Faith In Exile
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Faith In Exile

Pottsville, Pennsylvania, United States | SELF

Pottsville, Pennsylvania, United States | SELF
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"Faith In Exile MMC 14 Live Review"

“…Faith In Exile’s stage show was impressive even though they hardly had any room to move at Jackson’s Junction” - Pennsylvania Musician Magazine - Rachel Rocks


"Faith In Exile MMC 14 Live Review - 2010"

“…the group’s song material was consistently hard-hitting and volatile, with explosive and angry choruses, dark melody lines and instrumental intensity on all fronts.” - Pennsylvania Musician Magazine - Jim Price


"Faith In Exile Set To Release New CD"

Back in 2005 a couple of guys were sitting around tossing some band names around when someone suggested Broken Faith. As they continued the conversation, one of the guys suggested Faith in Exile and it stuck.

The band formed in late 2005. Since January 2006, Faith in Exile has been comprised of Rob Allison on vocals and guitar, Brandon Foti on guitar, Allen Buehner on bass and Ron Gubala on drums.

They are four guys who play music from the heart.

"We're not ashamed to touch on subjects that other bands might shy away from. We don't like to be labeled as a certain genre because one single label really doesn't do the band justice. We don't want to be pigeonholed," said Allison.

"We pull from rock, metal, blues and everything in between. Honestly, I think living in the coal region has been our biggest influence. The dark and gloomy look and feel of this place really takes root in our music. And I can't forget about the guys in Dead Leaves, their CD 'Your Kind Is Labeled' is still one of the best albums I own and in the past few years has really influenced us as a band," he said.

Faith in Exile is rooted in hard rock and metal. Old Metallica and Megadeth have been influences, especially for Foti and Buehner. Bands like Killswitch Engage, All That Remains, Soilwork, Lamb of God, In Flames, The Faceless and an amazing Swedish band Katatonia have been big influences as well.

Allison first became interested in music when he picked up a guitar that his dad had in the house and decided he wanted to play. The rest is history. The ultimate goal is to be able to make a decent living off of playing music. If that means the band is signed to a major label, great. If it means they are an extremely successful independent band that is perfectly fine by them as well. Overall, the best thing is playing live to Faith in Exile fans.

The band has had the privilege of opening for some national acts such as Alice in Chains, Red, Buckcherry, Days of the New and Tantric.

"I know if you ask Buehner and Foti who they would like to open for, they would both say Metallica and the response would be because 'And Justice For All' is the best album ever recorded," Allison said.

There are so many great tools for independent musicians out there especially the Internet.

"It is entirely in the realm of possibility to be an extremely successful band without being signed to a label. That wasn't the case 10 years ago. The ability to connect with fans via social networking has really revolutionized everything about the industry," said Allison.

"Two of the worst things to happen over the years are laptop computers, where now anyone can be a DJ and the other is the sheer lack of original music in this area. I've always considered the ability to express one's self as the point of playing music. You express your own unique self by writing your own songs. The concept of 'cover bands' and 'party bands' has always confused me," he said.

Faith in Exile has been working on their new CD for the past two years. They started recording "In Defiance of Suffering in early May at Thorium Productions in Saint Clair.

"The title of the CD is really a reflection on all of the negative events that have plagued the world lately. It is a statement that really says 'We aren't going to take this sitting down.' We are going to try to make a difference with our music. We need to be able to rise above all of the negative feelings." said Allison.

He said his favorite song to perform is "Malakai," the first track on the CD.

"It's the proverbial 'punch in the face.' I don't think there could have been a better track to kick off the album," he said.

The CD is heavy; you can definitely tell they are not holding anything back. They have worked extremely hard to write and perfect the songs over a period of time. Faith in Exile really went for broke on this album.

The most important lesson they have learned is patience.

"For this CD we wrote about 30 songs and then we narrowed those down to about 15. From there we whittled them down even more to get to the songs that are on the CD. So writing good songs we are happy with is a challenge. But you have to write some clunkers to get to the gems," Allison said. "As for the writing, I usually come up with the main idea for the song and everybody else adds their own parts and unique touches to it. Sometimes one of the other guys comes in with a riff or idea and we will build around that."

He explains that inspiration comes from life in general. Writing is like therapy for him and it gives him an opportunity to get things off his chest or allows him to get on his soapbox about topics that are bothering him at the time.

It is tough being an original band and funding the making of a full-length CD.

"A lot of people do not realize just how much money goes into a project like this. Between gear, recording and replication costs, websites, merchandise and travel, it really adds up very quickly," said Allison.

The new CD will be available on iTunes in September or you can also get a copy of the CD from

www.cdbaby.com/faithinexile. Better yet, get out to a show, say hello and grab a copy there!

The CD release show is set for 10 p.m. Sept. 4 at Striker's Pub, Pottsville. There is no cover. Among the Heroes will be kicking off the night. The new CD and new merchandise will be for sale for the first time that night. The local shows are always packed so we suggest you get there early.

"We have really grown a lot both as people and as musicians in the past year or so. We are getting much better but we still have a long way to go. But we have the passion and the drive to take this as far as we can," said Allison.

You can catch Faith In Exile at one of their upcoming shows:

Sept. 4 - Striker's Pub, Pottsville

Sept. 18 - Trippin' Billie Pottsville

Sept. 25 -Striker's Pub Pottsville, Make-A-Wish Carnival
- Pottsville Republican - Gina Tutko-Usalis


"Faith In Exile"

I am not a woman of faith, but indeed I have found a few bands in the area that I have faith may make it beyond the small Schuylkill County stages in the next few months and years as the talent develops, and Faith in Exile is one!

This young band brings with them an enthusiastic crowd, a range of music beyond their years and the soul of coal-country in their lyrics and performance.


Not unlike many other local musicians, these four men produce a sound that would not be readily heard on the glitter and eyeliner pop oriented local radio station, but Faith in Exile’s music could easily make airplay on stations like 97.9 the X.

Trash talked often, the band has persevered and produced a range of original songs that make them an act you cannot miss.

At times the reluctant lead vocalist, Rob Allison, seems to stretch a little too far out of his comfort zone, but brings home the big notes and the conviction in his delivery.

Brandon Foti anchors the front core, holding the guitar like an extension of himself and bringing the crowd with him on a tour of what the instrument can do.

Drummer Ron Gubala plays in the pocket well and when given the opportunity to showcase his talent steps up to the plate like a major league hitter on a streak.

Finally, bassist Allen Buehner solidifies the sound of the metal-influenced, hard rock/alternative band with great skill.

The performances of Faith in Exile that this SkookOwl was able to see, at Strikers Pub in Pottsville and Clamtown Steak and Ale, were high energy, and extremely entertaining. This is a far cry, even by the band’s admission, from their stage presence and performances of 2008 and before.

With the talent in the band, one may also ask them to push a bit farther in taking risks with their song choice, composition and live performance.

While they could still work to improve these elements, overall, Faith in Exile is a band well worth their cover and the drive.

The band also provided a free EP to this SkookOwl on Friday, May 29 after their show at Striker’s and it has scarcely left my CD player since that time. The first of the band’s albums, Three Feet Under, Halfway Home, provides a good preview for an earlier rendition of the band, but does not do the current construction and constitution of the band justice. Look for Faith in Exile’s second album in 2009.
- SkookOwl (www.skookowl.com)


"Three Feet Under, Halfway Home CD Review"

Recorded at C&C Recording Works, “Three Feet Under, Halfway Home,” was a labor of love for the Pottsville-native rock band, Faith in Exile. Recorded in sessions over a number of months, FIE worked very hard on this 8-track album, and it shows. There are no “filler” songs here; each track is just as good as the next.

With the addition of a second guitarist, their sound has grown heavier with an added depth. Plain and simple, this is just a really good rock album. What I find different about FIE and this album is the surprising level of maturity in their work. They display talent and range beyond their years

One thing we at WOM believe in when it comes to writing CD reviews is listening to the album more than once. I’ve been listening to this one nonstop for a few days now, and I know I will be still after this review is written. FIE’s songs are memorable and intelligent (two things that rarely exist in the same song these days).

“Dismorphia” is a personal favorite of ours, since we visited the band in the studio when they started recording it. “Man Down” is the big surprise, the song no one heard until the album was out. It’s a beautiful, heartfelt song, a bit toned-down, yet still FIE-style. “The Art of Burning Bridges” was my first favorite of their songs (dating back to the first time I saw the band perform live), and it’s my favorite on the album.
- Word Of Mouth Magazine (www.wordofmouthpa.com)


"Faith In Exile - Three Feet Under, Halfway Home CD Review"

George Bernard Shaw once wrote, “youth is wasted on the young.” In the case of Schuylkill County band, Faith In Exile, Mr. Shaw could not have been more wrong. One of the newest, youngest and (most importantly) hardest working bands around, Faith In Exile have just released their debut CD, “Three Feet Under, Half Way Home” and their youth has stood them well. Having already opened for bands such as Alice In Chains, Buckcherry, Powerman 5000 and more in their short existence, Faith In Exile has overcome their youth with road experience delivering a solid release. While at first listen, Faith In Exile may sound like any other “nu rock,” “X radio” band upon closer inspection you will find road tested songs with tight arrangements and intelligent and personal lyrics from FIE lead guitarist and lead vocalist Rob Allison with writing help from former band mate Justin Frank. The willingness of the guitarists, Allison and Brandon Foti, to experiment with varied guitar tones (a tip of the hat to producer/engineer Ivan Justofin at C&C Recording Works as well) goes a long way to separating FIE from the rest of the “dropped D,” “nu rock” pack. With 8 songs clocking in at only 30 minutes “Three Feet” does run a little short on time but this is a minor quibble for a CD that delivers a lot in that 30 minutes. Faith In Exile is a band just beginning to find it’s legs but with their strong work ethic and willingness to grow they could be around for a long time. George Bernard Shaw lived into his early 90s and possibly wrote the above quote when he was very old and maybe just a bit envious of the youth. Don’t worry though, with bands like Faith In Exile youth is well served.
—reviewed by Sterling Koch
- Pennsylvania Musician Magazine


"Faith In Exile Sonicbids Submission Review"

Hailing from the hard coal region of Pottsville, this back rocks as hard as the anthracite their home area is known for.

If there was any criticism that I could find with the band, is that when the band plays the fast songs, they are very on, like the songs available for review, “One False Word” and “The Art of Burning Bridges.” The slower one, “Suffocate” just didn’t jump out at me, it was okay, but nothing that stood out.

Still, this band is worth a look either through their tracks or playing a gig around the area.

3.5/5 - Shinbone Magazine


"Featured Band- Faith In Exile"

In a time where bands with gimmicks that follow current trends seem to be running rampant, it’s absolutely refreshing to find a band like Faith in Exile.

I think they describe it best themselves: Since the fall of 2005, Faith In Exile has been giving their fans honest, powerful, and memorable hard rock with their own signature style.

That’s the feeling that comes across during their live performances: honest, powerful and memorable rock. These guys know how to put on a good show, and they’ve got the talent to back it up! This is definitely one band you do not want to miss! In fact, I dare you to go to one of their shows and not be impressed!

The band recently shared the stage with Alice In Chains, Buckcherry, Ra, Socialburn, and Powerman 5000, and have just finished up their summer tour.

FIE is planning on recording this fall, with an album due out early 2007. They do have a few shows coming up soon, so don’t miss your chance to see this great band before they take their break!
- Word Of Mouth Magazine (www.wordofmouthpa.com)


"Faith In Exile Interview"

We caught up with Faith in Exile recently on their way to practice (We literally had to catch them since they’ve been so busy lately!). First off, they’re older than they look, and yes, we checked IDs.

One thing is for certain about FIE – they are just about the most fun band we’ve met. With a reputation for getting kicked out of Catholic schools, it’s no wonder! The band related story after story for us of getting into trouble and having fun, and that was just this summer. We also got to hear the infamous “Wendy’s Woody” story.

This fall marks the one year anniversary of the forming of Faith in Exile, a rock band that defies definition in a new way. You hear that a lot these days – "the band’s sound cannot be defined by a label" – and that generally refers to an obscure mishmash of genres set against one another in an effort to be new and different. Faith in Exile follows no passing trend – their aim is to create powerful and memorable rock (something that is sorely lacking these days) and they do just that.

FIE’s efforts are not going unnoticed, as they have a following in Ohio and Massachusetts, as well as Pennsylvania due mostly to their very successful Summer tour. The band is well-received no matter where they play because their honesty and dedication to their music comes across clearly when they’re performing.

What’s next for FIE? They’ve got a huge show at Crocodile Rock on Saturday, September 30th at the Jackass The Movie Numer 2 Premiere Party, and they are currently working on new material in preparation for their upcoming recording. There’s also talk of them opening for… I’m not sure if I’m allowed to say who it is, so let’s just say that it’s one of the biggest bands to come out of our area in the past few years. ;-)

Our interview with FIE was just the kind of interview we love to conduct – no formal question/answer format. We like to sit down and talk with bands to get a better understanding of the band as a whole, though one formal question did get through: Their favorite song to play live is “Dismorphia,” which is on their available EP or on their myspace, so go have a listen. Or better yet, go to a live show and hear it!
- Word Of Mouth Magazine (www.wordofmouthpa.com)


"Featured Band April 2007- Faith In Exile"

Pottsville rock band, Faith in Exile, invited us into the studio while recording their upcoming album, titled “Three Feet Under, Halfway Home,” an 8 song release featuring a culmination of the band’s beginning. A few of the songs are years old, written by three band members, but with the recent addition of a second guitarist Brandon Foti, the band has been writing new songs with a heavier sound. Does this mean FIE as we have known them have changed? Not quite. “We’re evolving,” singer Rob explains and jokingly adds, “like Pokemon, but not gay.” He went on explain just why they’ve changed. “The introduction of Foti into the band took pressure off what I had to do so I could concentrate more on developing my voice.”

Recorded in pieces during school breaks at C&C Studios, the band’s new album, “Three Feet Under, Halfway Home,” will be released during an all-ages show at Goodfellas in Pottsville on May 4.

FIE takes on an interesting persona while in the studio. Normally very high-spirited animated, the band becomes very serious about their music. The members’ distinct personalities came out as they played the current track they were working on (“Dismorphia”) ver and over again. Rob (singer and rhythm guitarist) is all business, his mind completely focused on the task at hand. Ron (drummer) is happy just to get through his drum tracks and is the token musician who can’t stop playing even when it interferes with recording. Foti (lead guitarist) is the quiet one, while Buehner (bassist) loses his temper tuning and the rest of the band has to work at keeping him from destroying everything in sight.

It’s really very cool to watch a band change and grow as these guys have. When the band’s first demo had been recorded, their bassist had only been playing for about 6 months and their singer had only been singing for about two months (we were shocked to learn this because they sounded like they’d been together for years). Their sound is really starting to mature, and we’re very happy with Faith in Exile as they are today. If you’re already a fan of FIE, stick around; if you haven’t seen them yet, get out to a show because I know you’ll love them.

FIE is one band that keeps coming up with surprises. Along with a handful of new songs for the upcoming album, they’ve included one song that no one has ever heard before. We had so much fun interviewing the band (with their MTV Cribs--style tour of their haunted practice space and grueling interview of WOM conducted by the band) that we wish we could feature them every month, just so we’d have an excuse to talk with them.
- Word of Mouth Magazine (www.wordofmouthpa.com)


Discography

The Gloves Are Off Demo- Released November 2005
(Track Listing: 1. Breaker 2. Careworn 3. The Art of Burning Bridges)

2006 Demo- Released March 2006 (Track Listing: 1. Noose 2. Dismorphia 3. The Art of Burning Bridges)

Three Feet Under, Halfway Home- Released May 4, 2007:
1. Dismorphia
2. One False Word
3. Desolate
4. Suffocate
5. Noose
6. Bleed
7. Man Down
8. Art of Burning Bridges

A New Shade of Black EP (Released mid-September 2008)
1. A New Shade of Black
2. One False Word
3. Lilith
4. A Convent Is No Place...
5. Lullaby For The Liars

In Defiance of Suffering (Released September 4, 2010)
1. In Defiance of Suffering
2. Malakai
3. Don't Bring A Knife to the Gunfight
4. One False Word
5. Lullaby For The Liars
6. The Dead Walk
7. A Convent Is No Place For A Whore
8. A New Shade of Black
9. Hearts At War
10. Lilith
11. Into The Storm
12. Exhumation

We have recieved airplay on 97.9X in Wilkes-Barre (PA), 1450 The Phoenix in Pottsville (PA), HBG Radio in Harrisburg (PA), VM Radio in Hellertown (PA), CoalCracker Radio in Pottsville (PA), AllBiz Radio in Columbus (OH), 91.3 Albright College Radio in Reading (PA)

Photos

Bio

Perserverance. This one word embodies everything that is Faith In Exile. Hailing from the once booming heart of Pennsylvania’s coal country, the quartet is influenced as much by the blue collar, “never say die” attitude of their home as they are by bands such as Killswitch Engage, Alice In Chains, All That Remains, and Katatonia. By combining the dark and gloomy feel of their surroundings with their metal and rock roots, Faith In Exile creates a genuinely unique sound, which is in short supply in their hometown. “Our scene is dominated by party bands and cover acts,” says vocalist/guitarist Rob Allison. “It’s extremely hard to be successful in our area as an original band, let alone an original band that plays metal.”
Faith In Exile originally formed in late 2005, enduring 3 major line-up changes before finding the missing piece of their puzzle in the form of guitarist Brandon Foti in late 2006. Drummer Ron Gubala agrees: “With Foti in the mix, our songs started to get more complicated structure-wise. The music we were writing began to show more of our metal influences.” The band released 2 independent CDs between 2007 and late 2008, building up a large and loyal fanbase. By the fall of 2009 Faith In Exile became the top draw in their area, routinely packing local clubs and bars to capacity and beyond. “For one show the club security had to start a waiting list to get in because the crowd became a fire hazard,” recounts bassist Allen Buehner. “People in the hall outside the door to the club, people in the parking lot, on the sidewalk down the street...it was crazy.” It became evident that the small bars and clubs of Schuylkill County and the surrounding region wouldn’t be able to contain the band for much longer.
Enter “In Defiance of Suffering,” the first full length release from F.I.E. Officially releasing on September 4th, 2010, the album is a musical tour de force from the first seconds of opener “Malakai.” Mastered by guru Alan Douchess (All That Remains, Killswitch Engage, Bullet For My Valentine), the record bridges many genres and sub-genres of rock and metal to create an intensely heavy yet accessible album. Gubala lays the foundation on the drums with pounding double bass runs and tempo changes executed to perfection. Buehner’s powerful bass playing solidifies the rhythm section, allowing Foti and Allison’s unique styles guitar playing to mesh seamlessly together, but not without letting their own tones to stand out. The songs are completed by Allison’s shape-shifting vocals, transforming from angelic clean to demonic screams in the blink of an eye and always underscored with a sense of urgency. The band’s live show captivates their audience at every show with intensity on all fronts. The band is able to duplicate their songs perfectly on stage while pouring every ounce of energy into their performance. “We always say if you do it in the studio, you’d better be able to do it live,” says Allison.
DIY-minded because of the isolation of their hometown, Faith In Exile has managed to translate their hard work into results. Through tireless promotion they have managed to spread their music all over the state. The band has continued to receive airplay on local radio stations. The band continues to be an online presence with a professionally designed website (www.faithinexilerock.com).
With a new album expected to catapult the band into the spotlight, a rabid fan base foaming at the mouth for new material, and a tireless work ethic, Faith In Exile seems poised to make an impact on the hard rock/metal scene in the very near future.