The early 21st century saw Pantera singer Phil Anselmo launch several side projects, including Necrophagia, Viking Crown, Christ Inversion, Southern Isolation, and Superjoint Ritual. The latter group is comprised of guitarists Jim Bower and Kevin Bond, drummer Joseph Fazzio, with none other than Hank Williams III on bass (Anselmo handled both vocal and bass duties for the group’s recordings, but opted to concentrate solely on vocals for the group’s live shows). According to Bower, the members of Superjoint Ritual approached the writing and recording of their debut with “the perfect 15-year-old mentality of having everything loud, everything on 10, getting loaded, and letting whatever happens, happens.” Recorded at a rehearsal space turned recording studio in Anselmo’s backyard, the sessions were produced by former Ugly Kid Joe member Dave Fortman (who has turned into quite a producer of ultra heavy bands — Eyehategod, Soilent Green, etc.). May of 2002 saw the release of the quintet’s debut, Use Once and Destroy, an album that reflected such influences as Black Flag, Righteous Pigs, Celtic Frost, and Voivod, among others. Superjoint Ritual supported the album with a summer tour the same year. The following year saw the release of the band’s sophomore outing, A Lethal Dose of American Hatred, which featured the singles “Waiting for the Turning Point” and “Dress Like a Target.” A 2004 dust-up between Anselmo and Fazzio proved too big keep operations running, and the band eventually called it quits. However, a pair of reunion shows in 2014 and 2015 led the group, which was now operating under the more simplified Superjoint moniker, back into the studio to begin work on their long-awaited third LP. The resulting Caught Up in the Gears of Application dropped the following year.
ABOUT BATTLECROSS —
A sonic metal assault that leaves audiences pumped with adrenaline, Detroit’s BATTLECROSS triumphantly return as one of the true champions of American Heavy Metal with their devastating sophomore release, War of Will. Co-Produced at Audiohammer Studios with famed producers Mark Lewis and Eyal Levi, the sophomore effort from Detroit’s newest soldiers of steel will soon prove as one of the most impressive follow-up releases , destined to become a heavy metal classic for fans of all sub-genres. “War of Will triggers a strange Deja Vu while feeling completely brand new” says Levi.
With elements of upbeat thrash, European, death, and southern metal, War of Will brings back the old school thrash, heavy groove, harmonizing guitars, epic guitar solos, dynamic death-style vocals and impressive bass work that made 2011’s Pursuit of Honor a fast favorite. Fans will appreciate another complete, yet more mature brutal assault with contagious hooks and choruses that will guarantee headbangability and the dynamic live show for which BATTLECROSS is best known.
Celebrated for their cross-over thrash/classic American heavy metal image and sound, and relentless enthusiasm for touring, BATTLECROSS entered Audiohammer Studio in March 2013 immediately after a full North American trek with Sweden’s In Flames and a busy 2012. With an impressive list of top notch metal productions, the studio turned out to be the perfect fit for the young band. “The laid back atmosphere, mixed with the ‘deliver or be delivered’ expectations really inspired us to push ourselves to be the best during the production, and it really reflects in the lyrical content as well as the final product.” said Guitarist Tony Asta. “War of Will is exactly what it sounds like, a straight up heavy metal album, but we’ll let the fans be the judge”
Titled to describe BATTLECROSS’ fast and furious climb in the two years since releasing their debut, War of Will challenges fans through its lyrical theme to push their limits in pursuit of their goals and to sacrifice all to overcome life’s obstacles and succeed–a message proven by the band’s quick ascent to breakout status from high-profile tours, heavy radio play, while drawing comparisons to the heavyweights of metal.
War of Will marks the first major session contribution by drummer Shannon Lucas, who contributes an upbeat thrash vibe with his precision and aggression best suited for the BATTLECROSS style. “Shannon is one of the true beasts of metal drumming” said Co-Producer Eyal Levi, “his skills are technically untouchable and combine that with a badass rising star of a band and we have the makings of a crushing record.”
The young band’s career kicked off what every metal musician dreams of: amazing album reviews from Metal’s most respected publications for their 2011 debut on Metal Blade Records, Pursuit of Honor. Metal Assault named the record “one of the most ‘complete heavy metal albums in recent times’ while receiving high praises from heavyweights Revolver, Decibel, Blabbermouth and others. With killer reviews across the internet and in print publications throughout North America and overseas (including band of the month in Metal Hammer Norway and Metal Hammer Spain), it should be no surprise that this blue collar, hard-work ethic that comes from the members of BATTLECROSS translates into a potent force on record as well as a high-energy live performance winning fans across the country on some of the metal’s highest profile tours.
The growing buzz over Pursuit of Honor positioned the band for opportunities that have proven to be stepping stones for what is expected to be a long and exciting career for BATTLECROSS, starting with a spot in a 2011 CMJ Showcase with Skeletonwitch and Kvelertak and the band’s first tour ever, an Eastern U.S. run with Rose Funeral and Diamond Plate. It was during this tour that BATTLECROSS was introduced to North America and became SiriusXM Liquid Metal mainstays with the single Push Pull Destroy, which spent over 30 weeks on ‘The Devil’s Dozen’ and reached the #1 most requested song for five weeks and to date, over two million YouTube views. Throughout 2012, satellite radio introduced singles ‘Breaking You’ and ‘Man of Stone’, together spending a total of 50 weeks on Jose Mangin’s popular Metal Countdown.
BATTLECROSS’ reputation for technical talent, humility and fan engagement earned the band the opportunity to continue their climb with an appearance at 2012 SXSW Metal Blade Showcase; tours with: Hate Eternal and Goatwhore (Winter 2012), Origin, Decrepit Birth, Cattle Decapitation on the Occupation Domination Tour (Spring 2012), Metal Hammer’s Trespass America Festival with Five Finger Death Punch, Killswitch Engage, and Trivium (Summer 2012), a headlining stage appearance at Heavy MTL, opposite System of a Down and high-profile shows celebrating Metal Blade’s 30th Anniversary with As I Lay Dying, Six Feet Under and more.
After a fist-pumping debut, impressive 2012 breakout tours, BATTLECROSS will continue their climb as one of Metal’s most impressive new bands with 2013 appearances at the New England Metal and Hardcore Festival, Orion Music +More with Metallica, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Deftones and Suicidal Tendencies in the band’s hometown of Detroit and the 4th Annual GwarBQ with Municipal Waste and Corrosion of Conformity.
WAR OF WILL releases July 9th, 2013 just as the band heads out for the summer on the Rock Star Energy Drink Mayhem Festival Tour with Rob Zombie, Five Finger Death Punch, Amon Amarth, Children of Bodom, Machine Head, Behemoth, Mastodon and more in what is expected to be the tour and album that will cement BATTLECROSS as an American Heavy Metal heavyweight banging heads for years to come.
ABOUT CHILD BITE–
The brainchild of Ferndale, Michigan graphic designer Shawn Knight, Child Bite is a hardcore punk/art rock band fueled by tension. Like an aggressive, modern take on Pere Ubu, Knight doesn’t sing as much as he yelps, flails, and shouts. Also featuring lead guitarist Zach Norton, bassist Sean Clancy, and drummer Danny Sperry, Child Bite formed in 2005 and became a cult staple in and around Detroit due to their wild shows and relentless promotion. After two full-lengths (Wild Feast in 2006 and Gold Thriller in 2007), 2008’s Exquisite Luxury and Fantastic Gusts of Blood were released on Suburban Sprawl. The fast-paced release schedule and hard touring wore out Norton and Sperry, and guitarist Brandon Sczomak and drummer Ben Moore took over for The Living Breathing Organ Summer. In 2013, a compilation of their Vision Crimes and Monomania EPs was released on Joyful Noise.