From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Live 2/7/2013 in Carrboro, NC
Background information
Origin Miami, Florida, United States
Genres Stoner metal, sludge metal
Years active 2004–present
Labels Relapse Records, Hydra Head, Rock Action, Robotic Empire
Associated acts Floor, Cavity, Mehkago N.T., Shitstorm, Tyranny of Shaw, Tunes for Bears to Dance To, MonstrO
Website Torche music
Members Steve Brooks
Rick Smith
Jonathan Nuñez
Andrew Elstner
Past members Juan Montoya

Torche is an American band from Miami, Florida, whose sound is often described as stoner metal, or sludge metal. They formed in 2004 and have released three full-length studio albums, four EPs, two split albums, and three singles. Their most recent release was Restarter, released in 2015.


Steve Brooks - live in concert

The group was formed in 2004[1] by Steve Brooks (ex-Floor), Juan Montoya (ex-Floor, ex-Cavity, ex-Ed Matus Struggle), Jonathan Nuñez and Rick Smith (who also played in the grindcore bands Shitstorm, Tyranny of Shaw, Adore Miridia, the screamo band Tunes for Bears to Dance To, and punk band Post-Teens).[2] According to "Their music has a unique, hard-hitting sound that provokes a wide range of emotions, and they have a large fan base throughout the world."[3] They have toured with Mogwai, Isis, Pelican, Black Cobra, Baroness, Jesu, The Sword, Coheed and Cambria, Stinking Lizaveta, Harvey Milk, Boris, and High on Fire.[4] Steve Brooks, however, has said that they don't consider themselves a metal band.[5] In describing the band's sound, Smith said in an interview: "To me it's mostly a combination of everything we listen to collectively as a band. We take what we like from what we grew up on and use it as creatively as we can. I think the meshing of different sounds comes naturally just because we all have different musical backgrounds yet have a ton of common interests."[6] In terms of touring, Brooks said Torche is getting more of a young crowd.[7]

On April 8, 2008, the band released their second full-length, entitled Meanderthal. It was produced by Kurt Ballou (Converge, Genghis Tron).[8] It was met with critical acclaim from publications including Decibel Magazine, who ranked Meanderthal No. 1 on their list of the Top 40 Extreme Albums of 2008,[9] and Pitchfork Media, who gave the album an 8.2/10 score in their review.[10] In an interview, Brooks said the band themselves came up with the album's concept in terms of artwork and packaging, along with Aaron Turner.[11] Brooks has also said that in terms of writing material, the band focuses on what they like, rather than worrying about a "backlash" from their fans.[12]

Guitarist Stephen Brooks is one of the few openly gay musicians in the metal scene.[13] He did an interview round table in 2008 on with other openly gay musicians such as Brian Cook (Russian Circles, These Arms Are Snakes, Botch), and Juan Velazquez of Abe Vigoda.[14]

In late 2008 Juan Montoya left the band, a move credited to musical differences. Steve Brooks said "He is an amazing guitarist, but we are just not on the same page... but Torche will still carry on as a 3 piece band". As of 2010, Juan Montoya joined up with ex-Bloodsimple members Bevan Davies and Kyle Sanders, and Charlie Suarez of Sunday Driver to create the band "MonstrO" In an interview with Malia James, Brooks revealed that Montoya's departure was acrimonious, and involved physical violence between the two of them.[13]

Torche embarked on tours with bands such as dredg in April 2009,[15] and another with a reunited Harvey Milk. The band opened for Coheed and Cambria on their headlining tour alongside Circa Survive in spring 2010. One of Torche's earliest festival performances was at Incubate in 2006. After that, the band played at SXSW in 2008.

On January 14, 2011, it was announced on the Riverfront Times Blog that Andrew Elstner (Riddle of Steel, Tilts) would be joining Torche.[16] The band released their fourth full-length, Restarter, in February 2015 on Relapse Records.


Current members

  • Steve Brooks – guitars, vocals (2004–present)
  • Jonathan Nuñez – bass (2004–present)
  • Rick Smith – drums (2004–present)
  • Andrew Elstner - guitar, vocals (2011–present)

Touring members

  • Howard Johnston – live guitars (2010)[17]

Former members

  • Juan Montoya – guitars (2004–2008)


Studio albums[edit]

Year Title Label
2005 Torche Robotic Empire/ Rock Action Records
2008 Meanderthal Hydra Head Records/ Robotic Empire
2012 Harmonicraft[18] Volcom Entertainment
2015 Restarter[19] Relapse Records


Year Title Label
2007 In Return Robotic Empire/ Rock Action Records
2009 Healer / Across the Shields Hydra Head Records
2009 Meanderthal Demos Rotting Chapel
2010 Songs for Singles[20] Hydra Head Records


Year Title Label
2009 Chapter Ahead Being Fake (split with Boris) Daymare Records
2011 Torche / Part Chimp Chunklet[21]


Year Single Album
2010 "King Beef" Chapter Ahead Being Fake
2011 "U.F.O." Songs for Singles
2012 "Pow Wow" / "80s Prom Song" Decibel Flexi-Disc Series
2012 "Kicking" Harmonicraft
2012 "Harmonslaught"[22] n/a
2013 "Keep Up"[23] n/a

Other appearances[edit]


  1. ^ Torche Biography Retrieved on 2009-07-31.
  2. ^ An Interview with Steve and Rick of Torche 2005-07-24. Retrieved on 2009-07-30.
  3. ^ [1][dead link]
  4. ^ [2][dead link]
  5. ^ [3][dead link]
  6. ^ "Torche Interview - Deaf Sparrow Zine". Retrieved 2012-12-31. 
  7. ^ "All That is Heavy". Retrieved 2012-12-31. 
  8. ^ Carman, Keith. "Torche Make It Quick • Interviews •". Retrieved 2012-12-31. 
  9. ^ [4][dead link]
  10. ^ "Torche: Meanderthal | Album Reviews". Pitchfork. 2008-07-31. Retrieved 2012-12-31. 
  11. ^ Torche interview 2008-05-29. Retrieved on 2010-07-21.
  12. ^ "Torche – Steve Brooks, Vocals/Guitars". 2008-03-27. Retrieved 2012-12-31. 
  13. ^ a b "Dirty Laundry Presents: Torche". Retrieved 13 November 2010. 
  14. ^ Reighley, Kurt B. A Big, Gay Roundtable 2008-10-28. Retrieved on 2010-10-29.
  15. ^ Torche & Dredg - 2009 Tour Dates 2009-02-23. Retrieved on 2010-03-01.
  16. ^ Zaleski, Annie.Andrew Elstner of Tilts, Riddle of Steel Joins Stoner-Metal Band Torche 2011-01-14. Retrieved on 2011-01-16.
  17. ^ Landau, Erica K. (July 14, 2010). "Q&A: Jonathan Nunez from Torche, Playing Respectable Street Saturday". New Times Broward-Palm Beach. The Village Voice. Retrieved July 23, 2010. 
  18. ^ Stosuy, Brandon (February 14, 2012). "Torche: 'Kicking'". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved February 14, 2012. 
  19. ^ Geslani, Michelle (November 4, 2014). "Torche announce new album, Restarter, plus US tour dates". Consequence of Sound. Townsquare Media. Retrieved December 20, 2014. 
  20. ^ Kitteringham, Sarah (May 25, 2010). "Torche Interview and Update". Decibel. Retrieved June 22, 2010. [dead link]
  21. ^ Fitzmaurice, Larry (September 19, 2011). "Listen: Torche Cover Guided by Voices". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  22. ^ Currin, Grayson (December 13, 2012). "Torche: 'Harmonslaught'". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved December 13, 2012. 
  23. ^ Martins, Chris (May 14, 2013). "Hear Torche's Blissful New Headbanger 'Keep Up'". Spin. Spin Media. Retrieved May 14, 2013. 

External links[edit]