Formerly known as Fear Before the March of Flames

Take whatever you think you know about Fear Before The March Of Flames and toss it in the garbage. Sure, your instinct is to flip through that file cabinet in your mind and pull out a folder that says "Fear Before is that heavy band that sounds like... (insert generic metalcore band here)," but believe this and you'd be terribly wrong. Let all of your preconceptions melt away and brace yourself, because Fear Before The March of Flames' third album The Always Open Mouth is about to cause an earthquake.

For those of you who don't know this unassuming group from Denver, CO, get ready for a shocking introduction. The Always Open Mouth is a long, winding journey through darkness, dissolution, and hope. While most fans are used to David Marion's passionate screaming and Adam Fisher's alternate singing, the two have now swapped duties. This is just one example of how the band has eschewed the "rules" of metal and turned their sound inside out.

"We realize that our sound is changing and it is indeed something we consciously strive for," says Fisher. "We never want to put out the same album twice. It's also quite natural, though, because we are constantly growing and drawing from new outward and inward influences. It's never an attempt to shift genres or try to be accepted into new scenes. There is no elaborate plan behind it."

If you really need a band comparison to get you to open the CD, think more along the lines of Cursive, Faith No More, or the Deftones rather than Converge or Dillinger Escape Plan. However, Fear Before's signature writhing guitars and unyielding vocals still resonate throughout the album. There is a constant grappling between melody and discord that creates a tug–of–war game in which you are essentially participating.

But what is The Always Open Mouth– According to Fisher, it refers to people who dismiss others for their various beliefs, theories, and stances. "There is always someone who is going to tell you you're wrong, and they usually think they have it 100% figured out, when the reality is no one has anything 100% figured out. If they think they do, they are either a): an all–knowing superbeing from another realm sent here to save us all or b): a fucking loud mouth bigot. They are The Always Open Mouth."

On the follow–up to 2004's Art Damage, the band has taken their music onto an entirely different plane. The Always Open Mouth is boldly experimental and brimming with musical complexity. It boasts several highlights including the macabre single "Taking Cassandra To The End Of The World Party," which has all the proper components to turn the heads of current fans as well as intrigue new ones.

Since their first LP, Odd How People Shake, Fear Before The March Of Flames have been working hard to develop their fanbase and establish themselves as one of the most recognizable names in the indie circuit. The band has had stints on Warped Tour and Sounds Of The Underground as well as high profile tours with bands such as Underoath and Norma Jean. Their video for "Should Have Stayed in the Shallows" off Art Damage was in heavy rotation on Headbanger's Ball, and the band has received coverage in national magazines such as Alternative Press and Revolver.

It's the combination of charisma, eyebrow–arching humor, and dichotomy of sound that has built a little home in the hearts of many fans. However, the band will tell you in complete seriousness that The Always Open Mouth is the best album they've ever recorded. Be prepared to hear the same aphorism each time they come out with a record because it's their work ethic and artistic aspiration that defines them. Just as you get comfortable with one classification, the band will stand up and be happy to shatter every last notion. So, now that you know, take a listen to The Always Open Mouth and re–file that Fear Before The March Of Flames folder within an open mind.
Fear Before

Fear Before the March of Flames