Brian Fair (Shadows Fall, Etc.) Comments On As I Lay Dying’s Controversial Return

Brian Fair (Shadows Fall, Downpour, & Hell Night) is one of the few members of the metal community to comment on the controversial return of Tim Lambesis and As I Lay Dying. Lambesis infamously tried to hire a hitman to murder his wife back in 2013 and was released from prison in 2016. Fair said the following:

“When I first heard of Tim‘s arrest I was shocked and disgusted to see someone I knew well, who built his following based on faith and righteousness commit such a heinous act directed at his family. I wrote “Serpent’s Tongue” by Downpour in response.”

“Their current revival has been tough to digest. I do believe in second chances but that doesn’t guarantee forgiveness or redemption. Those have to be earned with deeds and not words. I guess time will tell.”

“As far as the other members are concerned, I consider them friends and have to believe they see a change in Tim. I remain skeptical but will reserve judgement as this plays out.”

[via The PRP]

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As I Lay Dying Play First Show In Five Years

As I Lay Dying took the stage for the first time since Tim Lambesis infamously tried to hire a hitman to kill his wife in 2013. The show took place at the SOMA Sidestage in San Diego, CA last night (June 16) and footage from it can be seen below. Lambesis was released from prison in December 2016 and has since reunited with the band’s classic lineup. The group released a new video explaining their controversial return last night.

As I Lay Dying Members Discuss Their Decision To Return In New Video

As I Lay Dying have shared a new 31 minute video in which they discuss their decision to return. You can watch that and read some excerpts [transcribed by The PRP] below. Frontman Tim Lambesis infamously tried to hire a hitman to kill his wife in 2013 and was released from prison in December 2016. He has since reunited with the band’s classic lineup to release a new song called “My Own Grave”. The group are also playing a sold out show at the SOMA Sidestage in San Diego, CA tonight (June 16).

Lambesis started the discussion with the following:

“So there’s, there’s a lot of awareness of things that happened very recently in music and stuff. And then last year there’s an awareness of the public apology in my expression of remorse.

But behind all that there was the individual conversations we had and it was for me, expressing more remorse publicly. It’s one like one thing and that will be shown very slowly over time, people have to kind of get to know and see if they can trust that I was sincere or not.

But in terms of individual conversations, those went back even a year and a half before the public apology, almost two years before that. And those conversations were much more in-depth than anything we could ever like explain, you know even just this discussion or a written public statement or anything like that.

So, I first reached out to Jordan and Josh because I felt like that was just… I had to start somewhere and I felt like that seemed the most natural place for me. And I reached out to them in an email a long time ago and the first individual conversations we had were mainly me listening so that I could better express my apology for the ways that everything… Like I guess what the concept I talked about, the ripple effect.

There’s the obvious wrongdoings that I made and there’s the little ways that they sort of spread out beyond that and hurt people in so many ways that like I really wasn’t entirely aware until I got home.

And those conversations kicked off and I was sort of better able to understand what they’d been through and I think more sincerely apologize because of that.”

Later in the clip guitarist Phil Sgrosso opened up about how the band’s relationship with Lambesis was strained before his arrest:

“What happened in 2013 wasn’t like the start of the end of our relationship. It was like years before that and finally it was like when this happened, as terrible as it was, I felt like a sense of relief that I don’t have to do this band anymore. Like I don’t have to be so angry about a lot of things that are going on.

And, so it took me going through that and then being like ‘what I am going to do?’ ‘What are the rest of us going to do?’ And just kind of set out to keep doing music. however we could.

And when you went to jail it seemed like a peaceful period for us. We didn’t have to deal with you. We didn’t have to deal with any sort of manipulation, didn’t have to resent you.

But every little thing that came out, whether it was an interview after your sentencing, it was just like all of us were like fueled by this hatred of like ‘God, even when you’re not in our lives, we’re still being affected by it and will continue to be affected by it.’

So it put a lot of strain on other relationships amongst us as well. Because Nick and I didn’t really process our problems either in the most responsible way, so our relationship was deteriorating. So when I heard that you were getting out of jail. All of us were just on edge. Our community was on edge of just like ‘What is this guy going to be up to, now?’

Not just our local community, the music community, everywhere. Because we were all touring around and people, our friends in other states, countries, would be talking about stuff. Everyone was like ‘What is going to happen?’

And you I try, we all tried avoiding those things as much as possible. And I said ‘I will never do that band again. I will never play music with that guy again.’ Why would I? I was already enjoying playing with musicians that weren’t putting a strain on my life…”

Guitarist Nick Hipa added that Lambesis‘ emotional statement at the sentencing helped change his opinion of him, but things changed again after Alternative Press released an interview with the singer. However, Lambesis said the interview was recorded before his sentencing and that he changed as the case moved forward. Hipa said the following about that time:

“An interview came out that was just one long excuse. There was no ownership, it was just ‘I did this for all these reasons and there everyone else kind of led me to this.’ And that’s the moment that whatever shred of empathy I had for him turned into blind hatred. I was like this dude went too far down that dark road and he’s never coming back. And he almost fooled me once, but he’ll never fool me again…”

Hipa also talked about the strained relationship between him and Sgrosso, as well as Sgrosso‘s departure from their shared venue, Wovenwar, etc. He went on to say Lambesis was partially blamed for that resentment as well. He continued by saying constant speculation regarding Lambesis and interview questions were overshadowing his work and “destroying him,” leading to more hate and a refusal to grant interviews.

Hipa also said he did resist Lambesis‘ request to meet up for awhile, and when they did meet he tore into Lambesis with years of resentment. However, the way Lambesis carried himself in the face of all that gave him a change of heart:

“It took all of those years, him facing punishment, the consequences for his actions. Living in the ruin that he made for himself and also acknowledging that it would never end. What he did was very public and it would never be forgotten and it shouldn’t. But that’s part of what he has to endure for the rest of his life. But when I saw who he was and who he had genuinely become, I let go of that, and I wanted to let go of it.

Because I had never handled it… I let that pain and that hurt and that hopelessness… I let it become my life force in the form of hatred. And I used that as my strength for all those years but it devastated me on the inside.”

Lambesis also spoke of how he handled his arrest, sentencing and incarceration:

“Immediately after I had been arrested I went into this mode of just like ‘How do I kind of survive this situation?’ And you hire people, you find the best attorney who knows how to put together the best defense and all these people are speaking on your behalf. The mentality is like defend, defend.

I definitely bought into that and that influenced the person I was while awaiting my sentencing. There was that person Nick had all those hard feelings about. He was right, so it was literally leading up to the actual sentencing. That was the timeline of when I had said all those things [in the Alt Press interview.] Those things had been said and recorded, to come out sometime later after my sentencing.

Then my sentencing happened and my moment in the courtroom was true and genuine, but I didn’t have any ability to follow up with it in any way. So the way that Nick viewed it made absolute sense to me when he explained it to me. I get that because how insincere does that seem? I’m in tears in this courtroom and then you read this statement by me that says something opposite of that.

And then there was such an unbelievable sense of relief after my sentencing of like, defense is no longer in my vocabulary. I don’t defend what I did because there’s no defense for it…”

He later added: “All I can do is just make amends where possible, express my remorse and… just put my energy into something positive.” Lambesis also said he sees his and the band’s return as an ongoing process:

“…I’m not in a rush to handle this all today. I just have to be… If I’m genuinely confident in the person I’ve become I’ve just got to be myself over a long period of time.

You know in like two years from now, maybe there’s a portion of people that say ‘You know what? Ok, I’ve seen it consistently over time.’ And there’s definitely going to be a portion of people that are like ‘It doesn’t matter.’ It could be 20 years from now, I’m not ever going to give these guys a chance. And that’s fine, I have to accept that.”

Hatebreed’s Jamey Jasta Explains His Concerns Over As I Lay Dying’s Return

Jamey Jasta (Hatebreed, etc.) is among the few people in the metal community who has openly talked about As I Lay Dying’s controversial return, and during a recent episode of his podcast “The Jasta Show,” he discussed it even further. The particular episode, which can be found HERE, features Bleeding Through‘s Brandan Schieppati, who happens to be a good friend of Tim Lambesis. However, Jasta was unaware of this before recording the episode, so he decided to add a new intro to voice his concerns.

Here’s what Jasta had to say [transcribed by The PRP]:

“So I reached out to Brandan [Schieppati] saying like ‘Hey man, I wish I knew you were in contact with Tim Lambesis from As I Lay Dying because I have feelings about that whole situation.’

And this episode was recorded before Brandan posted a picture, you know, publicly aligning himself with Tim. Now I’ve since spoken to Tim and I’ve traded messages with Brandan… the verdict is still out if this is a good idea.

I wish no ill will upon anyone. But when you commit such a heinous crime and then you come out and you don’t make a statement from the band—the band that everybody in the band was like ‘I’ll never jam with this dude again, he ruined our lives.’ I shouldn’t say everybody in the band, but some people in the band we’re greatly affected by this.

Obviously it ruined the band’s career up until this point, right? So I just found it interesting that these guys would not only go back to jamming with Tim, but that also no statement, like ‘Oh, he’s a changed man’—no evidence of him being changed.

And we’ll give Tim the benefit of the doubt. I’m not saying that people can’t be rehabilitated. I’m not saying people don’t deserve a second chance. I just haven’t seen anything yet.

So when I see people following along blindly—and Brandan has a different relationship with Tim, they’ve been in contact this whole time. I wish I knew that before this episode because that would have drastically changed this episode.

I’ve dealt with people close to me in the past that had drug issues that became criminals. Some were rehabilitated, some went right back to doing the same shit they did before they were in jail, before they were caught.

I don’t want to see that happen with Tim, but I’m coming from a different place with this whole thing. I’m not just gonna follow blindly and go ‘Oh yeah dude, welcome back.’

This is gonna be a discussion that’s gonna come up on future episodes. And you see with other situations where people were acting really fucking shady—you look at Kevin Spacey, Kevin Spacey‘s not making movies right now. He doesn’t have a Netflix show.

What we do is a gift. What we do is a privilege and it’s gotta be earned. And it’s gotta be earned back if you fuck up and you hire someone to KILL. YOUR. WIFE. OK?

‘Oh, it didn’t happen. Oh, you never wanted to kill your wife? OH, You never wanted to kill somebody?’ No motherfucker I’m not saying that. Don’t fucking put words in my mouth. I’m saying what has been done… ‘Oh he served his time’—no, he served an abbreviated sentence.

Look he’s got time to show and prove. He’s got an open invite to come on the podcast and we’ve spoken. And we’re gonna have to get Brandan back on and see, because I think this is gonna be very polarizing for Bleeding Through fans—especially their female fans. With the Me Too movement going on right now and with Marta in the band, I gotta be honest I don’t think it’s a good look for him to be aligning himself with Tim Lambesis.

But they have a friendship and I like Brandan a lot. I respect him. I respect his hustle and his grind. We’ve toured before, we’ve shared a bus before. I consider him a friend but I just hope he’s not being manipulated.

And I hope that this isn’t a ploy for a band like As I Lay Dying to now get credibility off a band like Bleeding Through and that might not be the case, but this is just kind of my skeptical thinking, or my thinking right now.

And I want to be honest with my listeners and with my fans. And as you’ve seen—and this is the reason why I had to do an emergency intro before this episode—I’m like the only one who has sort of come out publicly in saying ‘Hey, hey not just yet, not just yet.’ ‘Oh well the song is a statement’, huh, OK. Interesting…

To each their own. If you want to support it and if you can separate the art from the person, that’s fine. But you are in a different position than I am in. Let’s be upfront. Let’s be honest about it. The stage is sacred. I worked my whole life, trying to treat people decently, trying to be a good guy.

You don’t just get this privilege and this honor and this gift back after an abbreviated sentence and without really a statement from the rest of the band or your ex or your kids saying ‘we’ve forgiven you.’ If that was the case then maybe my opinion would be different…”

Lambesis infamously tried to hire a hitman to kill his wife in 2013 and was released from prison in December 2016. He has since reunited with the band’s classic lineup to release a new song called “My Own Grave”. The group are currently scheduled to play a sold out show on June 16 at the SOMA Sidestage in San Diego, CA, and are planning to address their return in the near future.

As I Lay Dying: “We Understand There Are Many Questions And We Plan To Address Them”

As I Lay Dying’s return has obviously been met with some controversy and the band have finally broken their silence saying that they will address everything this week. Here’s their initial statement:

“It’s difficult to encapsulate all of the topics we want to address with a written statement. We understand there are many questions and we plan to address them this week.”

Frontman Tim Lambesis infamously tried to hire a hitman to kill his wife in 2013 and was released from prison in December 2016. He has since reunited with the band’s classic lineup to release a new song called “My Own Grave”. The group are currently scheduled to play a sold out show on June 16 at the SOMA Sidestage in San Diego, CA

As I Lay Dying Premiere “My Own Grave” Music Video, Confirm Classic Lineup Reunion

As I Lay Dying have premiered a new video for their new song “My Own Grave.” The clip also confirms that the band’s classic lineup, featuring Tim Lambesis, Nick Hipa, Josh Gilbert, Jordan Mancino and Phil Sgrosso, have officially reunited. The track serves as the group’s first new music in six years. With this news, the band have also announced that they will be performing at the SOMA Sidestage in San Diego, CA on June 16. Lambesis infamously tried to hire a hitman to kill his wife in 2013 and was released from prison in December 2016. He has since apologized for his actions.

As I Lay Dying Reunion Rumored To Feature Classic Lineup Members

As I Lay Dying recently shared a tease of some new music and the clip offered a glimpse of their current lineup. There is no official confirmation as of yet, but sites like Rock Feed, Lambgoat, and MetalSucks are reporting that the video contains some pieces of evidence (tattoos, mannerisms, instruments, etc.) that seem to suggest Jordan Mancino, Phil Sgrosso, Nick Hipa, and Josh Gilbert will be rejoining Tim Lambesis in the group. On top of that, Wovenwar, the band the others made after As I Lay Dying, hasn’t been active for months. Lambesis was released from prison in December 2016 after trying to hire a hitman to kill his wife in 2013, and his bandmates, especially Hipa, were understandably critical of his actions.