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Darkest Hour set to re-issue early recordings

Wed, August 30, 2006 6:58 PM PT3,789 views

Official press release: A-F Records is about to unleash a time capsule not unearthed in close to a decade! Within are the embryonic scrapings and raw rumblings of what became the metal juggernaut, Darkest Hour. Hailed at the forefront of heavy music, the group was one of the first bands to usher in the new age of American Metal combining elements of hardcore/punk with Swedish thrash. Recently releasing their newest album Undoing Ruin on Victory Records, the band have solidified their stab at metal supremacy along with their recent headlining tour of the U.S. and upcoming support of Soil Work on their U.S. tour. Archives contains the Washington DC based band's recordings as early as The Misanthrope EP recorded in 1995 while the members were in high school! It continues the band's output with The Prophecy Fulfilled from 1997 and singles from vinyl as late as 1998. While not as sophisticated as their current compositions these recordings show a surprising punk as fuck approach to metal and warm, lo-fi garage feel that can't be re-created. Speaking on Archives guitarist Mike Schleibaum says "This is the first puzzle piece for Darkest Hour, the spark that lit the fire for us. This was our FIRST BAND and what you hear is music written for the right reason, it's not career driven or funded by a big label. Hell, we paid for all of the recordings ourselves." Speaking of the recording of the actual work Schleibaum remembers "Because we had no money we would buy gear from a music store by the studio, use it to record and return it when we were done. On the Prophecy Fufilled EP we had no money to remix the record so we tracked the guitars in our friend's bathroom and then overdubbed that shit and released it like that. Back then you did anything and everything to put a record out."With the Archives album, the band was finally able to remaster the songs properly and give the recordings the extra oomph they couldn't afford when they were kids. "It brings out the songs a lot better than the original recordings. It's kind of like tricking out an old car"Schleibaum comments. Replete with liner notes written by the band and friends involved Archives also gives a unique perspective on how driven a band had to be before the internet. "Before Myspace, Hot Topic and MTV's interest, metal, hardcore and punk was such a subculture that you really had to go out of your way to get people to find out about your record"says Schleibaum. "I remember driving around DC putting up flyers to walking around to every show that happened in town trying to sell our record by hand." The early momentum the band built allowed them to share shows with every possible touchstone of mid 90's hardcore (being that there was no metal-core scene at the time) including Unbroken, Lifetime, Earth Crisis, Frodus, Battery, Damnation AD and Shelter. The collection is slated to hit stores on October 3rd.

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