Friday, June 19, 2009

Oh, Sleeper - not your typical metalcore band

I recently wrote a story on Christian metalcore band Oh, Sleeper. They're on Solid State Records, the same label as Demon Hunter, Haste the Day, Underoath, etc.

Here's the story (originally posted on!

Metal band has Christian roots but don't expect them to preach

By Anne Erickson, Lansing State Journal

"I like knowing that somebody out there is listening to our music and are getting more out of it than moshing at a show. It means a lot when people are really relying on our songs to help them through something, because music was really magical for me when I was younger."

That's the favorite part of making music for Ryan Conley, drummer for Fort Worth, Texas, metal band Oh, Sleeper. Granted, they aren't your typical hard rock band. The group's tracks are fierce, brash and menacing, but there is also an underlying message of hope in the final outcome.

"We all agreed that if we were going to do this aggressive music, we also wanted to play music that was victorious, music that would help people conquer their problems and not just whine about them," said Conley.

The guys of Oh, Sleeper are vets of the Texas hardcore scene. Three of the group's five members hail from former Christian emo band Terminal. After Terminal broke up, the guys took some time off and then put together Oh, Sleeper, which includes Conley, vocalist Micah Kinard, guitarist Shane Blay, guitarist James Erwin and bass player Lucas Starr.

Oh, Sleeper's recent full-length, which is out on Solid State Records, is titled, "When I Am God." It's a purposely controversial title from a band that's mostly made up of Christians, but doesn't want to push its beliefs onto anyone.

"Christianity is a big part of the band, but we're very much against commercializing Jesus and the belief of Christianity," Conley said. "When I Am God is more or less a way of saying that we want to let God be God, and to let us be followers of Him."

In the end, the album is about serving the band's fans.

"We basically want to make music that helps people," said Conley. "We are not a ministry, and we're not here to preach to kids. We play music to help empower kids to live their lives the right way. If it helps them get through the breakup of their girlfriend or suicidal tendencies, then that's what I want."

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