Michigan post-hardcore metal rockers David Stephens (vocals), Kyle Pavone (vocals), Joshua Moore (guitar/lyrics), Lou Cotton (guitar), Andy Glass (bass), and Eric Choi (drums) are a force to be reckoned with. Signed to Equal Vision Records, We Came As Romans have garnered critical acclaim and attention for their positive, anthemic music. Dual vocals by Stephens and Pavone produce a contrast of highs and lows that weave throughout the songs and are irresistible to the listener. Choi’s unique drumming style, paired with a seductive bass line by Glass form the foundation for expansive guitar riffs from Cotton and Moore, making the music at once hardcore and melodic.
We live in a complicated world. With so much going on in our global society, it is easy to give up. Words from the song, “Hope” declare, ‘We won’t fall to our knees/We are the one true hope’ pointing out that as a society, we have the power to effect change. The lyrics go on to ask, ‘So give me an answer/Are you in or you out?’ in a call to action for positive advancement. It is crucial to understand that the power of many lies within the strength of each individual. By uniting our collective efforts, we become the catalyst for change, because we have hope for a better future.
Music is a leap of faith. There was no bright light of clarity that led to Glass’s decision to make music his career. Instead, he gathered his courage, held his breath, and told his parents that he was going to forgo college to follow his heart. Music is a commitment and Glass knew he had to be all in to make it work. He said, “I didn’t really know how they were going to take it. I was, like, I want to do this music thing full-time and I know you guys really want me to go to school, but I can’t have one foot in and one out. I have to have both in. I guess that was a defining moment. It was pretty scary.” His dedication paid off as We Came As Romans have steadily climbed in popularity to become one of the favorites in post-hardcore metal today. His education did not end, because Glass continues to learn and grow through his music.
You can’t sit on the fence. At a certain point in life, we all must choose the path we follow. However, it is essential to realize that none of us travel alone. In the song “One Face”, the lyrics say, ‘Open your eyes to what you’re doing/You can change the world/Like you change your face’ demonstrating that each person has the ability to be whoever they wish to be. The song goes on to express, ‘Open your eyes to how you’re living/You can lead the broken/Show them the way’ divulging the power and responsibility we have to help others find their ‘face’ too. Often, in helping others, we also help ourselves.
Success is elusive. It is impossible to determine what makes a musician successful or not, because expectations change as quickly as the waves in an ocean. Glass measures the achievements of We Came As Romans through their progress and the effect they have on fans. He explained, “It is overwhelming. Success is hard to gain, because it is a challenge. I think, to me, success is our fans. When we have helped them out of a dark situation, or protected their lives somehow…that is success to me.” Glass understands how much music means to fans, because he feels the same way. Music has the power to encourage, comfort, and inspire the listener, as well as the musician.
Power to the people! The live performance from We Came As Romans is magnificent in the feeling you are left with. The high energy and powerful lyrics of each song are translated to empower the audience, a feeling that lasts long after the artists say goodnight. The day after the show, I attended a local charity event. With the words of the song “Present, Past, Future” ringing in my ears, I offered my time each month, in addition to my usual monetary donation, because I have the power to help. We Came As Romans recently recorded a cover of Taylor Swift‘s “I Knew You Were Trouble” for Pop Goes Punk Volume Six, out now on Fearless Records. They will continue to tour next year, while they work on new songs for their next release.
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