Rolling with the punches

All That Remains still going strong after seven records

All That Remains want listeners to make the most of what life hands them.

The Massachusetts metal band - currently comprised of vocalist Phil Labonte, guitarists Oli Herbert and Mike Martin, bassist Jeanne Sagan and drummer Jason Costa - has been active since 1998 and just released a new album called The Order of Things at the end of February.

“When people try to really control everything in their life they usually seem to end up a frazzled mess. What you want to control is your reaction to what happens because a lot of things you can’t do anything about. That’s just the way things are and that’s the inspiration behind our new album title,” Labonte says.

The Order of Things features everything from heavy metalcore that’s perfect for the pit, modern rock jams with clean vocals and some acoustic ballads to help slow things down a notch.  

“I think our longevity boils down to always being OK with trying new stuff. We experiment with as much stuff as we can because you never know what’s going to work and what doesn’t,” Labonte says.

After dropping four records with Killswitch Engage’s Adam D as producer, All That Remains switched things up by selecting Josh Wilbur, who has previously worked with Lamb of God and Gojira.

The group met up with Wilbur last May and say the decision to bring him on board was a no-brainer.

“He’s a really smart guy and he definitely brought a new perspective to the band. He even helped me co-write some of the lyrics, which was a new thing because I’ve always written the lyrics by myself. It wasn’t necessarily a conscious decision to have him help out either. He just shared some of his ideas and I decided to take his advice,” Labonte says.

“No Knock” is the first All That Remains song that features the f-word, but Labonte says he takes full credit for that one.

“That song is super heavy and fit the vibe. I just had to finally do it,” he says.

Overall Labonte says he’s happy with this record and admits that it’s a step up from 2012’s A War You Cannot Win.

“There was some stuff I thought could have done better with the last one. I wasn’t super happy with the mix and some of the tones and stuff, but I think this new one is a step up. When you’re fortunate enough to do seven records obviously you’re going to have some you don’t like as much,” he says.

For the rest of 2015 the band plans to hit the road hard and will be returning to Winnipeg this month.

“Because the cities are so far away the shows are always really good and we’re pumped to get in front of a Canadian audience again,” he says.

“Nowadays you really have to get out there and tour so I’m sure we’re going to be quite busy for the next 18 months or so.”

Published in Volume 69, Number 24 of The Uniter (March 11, 2015)

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