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Peace comes through struggle. It's a reward that's earned rather than simply given. It's the product of tireless work and an unbreakable spirit against all odds and opposition. OTHERWISE are no strangers to that struggle, rising up to become rock 'n' roll contenders in the face of a tumultuous musical climate and a series of personal hardships. The Las Vegas hard alternative rock quintet-Adrian Patrick [vocals], Ryan Patrick [guitar/vocals], Corky Gainsford [drums/vocals], Vassilios Metropoulos [bass], & Andrew Pugh [guitar/vocals]-catalog the next chapter of this journey on their second full-length album, Peace At All Costs [Century Media Records].
The ride starts with that very title. Adrian explains, "Our grandmother used to always say it. Peace At All Costs is a double entendre. We interpret the phrase as, 'Give us peace, or we'll take it from you.' The whole point of us being on this musical odyssey is our search for peace. We want to do something impactful in the world, and we're not going to stop. We're starting with ourselves first. It's about finding inner peace and restoring equilibrium within yourself. Music allows us to do that."
Their music has given countless fans worldwide the same outlet. By 2014, the band's debut True Love Never Dies moved nearly 60,000 copies and spawned close to 300,000 single sales of the hits "Soldiers," "I Don't Apologize (1000 Pictures)," and "Die For You." The group toured alongside heavy hitters such as Stone Sour, Papa Roach and Three Days Grace, and gave rousing performances at high-profile festivals including Rock On The Range, Aftershock, Rocklahoma, Carolina Rebellion, and Welcome To Rockville. However, Peace At All Costs raises the stakes across the board for the Vegas outfit.
In order to convey their message palpably and potently, OTHERWISE teamed up with iconic producer David Bottrill [Tool, Muse, Staind, Stone Sour]. Holing up in Vegas View Studios, the boys pushed themselves immensely with Bottrill's wisdom and encouragement.
"He really did contribute to the vibe of the album," Adrian goes on. "Whether it was changing the tempo from section to section or altering the key, David brought these new ideas to the fold, and you can hear them in each and every song. From top to bottom, the album has a lot of personality because of his contributions."
The musicians also had the chance to experience the other side of their hometown while recording. Vegas View Studios sits on the edge of the Las Vegas Valley, offering a stunning panorama of the wilderness surrounding the city. "It was the most beautiful view," affirms the singer. "Most recording studios are like casinos. There are no windows. You go in, and you have no idea what time it is. We had a beautiful vista of our hometown, and it lent to inspiration every night we were working." That lush expanse carries over into the first single "Darker Side of the Moon." Building from a thick distorted guitar into a robust melody, the song blasts off on a hypnotic and hard-hitting hook, opening up the doorway into Peace At All Costs.
"I've always been fascinated with the moon ever since I was a kid," affirms Adrian. "I'm still drawn to it as a grown-up. I find myself lost in it without even knowing what I'm doing sometimes. We've faced a lot of tragedies and dark times, and that song represents us. We're always going to try and look for the light in the darkness. We'll thrive there if we have to. There's a whole dark side of the moon we don't know about, and we're going to explore it. That's what's happening musically on this album."
That experimentation hits a high note during "Never Say." With its massive stadium-size refrain and rapturous instrumentation, the track brandishes undeniable universality. "It's one of two songs blatantly about romantic relationships on the album," says the vocalist. "My parents have been together for over thirty years. No matter what they go through, they refuse to walk away from each other. We completely admire our mom and dad and that loyalty. My brother and I have brought that into our own relationships. I have someone in my life who has helped pull me out of the emotional abyss I was in. She's shown me what it's like to be happy again. I don't want to be the one to say goodbye."
At the same time, the album still delivers a distinct wallop on the pummeling, riff-driven opener "Love & War," co-written with songwriters Julien Jorgensen and Matty McCloskey. Seesawing between a guillotine-sharp guitar and a distinct groove, it explodes on impact. "The guitar was just nasty," smiles Adrian. "The melody came right out. I was arguing with my girlfriend at the time, and it shaped the lyrics and subject matter of the song."
Ultimately, OTHERWISE do achieve Peace At All Costs, and they hope you will too. He concludes, "Our main goal is for people to feel hope. We attempted to do that on True Love Never Dies. We want to continue that fight on this and subsequent albums. There are so many emotions in life. You're not just always angry, happy, or sad. When the dark moments come, you just have to stay strong within yourself and you can make it through. We need to stay hopeful together. That's the point."