Halloween revelry than with a screamo portrayal of “Evil Dead 2?” Showbread, forever a band with a flair for the dramatic (and a love of horror movies), unleashes a terrifying tale of the Book of the Dead and the subsequent mayhem that ensues.

Sleeping with Sirens – “Dead Walker Texas Ranger”

Sleeping with Sirens made their entry into the post-hardcore Halloween canon with a song inspired by “The Walking Dead.” Here, the band advises us to run for our lives and “Watch as your greatest fears return to life.” Look out! They’re right behind you!

The Devil Wears Prada – “Outnumbered”

Speaking of the undead, The Devil Wears Prada have something to say with their five-song Zombie EP. On “Outnumbered”, the band depict a fallen world overrun with the living dead, backlit by brutal breakdowns. If the frightening tale won’t crush you, the music will.

Panic! at the Disco – “This is Halloween”

Want something a touch more light-hearted? Brendan Urie and co. are here with a rendition from everyone’s favorite Tim Burton tale. Panic! capture the mischief and magic of Jack Skellington on this frightfully fun track.

He Is Legend – “Attack of the Dungeon Witch”

Another band with a knack for scary stories, He Is Legend tell the tale of a violently vile antagonist that appears to cast a spell of charm. “I drank with the dungeon witch / Left my ring on her night stand / I woke with the dungeon witch / Now she’s got the upper hand”.

My Chemical Romance – “Vampires Will Never Hurt You”

For a band that made a living off of dark stories of revenge and death, it’s hard to pick just one song by My Chemical Romance that fits the Halloween mold. Before he shouted Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge or marched along with The Black Parade, Gerard Way sang of the allure of bloodsucking monsters.

The Maine – “Forever Halloween”

With Forever Halloween, The Maine took a lighter approach to the spooky holiday season. On the album’s title track, we’re told that the bumps in the night are nothing to be afraid of: “And darling, don’t you start to scream / It doesn’t mean anything / It’s just make believe”.

AFI – “Halloween”

The Misfits were certainly a band custom made for Halloween and AFI beautifully encapsulates that spirit on their cover of “Halloween”. Another band that knows their way around the darkness, AFI rip through this track for their All Hallow’s EP as Davey Havok sounds like a man on fire.

Fall Out Boy – “What’s This?”

You could argue “What’s This?” as more of a Christmas song, but its inclusion as a vital piece of “The Nightmare Before Christmas” soundtrack makes it eligible for this list. Plus, who could resist the sounds of Patrick Stump crooning, “Instead of screams, I swear / I can hear music in the air”.

Showbread – “George Romero Will Be at Our Wedding”

Our list wouldn’t be complete without one more song from Showbread as they pay homage to horror genius George Romero. Here, Josh Dies sings from the perspective of a man-turned zombie in search of his love. “If true love lasts forever, then love doesn’t die / It just becomes the living dead”. How romantic!

BONUS! Kanye West – “Monster”

What’s scarier than “Sasquatch, Godzilla, King Kong, Loch Ness”? How about a dark track in which ‘Ye, Jay-Z and Nicki Minaj all embrace their inner monster? In fact, if Nicki’s blood-curdling shriek at the end of her manic verse doesn’t send chills down your spine, you may want to literally check your pulse.

by Kiel Hauck

kiel_hauckKiel Hauck is the editor in chief at It’s All Dead. Over the past decade, he has been a contributor for multiple online and print publications and was most recently an editor at PopMatters. Kiel currently resides in Indianapolis, IN with his wife and their imaginary pet, Hand Dog. You can follow him on Twitter.

Warped Tour 2016: Make Some Noise

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Warped Tour can be an oppressive affair. Sweltering heat, oversized crowds and a fair amount of uncomfortable controversy all make for a cruel mixture. Yet for all of the obstacles, Warped Tour still offers a platform for up and coming bands and a meeting ground for music fans of all kinds. Now in its 22nd year of existence, the country’s largest traveling music festival is a well-oiled machine.

Per usual, this year’s trek offers up a variety of acts, both new and old, that span across multiple genres. Some bands are using the tour as a chance to say “goodbye,” while others are just making an introduction.

After attending Warped Tour’s recent stop in Indianapolis, we decided to highlight a few of the bands that are shining bright this summer. Whether you’re a fan of pop punk, metalcore, post-hardcore or pop, there’s no shortage of sets you won’t want to miss on this year’s tour. Take a look below!

Mayday Parade

Mayday Parade has come a long way since their days following Warped Tour in a van in 2006, handing out CDs to bystanders in line. The Tallahassee, Florida, outfit is a full-scale rock behemoth that once again finds itself gracing the main stage. With the release of last year’s Black Lines, Mayday Parade has fully transitioned from pop punk heroes to an alt-rock powerhouse. Even with an impressive new collection of songs at their disposal, the band still finds time to play fan favorites like “Black Cat”, “Jersey” and “Jamie All Over”

Mayday Parade

Mayday Parade

Against the Current

After signing with Fueled by Ramen and releasing their smash debut album In Our Bones, pop rockers Against the Current look primed to take over the scene. With the confident Chrissy Constanza behind the mic, the band deliver loads of melody perfect for summer sing-alongs. With a solid debut under their belt and a fan base growing larger by the day, don’t be surprised if Against the Current find themselves on the main stage in the very near future.

Against the Current

Against the Current

Yellowcard

Parting is such sweet sorrow. Sure, it’s devastating to consider Yellowcard’s upcoming disbandment following the release of their self-titled album in September, but at least fans are getting another chance to hear their favorite songs. This summer on Warped, Yellowcard reaches back, playing a variety of fan favorites, including four tracks from their smash album Ocean Avenue. Warped Tour won’t be the same without Yellowcard, but we’re thankful that we get to say goodbye.

Yellowcard

Yellowcard

The Word Alive

Even though Phoenix metalcore act The Word Alive are still a relatively young band, they’re now Warped veterans, spending their fourth summer on the tour. With Dark Matter, the band has evolved from their beginnings, offering a taste of experimental rock and even nu metal sounds. Their setlist is a wild ride, especially with Tyler “Telle” Smith on the mic, working the crowd into a frenzy.

The Word Alive

The Word Alive

Secrets

San Diego’s Secrets have had their fair share of re-birth, now enlisting their third vocalist in Wade Walters to handle screaming duties. Multiple changes behind the mic have done little to slow the band down, though, with last year’s Everything That Got Us Here being the band’s strongest work to date. Walters and clean vocalist and guitarist Richard Rogers are now one of the scene’s best one-two punches, providing fans with plenty of reason to jump around in the pit.

Secrets

Secrets

Sleeping with Sirens

Sleeping with Sirens have not only climbed the Warped ladder through the years, they’ve also covered a lot of sonic ground that has kept the band fresh in the eyes and ears of their fans. Last year’s Madness finds the band experimenting with pop elements in addition to ragers like “We Like it Loud” and “Kick Me”, which elicit excitement from the Warped Tour crowd.

Sleeping with Sirens

Sleeping with Sirens

Emarosa

Moments after the rest of Emarosa takes the stage for their set at Warped, vocalist Bradley Walden shoots into the crowd, performing “Miracle” from inside the pit. It’s the kind of energy that makes this summer tour such a blast for fans, especially when you consider the heart and soul poured into the band’s latest release, 131. Walden and company have taken their game to a whole new level, which is saying a lot for one of the most captivating bands in the post-hardcore scene.

Emarosa

Emarosa

Real Friends

Considering the clamor surrounding their debut, it’s still incredible to see how much Real Friends has upped the ante with their new release, The Home Inside My Head. The band continues to come into their own, now gracing the main stage for this summer’s Warped Tour. Dan Lambton bounds about the stage wailing with passion while the rest of the band drives their set forward, much to the crowd’s delight. Sometimes singing the saddest songs can still be a joyous affair.

Real Friends

Real Friends

I See Stars

It’s possible that Treehouse is the most criminally underrated album of 2016. The latest from electronicore act I See Stars finds Devin Oliver handling full vocal duty for the first time, and his stage presence at Warped is something to behold. The band still brings the house down with hits like “Murder Mitten” and “Filth Friends Unite”, but showcase newfound potential with new tracks like “Mobbin’ Out”. On their third full trek on the summer tour, I See Stars are sounding better than ever.

I See Stars

I See Stars

by Kiel Hauck

kiel_hauckKiel Hauck is the editor in chief at It’s All Dead. Over the past decade, he has been a contributor for multiple online and print publications and was most recently an editor at PopMatters. Kiel currently resides in Indianapolis, IN with his wife and their imaginary pet, Hand Dog. You can follow him on Twitter.

Review: Sleeping with Sirens – Madness

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This should have been the album where it all came together. After making waves with their sophomore breakthrough Let’s Cheers to This in 2011, Florida rock act Sleeping with Sirens began taking their first steps away from scene-core with their follow-up, Feel – an album that debuted at no. 3 on the Billboard 200. With the infusion of newly found pop rock influences, you could quite literally feel the tides turning.

Why, then, does the band’s latest release, Madness, sound like a band still trying to find its identity? After news recently broke in an Alt Press interview with the band that they had scrapped an entire no-holds-barred rock album produced by Nick Raskulinecz in favor of a less raw, more polished direction with John Feldmann, you would expect this effort to materialize as a crossover extravaganza. Not so fast.

Let’s be clear – there are songs included on Madness that are poppier and catchier than anything the band has ever written. There are also screamo-fest growlers that find the band proclaiming their love for “that rock and roll sound” and resounding with clarity that they have no intention of selling out. If you find yourself confused, you’re not alone.

First, the good news: Some of the aforementioned pop numbers are spectacular. Vocalist Kellin Quinn’s voice has always lent itself to this kind of music, and he uses it to his greatest advantage on Madness. The clear frontrunner is “Fly”, a danceable track that feels primed for summer radio. The song starts gently, leading to its huge chorus of, “I wanna fly / I’m ready to burn down all the walls that I’ve been building up inside / I wanna fly and put back all the pieces of this broken heart tonight”.

This sentiment of renewal and resolve is one that pervades many of the glossier tracks on the record, making it that much more awkward when the band transitions back to angry rockers, but I digress. “Save Me a Spark” is another shining radio pop anthem with a huge chorus. The band pulls this sound off so seamlessly, it’s easy to wonder why they haven’t been doing this all along.

Sleeping with Sirens quiet things down further with “The Strays”, an acoustic number with gang whistling. Yes, you read that correctly. The title track follows its lead while “Go Go Go” introduces a touch of power pop into the mix with another bouncy chorus.

So what’s the problem? Frustration arises from track to track during Madness when the band refuses to choose a side of the fence. “Kick Me” is a screamo smash that fits perfectly into the band’s Let’s Cheers to This sound, but is blatantly out of place here. “We Like it Loud”, in sentiment alone, flies in the face of the band’s new direction on Madness and serves as an awkward lead into the ballad-y “Heroine”.

Even on seriously solid tracks like “Better Off Dead”, which showcases a heavy pop punk vibe akin to A Day to Remember, it’s hard to know what the band is going for. There aren’t many “bad” tracks on Madness, but the conglomeration of sounds is too much to be considered anywhere close to cohesive. The talent in this band is clear – and the official addition of guitarist Nick Martin is a huge win – but the direction is murky at best.

Regardless of any of this, Madness will still blow up the charts. With a rabid fanbase and a handful of catchy new songs, Sleeping with Sirens are sure to strike it big once again. It won’t be long though, before fans will expect the band to choose an identity before things are watered down too far. Sleeping with Sirens have now released four full-length albums and we’re still not quite sure who they are. Time is of the essence.

3/5

by Kiel Hauck

kiel_hauckKiel Hauck is the editor in chief at It’s All Dead. Over the past decade, he has been a contributor for multiple online and print publications and was most recently an editor at PopMatters. Kiel currently resides in Indianapolis, IN with his wife and their imaginary pet, Hand Dog. You can follow him on Twitter.

The Time is Now: The World Tour with Pierce the Veil and Sleeping with Sirens

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No, the scene (still) isn’t dead. As hard as it is to sift through the fog of elitist Reddit threads and cancel out the decriers who man their posts with each weekly Warped Tour announcement, there’s still music being played here – and it’s resonating as loudly as ever.

Last summer’s monstrously successful Monumentour, featuring Fall Out Boy and Paramore, served not only as a credit to the depth of talent and longevity found in our world of post-alt rock, it also solidified the realm of possibilities laid before bands in this scene as more than just mere pipe dreams.

The World Tour is ground zero for bands on the brink. Yes, co-headliners Pierce the Veil and Sleeping with Sirens have already expanded their reach with moderate Billboard success and rapidly expanding fan bases, but they’ve taken this opportunity on the big stage to showcase some up-and-comers that aren’t far from nipping at their heels.

Last year’s first leg of the tour featured metalcore newcomers Beartooth and acoustic duo This Wild Life. This second leg, which will expand into Europe later this year, spotlights Cambridge rock act Mallory Knox and the explosive pop rock group PVRIS. While these acts are already on the rise, the big venues and sell out crowds serve as a larger proving ground for increasing their respective folds.

Truth be told, Mallory Knox already have the stage presence of a veteran band. Vocalist Mikey Chapman brings an animated energy to the band’s set as they power through a collection of amped-up, easy to sing along to songs. Last year’s Asymmetry packs an emotional punch that translates well to the band’s lively set.

PVRIS

PVRIS

The ascent of PVRIS has been a rapid one – and rightfully so. The Rise Records newbies dropped their debut, White Noise, late last year and sparked quite the buzz. The band’s brand of punchy power pop is full of melody and is as catchy as it is forceful. The band sets up their own equipment, receiving their opening cheers even before plugging in their amps – it won’t be long before they’ll be requiring a much more dramatic entrance.

Vocalist and guitarist Lynn Gunn sounds just as much a powerhouse live as she does on tape. The band opens with “Smoke”, a dark, dreamy track that builds like a slow burn, leading to an explosive moment from Gunn, who belts, “Don’t you try to run right now / Cuz baby I could burn you down”. You can tell that the band’s stage presence is still in process, but it’s no matter – the songs come across just as strong anyway.

Although the crowd sings along to catchy numbers like “St. Patrick”, it’s not until the pulsing “My House” that those in attendance catch fire, along with Gunn. When the song’s bass-filled breakdown hits just before the final chorus, the crowd pushes forward from the back and begins jumping to the beat. This isn’t your typical opening act. PVRIS may very well be holding down their own headlining tour before year’s end.

Of course, what makes this stage possible is the weight of Pierce the Veil and Sleeping with Sirens – two bands who have become intertwined in recent years, thanks in part to Sirens’ singer Kellin Quinn’s guest appearance on Pierce the Veil’s smash 2012 song “King for a Day”. Now, at the height of their popularity, both bands are able to enjoy the spoils of their status.

Pierce the Veil

Pierce the Veil

It’s been no secret for some time now that Pierce the Veil are one of the most exciting live acts in the scene. For The World Tour, they’ve left behind even a trace of their debut, A Flair for the Dramatic, and only play two songs off of their 2010 breakthrough Selfish Machines. This set is all about Collide with the Sky – an album nearing its third anniversary. With a new album in the works, this tour serves as Collide’s victory lap.

In some ways, Pierce the Veil are the spiritual successors of Chiodos in terms of theatrical production and performances. The band’s nu-screamo sound has leapt them to the front of the post-hardcore pack and singer Vic Fuentes has improved drastically, becoming one of the most recognized voices in the scene. He sounds flawless on this night as the band opens with the raucous “Hell Above”.

The band could be considered veterans on the tour circuit at this point, having developed a legendary work ethic with endless touring schedules. Bassist Jaime Preciado and guitarist Tony Perry bounce about the stage as drummer Mike Fuentes powers the band forward. When Vic stops for an acoustic rendition of “I’m Low on Gas and You Need a Jacket”, it serves as a breather for everyone in the room. That is, until Fuentes steps away from the mic and the crowd carries the song through the second chorus unprovoked.

The set ends with “King for a Day”, serving as the obvious transition to Sleeping with Sirens. For a band that seemed to be heading pop with 2013’s Feel, Sirens have responded with “Kick Me”, a song that functions as the set’s opener and the lead single for their upcoming album titled Madness.

Say what you want about Kellin Quinn – the band’s front man has a charisma that isn’t lost on the crowd. It also helps that the band’s performances are now anchored by post-hardcore vet Nick Martin, who made a name for himself as lead vocalist for hardcore heavyweights Underminded and also served as guitarist for D.R.U.G.S.

Sleeping with Sirens bulldoze through their set, letting off the gas slightly to play a cover of Goo Goo Dolls smash hit “Iris” midway through. Fans are treated to favorites such as “Low”, “If I’m James Dean, You’re Audrey Hepburn” and “If You Can’t Hang” before the band’s set comes to a close.

In many ways, The World Tour is a microcosm of the scene, featuring star power and buzzworthy bands on the rise. For every naysayer who bemoans the old days, there are at least 10 to 20 rabid fans attending sold out dates across the country and singing along to every song. Like it or not, this is the scene in 2015 – and it’s as alive as ever.

by Kiel Hauck

kiel_hauckKiel Hauck is the editor in chief at It’s All Dead. Over the past decade, he has been a contributor for multiple online and print publications and was most recently an editor at PopMatters. Kiel currently resides in Indianapolis, IN with his wife and their imaginary pet, Hand Dog. You can follow him on Twitter.

Sleeping With Sirens Release New Song “Kick Me”

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Surprising news today: Sleeping With Sirens have released a music video for a new song titled “Kick Me” on Epitaph Records’ YouTube page. A new album appears to be on the horizon, with the band recently in the studio with John Feldmann. Check out the video for “Kick Me” below:

What are your thoughts on the new song? Let us know in the replies!

Posted by Kiel Hauck