In 2011, the Charlotte-based metal band Young And In The Way seemed poised for a national breakthrough. That year, the band released two LPs, I Am Not What I Am and V. Eternal Depression, on the heels of three other EPs. In the months following, heavy music blogs raved about the band’s deft mix of unrelenting hardcore and moody black metal. They landed a spot at Hopscotch in 2012. And then, the gloriously loud blackened-crust outfit went uncharacteristically quiet.
YAITW re-emerged early last year, releasing split 7-inches with Chicago’s Moral Void and Canada’s Withdrawal in January. They also announced that their next full-length, When Life Comes to Death, would be released “soon” via Converge frontman Jacob Bannon’s Deathwish Inc. label.
“It was April when we started talking to Deathwish,” YAITW guitarist RIck Contes says, explaining the band’s relative calm. “We got an agreement from them to go ahead with the new full-length. Basically since then, we’ve been working on finishing writing it and then recording it. It’s been a pretty lengthy process for everything.”
Opting to record the album themselves, YAITW retreated into their studio and labored over every detail. “It’s turned out to be the best decision for us to take our time on it,” Contes says. “You can’t rush something you want to be perfect. It gives us freedom to do whatever we want. We literally spent months recording this album, and we couldn’t have done that in another studio.”
He vows that When Death Comes To Life is YAITW’s best and heaviest effort to date: “We spent a lot of time on tones and everything, just getting it as intense as we possibly could get it.”
In December, the band turned the master recordings over to the label. Frontman Kable Lyall just put the finishing touches on the artwork. Tentatively, the LP will be released this summer.
Meanwhile, the band’s few performances have been marked by an increased attention to performance and ritual. Candles and banners, and occasionally animal bones, adorn the stage. “Getting more stuff on stage is definitely something we’ve wanted to do for a long time,” Contes says. Additionally, they’ve been working on expanding their sets beyond 22-minute blasts. “Since we have so much more material to choose from now, we want to be able to play something from everything,” he says. “The actual setlist itself has a lot of new songs.”
When YAITW returns to Raleigh on Sunday to headline The Maywood, he adds, “We’ll be playing most of the new album.”