Posts Tagged ‘Attalus’

While Attalus is new to the music scene, the North Carolina-based quintet proves to be a promising band. Their debut, The Greater Tide EP offers an appealing alternative rock sound that can best be described as Thrice meets House of Heroes.

Attalus will keep listeners on their toes with frequent change-ups in style and rhythm. Take the second track “The Rich and Poor.” On the verses, it encompasses a crisp, fast-paced drum beat, sizzling guitar riffs, and a faint piano motif that graces over top of it all. The chorus takes a slower rhythm and melancholy chord progressions, putting the focus on the hook-laden melody. Another musically intriguing track, “Behind Your Eyes” starts full but quickly strips down to a simple, piano chord progression and a driving kick drum. The song builds momentum as instruments are added back. During the bridge, vocalist Seth Davey shows off his upper range, which is strikingly similar to that of Matt MacDonald from The Classic Crime.

The lyrics are just as attention-grabbing as the music. The Greater Tide isn’t a concept album per se, but there are a few songs that have a “sea” theme. One such song, “Message In A Bottle” tells a metaphorical story of a man surviving a shipwreck to demonstrate the beauty of grace, “And I don’t know why I survived. I too deserved to die/But Providence has turned His eye/Grace has chosen me to stay.” The title-track is about people who have died for their faith. Seth explains in an interview that the song “represents [his] admiration for those individuals.”

The Greater Tide is as solid as debuts come. The production is a little rough, but this is a minor detail. From the impressive guitar work and complex rhythms to the thought-provoking lyrics, Attalus sound more like seasoned pros than newbies. This is definitely a band to watch.

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Interview: Attalus

Posted: January 18, 2011 in Interviews
Tags: ,

Introducing Attalus: an indie alt. rock act hailing from North Carolina. Frontman Seth Davey gives us the scoop on his recently formed band and their impressive debut release, The Greater Tide EP.

How did Attalus get started?

Fortunately I was able to unite four friends who are also four great musicians. This is a band of brothers: myself and ben (manager), Evan and Adam, and John and Chris. I was in a band with John back in high-school. Evan and I recorded music together back in college. But those two worlds never collided until the summer of 2010. Adam wanted to start a band, which meant that he and Evan were naturally in; and after losing a bass player, that left two holes to fill: bass and guitar. John and Chris moved home from New York City and fortunately were able to answer that need.

Where did the name Attalus come from?

Finding a name is a difficult thing. At least it was for us. After exploring many options, we found we couldn’t agree on any single one. One night something came to my mind. When I had been reading an old Greek historian in preparation for my dissertation, I remembered coming across a moving story of Christian martyrs who lived in the 2nd century. I looked the story up and found that the name of one of the martyrs was Attalus. Upon seeing it, my first thought was, “Hey, that sounds like a pretty good band name!” My second thought was a little deeper. I started thinking that maybe if I remind myself constantly of the kind of faith and devotion this guy had – enough even to give up his life – perhaps it will strengthen my own. Well, we agreed on the name and that was that.

Does Attalus have a specific purpose/mission?

I suppose there are five different purposes/missions in Attalus because of the fact that we all bring our own ideas and ambitions to the table. Nevertheless, we do share a few specific things in common. The most important is our desire to share with people through good music that there is hope in a world that sometimes seems void of it. We are not a Christian band, but we are Christians. However, because of hypocrisy in the Church and because of media portrayals, many people are turned off by that very word. That’s understandable. So hopefully through our music and through our corresponding lifestyles listeners will find themselves giving Christianity a second look.

What are some of your musical influences?

This is a broad range, so I’ll just stick with modern examples. We’ll spare the obvious like “the Beatles.” for me it would be D.C. Talk (loved them as a kid!), Thrice, Blindside, and to some extent Switchfoot. Adam has a love for rap and ska to go along with his love of rock, so I would say the Supertones, T-bone, and Monty Are I. Evan is more eclectic. His favorite might be Neutral Milk Hotel and Coheed and Cambria. John loves Need to Breathe and Phil Wickham. Chris listens to harder stuff like As I Lay Dying and August Burns Red. Man I hope I got these right!

Is there an overarching theme on your latest release The Greater Tide?

Though not all songs use the metaphor of “the sea,” three of them do. So yes. The “greater tide,” as it suggests, is a concept. It also suggests there is more than one tide. As represented in the song, “Message in a Bottle,” the first is a tide of failure, shipwreck and destruction; the second is a tide of hope, restoration, and redemption. So the overarching theme of the album is stated best in the last line of that song: “Grace can even save a shipwrecked life.”

Is there a particular song on The Greater Tide that means the most to you?

“The Greater Tide” probably means the most to me because it is a story of brave men and women throughout history who gave up their lives for their faith. No matter what anyone believes, we all stand on the shoulders of people who gave their lives for us in some measure. Whether it was a soldier who died on the battlefield or a mother who refused to abort, we are the recipients of nameless individuals who made immense sacrifices. So this is a song that represents my admiration for those individuals who I feel I owe so much to.

What do you hope listeners take away from The Greater Tide?

Well I hope they will love the music! That of course is important. And ultimately I hope the lyrics will provoke them to think more deeply about life, love and the meaning of both.

Is The Greater Tide EP your first recording? Or do you have any prior material?

“The Greater Tide” is Attalus’ first recording, yes. Individually we have our own material, but not corporately.

If you could choose any band to tour with, what band would you choose and why?

Though we would all give different answers to this question, my answer would definitely be Thrice. That is because it became apparent to me back at University that Dustin Kensrue’s lyrics were inspired by many of the same things that have inspired my own: Greek philosophy, mythology, and modern thinkers such as G.K. Chesterton and C.S. Lewis. I’d love to tour with Thrice one day just to be able to talk with Dustin for a while. I have a lot of questions I’d like to ask him.

Does Attalus only tour locally?

Currently we are only touring locally. But when I come back from Wales in February, I hope we will make time to travel. Perhaps an opportunity will arise.

Any final comments?

Thanks for taking the time to ask these questions! I speak for all of us when I say that we’re very grateful. God bless.

For more info on Attalus visit their Myspace or Facebook page.
The Greater Tide EP can be purchased on iTunes: The Greater Tide – EP – Attalus