Sometimes fate takes time to materialize ...
Forming in 2009 ATTACK OF THE RISING quickly made a name for themselves in Southern California, headlining clubs on their own as well as supporting roles for the likes of Warrior, DC4 and Odin into 2010. At that point, the Lepre brothers decided to put the band on hold due to the attention they were giving to their other project at the time, Maleki Theory, which was a more traditional rock band in which Tony Lepre played bass, rather than guitar.
In 2014, the brothers decided to resurrect ``ATTACK OF THE RISING, leading to the release of their self-titled debut Ep, in December of 2014 as well as two videos, for "Blood in the Sand" and 'Fields of Maiden" in January and August of 2015, respectively. Touring the Southwest in support of the Ep release, ATTACK OF THE RISING soon added legendary bands Diamond Head, Metal Church and Armored Saint to the list of artists they had shared the stage with. During this time period, they also lent their talents to causes such as Rockers Against Cancer, the Kimberly Crane F*ck Cancer Benefit, Musicians for Vets, the Homeless Veteran Benefit and co-headlined Thunder in the Lot.
At this point, changes within the band were frequent, based on personality and commitment differences so the brothers once again found themselves looking to build a new lineup – a stable one this time. "We weren't sure what to do at this point," says Tony. Mandrake (ex Axehammer) was someone we knew, and we had wanted him to front the band for a while – the second Chris heard him he was like, 'that's exactly the guy we need!" They got to be friends with Mandrake, and he and Tony met up one night about two years later and It didn't take any convincing at all. “Twenty minutes into our conversation, after bringing it up, Mandrake said, 'I'm in ATTACK OF THE RISING!' That was the first step, getting Mandrake onboard, which proved to be relatively easy.”
Bringing a bass player and second guitarist on board wasn't quite as easy – "they both turned us down at first!" Tony laughs. "I'd met Mike a few times at various open jams and we bonded over our love of Armored Saint and old school metal in general. Mike was down and liked the songs I had sent him. But Initially the timing did not work. Then at the Armored Saint "Symbol of Salvation" LA show, Mandrake and I closed the deal with Mike.” While the quartet worked on material and getting a show together, the search for a second guitarist continued. "No one I knew fit what we were looking for and at some point, Mike mentioned Billy Sablan, who used to be in the band Rude Awakening and he had known over half his life. He talked to Billy and he had a couple of bands and didn't really have time for another. Mike sent him over a few demos, we jam with Billy, and that was it. Billy's in and we have a completed lineup."
Lineup in place, shows getting stronger, crowds getting larger, the next logical step is to record an album so that was up next. The band looked to legendary producer / engineer Bill Metoyer to get them down on tape. *"I've been friends with Bill Metoyer for some time, and he always liked the band,” says Tony. “We had initially discussed recording during the previous lineup. When he saw the new lineup's first show he was smiling which is Bill's way of letting one know... ya know? So, we discussed formalizing everything that same evening.” On June 28, 2019 ATTACK OF THE RISING started the process of recording with Metoyer, first tracking the drums at GailForce Studios. “Chris knocked out all 10 songs that weekend, then between July 2019 and November 2019, we tracked everything else at Skull Seven Studios. Bill had started working on the basic mixing process in January 2020, and then Covid 19 hit. Between October 2020 and Mid-December 2020, the mixing and mastering of the album was completed.”
“On the Horizon'' opens Game Changer with all the subtlety of a kick to the throat. Chris Lepre’s bombastic drumming coupled with his brother Tony and Billy Sablan’s twin guitar punch set up, and the old school Testament thrash riffage that the song then breaks into; sets the tone for what you’re getting here. Pure, melodic mayhem. The band’s early 80s East and West Coast Metal and NWOBHM influences shine through on tracks like “Gargula,” (Gargoyle’s are the subject matter, taking the view they are here to protect mankind), the raw intensity of “Burning Daylight,” (the blue collar struggle and how society in general, is in need of overhaul) and “Last Stand” (“We took 70’s riff rock, modernized to Heavy Rock with the message of this is humanity’s last stand”) set themselves off perfectly from the groove attack of “Eyes Closed” (“the first song we all wrote together, killer groove rock about suicide and total disillusionment with life) and the epic feel of “Opus X” (“A day in the life of any of us, and how we all have been in places and circumstances in life we don't want to be in, with light of hope at the end of the tunnel”). What you get with Game Changer is a work of art that appeals to all metalheads, old and new school fans alike.
ATTACK OF THE RISING wants you to “Be One Tribe with Us”