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The best kept secret in music



Hailing from the Fort Wayne/North Manchester area of northwestern Indiana, in the short time that they've been playing shows out and passing out demos, shunned has been able to secure for themselves solid place in the Indiana Metal Scene. Their debut album, Victims of Circumstance is an awesomely written and produced piece of work, with 7 tracks of gut-wrenching musick that voice what seem to be common feelings about life's frustrations. Dealing with raw emotions ranging from fear to grief to all-out rage, the subject matter of the songs makes them easily relatable to the listener.

After a short distorted vocal intro track, the album launches into the pummeling rhythms and riffs of 'Complicate' and carries them through into the brutally melodic yet radio-friendly 'By the Way.' If there are any songs that could even remotely be considered a ballad on the disc, it would be the next track, '1109.' Mournful and unbridled in its openess about the pain of loss, '1109' emphasizes the 'power' in power-ballad; make no mistake though, this song is not at all reminiscent of the glory days of the power-ballad (the '80's) - it is relevant and has all the modern edge that many of today's hard rock and alternative metal bands espouse. After '1109' has wound its course, the disc moves back into harsher territory. 'The Message' is a solid song with a hard-driving beat sure to make any metalhead happy. The next two songs, 'Face It' and 'Pleased (To Beat You),' (which opens with a backwoods sounding riff) are odes to the rage that dealing with idiots and fucktards can create, with 'Face It' destined to become a mosh-pit anthem. The final track, 'Twist' closes out the album in a fury of riffing and rhythm that will leave the listener wanting more.

Over all, the album is well put together, with the mix of songs making sense and working well together, yet being individual enough that you won't hear the same song twice on the album. Jonathan Herrera does an excellent job of making the most of his vocal dynamics throughout the 7 songs on the disc, ranging from the mournful wail of '1109' to the rage and brutality of 'Face It.' This disc offers something for everyone, and the variety in the songs keeps shunned from being easily classifiable in the metal genre, mixing elements of hardcore riffing and rhythms in with the detuned guitars of modern rock and alt/nu-metal. Rather than suffering for it, this proves to be one of the band's strengths, showing that they have the diversity necessary to appeal to a broad audience while remaining true to what they are doing. Of all the tracks on the CD, 'Pleased (To Beat You)' was my least favorite, but even so, it still works in the context of the other songs.

The production on the album is stellar, virtually at industry standard, and it is packaged to match. The only thing involving the production that I felt wasn't the greatest were some of the effects added to Herrera's vocals; at times they are a touch too much, muddying up the clarity that is otherwise so present in the dynamic frontman's voice.

The solidity of the production, performance, and songwriting on Victims of Circumstance says a lot about why shunned has been able to gain the attention and respect of the local scene in such a short amount of time. While it is successful in presenting the musick of shunned in an honest and accurate manner, the CD is but a shadow of the intensity and stage presence of the band's live show, which continues to get better each time. If there is anyone thing about this disc that I don't like, it is that there aren't enough songs on it, but that is part of it's beauty - leaving the listener satisfied, yet still wanting more. - the Forge by stormgod

"Disregard the Name- despite their name shunned are anything but rejected!"

Shunned are a band that are doing pretty much the opposite of their name. Instead of being "ignored and avoided scrupulously", these guys are becoming more popular and recognized not only in the Ft. Wayne music scene, but regionally as well.

The core members are drummer Scott Earley and Jonathan Herrera, vocalist, who started the band in 2002. Guitarist Brandon Thrasher joined up about a month later, with Mike Granger, bass, making it a four piece a year later. Guitarist Brad Hargrave has just joined, expanding shunned's lineup as well as the band's sound and general attitude....

In their short, somewhat erratic formative time, shunned have managed to release one CD entitled "Victims of Circumstance", the project looks and sounds like something a major label dropped megabucks to produce. The concept artwork using an empty chair chair as a metaphore, is eye catching, playing off the theme of being shunned...rejected.

...At only seven tunes, Victims Of Circumstance is short, but it shows Shunned's aggressive, right between the eyes approach!...
" Several people have told us that once you get to the end of the disc you find yourslef going right back to the front. You wonder why there are no more songs, and yet, if there were more, it would'nt sound like it does now!" says Herrera.
"It would'nt have the impact!"adds Earley....

to read more from the Whatzup interview please visit and go to the multimedia forums!

- whatzup magazine/by John Degroff

"Mayday Metalfest review"

....Closing the weekend, headlining if you will, was Fort Wayne's Shunned. I spent a good while with the lead singer Jon and have an enormous amount of respect for him and his band. Proof on their integrity is the fact that not only were they present to support EVERY band that weekend, they entered and exited the stage with the line "thank you for having us. We don't deserve this slot. We're just another band like you." Shunned is a 5 piece metal band, a la Sevendust meets the Deftones. They have an excellent stage presence, commendable image and are fronted by one of the best vocalists in the state of Indiana. Jon's unique clean voice is powerful and only topped by his gut wrenching scream.... - Jason Leckberg/


2002 shunned "circumstances" Demo (250 copies!)
2003/04 shunned- Victims of Circumstance
full length album
Songs currently in rotation and radio play:
By the Way/ Twist/ 1109


Feeling a bit camera shy


Hailing from Northern Indiana, shunned was formed in the spring of 2002 by Drummer Scott Earley and Vocalist Jonathan Herrera. After several months of searching for like-minded musicians and testing the waters of the local music scene, the lineup was completed by the addition of Guitarist Brandon Thrasher and Bassist Mike Granger in the fall of 2003. Brad Hargrave was added to the line-up in the spring of 2004 as a second guitar player, completing the sound. shunned's potent combination of skillful music, restless lyrics, and hard-hitting stage show has peaked the curiosity and earned the respect of fans and peers alike. Their circle of influence has since expanded throughout Indiana, Northern Ohio and beyond!

The core of shunned's music is provided by the steady sound of chunky bass lines and elaborate drum work. The guitar compliments this drive by incorporating both intricate and heart-felt leads as well as simplistic rhythms to support the message of their music. The lyrics of shunned's music take their audience through a variety of experiences that most can relate to, moving from the turbulence and restlessness of "Complicate" to the desolate and mournful "1109" and then on to the victory and hostility of "Pleased (To Beat You)". The diversification of the lyrics is then supported by vocals that effortlessly take the listener from passionate melodies to tortured screams and then back again.

Recently shunned has been the center of attention in their scene having secured several opening slots for national acts such as Dope, Slaves on Dope, & Exodus as well as sharing co-Healiner slot with the likes of Mastadon and Rune of Relapse records at the MayDay MetalFest in Indiana. Jonathan is also very active the their local metal scene being featured as the voice of "the Underground" on THE METAL SHOP out of Ft. Wayne's own X102.3fm every Saturday at 11:00pm.
Over 500 copies of their debut album, Victims of Circumstance, have been sold to date and shunned has been busy supporting it nonstop since November of 2003.
Shunned is in the writing stages of their next album which should start to see some light of day by early summer of 2005. Check out the progress on

Pound for pound, with their drive and "do anything to play" attitude, shunned is easily one of Indiana's premiere Metal/Hard core acts of 2004!