The Rock City archives: 2012

Defeater, Rock City Basement

  • Tuesday 3rd July 2012
  • Supported by: Former Theives, Polar, The River Card

Defeater are an American Hardcore/Punk band from Massachusetts.

Defeater is a concept band whose body of work features an overarching story-line told through multiple concept albums. The narrative highlights the hardships and internal conflicts faced by a working-class family living on the Jersey Shore during the post-WWII period. On why this era is of interest to the group they said "it's seen as this period of great American prosperity but there was still a lot of racism, sexism and homophobia. We write about these prejudices and things like war and murder and how they affected real people. All these things definitely contradict those Norman Rockwell-rosy images of that period."

Bio taken from website...

Defeater is a band recognized not only for their obvious musical talent, but also for their social awareness and environmental activism in a musical landscape plagued with insincerity and complacency. The Massachusetts-based band formed two years ago with the premise of utilizing a musical platform for good; whether it be starting an environmentally conscious company or writing albums about oppression and equal rights. With one full-length release under their belt (2008’s Travels) and an EP on the horizon (Lost Ground, in stores November 17, 2009), Defeater is once again releasing a musically precise and genre-bending album that will redefine the term “forward-thinking music”.

In early 2008, Defeater got together and teamed up with Topshelf Records to release their debut full-length titled Travels. Printed on 100% recycled materials, Travels was the first conceptual (and environmentally-friendly) piece from the band, unique in that each song read as a narrative chapter from a novel while creating an embellished piece of fiction set in post WWII America in a broken home. The release of Travels caught the attention of fans, labels, and press alike with hailing it as "a new artistic peak for hardcore." With unrelenting buzz and critical acclaim surrounding the band, Defeater and Bridge Nine Records partnered up to re-release Travels all over the world in September of 2008. This re-release saw the band touring across the United States with the likes of Energy and End of a Year, across Europe with Comeback Kid, and throughout the UK with labelmates Polar Bear Club and Ruiner. Guitarist Jay Maas said, “The biggest highlight for us touring on Travels was meeting people around the country and world that have really connected with our music and/or lyrics. It’s weird how every now and then you can affect and impact a little pocket of people without knowing it. It’s a great surprise when that happens.”

Fast forward to 2009 and Defeater geared up to write and record their second conceptual release titled Lost Ground. A six song double 7", this EP was written in a similar narrative style to Travels following a man's journey from enlisting in the military to post-war life (the same man that listeners were introduced to on track 6 of Travels: “Prophet in Plain Clothes”).

Lost Ground contains six new songs written in an anecdotal style following the homeless man from "Prophet In Plain Clothes" off of Travels. Lyrics were once again written by vocalist Derek Archambault and Lost Ground tells"…the story of how he [the character from ‘Prophet’] came to end up on that street corner. Lost Ground looks into the difference between how different races could all go to war fighting and dying for this country yet not all be treated with equal rights as citizens upon their return, and what kind of effects that inequality can have on a an honest person," said Maas.

A much more melodic and dynamic album than previous efforts, Lost Ground is set to a volatile soundtrack of hardcore fury, punk melody, and metal technicality while the band explores some cleaner and bigger-sounding dynamics.

Check out their facebook - Defeater