Arsis, a musical term for “upbeat”, was formed in 2000 by guitarist/vocalist James Malone and drummer Mike Van Dyne. Their sound was heavily influenced by melodic death metal classics “Heartwork”, “Slaughter of the Soul”, and “Storm of the Light’s Bane”, along with a dose of 80’s metal and thrash. The duo recorded two demos independently in 2001 and 2002, which received positive reviews from the likes of Metal Maniacs Magazine, Metal Judgment, etc. and began to slowly work their way up the ladder by playing live every chance they could get. This led to Arsis signing with Willowtip Records in the fall of 2003. Their debut album, “A Celebration of Guilt”, was released on March 30, 2004 and garnered rave reviews from metal press worldwide. In addition to receiving Album of the Year honors on, being featured on numerous Top 10 of 2004 lists, and heralded by Revolver Magazine as “the genre’s best album since At The Gates’ legendary swan song [Slaughter of the Soul]” upon it’s release, “A Celebration of Guilt” has, in more recent years, been the subject of retrospectives by Invisible Oranges, Toilet Ov Hell, etc. while also ranking #50 on Decibel Magazine’s ‘Top 100 Death Metal Albums of All Time’ list. This early momentum, combined with a desire for continued creativity and a willingness to play as many shows as possible in their formative years, led to Arsis releasing subsequent albums for Willowtip, Nuclear Blast, etc. and eventually sharing stages worldwide with top-tier metal acts such as Arch Enemy, Exodus, Behemoth, Devildriver, Sacred Reich, Cynic, Dying Fetus, Grave, Misery Index, Necrophagist, Cattle Decapitation, Napalm Death, Dead To Fall, Misery Signals, Incantation, and many others. Van Dyne officially parted ways with Arsis in 2012 to pursue his career in medical imaging, and additionally recorded two well-received albums + performed live alongside many renowned metal acts with melodic/progressive death metal band The Final Sleep. Malone continued to release albums and tour under the Arsis banner with several different lineups through the years, and also released music with Necromancing The Stone and Sacrifixx. With the 20th anniversary of “A Celebration of Guilt” on the horizon, Arsis’ debut continues to stand strong as an example of forward thinking metal.