For the Fallen Dreams

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For the Fallen Dreams
For the Fallen Dreams NSD! 2012 Cologne.JPG
For the Fallen Dreams performing on the Never Say Die! Tour 2012 in Cologne, Germany
Background information
OriginLansing, Michigan, United States[1][2]
Years active2003–present
Associated acts
  • Jim Hocking
  • Brandon Stastny
  • Chad Ruhlig
Past members(See List)

For the Fallen Dreams, often abbreviated FTFD, is an American metalcore band from Lansing, Michigan,[1][2] formed in 2003. The band originally signed to Rise Records but produced one album under Artery Recordings in 2012. After the departure of then vocalist Dylan Richter and the return of vocalist Chad Ruhlig in 2013, the band started producing music under Rise Records once again.[2]

They have released three demos (their first being in the genre of deathcore), a self-titled extended play, and six full-length albums: Changes (2008), Relentless (2009), Back Burner (2011), Wasted Youth (2012), Heavy Hearts (2014) and Six (2018). Relentless charted at number 29 on the Billboard Top Heatseekers.[3] Three other albums have charted within the top 10 on the Billboard Top Heatseekers.

The group has had a complicated history of members. Many members of the band were friends of the band who would fill spots temporarily. Noticeable past members, based on length of participation and role, include Joe Ellis, Andrew Tkaczyk, Dylan Richter, Kalan Blehm, and Navid Naghdi. Jim Hocking is the only member of the original line-up that remains in the band.


Formation and early years (2003–2006)[edit]

Jim Hocking (lead guitar), Andrew Tkaczyk (drums), Aaron Long (vocals), and Chris Ash (bass) formed For the Fallen Dreams in 2003. While Long and Ash only had brief stays in the band Hocking and Tkaczyk watched members come and go (including Chad Ruhlig on bass) for the first two years of the band's existence; altogether amounting to 10 members.

Jim Hocking

Signing to Rise Records, debut album Changes and Ruhlig's departure (2007–2009)[edit]

In early 2006, the band added Chad Ruhlig as vocalist and produced the album Changes which was released in 2008 after members Marcus Morgan (rhythm guitar) and Scott Green (bass) had also left the band.

On January 8, 2008, the band released its first full-length studio album called Changes.


In January, FTFD and Cassius, a band signed to Lifeforce Records, planned a tour visiting seventeen states, starting and ending in Michigan.[4]

FTFD performed at The Modern Exchange in Southgate, Michigan on July 30, 2008 with bands I Am Abomination and A Day to Remember.[5]

Richter's arrival, Relentless and Ellis' departure (2009–2010)[edit]

Chad Ruhlig departed For the Fallen Dreams in 2008, the same year that they released their highly acclaimed album Changes. After briefly working at a Hot Topic store in Saginaw Township, he began working on material for the band Legend which released its first album, Valediction, in 2010. Ruhlig stated that the departure was mutual and that he and the band both wished the best for each other[6] After Ruhlig's departure the band quickly welcomed Dylan Richter as the new lead vocalist.[1] Dylan Richter fronted the band From Under the Gallows previous to FTFD.

On July 21, 2009, the album Relentless was released. It charted at number 29 on the Billboard Top Heatseekers list.

Vocalist Jeremy McKinnon from A Day to Remember was featured on the song "Nightmares".


FTFD toured with A Day to Remember and Azriel in the UK and Germany 2009 Tour in February and March 2009.[7]

The Thrash & Burn tour in August 2009 included FTFD as well as Devildriver, Emmure, MyChildren MyBride, Veil of Maya, Oceano, Periphery, and more.[5]

They performed with Azriel and Confession at The Cockpit in Leeds, UK in March 2010.[8]


2009 saw the departure Chris Cain on rhythm guitar and the arrival of Kalan Blehm. In 2010, bassist Joe Ellis, member since 2007, also left the band, leaving a spot that would be filled and vacated by two members in the same year.

Tkaczyk's departure, Back Burner and Stastny's arrival (2011–2012)[edit]

On May 24, 2011, For the Fallen Dreams released the album Back Burner. The band produced two music videos to the songs "The Big Empty" and "Let Go".


On March and April 2011, For the Fallen Dreams performed at the Sick Tour with Chelsea Grin, Attila, Chunk! No Captain Chunk!, and Vanna with Volumes and The Crimson Armada on select dates.[9]


In 2011, founding member Andrew Tkaczyk departed the band and joined The Ghost Inside. Tkaczyk would remain completely removed from the band until 2013 when Chad Ruhlig returned. After Ruhlig's return Tkaczyk rejoined FTFDs efforts, contributing to composition and songwriting.[10] Jordan McPherson, bassist and backing vocalist, and Arvan Sarathy, drums/percussion, also joined and departed the band in 2011.

Signing to Artery Records, Wasted Youth and Blehm's departure (2012–2013)[edit]

On July 17, 2012, Wasted Youth was released.

One month prior to the release, the music video for the song "Resolvent Feelings" was released. "Resolvent Feelings" was the only song on the album had a music video.[11]


FTFD was on the bill for the 14th annual Metal and Hardcore Festival in Worcester, Massachusetts in April. The bill had 77 bands over 3 days. FTFD played on the third day on the same stage as Killswitch Engage, Vanna, Every Time I Die, For Today, Chelsea Grin, Stick to Your Guns, Attila, MyChildren MyBride, Texas in July, Betraying the Martyrs, Like Moths to Flames, Volumes, Hundredth, No Bragging Rights, The Air I Breathe and others.[5][12]

The band attended the Slam Dunk South Festival in Hatfield, England in May, playing alongside Taking Back Sunday, Motion City Soundtrack, Architects, Mayday Parade, Cancer Bats, Every Time I Die, Lower Than Atlantis, Funeral for a Friend, Upon a Burning Body, Of Mice & Men, I See Stars, and more.[5][13]

FTFD performed at the Skate and Surf Festival in Jackson, New Jersey in May. Bands on the roster included A Day to Remember, Gideon, Breathe Carolina, Crown the Empire, Escape the Fate, Of Mice & Men, Dangerkids, For All Those Sleeping, Issues, Miss May I, Hundredth, and more.[14]

In August 2012, they joined the All Star tour which included bands Suicide Silence, The Word Alive, I See Stars, A Skylit Drive, Winds of Plague, Stick to Your Guns, Attila, Stray from the Path, Make Me Famous, Betraying the Martyrs, Obey the Brave, Ice Nine Kills, and Dance Gavin Dance plus Unearth on select dates.[15]


In 2013, Kalan Blehm departed For the Fallen Dreams and joined Attila as their new bassist and backing vocalist. Blehm was the last full-time rhythm guitarist on the band's roster. Dylan Shippey joined FTFD as the new percussionist, filling the spot that Arvan Sarathy vacated in late 2011.

Richter's departure, Ruhlig's return and Reawakening the Cult Following (2013–2014)[edit]

In 2013, Richter decided to part ways with For the Fallen Dreams after acting as vocalist for the three full-length albums Relentless (2009), Back Burner (2011), and Wasted Youth (2012). Richter cited his need for change and prioritizing and that home-life was the reason for departing For the Fallen Dreams.[16]

Being aware of Richter's eventual departure For the Fallen Dreams contacted Chad Ruhlig to see if he would be interested in returning. In an interview on the May 23, 2013, Ruhlig stated that his return seemed like a logical choice because of his relationship to the band and the band's need to stay genuine to their sound. Ruhlig also stated that he was impressed by Richter's work on Relentless and Back Burner and that despite his absence those albums were true to For the Fallen Dreams musical style.[17]

Chad Ruhlig

Wasted Youth had been released not even six months prior to Dylan Richter's departure and the band had no intention of letting the loss of a member slow their progress, after all For the Fallen Dreams history was rife with transient members.


FTFD planned on attending the Boys of Summer tour in Australia in January 2013 but cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances.[18]

The single "Substance" was released in May 2013. The single marked Ruhlig's return and showed fans the style of music they should anticipate for their next album.[19]

In April, while performing tour dates with Abandon All Ships and Dream on Dreamer in Europe and the UK, the band announced their own headlining tour which included 27 dates between May and June. Upon this Dawning, Hundredth, Gideon, To the Wind, and Wolves at the Gate had also signed onto the tour.[20]

FTFD announced that they would be returning to Australia in September 2013 to attend tour dates with The Plot in You, Storm the Sky, and Fit for a King. They had to cancel due to injuries that Ruhlig sustained from a motorbike accident. Ruhlig was wheelchair-bound for at least two months and was told that he might need surgery on his leg.[21]

In the months of October and November, FTFD acted as support for Senses Fail's headlining tour.[22] The band had started playing singles from their next album Heavy Hearts at this time gearing up fans in preparation for its release in 2014.


Late in 2013, percussionist Dylan Shippey departed For the Fallen Dreams and Navid Naghdi joined to fill Shippey's place.

Signing back to Rise Records, Heavy Hearts and Naghdi's departure (2014–2017)[edit]

The album Heavy Hearts was released on April 4, 2014 and is the fifth studio album the band has produced.

It was reported on September 8, 2014 by AltPress that the band had released a music video for the song "Bombay".[23]

Brandon Stastny


On June 5, 2014, the band performed with Obey the Brave, I the Breather, Sylar, and Reflections at The Masquerade in Atlanta, Georgia, July 17, 2014 the band visited Camden, London and performed at The Underworld, and For the Fallen Dreams headlined on The Amity Affliction's Don't Lean On Me Tour and the Let the Ocean Take Me Tour from September to October 2014.

On March 15, 2015, For the Fallen Dreams performed with Norma Jean, Silent Planet, and Sirens and Sailors.

On August 13, 2016, they performed with Bury Your Dead, Hatebreed, Walls of Jericho, Attila, and Born of Osiris at The Crofoot Parking Lot in Pontiac, Michigan.

In 2017, the band joined the Southbound Tour with Silverstein and The Word Alive and performed twice at The Wire in Berwyn, Illinois, once with Famous Last Words.[24]

Shed My Skin Interview

In 2015, Shed my Skin interviewed Chad and Jim wherein they recalled how a truck had smashed into their trailer on tour a year earlier. Jim recollects climbing out of the van after being awoken by the accident to Chad telling him that a truck had hit the trailer and was stuck inside of it. To Jim's surprise Chad wasn't exaggerating, the truck had wedged itself all the way inside the band's 7' by 14' trailer. Luckily a bass drum, a lot of merchandise, and miscellaneous things were the only losses from the accident. In the same interview Jim and Chad described how every band experiences hiccups like theft and road accidents, and that they were hopeful that this accident would be the last mishap for at least six months.[25] In the same year as this interview former member and current songwriter of FTFD Andrew Tkaczyk and other members of The Ghost Inside were also involved in a road incident in their touring van. Tkaczyk lost his right leg as a result of the accident.[26]

Navid Naghdi


At some undetermined time the For the Fallen Dreams Wikipedia page was edited as saying that percussionist Navid Naghdi had left the band in 2016. There are no sources at this point in time that provide evidence for this being true. Further investigation shows that sources like Shockwave Magazine, the website Cryptic Rock, and the band's own Facebook page show that Naghdi is still the acting percussionist for the band. He announced his departure from For The Fallen Dreams on June 2, 2016 via his Instagram account. He was drum tech for Suicide Silence and current drum tech for Asking Alexandria.[27][28][29]

Six (2018–present)[edit]

On January 12, 2018, Rise Records published the music video for the song "Stone" on YouTube. The song is off of the upcoming album.

Six was released on February 16, 2018. Some tracks, like "Forever", are likened to a gritty version of Deftones or Breaking Benjamin.[28]

On March 14, 2018, the music video for "Unstoppable" off of Six was debuted. Bassist Brandon Stastny shot and edited the video. In a brief interview the band told of how the video was shot in their home-state of Michigan a few hundred yards off the coastline on the Lake Michigan shelf ice formations which occur every winter. The day the video was shot was the only clear and sunny day during that month so it couldn't have been more perfect, they explained.[30]


Musical style and progression[edit]

Other bands that have a similar sound to For the Fallen Dreams include: A Day to Remember, The Ghost Inside, In Hearts Wake, Fit for a King, A Call to Sincerity, and Buried in Verona.[31]

One of the most noticeable changes in For the Fallen Dreams musical style came while Dylan Richter was the acting lead vocalist. Both the third studio album Back Burner and the fourth studio album Wasted Youth had more clean vocals than the albums previous to them and their music took on an A Day to Remember-like sound. Richter worked with Jeremy McKinnon, the vocalist of A Day to Remember, on the song Nightmares which was featured on the 2009 album Relentless. Tom Denney, former guitarist of A Day to Remember, produced and mixed the 2011 album Back Burner and the 2012 album Wasted Youth.

As the band has aged, the occurrence of clean vocals has increased. The Richter's era featured a dramatic shift in the amount of clean vocals in songs. Back Burner and Wasted Youth included many choruses where Richter sang clean vocals. At this time, Hocking was performing very little backing and clean vocals but in 2013, with the reemergence of Ruhlig, he stepped up to the microphone and can be heard on tracks like "Emerald Blue", "Bombay", "Amnesia", amongst others on the Heavy Hearts album. With 2018's album Six, Hocking established himself as the full-fledged clean vocalist of the band.

Composition and lyrical content[edit]


Jim Hocking is the only founding member of For the Fallen Dreams that remains on the line-up. Andrew Tkaczyk was the main songwriter up until he left the band in 2011 and joined The Ghost Inside; contributing to Changes (2008) and Relentless (2009). FTFD's signature sound was the making of Tkaczyk but their steady musical style over their history is the product of Hocking's tenure.[32] Tkaczyk completely separated from the band in 2011 but returned to the songwriting front when original vocalist Chad Ruhlig returned in 2013.[33] The Heavy Hearts album featured the song "Emerald Blue" which was partially composed by Tkaczyk.

After Tkacyk's departure, Hocking and Richter worked together on the albums Back Burner (2011) and Wasted Youth (2012).[34]

Lyrical content

For the Fallen Dreams lyrical content has been consistent over its history. The lyrical content of both the Richter and Ruhlig eras express the human condition, disposition towards others, instability, intense feelings, finding strength, and loss of faith in humanity.[35][36]


Current members[citation needed]
  • Jim Hocking – lead guitar (2003–present); rhythm guitar (2004–2005; 2013–present); clean vocals (2013–present); backing vocals (2003–2013); bass (2011)
  • Brandon Stastny – bass, backing vocals (2012–present)
  • Chad Ruhlig – lead vocals (2006–2008; 2013–present); bass (2005)
  • Marc Esseses – drums, percussion (2016–present; touring member)

[citation needed]


Studio albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions


Hard Rock
2008 Changes
  • Released: January 8, 2008
  • Label: Rise
  • Format: CD, digital download
2009 Relentless
  • Released: July 21, 2009
  • Label: Rise
  • Format: CD, digital download
2011 Back Burner
  • Released: May 24, 2011
  • Label: Rise
  • Format: CD, digital download
187 4 28 46 10
2012 Wasted Youth
  • Released: July 17, 2012
  • Label: Artery
  • Format: CD, digital download
176 6 31 16
2014 Heavy Hearts
  • Released: April 4, 2014
  • Label: Rise
  • Format: CD, digital download, vinyl
162 3 27 33 12
2018 Six
  • Released: February 16, 2018
  • Label: Rise
  • Format: CD, digital download


Date of release Title[citation needed] Label
2004 Dead as the Rest (Demo) Self-released
2005 For the Fallen Dreams (Demo)
2007 New Beginnings


Song Title Album Year Month Record Label
"My Anthem-Like Symphony" Back Burner 2011 April Rise Records
"Strange Faces" July
"Hollow" Wasted Youth 2012 May Artery Records
"Substance" Non-album single 2013 Rise Records
"Emerald Blue" Heavy Hearts 2014 February
"Stone" Six 2018 January
"Ten Years" February

[citation needed]

Featured acts[edit]

Changes (2008) "Vengeance" – Chris Aslip of Suffocate Faster

"Falling Down" – Matthew Hasting of MyChildren MyBride

Relentless (2009) "Nightmares" – Jeremy McKinnon of A Day to Remember
Back Burner (2011) "Yellow" – Mike Duce of Lower Than Atlantis
Heavy Hearts (2014) "Dream Eater" – Garrett Rapp of The Color Morale

"Smelling Salt" – Landon Tewers of The Plot in You


Song Album Year Month
"The Big Empty" Back Burner 2011 May
"Let Go" 2012 April
"Resolvent Feelings" Wasted Youth July
"Bombay" Heavy Hearts 2014 September
"Stone" Six 2018 January
"Unstoppable" March

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b [failed verification] Database (n.d.). "For The Fallen Dreams". MTV. Retrieved February 4, 2012.
  2. ^ a b c Staff (February 4, 2012). "For The Fallen Dreams Signs with Artery Records". Archived from the original on September 15, 2012. Retrieved February 12, 2013.
  3. ^ [failed verification] Database. "Relentless – For the Fallen Dreams". Billboard. Retrieved February 12, 2013.
  4. ^ "Cassius, For The Fallen Dreams tour". Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  5. ^ a b c d "For the Fallen Dreams's Concert History | Concert Archives". Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  6. ^ Valediction, Rise Records, May 25, 2010, retrieved February 16, 2018
  7. ^ "A Day To Remember, Azriel, etc. tour (UK)". Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  8. ^ "For the Fallen Dreams's Concert History | Concert Archives". Retrieved February 23, 2018.
  9. ^ "Chelsea Grin To Headline "The Sick Tour" With Attila, For The Fallen Dreams, Etc., New EP In The Works |". Theprp. December 22, 2011. Retrieved March 6, 2018.
  10. ^ "Artist of the Day: For The Fallen Dreams". Muzik Dizcovery. Retrieved February 23, 2018.
  11. ^ "For The Fallen Dreams to release "Resolvent Feelings" video - News - Alternative Press". Alternative Press. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  12. ^ "14th Annual New England Metal & Hardcore Festival 2012 at The Palladium (Worcester) on 20 April 2012". Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  13. ^ "Slam Dunk Festival Leeds 2012 Setlists". Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  14. ^ "For the Fallen Dreams's Concert History | Concert Archives". Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  15. ^ "All Stars Tour 2012 Full Routing Announced (SUICIDE SILENCE, UNEARTH, WINDS OF PLAGUE, STICK TO YOUR GUNS) - Metal Injection". Metal Injection. May 14, 2012. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  16. ^ "For The Fallen Dreams Vocalist Dylan Richter Exits The Band |". Theprp. January 8, 2013. Retrieved February 16, 2018.
  17. ^ rtmconcerts (May 24, 2013), 2013.05.23 Interview with Chad Ruhlig from For The Fallen Dreams (Live in Joliet, IL), retrieved February 16, 2018
  18. ^ "Buy The Boys Of Summer tour 2013 tickets, NSW 2013 | Moshtix". Moshtix. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  19. ^ "For The Fallen Dreams stream new single, "Substance" - News - Alternative Press". Alternative Press. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  20. ^ "For The Fallen Dreams Announce Headlining Tour | Under the Gun Review". Under the Gun Review. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  21. ^ "For The Fallen Dreams Singer Seriously Injured In Motorcycle Accident, Australian Tour Cancelled - Music Feeds". Music Feeds. August 28, 2013. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  22. ^ "Tours: Senses Fail / For the Fallen Dreams / Expire / Being as an Ocean". Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  23. ^ "For The Fallen Dreams release "Bombay" music video - News - Alternative Press". Alternative Press. Retrieved February 17, 2018.
  24. ^ "For the Fallen Dreams's Concert History | Concert Archives". Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  25. ^ Shed my Skin TV (June 17, 2015), For The Fallen Dreams - Deep Interview with Chad & Jim 2015, retrieved March 11, 2018
  26. ^ "The Ghost Inside Drummer Andrew Tkaczyk Loses Right Leg". Loudwire. Retrieved March 11, 2018.
  27. ^ "For the Fallen Dreams - Six (Album Review) - Cryptic Rock". Cryptic Rock. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  28. ^ a b "For The Fallen Dreams: Six - Shockwave Magazine". Shockwave Magazine. February 26, 2018. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  29. ^ "For the Fallen Dreams". Facebook. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  30. ^ "For The Fallen Dreams Debut "Unstoppable" Music Video | Theprp". March 14, 2018. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  31. ^ "Similar artists to For the Fallen Dreams — Free listening, videos, concerts, stats and photos at". Retrieved February 16, 2018.
  32. ^ "Jordan McPherson | Aggressive music". Aggressive Music. Retrieved February 25, 2018.
  33. ^ "Artist of the Day: For The Fallen Dreams". Muzik Dizcovery. Retrieved February 25, 2018.
  34. ^ "For The Fallen Dreams – Rock The Walls – Interview with Dylan Richter". Idobi. Retrieved February 25, 2018.
  35. ^ "FOR THE FALLEN DREAMS LYRICS - "Heavy Hearts" (2014) album". Retrieved February 25, 2018.
  36. ^ "FOR THE FALLEN DREAMS LYRICS - "Wasted Youth" (2012) album". Retrieved February 25, 2018.
  37. ^ "For the Fallen Dreams – Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved January 31, 2014.
  38. ^ "For the Fallen Dreams – Chart History: Heatseekers Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved January 31, 2014.
  39. ^ "For the Fallen Dreams – Chart History: Independent Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved January 31, 2014.
  40. ^ "For the Fallen Dreams – Chart History: Top Rock Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved January 31, 2014.
  41. ^ "For the Fallen Dreams – Chart History: Hard Rock Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved January 31, 2014.

External links[edit]