New York hardcore rockers, MASSiVE, share a vision of the world, that is not always nice. Craig Johns Jr. (guitar), Anthony Caggiano (drums), Joey Scott DeVito (bass/vocals), Rob Ulshafer (vocals), and Emmett Maloney (guitar) believe that music is a platform to bring about awareness (and solutions) for injustice worldwide. Their goals are simple: put it out there and stop it.
Music is a powerful motivator. The artists of MASSiVE live in the real world, with all of the strife and heartache it contains. They have found a voice through their music, hoping to affect global change, and right the wrongs in our society. Lyrics from the song, “Still Alive” express, “I’ve been the witness/and I don’t see an end to this/I’ve been the listener/Deafened by indifference”. No matter what part you play, witness or listener, the effect is devastating. The song is a call to action for everyone. We must take part in making our communities stronger by eliminating abuse and unfairness across the board.
Learning is growing. A lack of music programs in their collective schools did not stop the musicians in MASSiVE from following their dreams. Songwriting can be a daunting task, but they have found a formula which allows music to evolve organically works best for them. As they continue to learn about music, and master their respective skills, MASSiVE sees their future in music as a constant and thrilling learning opportunity. It is a cycle of success: the more they learn leads to more compelling songs, which brings more listeners, and enables them to reach more people.
You have to see it to believe it. The newest song from MASSiVE features Landon Tewers of The Plot In You, and is appropriately named, “Lead Hands”. The video demonstrates how critical it is to address the issue of police brutality. Powerful lyrics, stunning vocals, with a hard driving metal accompaniment is set against a backdrop of startling images that depict actual incidents of police violence. It is shocking, heartbreaking, and frustrating all at once. Ulshafer is dynamic and articulate in the unclean vocals, but shines with his innovative style of screaming. Midway through the song, Ulshafer screams in rapid (almost rap) fashion, portraying the panic of the scene behind him. The dual vocalists complement each other and form an impressive front for the forceful guitar riffs, pounding bass, and colossal drums.
The name says it all. MASSiVE is a name that sums up their dedication to positive activism. All capital letters shows the magnitude of problems our society faces. They can seem insurmountable, or too large for one individual to make a difference. But, if you look closely, you will notice that the “I” is in lower case, like a small David among a sea of Goliaths. Each time I see that small letter, I am reminded that all it takes is one person to listen, help, or have an idea to truly make the world a better place. They have found their voice and the message from MASSiVE is clear, take a look around you and make your voice heard.