Walls of Jericho is an American metalcore band from Detroit, Michigan, formed in 1998.
Early career (1998–2001)Walls of Jericho were formed following the demise of two Detroit based bands. The first being the influential Earthmover, featuring members Mike Hasty (guitar) and Wes Keely (drums). The second was a band called Universal Stomp which Aaron Ruby (bass) played in. Both bands fizzled out at around the same time prompting the three friends to start a new band. At the same time Candace Kucsulain, 2 year singer for the band Apathemy auditioned with the band. After numerous other auditions for lead singer the band accepted Candace as their new frontwoman in September 1998. For the first few months the band would perform with friends of theirs filling in on guitar however later decided to ask close friend Chris Rawson in as full time member who was able to offer more commitment to the band. With the line-up complete the five piece began touring the local Detroit hardcore scene. Soon after in April 1999 the band released their first EP on 7" through label Underestimated, which was followed shortly thereafter by a CD EP containing that 7" and demo tracks, called A Day and a Thousand Years released on Florida based Eulogy Recordings. This was later released by European imprint Genet. After continuous touring in support of their EP releases, the band attracted the attention of both Ferret and Trustkill Records. They went on to sign with Trustkill which resulted in the December 1999 release of their debut full-length album The Bound Feed the Gagged. The band hit the touring and hardcore festival circuit the following year. In August of 2000 they began touring the United States in support of straight-edgers Earth Crisis, Swedish melodic death metal band In Flames, and Oakland, CA's metallic Skinlab. After another spate of touring in 2001, drummer Wes Keely announced he would be leaving the band to finish school in Seattle, Washington. With the band based in Detroit it would prove impossible for them to continue together. Keely was replaced by ex Suicide Machines drummer Derek Grant. Five months after touring with the band Grant announced he would be leaving to join Chicago punk rockers Alkaline Trio.
Break up (2001–2003)After unsuccessful auditions to fill the vacant drummer position the band, feeling that none of the applicants met their criteria as a band member were forced into a hiatus. Shortly before this announcement was made singer Candace got herself an apprenticeship in body piercing which would occupy her free time over the next two years. Also during this time band members Mike, Aaron and Chris started a side project band called It's All Gone to Hell. For the next 2 years guitarist Mike Hasty would continue to work out of his recording studio Cloud City as an engineer working with bands such as The Black Dahlia Murder and Bloodlined Calligraphy.
Re-formationAfter a 2 year silence period the band would eventually see the vacant drummer slot filled by ex Catharsis member Alexei Rodriguez who called the band after returning from Germany. It was at the same time that Candace was on her way to audition for a local indie band when she received the call from Mike saying that WOJ were re-forming. In April 2003 the band began touring again playing major hardcore events such as Hellfest in Syracuse, NY. Complete with their new drummer the band began writing new material and had completed recording in September 2003. All Hail the Dead was released in February 2004, 5 years since the release of The Bound Feed the Gagged.
The album was released to critical acclaim across the hardcore/metal scene and propelled the band to the forefront of the hardcore scene seeing them fill support slots for bands such as Madball, Hatebreed and Sick of It All as well as headlining tours of their own. It wasn't long after the release that the band would see the loss of their third drummer. Fortunately for the band the position was filled relatively quickly by long time friend Dustin Schoenhofer - ex drummer for Next to Nothing and Premonitions of War.
The next two years would see WOJ touring extensively across the US and Europe gaining more and more support and a very loyal following along the way.
With Devils Amongst Us All (2006)In 2006 WOJ entered a studio in Cleveland with producer Ben Schigel (Chimaira, Zao, Ringworm) to start recording their third album. April of that year saw the band contribute the song A Trigger Full of Promises to the MTV2 Headbangers Ball: The Revenge compilation CD. This would become the first track off of their new album. A video of the song was later released to accompany the song. During the Summer the band was added to the roster of one of the biggest festivals to tour the US - Ozzfest 2006. Following on from this the band also toured as part of the Family Values Tour before releasing their new album in August 2006 titled With Devils Amongst Us All. According to Nielsen Soundscan the album sold 2,800 copies in its first week. The band went on to play a few dates in the U.S. supporting Bury Your Dead as well as a few dates in Brazil before flying to Europe to headline their own UK tour as well as support Sick Of It All, Madball, Terror, Comeback Kid and others on an 11 date European tour called Persistence 2006. 8 of the 11 dates were completely sold out. Early 2007 saw the band tour a few dates around Mexico before embarking on an extensive US tour. In the Summer 2007 they toured Europe again, playing many of the big European summer festivals including Hellfest, France, Pressure Fest, Germany, With Full Force Festival [Germany] and Summer Blast Festival, Germany.
Redemption (2008)In October 2007 the band worked with Slipknot/Stone Sour front man Corey Taylor who produced their EP entitled Redemption which was released on April 29th, 2008 via Trustkill. In addition to producing the EP, Taylor provided guest vocals on three of the five tracks ("Ember Drive," "My Last Stand," and "Addicted" which Taylor co-wrote). The EP also included a rendition of "The House of the Rising Sun". The EP was an acoustic-only release, representing a significant departure from the style of previous studio albums. The release is due to be included with their upcoming Live in South America DVD which was recorded in August 2007. The was also a guest appearance on the EP from Ben Legg - a friend of Candace's.
The American Dream (2008)On July 29, 2008 the band released their fourth full-length studio album The American Dream. The album features a return to the band's pre-"Redemption" musical style. For this album, the band worked again with "With Devils Amongst Us All" producer Ben Schigel.
Current endeavorsAccording to a post by vocalist Candice Kucsulain on the band's official Myspace, WOJ is on a break and she has been working on a side-project called The Beautifuls with her husband, Death Before Dishonor guitarist Frankie.
- The Bound Feed the Gagged (1999)
- All Hail the Dead (2004)
- With Devils Amongst Us All (2006)
- The American Dream (2008)
- Candace Kucsulain – vocals
- Chris Rawson – guitar
- Mike Hasty – guitar
- Aaron Ruby – bass guitar
- Dustin Schoenhofer – drums (2004–present)