Monday, May 27, 2013

Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile: Lead The Dead

In our last monthly feature post of May 2013, it's now time for this month's Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile on this Memorial Day! As you likely know, this ongoing series looks at a band from outside of the Twin Saults that has featured at least one Saultite in any of their past or present lineups, along with bio information, media, and more on each! Though defunct, this band hit some solid heights during their run, and their local member has been quite prominent recently (in fact, he's playing at The Oddfellows Hall on Wednesday), so read on below for this month's out-of-town profile! (Updated on November 27th)
Lead The Dead (London, Ontario)

Lineup: (Saultites in RED; ex-members in italics)

Martin Ryersee (vocals/ex-bass)
Chad McLaughlin (guitar)
Andre Fetchison (guitar)
Goran Mamika (bass)
Chris Johnson (drums)

Nathan Stokes (vocals)
Chris Page (guitar)
Ted Feica (drums)

Official MySpace page:
Local Info: As best as I can tell, the only Saultite to have played in Lead The Dead was original rhythm guitarist Chris Page, who local fans may better recognize for his work in the local stoner/death metal quartet Giwakwa! You may also recognize Chris from local (and arguably obscure) 1990s bands like Oblige and Mimik, but he hit his biggest heights in music to date after graduating from Fanshawe College in the early 2000s and during his Lead The Dead tenure, before returning home by 2011, but keep watch for Giwakwa's next shows!

Band Bio: Lead The Dead were a death/thrash metal band from London, Ontario that launched in 2006. After securing a full lineup, they debuted circa January 2007, and they played numerous opening sets and headlining gigs in the London area over the next 4 years, including sharing the stage with notable bands like Fuck The Facts, Threat Signal, Abriosis, and Endast during their run. Though their lineup were generally stable from 2007 onward, Chris Page left the band circa January 2009, and was replaced by current Mulletcorpse guitarist Andre Fetchison, completing the lineup that would record their debut (and only) EP "Everything Burns", which came out in May 2010. Last seen opening for Soilwork in London on August 17th of that year, Lead The Dead had begun working on djent-influenced original material that fall, but no public updates followed, and it's presumed that the band quietly broke up by early 2011.

Surviving material of the band's tenure with Chris Page is honestly very hard to find, so I admittedly can't comment on his work with Lead The Dead, but if his Giwakwa material is any indication, he was a key member of their arsenal! For the media that is available, I'm detecting a hard hitting and brutal mix of death and thrash metal with a lot of melodic flourishes, and they'd fit nicely at a varied mix of metal shows! Martin Ryersee's vocals are harsher and more extreme than his predecessor Nathan Stokes' work in other bands, but they better fit the genre, and they add a good compliment from the often very technical guitar work, and I'm also really impressed by Chris Johnson's often blistering drum work! I also like how they don't pigeonhole themselves into one genre, they throw a lot into their music, even incorporating softer material on songs like "Withdrawal", along with some experimental and progressive elements on others. I wish there was more to judge some of L.T.D.'s earlier work, but if their EP's any indication, they were not a band to be missed, and maybe they'll resurface down the road!

Adding to their relative elusiveness for surviving media, the only videos I can find of Lead The Dead are studio instrumental samples, filmed on very grainy cameras, both of which are on their MySpace page linked above. The only full videos of the band that I've found are through Rock Band playings of their material, and this upload of their original song "Rip'er" from their "Everything Burns" EP, so click here for most of those, and check out their very cool track "Rip'er" below!

I hope you guys liked this month's Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile! Next month in this series, I've chosen Lethbridge, Alberta metal band Caste of Shadows (now featuring veteran local musician Paul Melanson) to look at in our June profile, so watch out for that on or around June 26th, and stay tuned for more big news tomorrow! Thanks everyone!

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