I am a sucker for a new band. I love to listen to new projects and I get really stoked when they are mind blowing good!
A few weeks ago Tate and I had the honor of sitting down with two of the five members of the up and coming- Fair Trade services artist- ASHES REMAIN.
They were in Florida visiting several radio stations with one of their label reps. One of their stops just happened to be Z88.3. Tate wanted me to come to the station and meet them and hear them sing for the staff. I went, not knowing WHAT to expect. Ok, well, that’s NOT entirely true. I knew that Trevor McNevan of Thousand Foot Krutch (My ALL time FAVORITE band) co wrote with them and collaborated on some projects with them. SO- In my heart I had already decided this band was gonna be pretty good. They had the “Trevor” stamp on them.
When I got to the station everyone met in the conference room with lead singer- Josh Smith
and bass player- Jonathan Hively. They played a few songs off of their new album, “What I’ve become” to be release August 23rd, 2011.
Before they started playing, they apologized for not having their full set there but said they would still like to play a few songs- acoustically for us. I sat, waiting…and then BOOM!
I was hooked!
The first song they sang is their current release “Everything Good.”
The lyrics were something that resonated more of a modern day psalms. Heart cries of hope and brokenness mingled beautifully.
“You are everything good, everything true, when all the world is fading, your everything new. You are my eyes when I can’t see. When all the world is broken you will always be- everything good.”
They said they wrote that from the perspective of Paul and Silas sitting in chains and in prison in the bible singing to praises to God. What a simply beautiful picture of hope in something bigger than us.
Then they sang another song for us-
“Change my life“- WHO HASN’T asked that question at one point or time in their own life.
Once again, the lyrics reached up and grabbed me by the proverbial lapels-
“I’m still awake tonight, broken up inside. I wanna run, but I don’t know where to go.-
Calling your name, through the pain, will you turn your face to me. I’m crying out. I need a miracle!
If you could make the sun burn through the night, and you can make a dead man come alive, and if you can make the oceans run dry, then I know you can change my life.”
How beautiful. To me this portrayed bottom line honesty to God – creation to creator.
I was given a copy of the pre release album to listen to and review. And if I am being honest, they gave it to Tate but I snagged a copy for myself too.
After the gathering at the radio station the record rep, the band and Tate and I all went out to lunch. It was there that I got to really hear their hearts about the band, the projects and their purpose for what they do. I can honestly say they have such amazing hearts for God and broken people.
It was a very refreshing conversation. (and they were very gracious and answered ALL of my questions as I asked way too many!!- it’s the writer in me….I guess.) Here’s a peek into their heart… thanks to youtube.
Interview with Ashes Remain
When lunch was over they took off to head back to Baltimore, MD- where they hale from. Tate and I headed back to the station. I had the cd in the player before I had the ignition turned completely over.
I was a fan from the first song in. The project resonates music similarities to Nickelback, Shinedown, Kutless, Skillet and a little Decyfer Down- all rolled into one. Even though I could hear the similarities- They still stood out as a unique voice and a captivating artist.
I cranked up the music and NONE of it disappointed! NONE! Josh’s lead vocals are guttural and gritty- but passionate especially in lyrics like “My mind’s a loaded gun, and no one can hear me screaming.” from the track “Keep me breathing.”
My personal favorite song out of the entire project has to be- “On my Own.” For me, the lyrics are my personal anthem right now. A realization that I do not have to fight things alone in this life. I have the very one that created me walking right beside me…helping me every step of the way….
Here are the lyrics:
“There’s gotta be another way out
I’ve been stuck in a cage with my doubt.
I’ve tried forever getting out on my own
Every time I do this my way
I get caught in the lies of the enemy.
I lay my troubles down
I’m ready for you now.
(Chorus)- Bring me out- come and find me in the dark now
Everyday by myself I’m breaking down, I don’t wanna fight alone anymore.
Bring me out from the prison of my own pride
My God, I need a hope I can’t deny.
In the end I’m realizing I was never meant to fight on my own.
Every little thing that I’ve know is everything I need to let go
Your so much bigger than the world I have made
So I surrender my soul, I’m reaching out for your hope.
I lay my weapons down
I’m ready for you now.
I don’t wanna be incomplete
I remember what you said to me
I don’t have to fight alone.
I truly enjoyed getting to meet these guys and I am sooo excited for this project to hit the shelves on August 23rd. Their album “What I’ve become” is the debut release for them and for Fair Trade services.
Please go and pick it up!! You won’t be disappointed. I promise.
Follow them on Facebook and Twitter too!!
Until next time,
See ya on the Random Side,