Formed in 2008 and fronted by vocalist Larado Romo, ANTI-MORTEM’s line-up includes older brother-guitarist Nevada Romo, guitarist Zain Smith, bassist Corey Henderson and drummer Levi Dickerson. With over 300 shows to their name, these Chickasha, Oklahoma natives (aged between 18 & 22) spent their formative nights and weekends woodshedding their sound on the concert stage they built themselves in the Smith family barn (originally intended to store an old car collection).
While Zain’s parents were away working on the weekends, ANTI-MORTEM would turn their barn rehearsal space into a makeshift venue and hone their chops by inviting friends and family in Chickasha over for an afternoon of gravel-throated vocals, crunch-laden riffs, thick grooves, and some good ol’-fashioned Southern hospitality.
Nuclear Blast Entertainment President Monte Conner states: “ANTI-MORTEM connect with a fist-to-the-face, combining the power of American heavy metal and the down-home flavor of the classic Southern rock and blues they were raised on. I’ve been watching them develop for the past two years and they are now ready to show the world how a good ass-kicking is delivered.”
"We are beyond pumped to be signing with Nuclear Blast Entertainment and to have Monte Conner in our corner,” shares ANTI-MORTEM vocalist Larado Romo. “We are looking forward to a very long worldwide career with Nuclear Blast and are excited to finally have the opportunity to spread our music and message."
For »New Southern«, ANTI-MORTEM worked with veteran producer Bob Marlette (SHINEDOWN, SEETHER, BLACK STONE CHERRY), who helped them to channel their varied influences and inspirations into a cohesive and seamless mix. Incredibly prolific, to date they have penned a whopping 100 songs as a band, and come up with a new song or a new riff every week. "We have so many writers in our band and we all have different tastes," Romo says. "Me and [guitarist] Zain [Smith] will write a song that's pretty metal, and then all three of us write a song that is like southern metal or like it was from the '70s. None of us have ego about writing. We don't question if it's soft or heavy. If one of us says, 'I believe in this riff,' then it becomes, 'Let's write an ANTI-MORTEM song around it.'"
Smith clarifies, "It's not that anyone doesn't like the same style. I listen to the most brutal metal, which the other guys might not get into. We just don't limit ourselves."
Once you get through a full listen to »New Southern«, you will find yourself not believing that musicians as young as the members of ANTI-MORTEM could craft such a solid album. They play with the skill of seasoned vets, yet they have the fire in their bellies that defines up-and-coming bands determined to make a go of it and to be heard.
While ANTI-MORTEM are confident that they are armed with an arsenal of heavy-as-balls songs, live is the band's most natural state and where they truly blossom and come to life. On stage, they adopt a laser-like focus -- no one else exists but ANTI-MORTEM in that moment! Their goal: to lay waste to stages and win fans over in the live realm. "You may hear it and think it's good," Romo says about the album, conceding that the stage is where ANTI-MORTEM are truly in their element. “But when you see us live, you will be crushed. We don’t want you to just listen to the album. Fuck the album. Come see us live."
Smith concurs, "Our goal is to get out there and play better than anyone else. It's not a competition. But we want to get out there and crush. You have to have that attitude that you are the best and look like it. We keep that mindset. When we get on stage, we think we are the baddest band in the world."
The other goal that ANTI-MORTEM have is to inspire people to recall, revere and respect the power of the riff and the guitar. "We want to inspire people to pick up guitars," adds Smith.