Arsis is an American technical/melodic death metal band. Characterized by their strong focus on mixing catchy songwriting with technical showmanship, as well as their heavy traditional metal influence, Arsis has become a major player in modern death metal over the years even in spite of the many, many hurdles they've had to clear.Formed in Virginia Beach, Virginia in 2000 by Berklee friends and students James Malone (vocals, guitar) and Mike Van Dyne (drums) over a mutual love of King Diamond, the band was initially not a serious endeavor, though they did record a pair of demos in 2001 and 2002 in spite of this. To the mutual surprise of Malone and Van Dyne, however, the demos actually gained a fair bit of praise, enough so that the two eventually decided to make Arsis a serious endeavor as well as a live band. This quickly led to a deal with Willowtip Records in 2003, with a full-length, A Celebration of Guilt, soon following. The near-unanimous critical praise that followed helped propel the band even further, with the A Diamond for Disease EP dropping that following year and creating an even bigger splash thanks in no small part to its twelve-minute title track. 2006 brought with it a full-time bassist in the form of Noah Martin, as well as United in Regret, their second full-length. Unfortunately for Malone and co., however, United was met with a decidedly less enthusiastic reaction. In spite of this, the band soldiered on, even welcoming in new blood in the form of hotshot young guitarist Ryan Knight, finally providing a dual lead team. Another hotshot young musician came the following year in the form of fellow Berklee grad Darren Cesca, who replaced the departing Van Dyne. This also coincided with a new record deal with Nuclear Blast, something that served as a major milestone for the band and a harbinger of greater success to come.This new, more technically-inclined lineup went on to record 2008's We Are the Nightmare, their Nuclear Blast debut, which coincided with multiple tours supporting high-profile acts. Cesca, however, did not stay for much longer, as the tensions between him and the rest of the band reached a breaking point. Alex Tomlin replaced him for the short term as a live session member, though he soon left as well and was replaced in turn by Shawn Priest. Knight and Martin left later on that year, with the former having joined The Black Dahlia Murder and the latter focusing on his college studies. Alone at the helm, Malone decided to try and keep Arsis alive anyways, with Nick Cordle quickly joining on bass before switching to guitar and Van Dyne returning to his old drum spot. Nathaniel Carter then joined in on bass the following year, creating the Starve for the Devil lineup. That album dropped in early 2010, but Carter did not stick around and was quickly replaced by a returning Noah Martin. 2011 brought with it a touring blitzkrieg, though Malone surprisingly sat out one of the tours due to his need to rebuild his life after a lengthy series of major personal problems, including a severe anorexia episode. As such, Mike Parks and Brandon Ellis filled his vocal and guitar spots, respectively.2012 brought another round of major changes. A demo version of a new song was released early in the year, but that was offset by Cordle's departure to fill Chris Amott's spot in Arch Enemy, as well as Van Dyne's (presumably) final departure to focus on his career. Brandon Ellis and Shawn Priest were welcomed in full-time as a result, creating the current lineup. Another barrage of touring followed, and the end of the year brought the free Lepers Caress EP courtesy of Scion A/V as a taste of what was to come on Unwelcome, which hit four months later in April 2013. Another whirlwind of touring is inevitable at this point, and this certainly appears to be one of the most stable eras the band has seen yet.
This band contains examples of the following tropes: