East of Eden
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East of Eden


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"The Petitioner EP Review"

East of Eden – The Petitioner EP
The six lads from East of Eden have a lot to be proud of. Their six-track EP displays a maturity not often seen in a band so fresh on the scene. Mixing elements of metalcore, hardcore and punk-pop melody, this band displays a progressive diversity that sets them apart from the herd. While most post-hardcore bands stay true to the stock standard blast-beat verse, melodic chorus and inevitable breakdown in the bridge, East of Eden like to remain unpredictable. The six songs on their debut EP flow in a way that makes them easy to listen to on endless repeat. Technical guitar riffs, borrowed from blues and jazz, weave their way behind heavy bass and a powerful double-kick, adding a beautiful continuity to the music as time signatures shift and beats frequently change. Amidst the heavy, drop-tuned sound of the instruments can be heard the vocals of Spencer Jones and Hugh Ozumba. Eschewing the cliché of screamed verses and clean-sung choruses, the two vocalists cleverly alternate between each other. Hugh’s deep growl and Spencer’s pop-punk-reminiscent melodies add yet another dynamic to the music that lends to its catchiness. Each time the tracks are listened to, a different aspect of the music comes into focus, whether it be the guitar, drumming, vocals, interludes or even gang vocals on tracks such as ‘Miracles’. Highlights of the album are definitely two of the bands older tracks which are also highly popular live. ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ features two breakdowns which promise to be ear candy to anyone who loves a good throwdown while at the same time the song provokes thought with evocative lyrics. The crowd-pleasing ‘Mount of Olives’ adds gang-vocals to its sing-along chorus that, while captured excellently on the EP, is infinitely more enjoyable to join in live. Indeed, this independent EP release is impeccably recorded by the band and mixed by lead vocalist Hugh Ozumba who is also an audio engineer. But to truly experience the band, attending a live show is a must. The liveness of a show adds intensity and emotion to the band’s performance that inspires involuntary head banging and leaves one with well-enjoyed hearing loss. 4 ½ starts bro, 4 ½ stars. - Craccum (official student magazine of The Auckland University)

"Expelled from the garden - an interview with East of Eden"

Craccum interviews up-and-coming post-hardcore band East of Eden. This young band has already opened for some big names in the scene, including Pierce The Veil and Attack Attack! We asked them what it was like and how they have come so far so quickly.

What was it like opening for Pierce The Veil, Attack Attack! and of Mice & Men?

Ryan: Yeah they were bands I’d heard of that I wasn’t necessarily into, but the fact that they’ve toured extensively and we’re opening for them.
Spencer: We had pretty much just started out then so it blew us away to get something that big that fast. It was just ridiculous.

How soon after you started did you get that gig?

Hugh: it was our fourth show that we opened for Attack Attack!

Spencer: so that was a bit ridiculous.

How did you guys get it?

Cameron: Because we have Ryan in the band [laughs].

Ryan: yeah my friend organises gigs and stuff. He knew our genre and he thought it was quite fitting. He had faith in us and since then he’s supported us by putting us on numerous shows. He’s been a great help as far as getting ourselves out there.

What’s the inspiration behind your music?

Hugh: We’ll start with musically. When we first started East of Eden it was a side project with myself and Spencer. We were inspired by bands like Misery Signals and Life in Your way – it’s sort of like a blend of hardcore, metalcore and melodic elements. I guess we wanted to bring the spiritual vibe and represent that musically, if that can be done. That’s what we wanted to go for. It sort of morphed along the way out of listening to other types of music. We took inspiration from bands like Haunted Shores, Periphery, Volumes. The main thing is just that it’s melodic and progressive; it’s different. We always wanted to be something else, not something that everyone else does; experimenting with different time signatures and all sorts of musical passages.

What about lyrically?

Hugh: well, obviously we’re a Christian band so it all comes from there. When we first started writing lyrics we sort of envisioned us as an alternative to your typical Jesus Culture, Hillsong, Planet Shakers. We wanted to bring a worship element for kids who don’t resonate with your typical worship music but instead can relate to the heavy sort of music. So we thought if we brought the worship style lyrics into our music that would be really effective. We took lyrics from our individual walks and times in our spiritual lives when we’ve had our highs and our lows and we try to represent that. Alongside worshipping God we’re trying to be honest with what we say; that it’s not always rosy. There is just an element of being honest and being true, but also we do want to focus on our faith and what it means to us.

What have been your favourite shows/places to play?

Ryan: I liked Zeal in Wellington.

Spencer: Zeal Wellington was pretty mean.

Ryan: I think it was because by then we were all comfortable in the band and what we were doing. Playing Zeal again would be a completely different experience to the first time we played it because we’ve matured since then. But yeah, Zeal Wellington’s been my favourite show. Either that or Ellen Melville.

Hugh: Yeah, I was going to say Ellen Melville. For me and Cam especially it’s quite nostalgic. We used to go to shows there pretty much every weekend. Old school punk shows. I always used to dream about one day playing at Ellen Melville. And when we actually played there it was like ‘wow’.

Spencer: And Parachute. Parachute was incredible. We were blown away. We didn’t expect half the amount of people that turned up.
I was at Parachute and that was the biggest hardcore show I saw. It was the biggest pit I’ve seen at Parachute.

Ryan: we weren’t even planning to play Parachute. We got a call saying ‘hey a band dropped out” two weeks before.

Spencer: Because we got turned down first time [laughs]. But yeah, it blew us away.

Hugh: we expected no one to turn up.

Any tips for hardcore pits?

Ryan: I think just with a pit, if you get hit don’t be shocked. You’ve kind of got to expect it

Spencer: With hardcore dancing, what I always do is go in there and tense every muscle of my body so you’re prepared to be hit. So you’re tensing everything but dancing at the same time, so if you get hit you’re okay. It’s all part of the fun.

Hugh: You want to create a shield with your flailing arms [laughs].

Cameron: Protect the head!

Ryan: It’s a funny thing because you don’t want to hit anyone but the dancing you’re doing is going to hurt people.

Does anyone want to explain hardcore dancing for those who don’t know what it is?

Spencer: I don’t really know what it is to be honest [laughs].

Ryan: for me and the majority of the hardcore scene in the country and worldwide it’s like an expression. People express feelings through normal dance, and this is like our expression. Let’s say I was really agreeing with what James from The Voyage was saying on stage, I’ll express that by looking silly and throwing down. I think it’s also a means of getting anger out as well. There’s a lot of angry kids in this scene. As much as it’s weird to say, it’s a safe way of getting anger out. Yeah it’s quite dangerous, but better that than going out and trying to hit some people. So yeah, it’s expression and a method of therapy for some.

Spencer: it’s also been described as fighting invisible ninjas. Or like krumping for hardcore kids.

How is the state of the local hardcore scene?

Ryan: It’s definitely shrinking

Cameron: I think the quality of bands coming out is getting better. But there is probably less big bands. There are a lot of bands sort of at the same level, which is cool. There’s no one really massive – we’re all moving and growing at the same time

Ryan: I think that’s a reflection of New Zealand as a music scene. You can only get so big in New Zealand before you have to take it elsewhere. Addison and bands like that had to move to Australia. But there are some up and coming bands like As Colour Fades and Edge of Fury

Cameron: There’s a real good sense of community. We’re all good friends and I guess we want to expand that. - Craccum (official student magazine of The Auckland University)


East of Eden DEMO (2009)
-1. The Diary of Anne Frank
-2. Once on Silk Road
-3. Nineveh
-4. Mount of Olives

The Petitioner EP (2011)
-1. Excerpts
-2. The Diary of Anne Frank
-3. Arrival
-4. Once on Silk Road
-5. Miracles
-6. Mount of Olives



It was just two years ago when the idea of a melodic, progressive hardcore, worship-driven musical project in NZ was deemed pure wishful thinking. Nevertheless, motivated by their Christian faith and a love for music, vocalists Spencer Jones and Hugh Ozumba set about creating this sound and searching for four more passionate musicians to share their vision.

Spencer and Hugh began in 2008 by self-producing the first East of Eden single, “The Diary of Anne Frank”, a strong declaration of the aggressive, passionate and emotional musical and lyrical direction they would take. After the song was released online and began to accumulate plays, it became evident that they were not only serious about their vision, but had the potential to cultivate it.

One by one the soon-to-be members East of Eden began to come into light. Veteran bassist Cameron Couper and experienced blues guitarist Geoff Ong brought their share of passion and musical virtuosity to the table and joined the search for the two remaining members which would complete East of Eden. Soon came the young but impressive drummer and guitarist Ryan Wilson. With experience and maturity far beyond his age, Ryan comfortably led the rhythm section on drums.

However, as time elapsed and the pain-staking search for the last member continued to yield no results, it became increasingly apparent that there might not be anyone who would be suitable as the second guitarist. It was at this point that drummer Glen Ellis stepped out into the open, provoking excitement amongst the current members at the prospect of having a complete ensemble. The band made the decision to shift Ryan to guitar and let Glen command the backline, completing the full East of Eden line up.

Having played shows alongside international artists such as Attack Attack and Of Mice & Men, and with the debut of their first six track release, The Petitioner EP, East of Eden has already managed to generate much excitement amongst the local crowd and is considered amongst fans as “[one of] NZ’s best and brightest bands” (Live Access Photography liveaccessphotography.webs.com). Driven by faith, zeal, love, and a strive for excellence; East of Eden hopes to bring a new level of energy, power, and worship into the NZ music scene.