State of Deceit are a metalcore, thrash and groove band founded by Jonathan Russell in South Wales, UK. Bandmembers include: Peter Scammell on lead vocals, Jonathan Russell on rhythm guitar, Gareth Jones on lead guitar, Davide Santini on bass and backing vocals, and Matthew Toner on drums. Their main influences are Trivium, Pantera, Fit For a King, Machine Head, and Killswitch Engage. They released the EP titled Retribution in 2019, recorded with Romesh Dodangoda (Motörhead, Bring me the Horizon), and the band then used the pandemic to build on the former in order to craft the powerhouse debut album: Stalked by Daemons, recorded at Sonic One Studios in West Wales with Tim Hamill, (who had previously produced Anterior among others). Plainly, the record is lightening in a bottle, a testament, a statement that fortifies and amplifies the admirable reputation the band has as absolute bangers: fast, heavy, and mosh-ready, turn it up!
After a plethora of sold-out shows, State of Deceit has become the pride of South Wales and the “must see” band all across the UK. While each gig has been unique, each with its own epiphanies and fireworks, there is one thing that has always been the cornerstone. This band blows the roof off the joint anywhere they play, and new fans go home knowing they just saw something new, something heavy, something consequential in the sense that they will use State of Deceit as an indicator now, a lynch pin defining life as “before” and “after,” like BC and AD. Hey, the band made it to the Metal to the Masses final in 2022 for a reason. Now they belong to us, and our expectations are dizzying as the band set the bar so damned high.
Just give a listen to the songs, the hooks, the thunder and blast of the rhythm patterns, the funkified bass, the bone-buzzing verse growls, the anthem-like vocals in the choruses, the addictive riffs, and the blistering platform guitar solos that make you feel as if you are riding a Harley on the highway at a million miles an hour.
In reference to the writing, the band always initiates the process with a live show in mind, making the songs exciting and fun to play. The work usually begins with Jon, Davide or Gareth coming up with a riff, half a song, or even a complete composition, recorded on a home demo. Collectively, the band plays along with the parts until they are ready to take it to the rehearsal room, jamming on it to get a feel for it live. Once they settle on the skeletal structure of the riffs, Pete will start working on vocal patterns and melodies, often in the car. Lucky car! Song lyrics at times will come last, often creating a theme or building off one already architected in the jam sessions.
In a more personal look at message and content, State of Deceit write about topics close to the soul and socially relevant, like mental health and politics. Still, the band generally thinks of the studio as a fun place to be, making the music come from emotive foundations and filled with humor at times, especially with Tim and stunts like the salt-in-the-water-bottle-video with Gareth, and having to get Matt straight from a suit fitting for Pete’s imminent wedding, to re-record some drum fills while still in the suit! Mostly, they want their listeners and viewers to feel like they’re rocking with pure joy, howling at the moon, vibrating the walls, and sticking a middle finger straight into the mug of the mainstream.
State of Deceit has arrived. Debut records are often brilliant, daring, and new. Stalked by Daemons is all that, through and through track to track, but the most significant difference is that this band doesn’t have the feel of a neophyte. They have swag. Like champions. Like Kings. Like they were meant for this.