Christianity in Metal is an awkward combination. Metal always seemed like something sacredly evil that shouldn’t be tainted by all the good, well-meaning moral messages of religion. Then again, maybe the idea of Christian Metal was just ruined by bands like Stryper (and, to an extent, Creed), which spoiled the subset before it even had a chance to shine. (I’m pretty sure even Jesus doesn’t like Scott Stapp.)
Still, there is something to be said for a Metal band that can incorporate its religious beliefs into the music without coming off as cliché or pompous. Over the last decade or so, San Diego Metalcore outfit As I Lay Dying has been one of those bands.
Tim Lambesis, lead singer/screamer and founding member of AILD, really found his voice on the 2007 album, An Ocean Between Us. His deeply personal lyrical narratives and clever allusions, which delve into both his personal life and faith, gave AILD a depth that the Metal genre hadn’t seen in a while.
Lambesis’ smart lyrical approach matches up nicely with the Thrash-infused riffs and solos of ax-men Nick Hipa and Phil Sgrosso, the relentless drumming of Jordan Mancino and the clean vocals laid down by bassist Josh Gilbert.Although it took several years for AILD to find its place in the Metal community, with an impressive discography, technically awe-inspiring live show and Jesus as its sound guy, AILD today has become part of the Metalcore elite.
AS I LAY DYING performs Friday, Nov. 30 at Madison Theater in Covington with Asking Alexandria, I See Stars, Memphis May Fire, Atilla and Come the Dawn. Buy tickets, check out performance times and get venue details here.