Elysia t-shirts, BUSH BLACK
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Elysia was an American deathcore band from Shingle Springs, California. Originally called Elysium's Revenge, the band was started in 2003 while the members were just freshmen and sophomores in high school. Since 2003, they have released two EPs and one full-length album, and have completed two US tours despite almost constant line-up changes. Having settled into a more solid line-up, the band released their latest full length, Lion Of Judas, on June 10, 2008, through Ferret Records. They have apparently since disbanded, as vocalist Zak Vargas refuses to speak of Elysia anymore.
They have toured and performed alongside many bands, including Arsonists Get All the Girls, Knights of the Abyss, Catherine, Emmure, Heavy Heavy Low Low, Impending Doom, Killwhitneydead, Suicide Silence and This Is Hell. They also have performed at the Saints & Sinners Festival in 2007. Elysia has close ties with Knights of the Abyss and Arsonists Get All the Girls; for example, Zak Vargas did guest vocals on Knights of the Abyss's full-length Juggernaut, on the track "Decaying Waste".
Elysia started as Elysium's Revenge, while the band members were still in high school. The band gained notoriety in the Shingle Springs-Cameron Park area with their empty shows at the Shingle Springs Community Center. By the end of 2003, they shortened their name to Elysia and added a second vocalist, Justin Chambers who helped them record their first EP. Months later, they pen "Incinerate", a song that has grown to become a staple in their setlist. In the spring of 2004, they recorded a second EP, with the first occurrence of "Incinerate". The release show for this EP features Suffokate and The Frontline. That summer and fall, they would write "Triumph" and "Filthy".
Out of the Masochist writing sessions came their first full album, Masochist. Originally planned to be released on the This City Is Burning Records, problems arose and it became a DIY effort. It was during this time that they started to become more known, touring with killwhitneydead. Around this time, most of the band graduated, and Kerem Yildirimer left the band to move to San Diego. After several band member changes, they toured along the west coast. In the spring of 2007, the band planned to rerecord the album for a re-release on Tribunal Records, with Jamie King as the producer. However, Joey Rommel, drummer at the time, left the band right before they go into Castle Ultimate Studios for the recording. Thus, they never re-released the album, although they are on a Tribunal Records sampler. They found drummer Jacob Durrett (now playing drums in Fate) to fill in for a 10 Day tour with Impending Doom and Moria. After returning home they found Steven Sessler to play drums, who is still in the band today. Alex Porte left the band in the summer of 2007, less than a month before their first full US tour. With Zak Vargas now the sole original member, the band almost breaks up, but continues due to contractual obligations to perform. They toured with Knights of the Abyss and Arsonists Get All the Girls, and during the tour got jumped for a second time. In the low point of the band, when they are about to break up, Elysia got signed to Ferret Records. Elysia signed into a three day mini-tour, and the day it starts Mark Underwood, Alex's replacement, leaves the band. Once again, the fate of the band is at stake, but Zak agrees to continue and they found a replacement guitarist. To save the band, after the mini-tour Zak talked Garrett Gilardi, a highschool friend, into joining the band again, as well as Jon joining the band again as the bassist.
In December, 2007, the band sat down to write their second album, Lion of Judas released through Ferret Records. They consider their new music to be "a new era for Elysia, so please do not expect the same band." They were on a tour with This Is Hell, where it concluded with a trip to Salem, Massachusetts where the new album was recorded with Kurt Ballou for a week. They dropped off the tour with Shai Hulud and Full Blown Chaos because of medical issues with Zak.
After the drop-out of the last tour, there were hints of Elysia's then current state including their MySpace design removed and Zak's blog entries which included Elysia breaking up. Members including Zak, Steven, and Garrett are slowly working on a new musical project.
Elysia's lyrics cover a wide range of topics, from anti-homophobia to women's rights. The band admits that they sometimes have a hard time accurately portraying the meanings they want to put across, mainly because of "immaturity". For example, the lyrical content of "Incinerate" and "Filthy" has had the band criticized. They have also been banned from playing at venues because of their lyric's graphic violent content. Their sound has encompassed several facetes of hardcore and metal. Their early material, to include Masochist, was of the deathcore style. Their second and final album, Lion of Judas, was of a style remisicent of 90s hardcore in its sound; however it continued the band's socially minded lyrical themes, albeit in a more seasoned manner.
Honorable mention to: Andre vocino, Jeremy Chavez, Alex Port, Kevin
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