When From Autumn to Ashes front man Fran Mark and guitarist Rob Lauritsen began writing together after 2007’s “Holding a Wolf By the Ears,” they intended to write the next From Autumn to Ashes record. What came out was an even harder showcase of guitar and screaming vocals than From Autumn to Ashes had ever put out before. It soon became apparent that the material wasn’t in the same line of their previous work and the band split before putting it out.

Mark and Lauritsen took their newfound writing companionship and formed “ËœWarship’.

“Out of the five members, Rob and I were the only two people into the same things at the time. We just kind of drifted apart from the other guys. We were the only two who had a similar vision,” Mark told Blast at a recent Harper’s Ferry show in Allston, Mass.

Still signed to Vagrant records, the duo put out their first LP, “Supply and Depend,” in November 2008. The new record featured raw, gripping, metal guitar licks supporting Mark’s screaming social conscious lyrics to create a sound plunging farther into hardcore and metal than From Autumn to Ashes ever dreamed of.

“I really like a lot of heavier [stuff],” Mark said. “I love heavier music. I think Rob writes guitar parts that just lend themselves to it. When I was putting vocals to old [From Autumn to Ashes] songs I sang a lot more because the guitar parts sort of asked for it but Rob’s really into really “Ëœdoomy metal’.”

Touching on themes like suicide, war and age old societal issues, Mark explains that having a microphone in your hand means having an opportunity to make an impact.

“You have an opportunity to have people’s attention. It’s a responsibility to put out a positive message. You don’t necessarily have to be preachy but it’s important to use it as a tool,” he said.

Even the band’s name is an effort to create awareness with their fans. “ËœWarship’ is a play on the word “Ëœworship’, an attempt for Mark to make people evaluate the role of religion in their own lives and in the life of society as a whole.

“I had a religious upbringing, but then in my teens the whole thing started to feel a little off,” Mark explained in a recent press release. “I feel like religion should be a personal thing, and a tool to bring people together, and have people take care of each other, and respect each other, but it’s not. It becomes a tool of segregation, a political tool, and people use it to gain power over one another, and that’s off the mark.”

While Warship wants to avoid being directly political, they do have Ralph Nader listed in their Top 8 on Myspace and admit to being skeptical about the new administration.

“We’ll see. I think this stimulus plan is never going to work. I think they have some good ideas but we’ll see how it pans out,” Mark said.

Currently, Warship is spreading social consciousness on tour. The band missed the first couple dates of their current tour with Goblin Cock due to their van breaking down in West Virginia on Super Bowl Sunday. Since re-connecting with the tour, Mark says that he enjoys being on the road again and exploring the harder sound.

About The Author

Megan Vick is a Blast editor-at-large

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