Fearless Vampire Killers (band)
|Fearless Vampire Killers|
From left to right: Shane Sumner, Drew Woolnough, Luke Illingworth, Laurence Beveridge and Kier Kemp, photographed in October 2014.
|Genres||Rock, Death Pop, pop punk, alternative rock, gothic rock, shock rock, emo, new grave|
|Labels||Goremount, PIAS Recordings|
|Associated acts||William Control, LostAlone, Crystal Bats, The Dead Lay Waiting, Black Veil Brides, Ashestoangels, Dead!|
|Past members||Nick Hill
Fearless Vampire Killers are a five-piece English theatrical alternative rock band formed in Beccles in 2008 composed of vocalist and rhythm guitarist Laurence Beveridge, vocalist and rhythm guitarist Kier Kemp, bassist Drew Woolnough, lead guitarist Cyrus Barrone (real name Shane Sumner) and drummer Luke Illingworth. The name of the band originates from the 1967 Roman Polanski comedy horror film The Fearless Vampire Killers.
Their debut studio album Militia of the Lost was set for release on 7 May 2012 through Goremount Records, but the physical release was pushed back to 14 May 2012. The digital release went ahead as planned. A deluxe version of the CD, containing more exclusive artwork, was released at the same time. In 2014, they were an open act to Black Veil Brides tour. They released new EP Bruises in 2015.
The band's first incarnation was under the name of Remember When back in 2007, consisting of current members: Laurence Beveridge, Kier Kemp and Shane Sumner as well as their previous drummer Luke Fairhead. All of the members of Remember When knew each other from growing up in Waveney Valley in Suffolk. Soon after moving to London, Remember When broke up and its former members then came together as Fearless Vampire Killers in 2008. A short time later they recruited Drew Woolnough, who had previously played with Laurence in a band called Self-Titled, to play bass, and after going through a series of drummers the current line-up was completed in 2011 when Luke Illingworth joined as their current drummer.
The band are known for being very hands-on with their work, with Shane Sumner producing all of their artwork and merchandise designs. Additionally, Laurence Beveridge wrote a 334-page novel called Ruple & Evelyn to go along with their EP, In Grandomina..., although the events in the story happen roughly 600 years before the events in the songs.
Parts of their look, especially Shane Sumner's stage outfit, are influenced by steampunk as well as "turn-of-the-century France, late-1800s bohemian ideas, short waistcoats [and] a bit of the old eyeliner" according to vocalist Kier Kemp.
Their debut album, Militia of the Lost, was described as a concept record by vocalist Laurence Beveridge; it features themes of "love, loss and addiction" as well as being "an album about the struggle to find a place in society." The songs in the album are about "the events in the lead up to, and subsequently the repercussions, of the city’s royal palace being set on fire" and "five men [that] cross paths and get dragged into this world of monsters and crazed revolutionaries." They recorded their second album in the summer of 2013 with William Control as the producer.
Sound and influences
A review by Rock Sound of their first EP, In Grandomina, described the tracks as "gothically inclined pop-rock songs" that "boast some decent hooks, with a new romantic sensibility spliced into the mix in a weirdly effective fashion." Reaction to their second EP, ... The Blood Never Dries, was mixed, with most reviewers offering a score of 3/5 or similar. They have been suggested as for fans of American rock bands My Chemical Romance, Black Veil Brides, Aiden and English rock band Muse and Bizarre Magazine has said "if My Chemical Romance and Panic At The Disco mated, their offspring might look like Fearless Vampire Killers" and that they are an "incredibly promising prospect." The band has also described their sounds in various interviews as Danny Elfman Diarrhoea and Halloween in a roast dinner.
They were named as one of Kerrang!'s '10 Best Unsigned Bands in Britain' in September 2011. They were also featured as Guardian Newspaper's Band of the Day (#1226) and Rocksound.tv selected them as their Band of the Week on 5 March 2012. Altsounds featured them before the release of the album with an "In Pictures" taken at their acoustic gig at St Luke's Church.
They have appeared in print in many publications, such as Big Cheese, Rocksound (calling them "an instant antidote to everything predictable and mundane"), Artrocker and Kerrang!. In early 2012, they were featured in Kerrang!'s Shots of 2011 - The New Breed, which contained photos of new and upcoming bands, and their release show for their EP '... The Blood Never Dries' was rated four Ks out of five by Kerrang!, who did a full-page spread on it: in the review, they labelled them as "potential stars of the future." Kerrang! also later called them "the new band of [their] dreams" in an introducing page.
They received their first major award nomination in May 2012 when they were nominated for "Best British Newcomer" at the 2012 Kerrang! Awards. Kier Kemp, co-frontman for the band, was chosen by Kerrang! for #20 in their list of the '50 Greatest Rockstars in the World Today'.
Guitarist and vocalist Kier Kemp appeared on Channel Four news in a brief segment on 4 April 2013 about attacks against members of "alternative sub-cultures" being classed as hate crimes.
The band were again nominated for "Best British Newcomer" in May 2013 for the 2013 Kerrang! Awards.
Tours and appearances
Fearless Vampire Killers have played regularly in small venues all around England. In December 2010, they supported rock band Aiden on several of their UK tour dates. They also played at Rebellion Festival, the world's biggest punk festival, in August 2011 and at O2 Academy Islington in October 2011. In June 2011, they embarked on a Scottish tour, Rockstar Energy Drink's The Harder They Fall Tour, for the very first time with Hopeless Heroic, Drive By Audio, Stanley Odd and Excellent Cadaver.
In April 2012, they were announced as a support act for William Control, lead singer of Aiden Wil Francis' side-project, on the UK leg of his UK/Euro 2012 tour The New Faith. They were announced on the lineup of Download Festival 2012, a three day English rock music festival held annually at Donington Park and played on two days.
They embarked on a UK co-headline tour with fellow Kerrang! Award's Best British Newcomer nominated band The Dead Lay Waiting in October 2012, called "The Killing Is Dead Tour". The two bands headlined the Exeter Zombie Walk and Ball. The tour climaxed with them supporting Wednesday 13 on Halloween in London.
They were a support act for Black Veil Brides on the 11-date Kerrang! Tour 2013. The other support bands on the tour were Tonight Alive and Chiodos. In April 2013, the band toured around England (with one date in Glasgow) with Fort Hope, on the "Diamonds and Disgrace" tour. They went on to headline the Red Bull stage at Download Festival 2013 after an appearance there in 2012. They are also a support act on Madina Lake's September farewell tour of the UK.
In August, it was announced they were set to join William Control on the North American "Revel Without A Cause Tour" in 2013.
The band announced in March that they would be touring parts of the UK with Dead! and other artists as part of the "Cabin Fever Tour", starting 13 April 2014.
On 31 May 2014 Fearless Vampire Killers appeared at Camden Rocks Festival, playing both an acoustic set and an electric set.
The band were a support act to Black Veil Brides on the UK leg of their "Black Mass" tour in October 2014, along with Attila and Drama Club. They were a support band for Black Veil Brides on the EU leg of their "Black Mass" tour in March 2015, along with Like A Storm. They also supported In This Moment on their tour of Europe and the UK in February and March 2015. Their headlining "Unbreakable Hearts" UK tour has been rescheduled for 2015.
The Obsidian Bond
On 17 July 2014, Fearless Vampire Killers launched their very own social networking website called "The Obsidian Bond" 
It is a fan-orientated social network which consists of many features such as guitar & drum tabular and lyrics to all of their songs. It also contains exclusive band footage such as their documentary, At War With The Thirst, new and old podcasts, acoustic versions of their songs and exclusive videos recorded by the band themselves.
The original purpose of the website was for the fans of Fearless Vampire Killers to come together and socialize. Members can add each other to build their friends list as well as post messages, photos and videos on each other's walls. The Obsidian Bond also contains a large amount of groups and forums where fans can post artwork, cosplay photos and photography as well as having the opportunity to create their own groups and forums and discuss whatever they wish.
The Obsidian Bond is also a base for fans to read stories written by Laurence Beveridge. There is a large selection of his writing stored in the site's library.
It is also more popularly known to stream Fearless Vampire Killers' latest album, Unbreakable Hearts, before its release. Upon the website's launch a track was previewed every week. Once a track has been online for a week, it is taken down on the following Thursday and replaced with the next track on the album. As the weeks go by, the fans are also given a story to go along with the track. The story explains the backstory of the song as well as expanding on the band's concept.
- Bruises (2015)
|1.||"Feel Alive"||Kier Kemp||3:39|
|2.||"Stepping Stones"||Laurence Beveridge||3:01|
|3.||"Keep Smiling"||Fearless Vampire Killers||4:24|
|4.||"Regret"||Fearless Vampire Killers||4:44|
|5.||"Like Bruises"||Laurence Beveridge||3:54|
|6.||"Aging Love"||Fearless Vampire Killers||4:16|
- Unbreakable Hearts (2014)
|1.||"Intermission"||Fearless Vampire Killers||0:56|
|2.||"Say What You Want from Me (The Ghost You Left Behind)"||Fearless Vampire Killers||4:31|
|3.||"Turn Your Heaven to a Tomb"||Laurence Beveridge||3:41|
|4.||"Exploding Heart Disorder"||Fearless Vampire Killers||3:34|
|5.||"Edge of Eternity"||Fearless Vampire Killers||3:07|
|6.||"Taste the Iron on Your Lips"||Fearless Vampire Killers||3:21|
|7.||"Our Nature's Unnatural"||Fearless Vampire Killers||3:45|
|8.||"Dream of You"||Fearless Vampire Killers||4:42|
|9.||"Brave the Night"||Kier Kemp & Luke Illingworth||5:16|
|10.||"In Wondrous Rage"||Fearless Vampire Killers||3:33|
|11.||"Neon in the Dancehalls"||Laurence Beveridge||3:52|
|12.||"Batten Down the Hatches"||Fearless Vampire Killers||3:47|
|13.||"Maeby"||Fearless Vampire Killers||4:07|
|14.||"Unbreakable Hearts"||Fearless Vampire Killers||5:03|
|15.||"Remember My Name"||Fearless Vampire Killers||5:04|
|16.||"Lucifer's Shroud"||Fearless Vampire Killers||2:37|
|17.||"City Falls to Dust"||Fearless Vampire Killers||6:16|
- Militia of the Lost (2012)
|2.||"Could We Burn, Darling?"||Laurence Beveridge||2:36|
|3.||"Concede, Repent, Destroy"||Drew Woolnough||3:47|
|4.||"Bleed 'Till Sunrise"||Laurence Beveridge||3:02|
|5.||"Bite Down On My Winchester (There's a Reckoning A'Coming)"||Drew Woolnough||2:52|
|6.||"Palace in Flames"||Laurence Beveridge||2:20|
|7.||"Even Ghosts Forget (The Empire for a Kiss)"||Laurence Beveridge||2:07|
|8.||"Fetish for the Finite"||Laurence Beveridge||3:08|
|9.||"Bow Ties on Dead Guys"||Drew Woolnough||2:11|
|10.||"Pleasure of the Pain"||Laurence Beveridge||2:42|
|11.||"At War with the Thirst"||Laurence Beveridge||4:38|
|12.||"Mascara Tears and Vanilla Spice"||Laurence Beveridge||3:27|
- In Grandomina... (2010)
|1.||"Faces In The Dirt"||Fearless Vampire Killers||3:02|
|2.||"Palace In Flames"||Laurence Beveridge||3:24|
|3.||"Interlude (Feat. Crystal Bats)"||0:47|
|4.||"Don Teriesto"||Shane Sumner||4:27|
|5.||"Fearless Vampire Killers"||Fearless Vampire Killers||3:44|
- ... The Blood Never Dries (2011)
|2.||"A Study In Dystopia"||Drew Woolnough||2:52|
|3.||"Bleed Till Sunrise"||Laurence Beveridge||3:06|
|4.||"Concede, Repent, Destroy"||Drew Woolnough||4:03|
|5.||"Fetish For The Finite"||Laurence Beveridge||3:13|
- Exposition: The Five Before The Flames (2013)
|1.||"The Pilot: P-Train"||Luke Illingworth||5:08|
|2.||"The Thief: Merchants Of Decay"||Kier Kemp||3:44|
|3.||"The Mechanist: Handlung (Stargazer)"||Shane Sumner||4:16|
|4.||"The Vigilante: Death Or Disgrace"||Drew Woolnough||4:56|
|5.||"The Prince: Diamond Dust And Crimson Reign"||Laurence Beveridge||3:33|
|Date of release||Title||Producer||Label|
|30 November 2009||"I Am Gonna Leave You"||Paul Tipler||Self Released|
|26 March 2012||"Bow Ties on Dead Guys"||Ben Humphreys, James Billinge and John Mitchell||Goremount Records|
|11 June 2012||"Could We Burn, Darling?"||Ben Humphreys, James Billinge and John Mitchell||Goremount Records|
|5 November 2012||"Exploding Heart Disorder" / "Palace in Flames"||Ben Humphreys, James Billinge and John Mitchell||Goremount Records|
|25 January 2013||"Diamond Dust and Crimson Reign"||Ben Humphreys, James Billinge and John Mitchell||Goremount Records|
|28 September 2013||"All Hallows Evil"||Ben Humphreys, James Billinge and John Mitchell||Goremount Records|
|Date of release||Compilation||Producer||Track|
|June 2010||Big Cheese Mix Tape||Josh Friend||"Palace in Flames"|
|March 2012||Rock Sound 100% Volume: 159||—||"Fetish for the Finite"|
|April 2013||Rock Sound 100% Volume: 172||—||"Diamond Dust and Crimson Reign"|
- "Fearless Vampire Killers – Interview". Rock N Review. 2012-03-01. Retrieved 2012-04-04. Kier Kemp: "Laurence and Shane were in our tiny flat in London talking into the early hours. They were discussing what a band should be, why it should be and what inspired them. Laurence scrawled the name of a film he’d watched extensively as a child onto a piece of paper... (which we still have). That film was The Fearless Vampire Killers by Roman Polanski."
- "Fearless Vampire Killers debut album Militia Of The Lost lands May 7th 2012". Altsound. 2012-02-27. Retrieved 2012-04-09.
- "Fearless Vampire Killers announce staggered album release.". HevyPetal. 2012-04-23. Retrieved 2012-04-26.
- "Introducing…..Fearless Vampire Killers". RockedUp. 2011-09-07. Retrieved 2012-04-04. Laurence Beveridge: "Drew and I were in a weird Weezer/Kinks/Muse band called Self-Titled and Kier and Shane were in a Punk-Rock band called Korze 4 Koncern, (being from East Anglia they couldn't spell.) After playing anywhere that would have us for two years, I joined K 4 K when their guitarist left and we changed our name to Remember When."
- "Fearless Vampire Killers". Basingstoke Live. Retrieved 2012-04-10. "FVK pay close attention to every detail outside of their music too: From their clothing and make up to the artwork and even their own comic books. Every sketch, painting, and cartoon is created by the band themselves. Right down to printing their own merchandise, everything is a personal hand made artefact."
- "Ruple & Evelyn (Kindle Edition)". Amazon eBooks. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- "Dance of the Vampires: An interview with the Fearless Vampire Killers". The Marshall Town. 2010-12-23. Retrieved 2012-04-04. Laurence Beveridge: "The novel documents the beginnings of the world our songs are set with in. For instance, the cardinal mentioned in "Palace in Flames" is not the cardinal in the book. Our songs are set like 600-ish years after the novel."
- "Vampires’ bite at the big time". Camden New Journal. 2009-11-19. Retrieved 2012-04-09.
- "Fearless Vampire Killers Get the lead out about Upcoming Album in NEW Interview". Natalie's World. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- "News: William Control to produce Fearless Vampire Killers second album". Get Ready To Rock!. 2013-05-29. Retrieved 2013-09-01.
- "Introducing…..Fearless Vampire Killers". RockedUp. 2011-09-07. Retrieved 2012-04-04. Cyrus Barrone: "However I’d say communally the biggest contributor to our musical bucket would be Green Day."
- "Introducing: Fearless Vampire Killers". BanterBanter. 2011-10-04. Retrieved 2012-04-04. Drew Woolnough: "Death Pop is our tongue cheek name to describe it, and I like to think of it as Danny Elfman turned up to 11."
- "FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS - IN GRANDOMINA". Rocksound. 2011-01-04. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- "Strictly New Bands (no. 45): Fearless Vampire Killers". Strictly Reading and Leeds. 2011-03-30. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- Kerrang! Magazine, issue #1379, page 51, 3 September 2011.
- "Battle of the Bands finalists reviewed". Bizarre Magazine. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- "Fearless Vampire Killers (No 1,226)". Guardian Newspaper. 2011-03-12. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- "BAND OF THE WEEK: FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS". Rocksound.tv. 2011-03-05. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- "Valentines Day Mascara - Fearless Vampire Killers w/ Hearts Under Fire & Tin Soldiers". Altsounds. 2011-02-15. Retrieved 2012-10-23.
- Big Cheese Magazine, issue #143, April 2012.
- Big Cheese Magazine, issue #123, June 2010.
- Rocksound Magazine, issue #159, March 2012.
- Artrocker Magazine, issue #97, January 2010.
- Kerrang! Magazine, issue #1396, page 28, 7 January 2012.
- Kerrang! Magazine, issue #1378, page 18, 27 August 2011.
- Kerrang! Magazine, issue #1395, page 12, 24 December 2011.
- "And the nominees are...". Kerrang!. 2011-05-02. Retrieved 2012-05-23.
- Kerrang! Magazine, issue #1422, page 28, 7 July 2012.
- "Is this hate crime?". Channel 4 News on Youtube. Retrieved 2013-04-05.
- "Rebellion Festival 2011 - complete running order". 2011-08-05. Retrieved 2012-04-07.
- "William Control". William Control. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- "Refused confirmed for Download as another 13 bands join the lineup". Download Festival. 2012-04-01. Retrieved 2012-04-04. "Other new additions insclude [sic] the likes of theatrical rock troupe Fearless Vampire Killers."
- "Fearless Vampire Killers Plot Halloween Tour With The Dead Lay Waiting". Rock Sound. 2012-07-19. Retrieved 2012-08-11.
- Connor Williams (2012-11-03). "LIVE SHOW REVIEW: EXETER ZOMBIE WALK & BALL 2012". Rockrevoltmagazine.com.
- "The Kerrang! Tour 2013 is go!". Kerrang!. 2012-10-09. Retrieved 2012-11-23.
- "Fearless Vampire Killers Announce April Tour With Fort Hope". Rocksound.tv. Retrieved 2013-04-05.
- "Black Stone Cherry, Fidlar, Fearless Vampire Killers & More For Download!". Rocksound.tv. Retrieved 2013-04-05.
- "Fearless Vampire Killers Announced As Madina Lake Support". Kerrang!. Retrieved 2013-05-08.
- "William Control announces North American tour with Fearless Vampire Killers". Alternative Press. 2013-08-20. Retrieved 2013-09-01.
- "Black Veil Brides Announce UK Tour Supports". Kerrang.com. Retrieved 2015-05-28.
- Emily. "Fearless Vampire Killers To Support In This Moment". Kerrang.com. Retrieved 2015-05-28.
- "Fearless Vampire Killers Postpone UK Headline Tour - News - Rock Sound Magazine". Rocksound.tv. Retrieved 2015-05-28.
- "Obsidian Bond". Fearlessvampirekillers.com. Retrieved 2015-05-28.
- "Fearless Vampire Killers Preview New Album". Kerrang!. Retrieved 2015-05-28.
- "iTunes - Music - Militia of the Lost by Fearless Vampire Killers". iTunes. Retrieved 2012-05-16.
- "In Grandomina... by Fearless Vampire Killers". Last FM. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- "...The Blood Never Dries - EP by Fearless Vampire Killers". Last FM. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- "Exposition: The Five Before the Flames - EP". iTunes. Retrieved 2013-03-12.
- "Fearless Vampire Killers Last FM". Last FM. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- "Bow Ties On Dead Guys". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-04-04.
- CD included in Big Cheese Magazine, issue #123, "Big Cheese", June 2010.
- CD included in Rock Sound Magazine, issue #159, "Rock Sound", March 2012.
- CD included in Rock Sound Magazine, issue #172, "Rock Sound", March 2013.