Dead by April is a Swedish metal band from Gothenburg, formed in February 2007 by Pontus Hjelm and Jimmie Strimell. The current band lineup consists of Christoffer "Stoffe" Andersson, Zandro Santiago, Marcus Wesslén, Marcus Rosell and Pontus Hjelm. They released their self-titled debut album in May 2009. In 2010 the two guitarists, Pontus Hjelm and Johan Olsson, left the band. Pontus, remained a songwriter for the band, however rejoined as the "session" guitarist, then later as a permanent member. One of the founding members, as well as main vocalist of the band, Jimmie Strimell, left the band in March 2013 due to personal problems.
Early days and debut album (2007-2010)
The band was formed in early 2007, when Jimmie Strimell, the lead singer of Nightrage, decided to collaborate with songwriter and former Cipher System member Pontus Hjelm to form Dead by April. During the band's early days in 2007 and 2008, the band did not release any physical media, though most of the songs that they gave to friends were quickly leaked out to several peer-to-peer-sites, with the first songs being "Lost" and "Stronger". During this time, they also played in local venues around Gothenburg.
On March 27, 2010, Dead by April headlined the Norwegian festival 'Rock mot Rus' together with several Norwegian acts such as Turdus Musicus, Moddi, Cyaneed, Jodski, Purified in Blood etc. The band continued touring with Purified in Blood until early May.
New line-up and Stronger (2010-2011)
On April 23, 2010, it was announced on the band's official MySpace page that Pontus Hjelm (guitarist, songwriter and singer) had officially left Dead by April. The reason for his departure was because he didn't want to continue as a band member, he wanted to focus on being a songwriter. Although Pontus would no longer be an official band member, he wanted to continue writing music for Dead by April, telling the fans that "nothing is different in the songwriting department". The replacement for Pontus Hjelm became Zandro Santiago. Although Zandro only provides vocals, the band felt that it did not change much of the sound to continue with only one guitarist.
On May 17, the band released the fourth single of their debut album. Unlike any other Dead by April-single release, this single was a double A-Side entitled "Love Like Blood/Promise Me". Besides that "Love Like Blood" is a Killing Joke cover, it marks the very first track recorded by Dead by April with their new singer, Zandro Santiago. "Promise Me", however, already appeared on the album.
On October 22, 2010, it was announced that Johan would be leaving the band, citing "personal issues", as well as focusing on his clothing range. The band searched for a new guitarist via FaceBook and YouTube. However, they later revealed on their Facebook page that Pontus would act as a "session" player on their upcoming album and whilst on tour.
During Dead by April's UK tour with My Passion, Johan was replaced by guitarist Joel Nilsson.
In August, 2010, they released a teaser for a new song called "Within My Heart", which was released, along with the new album, in early 2011. The album is heavier and more dynamic than their self-titled album. The song "More Than Yesterday" has been played live on tour in the UK and Sweden and will feature on the new album, as well as the compilation album, "Stronger". Jimmie released a demo recording of it on his YouTube channel.
Dead by April made an appearance on the soundtrack for Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit as a featured artist on the song "Stronger" by Lazee (not to be confused with their song with the same name).
On December 7, it was announced that a new compilation album called "Stronger" would be released on January 25, 2011. It contains a demo version of "More Than Yesterday", three heavier versions of their songs and some tracks that have already been released.
During shows in Russia, DeathDestruction drummer Jonas Ekdahl, was replacing Alexander while he is resting his ears. Jonas will remain as a session drummer for the coming 3 to 5 months.
On January 24, 2011, Dead by April released the compilation album Stronger. On April 19, 2011, Dead by April confirmed the mixing was complete for their newest album via their Facebook page. On May 2, 2011, Dead by April announced that their first single of their second album would be "Within My Heart". This was released digitally on May 16, 2011 and included two more songs - a new song called "Two Faced" and a re-recorded version of "Unhateable". Later it was confirmed that the band would perform at the Sonisphere Festival in Sweden on July 9.
Incomparable and Melodifestivalen (2011-2012)
Dead by April began mixing their new album in the second quarter of 2011 and concluded on April 19, 2011. On the 4th of July, the band announced the title of the new album to be "Incomparable", and it was announced on July 11 that it would be released on September 21, though it was rumored to be delayed in early August to a possible November 7 release date. The album cover was originally going to be released by the band on Facebook once they reached 230,000 "likes", but other sites leaked the cover so the band released it early. The cover features a sky blue back ground with the same "Dead by April" logo as their self-titled album. The center shows a Japanese girl with blood and a black substance coming out of her mouth, similar to scenes from The Grudge. The album is said to be heavier and more dynamic than their self-titled album. Zandro Santiago commented on the band's genre, stating that, "[Dead by April is a] metal and boyband pop. Metal fans might not handle it properly."
Similarly to the band's debut album, Incomparable debuted at number two on the national Swedish album charts, the band's homeland. The album was outsold only by Melissa Horn's Innan jag kände dig, which was in its second week of release and had already reached gold status in Sweden.
Dead By April performed in Melodifestivalen in early 2012 and went into the finals. The band placed 7th, using the song "Mystery". They have also announced that they are currently working on a new album, and that Pontus Hjelm had rejoined officially.
Jimmie Strimmell's departure and Let The World Know (2013-2014)
The band re-recorded an old demo song of theirs called "Found Myself In You" for pledgers on their PledgeMusic site. They have also announced that they will release a compilation album early next year. On the 25th of February 2013, Dead by April gained the number of pledges required for them to fund a live DVD release set for the 13th of March. Unfortunately after much delay due to subsequent filming problems, the band later scrapped the release and refunded the funds.
On the 18th of March 2013 it was confirmed by the band that Jimmie Strimell was no longer part of the band and had been replaced by Christoffer Andersson, current member of What Tomorrow Brings. The statement also stated that a new album, EP and tour was under way. The EP featured 2 new songs It was announced in November 2013 that the band's new album, Let the World Know, was scheduled for release in mid-February 2014, and would be published by Spinefarm Records. Later that month, the band later confirmed the official release date of the album will be on the 12th of February, 2014. The band released a new single on the 6th of December 2013 titled "As a Butterfly". Shortly after the release of Let The World Know, the bands original drummer Alexander Svenningson announced he had left the band and had been quickly replaced by Marcus Rosell, current member of Ends With A Bullet.
Dead by April have been categorized under various metal genres, particularly under the melodic metal genres such as melodic death metal and melodic metalcore. The bands first début album of the same name was reviewed by AllMusic as a mash-up of "...metalcore mixed with the melodic death metal..." Before the release of Incomparable, be band claimed that their sound was a blend of pop and metal, however when reviewed by AllMusic, it was reviewed as alternative metal album with infuences of Nu metal. The Incomparable album is also said to have "...twisted techno synths and squelchy basslines..." particularly in the song Dreaming.
The two singers of the band; Zandro Santiago, who clean sings for the band, and Christoffer Andersson (formerly Jimmie Strimell) who is the screamer of the band sing hand-in-hand with each other.