As I Lay Dying are an American Metalcore band that formed in 2000. They are named after the book of the same name. They have released seven full-length albums, the latest one having come out in 2019. On their first two albums, they had a more standard sound, though they would add elements of Melodic Death Metal beginning with the widely acclaimed Shadows are Security and Thrash Metal in their music starting with An Ocean Between Us, which has been so far been regarded by fans as their best work to date.
Frontman Tim Lambesis also runs the Comedy/Arnold Schwarzenegger tribute band Austrian Death Machine, which plays Thrash Metal/Crossover with the same metalcore influences as well as the Death Metal band Pyrithion
On May 7, 2013, frontman Tim Lambesis was arrested for allegedly trying to hire a hitman to kill his wife. He initially plead not guilty, but eventually switched his plea to guilty and was sentenced to six years in prison on May 16, 2014. During this time, the remaining members went on to form Wovenwar with Shane Blay of Oh, Sleeper (in addition to Phil Sgrosso's side project Poison Headache, which eventually became his main band after he split with Wovenwar) and have been met with a decent amount of success. Lambesis was released near the end of 2016 and in 2017, Lambesis announced he would make new music under the As I Lay Dying name, with none of the other members involved. In 2018, to the shock of the metalcore community, the original lineup reunited and released the song "My Own Grave". They then resumed touring together and released a new album in 2019 called Shaped by Fire.
- Tim Lambesis - lead vocals (2000-present)
- Phil Sgrosso - rhythm guitar (2003-2014, 2018-present)
- Beneath the Encasing of Ashes (2001)
- Frail Words Collapse (2003)
- Shadows Are Security (2005)
- An Ocean Between Us (2007)
- The Powerless Rise (2010)
- Awakened (2012)
- Shaped By Fire (2019)
Tropes associated with this Band:
- Anti-Love Song: "Comfort Betrays"
- The Atoner: The rest of the band says Tim is a lot nicer person since getting out of jail than he was for the few years before that. This is even the main lyrical theme of Shaped by Fire.
- Not Christian Rock: Despite the lack of overtly religious lyrics, they had embraced the "Christian band" label for most of their career, as all five members were Christian. However, many fans noticed that the lyrics to some tracks from Awakened expressed heavy skepticism and criticism of Christianity and religion and general. After the events that led to his arrest and guilty plea, Tim elaborated that a severe crisis of faith had caused him to briefly identify as an atheist, and that he had since returned to the faith.
- Cover Version: "War Ensemble" by Slayer, "Electric Eye" by Judas Priest, and Coffee Mug by Descendants
- Darker and Edgier: Compared to other bands of the same genre; they are slightly heavier than most.
- Drugs Are Bad: It turns out Lambesis was using steroids as an aid for his body building...needless to say, it didn't turn out well, and even tried to initially blame his infamous actions on these along with a poor marriage.
- Early-Installment Weirdness: Beneath the Encasing of Ashes is far less melodic than their later works, with some Grindcore influences and Tim using the occasional Death Metal growl in addition to his usual screams. Overall, it sounded a lot like Zao, who were one of their biggest influences.
- Indecipherable Lyrics: Good luck trying to follow the lyrics on their first three albums without a lyric sheet.
- La Résistance: The music video for The Sound of Truth.
- Lead Bassist: Josh is a type B and arguable type C as he is the most well known bassist in AILD's history.
- Lyrical Dissonance: The music itself is quite hard, even for Metalcore standards, but the lyrics are more on the depressing, sad side rather than on the aggressive one.
- Metal Scream: This is Tim's specialty. He began with a type 3, but eventually moved toward type 1, and on their latest material, he's been leaning towards using both types 1 and 3.
- New Sound Album:
- Thrash influences began showing up in An Ocean Between Us, in addition to more guitar solos This carried over to The Powerless Rise.
- ''Awakened dialed the Thrash influences back, but kept the guitar solos
- Shaped by Fire instead had a more pronounced Melodic Death Metal sound, with harmonized chainsaw riffs and more guttural vocals.
- Took a Level in Badass: Compare Tim's look in 2010◊(he's the one in the center) to 2012◊. Yes, that's the same guy. Sadly, it also came with a huge Took a Level in Jerkass. He's since then been atoning since being released.
- The Power of Rock: The music video for the cover of Electric Eye has the band using their music to fight a giant scorpion.
- The Sociopath: After his arrest, lead guitarist Nick Hipa publicly called Tim a psychopath and said that the behavior on display was not new, and that while they never expected him to go quite that far, it wasn't inconceivable. Ultimately subverted as Tim did learn from his misadventure and has done his best to mend bridges after being paroled.
- Soprano and Gravel: Tim Lambesis does the harsh vocals while Josh Gilbert does the clean singing.
- Start My Own: Jordan Mancino, Nick Hipa, Phil Sgrosso and Josh Gilbert all started Wovenwar with Shane Blay of Oh, Sleeper after Tim's arrest, while Phil additionally helped found Poison Headache and later split with Wovenwar to focus on it.
- Thrash Metal: Not a full-fledged example, nor even a partial example, but they had elements of in in their later work, though they ditched it on their last album prior to Tim's arrest.
- Vocal Evolution: Starting with An Ocean Between Us, Tim's voice became deeper, less phleghmy, and easier to understand. The 2021 song "Roots Below" introduced Death Metal growls that originated in Pyrithion.
- Vocal Tag Team: Of the Soprano and Gravel variety, with Tim providing the screams and Josh providing the singing.