Erra is a five piece progressive metalcore band formed in 2009 from Birmingham, Alabama. Thanks to riding the wave of djent in the 2010s, a lot of hard work, and a bit of luck they established themselves as one of the most popular and genre defining bands of the 2010 metalcore scene.
Erra had humble beginnings when high school friends Jesse Cash (guitars, vocals), Garrison Lee (harsh vocals), Alex Ballew (drums), Adam Hicks (bass), and Alan Ridgon (guitar) decided to start a band. They released two EPs during this time, a self-titled EP and Andromeda. Neither EP set the world on fire, but they did get the attention of Tragic Hero Records, who signed them in 2011. Erra would release their first LP, Impulse in 2011 and they hit the ground running touring with bands such as Born of Osiris and Upon a Burning Body. In 2012 Adam Hicks left the band and was replaced by Sean Price. As usual, more touring occurred throughout 2012. The band would hit the studio again and release their second LP, Augment in 2013. Augment saw the band getting more attention and started going on bigger tours.
2014 was a really busy year for Erra. Garrison Lee and Alan Ridgon both left the band. Sean Price switched from the bass to guitars and Ian Eubanks was brought in as Erras harsh vocalist. Erras contract with Tragic Hero came to an end and they signed on to Sumerian Records and released the Moment of Clarity' EP in 2015. Erra embarked on their first headline tour in 2015 and started touring internationally, doing a Japan run with Within the Ruins and Earthists. Unfortunately, Ian Eubanks time with the band was short lived, as poor technique and health issues made it difficult for him to perform. He would leave the band after a winter tour with Tesseract and The Contortionist. After a bit of deliberation, JT Cavey (ex-Texas in July) joined Erra at the start of 2016 and tracked vocals for Erras third LP, Drift. More tours ensued, joining the Sumerian 10 Year Anniversary tour with Born of Osiris, Veil of Maya, and After the Burial and doing direct support for August Burns Red in fall 2016. Connor Hesse would join the band late 2016 as their full-time bassist and they would go on their first European run with Northlane.
Erra would continue on as normal during 2017-2018, touring as much as they can if not doing direct support, then doing their own headline shows. They eventually found time to record their fourth LP, Neon in 2018 which went to number 1 on Billboards Heatseeker chart. 2019 was a bit easier for the band. Jesse Cash took his side project Ghost Atlus on the road for the first time, but Erra would quickly get back on the touring circuit supporting We Came As Romans and Crown the Empire and doing their own co-headliner with Northlane in America, as well as supporting August Burns Red in Europe. Erra would release two new singles, Eye of God and a cover of Queens of the Stone Ages You Think I Aint Worth a Dollar, But I Feel Like a Millionaire. In August 2020 Erra released a new single titled "Snowblood" and announced they signed to UNFD. New music is slated for 2021 and Erra will continue as normal for the foreseeable future.
Discography (full lengths in bold):
- Erra (2009, EP)
- Andromeda (2010, EP)
- Impulse (2011)
- Augment (2013)
- Moment of Clarity (2015, EP)
- Drift (2016)
- Neon (2018)
- Eye of God (2019, EP)
- Snowblood (2020, single)
- ERRA (2021)
- ERRA Deluxe Edition (2022. An Updated Re Release of Erra that includes seven new tracks.)
WE ARE THE TROPES, OF THE OMEGA, GENERATION!:
- Amicable Exes: The band is on good terms with Ian Eubanks. Hilariously, when Erra isnt on the road JT works at Ians bar in Alabama!
- The Band Minus the Face: When Ghost Atlus goes on tour, its the same lineup as Erra without JT.
- Cover Song: A cover of Queens of the Stone Ages You Think I Ain't Worth a Dollar, but I Feel Like a Millionaire was released as a single. Erra recorded three new covers for the self-titled Deluxe Edition that included Muse's "Stockholm Syndrome," Audio Slave's "Light My Way," and Nine Inch Nails' "Hersey."
- Deep South: Averted, despite being from Alabama.
- Djent: The scene they were associated with the most when they started out; this was most apparent on Impulse, but they dialed down the djent influence on later releases for a more flowing, progressive sound.
- Epic Rocking: Render the Void (5:48), Dementia (7:36, their longest song), Safehaven (6:22), The Hypnotist (5:55), and "Lunar Halo" (5:52).
- Epileptic Flashing Lights: The visual video for "House of Glass" which thankfully warns the viewer about it's flashing lights.
- Expy: Vocally, Jesse Cash is noted to be one to Saosins Cover Reber. JT has a lot in common with August Burns Red's Jake Luhrs not only vocally, but their appearances as both bald, bearded, burly frontmen. Funnily enough, JT DID fill in for Jake on one date of August Burns Reds European tour, when Jake was too sick to perform.
- Grief Song: Heart, which is about the death of Garrisons father and Continuum, which is about the death of Jesses first girlfriend.
- I Am the Band: Jesse Cash is the main driving force behind the band and primary lyricist. This is most apparent on Drift where Jesse wrote and tracked ALL of the guitar and bass parts and wrote the majority of the lyrics. Played even straighter with Ghost Atlus, where he writes all of the music.
- Large Ham: JT LOVES the spotlight, thats for sure.
- Longest Song Goes Last: Dementia on Augment and Render the Void on Impulse.
- Metalcore: The style of music and scene they associate with, and more often then not the bands they frequently tour with.
- Metal Scream: Garrison and Jesse give out good ones in Hybrid Earth. IN HUMANITY CROWNS THE EARTH!
- New Sound Album:
- Augment would clean up the vocals from Impulse and focus more on riffing than straight up djenty-chugs.
- Drift would add in a significant amount of progressive metal elements and vary up the song structure more, with varying song lengths and different heaviness levels.
- Neon downplayed the progressive elements for an early 2010 metalcore sound, albeit with a stronger focus on riffs and guitar solos.
- Nobody Loves the Bassist: During the early part of the Drift touring cycle they didnt have a full time bassist, either relying on a touring musician or tracked bass. Connor Hesse would join as Erras full time bassist in 2016.
- One-Word Title: The bands name, all of their studio albums, and all of the song names on Drift. Jesse must be a fan of this trope.
- Progressive Metal: Helped codify the progressive metalcore style of music note along with Periphery and Northlane. Erras style of music would later be cited as an influence by similar bands such as Novelists FR, Earthists, and Aviana.
- Sequel Song: Psalm of Sedition off of the deluxe edition of the self-titled is this to Disarray from Neon.
- Smoking Is Cool: Highlighted by Alex in the Skyline music video.
- Soprano and Gravel: Jesses cleans with Garrison/Ian/JT screaming their brains out. That said, in the Self-Titled Album JT started incorporating more cleans.
- Special Guest: Not for any of their studio albums, but Jesse appeared on Invent Animates Naturehold and Novelists FRs Joie de vivre.
- Courtney LaPlante appears on a version of Vanish Canvas released months after the self-titled (which is the bands first guest vocal spot since Impulses Obscure Words which featured the vocalist of Jesse and Alexs old deathcore band, Adam Langston).
- Surprisingly Gentle Song: Skyline and Drift, though the latter isnt necessarily in a sad/somber way. "Memory Fiction" plays it straight, being the only song in Erra's discography to not have any harshes.
- Teen Genius: The band dropped both of their first EPs when they were in high school.
- True Companions: Jesse with Trey from Invent Animate. The two hang out frequently and Jesse regularly gives Trey (and the rest of his band) a good ribbing, but theyre thick as thieves at the end of the day.
- Updated Re Release: Erra released a "Deluxe Edition" of their self-titled early in 2022, with three new songs, three covers, and a feature from from Coutrney LaPlante on a new version of "Vaniash Canvas."
- Word Salad Lyrics: Some of Jesse's lyrics can be really out there. From "Divisionary:"Distraction is clandestine
but we all have the passcode.
Identities wander as autonomous shadows.
The concept animates in reflective visage.
Man creates God in his own image.