Demon Hunter will release THE WORLD IS A THORN on March 9, 2010 in-stores and online.
The band’s fifth album follows the landmark documentary 45 Days, last year’s LIVE IN NASHVILLE collection and a catalog of landmark albums that have made the band one of the most important in the genre.
THE WORLD IS A THORN was produced by the band’s longtime collaborator Aaron Sprinkle (Acceptance, Anberlin, The Almost) and mixed by powerhouse producer Jason Suecof (All That Remains, Trivium). It’s a pairing emblematic of how skillfully Demon Hunter has always blended metallic might with melody.
It’s a well-worn cliche these days for a band to say their new album is “our heaviest but also our most melodic,” but Demon Hunter delivers in spades with this release. Songs like “Descending Upon Us,” “Lifewar” and the title track are by far the most aggressive of the band’s career, “This is the Line” and “Collapsing” are a couple of the fist-pumping but still hard-driving anthems and “Driving Nails” is one of two ballads on the album the likes of which their fans have come to both expect and cherish.
The album formally introduces guitarists Patrick Judge (who joined the band as a touring guitarist in 2008 and is now a full-time member) and Ryan Helm (of The Ascendicate) with a new batch of songs written by co-founder and vocalist Ryan Clark. Yogi Watts returns with another jaw-dropping drum performance, backed up by longtime bass player Jonathan Dunn. THE WORLD IS A THORN is a definitive mission statement from a band at a creative apex, firing on all cylinders with awe-inspiring intensity.
“The album title refers to the often harmful and destructive world that we live in,” explains Clark. “Most of the songs deal with the current state of the nation and the world as a whole. In particular, the lyrics take aim at the ideals of a Godless people and the depletion of our morals and values.”
Demon Hunter has always been a Christian band and has represented their point of view strongly, despite the larger trend of watered down philosophies that straddle the line for popularity’s sake. This stance has won them respect from fellow believers and opposite points of view alike.
“In this age it has seemingly become more and more detestable to be a Christian,” Clark elaborates. “Our opinions on social and political issues are no longer tolerated as valid and we are commonly viewed as the enemy. Subjective truth, self-love, unrestricted perversion, the destruction of morality: these are the things that have ultimately brought us to a place of depression and madness.
“This album is the antithesis of the modern way of life.”
THE WORLD IS A THORN follows previous studio albums STORM THE GATES OF HELL (2007), THE TRIPTYCH (2005), SUMMER OF DARKNESS (2004) and DEMON HUNTER(2002), as well as the live album and three-disc CD / DVD set 45 DAYS, which have sold close to a combined half a million copies. It’s an incredible feat for a band that has yet to venture from North America and has never toured regularly.
“Fading Away,” the first video / single from STORM THE GATES OF HELL, has received over 1 million views on YouTube. That song, “Carry Me Down,” “Undying,” “One Thousand Apologies,” “Not Ready to Die” and “Infected” — to name a few — have all been staples of Christian, college and speciality radio and featured continuously on MTV2’s Headbangers Ball and Fuse. Ryan Clark was featured on the cover of Revolver in 2006 as part of their “Christian Metal” cover story and they are regularly a huge draw at festivals.
The “Hunters” in the “Blessed Resistance,” as the band’s most devoted fans are known, have championed the cause since day one and are making their voices heard throughout the underground.
Demon Hunter’s level of commitment to the quality and presentation of their music is matched only by their attention of detail to their packaging and overall aesthetics. Ryan Clark’s graphic design firm he co-owns with his brother Don (formerly of Demon Hunter), Invisible Creature, has racked up several Grammy nominations in the packaging category. The fans match that passion and dedication, proudly displaying the group’s symbol on their social networking pages and tattooing it on their bodies.
Demon Hunter is an anomaly in today’s heavy music scene, jettisoning fashionable trends and easily recognizable cliches in favor of traditional heavy metal power and melodic hooks. THE WORLD IS A THORN recalls the best of the genre’s past while pushing the envelope forward at the same time.