Taking part in a benefit concert series is a chance to help others. For David Winters (vocals), Ryan Kole (guitar/vocals), Justin Hatton (guitar), Thom Schultz (drums), Josh Beoddy (keys), and Chaser (Chase the Bass) Hassell (bass), it was the place they found a musical home. Through a shared ardor for melodic metalcore music and experimental sound, the six guys from Florida formed I Shot the Albatross. Combining haunting melodies with dynamic lyrics in dual vocals and massive breakdowns, I Shot the Albatross takes metalcore to a new level.
Change demands a revolution. Incorporating spoken word within the music, I Shot the Albatross allows the listener to stop and consider what the music is all about. All wars are not fought on a battlefield, but often through propaganda that can surface from all sides. The text explains, “…there is a war going on right here in our own backyard. Not a physical war, but a war for your minds. A battle to make you believe who you are and what you should be”. Instead of buying in to the popular concept of the “basic good of humanity”, I Shot the Albatross considers that people can ignore the suffering of others in order to convince themselves that they are happy. It is easier, but not the true picture of what is happening in our communities. Individuals must sift through the hype to determine what needs to be done for the collective good. Even more important is to reach out and join others that seek to make revisions in the way we think and act, because constructive change is a group effort.
Family is the glue that holds life together. However, not all families are traditional. I Shot the Albatross found an extended family in their music. Coming from bands of all different genres, Kole embraced the experimental music of I Shot the Albatross, but discovered there was so much more. He stated, “After a few concerts, building relationships with the people we sold tickets to, or just hanging out with them—knowing that in some way I was able to positively impact and encourage them– that was what I wanted to do with my life”. Kole is passionate about metalcore and the scene associated with it. He is dedicated to accepting fans for who and what they are, without reservations, and prefers to focus on a better future for everyone.
Music requires patience. I Shot the Albatross released their first single on the night I spoke with them. They were excited to see a year-long odyssey come to fruition. Schultz and Kole wrote the song, “To the Cliffs” almost a year ago, returning to it often, tweaking and perfecting each note. With the help of James Lewis and Forerunner Recordings, the first single is officially ready. The end result is a powerful lyrical tale set to alternating melodies and hard driving metalcore that sends the listener on a journey of emotion throughout the song. Like a symphony, the music progresses in movements, complete with unexpected shifts, leaving a provocative composition that envelopes the audience in sound. This single is available now on BandCamp and will be featured on their upcoming EP. Their first official music video for “To the Cliffs” is due out this year.