The Acacia Strain Sign To Rise Records

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Date Signed: May 2012
Label: Rise Records
Type of Music: Death Metal
Band Members: Vincent Bennett, vocals; Daniel Laskiewicz, guitar; Jack Strong, bass; Kevin Boutot, drums
Management: Leah Urbano, Scott Lee/Crimson Management, crimsonmgt@gmail.com
Booking: Matt Pike/The Kenmore Agency; Tom Taaffe/The Agency Group
Legal: Brian Christner
Publicity: Mike Cubillos, mike@earshotmedia.com
Web: http://theacaciastrain.com
A&R: Craig Ericson

By Jessica Pace

When the Acacia Strain sought a new label, Rise Records wasn’t the first that came to mind. The Massachusetts death metal band didn’t think their style fit the label’s bill, but a meeting with Rise CEO Craig Ericson changed their minds.

“When we met with Craig, he took us out to dinner, we had a beer, and he laid it out on the table," says vocalist-songwriter Vincent Bennett. "He’s just an old rock dude who signs bands to put out the records he wants to put out. Nowadays, people sign bands to make money, and that’s their end game. Craig puts the money back into the label and gives a chance to bands that wouldn’t normally get a chance.”

Photo by Jeremy Saffer

The Acacia Strain, though the band's lineup has changed several times, have wizened in their 11 years as a band through their experiences with two drastically different labels.

“Devil’s Head was a one-man hobby operation, and I learned it’s hard to run your own record label, especially now with digital downloading and pirating. The only real marketing an independent label can have is vinyl, which is getting huge in hardcore and punk rock,” Bennett says. What his band learned from Prosthetic Records is to never sign a deal for more than two records. "When you’re a brand new band like we were when we first signed, we were just excited to be on a record label. Fast-forward eight years and you’re a different person. Prosthetic’s priorities didn’t change, and ours did." Bennet feels that as a band grows and evolves, their label needs to grow and evolve along with them. "If it doesn’t, you need to seek out other options," is his advice.

The band signed to Rise for one album, and Bennett says he’s excited about the label’s openness to marketing ideas.

"Having someone to put out your CD isn’t really enough,” Bennett says. "You need someone who backs your ideas, listens to you and will carry out the things you want carried out. We’re brimming with ideas, and our past experiences with record labels is they do what they want, and they don’t care what you think. They have a preconceived plan set up for you. But Rise is open for anything. That’s their strongest attribute for us—that they would even consider ridiculous ideas.”

The release date for Death is the Only Mortal, the Acacia Strain’s sixth studio album, was Oct. 9th.