New AS I LAY DYING Album Is Still Being Mixed

February 15, 2024

In a new interview with Chaoszine, AS I LAY DYING's founding vocalist Tim Lambesis spoke about the progress of the mixing sessions for the band's next studio album. The LP will mark AS I LAY DYING's first with its new lineup, featuring Lambesis and longtime guitarist Phil Sgrosso alongside drummer Nick Pierce (ex-UNEARTH),bassist vocalist Ryan Neff (MISS MAY I) and guitarist Ken Susi (UNEARTH).

Asked if the new album is "already done and in the can", considering that the mixing sessions began last fall, Tim said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "So what's interesting about it is the mixing engineer has a few more songs to finish. Not because he's lazy or anything, but because we always end up like adding a layer or a couple of things here last minute. But he's been mixing it since I first said that in November, but then with the holidays and everything, there was a little bit of a break. Long story short, he's still fixing a few things. And we definitely have the album scheduled to come out this year and some tours that are already booked to follow that. I just can't announce those tours yet."

Pressed about whether the album will definitely be out in 2024, Tim said: "Yeah, it definitely needs to be because [laughs] we have album-release tours booked, so it's definitely gonna be out this year."

Earlier in the month, Lambesis told the Today's Boondoggle podcast about the musical direction of the new AS I LAY DYING material: "No disrespect to some of these other bands, but some bands, when they get to as far along in their careers as we are, they start lightening up or putting out records that are, I think, less exciting than their previous material. And I think for us, it's really cool. I feel like a second with AS I LAY DYING to where it's, like, this record has a lot of really cool intense parts, a lot of really great intricate melodies and cool guitar work and stuff. And so just showing people that we're just as passionate and energetic about where we're at as we've ever been, that, to me, is what's important."

Last June, Tim told Graspop Metal Meeting about AS I LAY DYING's upcoming LP: "We partly self-produced [it], and then we also worked with another producer. So we spent about a year working on the album by ourselves before we gave it to the producer, who's mixing the album now."

Regarding how the addition of new members Pierce, Neff and Susi has affected AS I LAY DYING's sound, Tim said: "Well, [Nick, Ryan and Ken are] new for us, but, obviously, the guys have been around playing music for 20 years themselves. We're familiar, just having spent so much time with UNEARTH, and then MISS MAY I having a pretty similar sound.

"The songwriting within AS I LAY DYING has historically been mostlyPhil and I," he continued. "Josh [Gilbert], our previous bass player, helped. But the core of the songwriting is the same. So this additional layer that we get from these new guys is almost like breathing fresh new air… a breath of fresh air."

In September 2022, Lambesis addressed AS I LAY DYING's recent lineup changes in an interview with Metalshop TV. He said: "I think for our fans, they think that the changes happened all in a very short period of time, but they actually happened over the last two years. The first change was on guitar we invited Ken Susi to fill in for us. And that was [around 2020] that we invited him. But then, of course, the pandemic happened and so we had a lot of breaks until we had a tour again. So Ken's been rehearsing with us, or talking about rehearsing with us, for the last couple of years. And on drums we have Nick Pierce, who joined us. Nick Pierce was previously in UNEARTH; Ken is from UNEARTH as well. And Nick stopped playing with UNEARTH and coincidentally at the same time we needed a drummer, because our previous drummer hadn't been communicating with us; he went very isolated once the pandemic hit. And so there wasn't an argument or anything like that; it was just a situation where when the pandemic hit, he decided to take a new direction in life and kind of cut himself off from the rest of us. And we decided we wanted to keep going forward. Phil and I had been the ones writing the songs all these years, so when Nick Pierce left UNEARTH, we thought it was the perfect opportunity to have him perform with us. And then Ryan came from MISS MAY I. He was the last guy to come in. And he didn't come in until a couple of months ago. Our bass player, Josh, previously left, and he's with SPIRITBOX now. And when he decided to go perform with SPIRITBOX, we called up Ryan, who was with MISS MAY I. And Ryan Neff was on tour at the time. And then we asked him, 'Can you start touring with us as soon as this tour is over?' And he said, 'Well, I'm only gonna have three days off to rehearse in between tours.' He said, 'If you guys want me to do it, I'll make sure I come prepared.' And he had a lot to learn in three days, but he pulled it together. He's a very, very hard-working guy."

AS I LAY DYING's new album will be the follow-up to "Shaped By Fire", which came out in September 2019 via Nuclear Blast.

In June 2022, longtime AS I LAY DYING drummer Jordan Mancino announced that he would sit out the band's tour due to "a number of ongoing internal issues" that "have not yet been resolved."

Mancino's announcement came less than a month after AS I LAY DYING's longtime bassist/vocalist Josh Gilbert revealed that he was leaving the band. In a statement, the remaining members of AS I LAY DYING said that Gilbert "decided to exit" the group "to pursue other musical opportunities."

Josh was the second AS I LAY DYING member to leave the band in less than a year. In August 2021, guitarist Nick Hipa confirmed his exit from AS I LAY DYING, explaining that he could no longer justify being part of "a superficial pursuit" of the "story and meaning" that the band's 2018 reunion was built upon.

Lambesis was famously convicted in 2014 for his role in a murder-for-hire plot against his estranged wife.

In May 2014, Lambesis was sentenced to six years in jail after pleading guilty to paying a San Diego police officer posing as a hitman $1,000 to kill his wife. Approximately two and a half years later — on December 17, 2016 — he was discharged from a California detention facility and was transferred to the Division of Adult Parole Operations.

In June 2018, AS I LAY DYING played its first show with Lambesis in five years and released a new single. Lambesis also owned up to his crimes in a long apology on the band's Facebook page after his release.

The return of AS I LAY DYING raised some questions, particularly since Hipa categorically denounced the band's disgraced frontman as a "sociopathic narcissist in definite need of rehabilitation" in a social-media post back in 2014.

In September 2021, AS I LAY DYING released a new song called "Roots Below" which was originally a B-side leftover from when the sessions for "Shaped By Fire".

Photo credit: Randy Edwards (courtesy of Nuclear Blast Records)

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