1993 – present (25 years)
At least two bands share the name Face Down.
1) Face Down (formerly known as Machine God) is a post-thrash/death metal band from Sweden.
In 1993 bass player Joakim (Harju) Hedestedt and drummer Richard Bng started a band called Machine God along with guitarist Alex Linder. The band was soon joined by vocalist Marco Aro.
After the first gig in spring 1994, guitarist Joacim Carlsson (Afflicted, General Surgery) joined up and they decided to change the band name to Face Down. Later that year, Linder was replaced by Niklas Ekstrand (ex-Tiamat) due in part to his basic lack of interest. With this line up, the first demo was recorded and duplicated in over 800 copies. These were widely spread and given away and none were sent out to record companies.
Through word of mouth, the demo was picked up by Soundfront Music. After a gig in Stockholm in spring 1995 the band signed a contract with Roadrunner Records (through Soundfront Music.) That was also the last gig with Ekstrand, who didn't seem as eager to work as hard as the rest of the band, who in turn doubled their efforts in order to make a great debut album. The album "Mindfield" was recorded in summer 1995 at Soundfront Studio, with acclaimed producer Daniel Bergstrand. Shortly afterwards, Bng left the band. He was soon replaced by drummer Peter Stjrnvind (Unanimated, Merciless) and Face Down was ready for action.
After the release of "Mindfield" in January 96, the band went on an European tour supporting Napalm Death and Crowbar. Around this time the "Kill The Pain" video was shown several times on MTV's Headbangers Ball and the band also appeared in a live interview on the show. This tour also included a couple of gigs with the legendary At The Gates. The European tour was shortly followed by a co-headline tour in the UK with London thrashers Above All and culminated with a magic gig at London Astoria (Metal Hammer's 4-play Night), supporting Cathedral. Back home in Sweden, Face Down attended the awesome Hultsfred Festival and completely devastated the crowd. After lots of problems with Soundfront Records the band stood without a record deal, but was quickly signed on to Nuclear Blast Records. In Autumn of 1996 the band started to work on their second full-length record.
In February of 1997 the band entered Sunlight Studios with producer Tomas Skogsberg. A total of 15 tracks were recorded for their second release in six weeks time. Upon completion of the recording, the band submitted the masters to Nuclear Blast, who in turn, didn't accept the production. The band was forced to re-record the album at Daniel Bergstrand's Dug Out Productions studio in two weeks in July 1997. After the release of "The Twisted Rule The Wicked" in late 1997, Peter Stjrnvind left the band to join Entombed. Hkan Ericsson (from local act Godblender) was quickly brought in to replace him. Tough times lay ahead. The departure of Peter and even more problems with Nuclear Blast made the morale of the band low. The band played some local shows, got promised a couple of tours but nothing ever materialized. The band decided to set up their own tour in the territory where they were best known, the UK, along with HC band Soulquake System from Kristinehamn.
After completing the UK tour in early 1998 with Soulquake System, the band took a break for a few months. Work was resumed during autumn '98, and the band recorded a three track demo-tape at Sunlight Studio.
At this point the relationship with Nuclear Blast was disintegrating completely and further co-operation was impossible. The band once again found themselves without a record deal, with almost all material written for their third album.
In early 1999, Marco decided to leave the band as The Haunted had made him an offer he could not refuse. Face Down was at its lowest point ever. Facing a bleak future with no record label or lead vocalist, Joakim, Hkan and Joacim tried to hold on a couple of weeks but it was pointless. Face Down was dead… The remaining members went their separate ways in spring of 1999.
Over five years later Joakim (Harju) Hedestedt (who was playing base for Construcdead) felt that it was time to reunite the band. He'd heard about Marco Aro's departure from The Haunted and started making some phone calls to his old band mates. The reaction was very positive. To take on the heavy burden of drummer, Joakim asked his good friend Erik Thyselius (also of Construcdead and Terror 2000). Erik gladly accepted the task and the new Face Down was created. Shortly after the band was signed on to Black Lodge Records.
After successfully recording a 3 track demo in the summer of 2004, the band were invited to appear at 'Sweden Rock', the country's largest and most renouned music festival, and also the legendary 'Decibel 2000' festival. Hard work was resumed as the band once again hit the 'Fear and Loathing' recording studio in order to put down tracks for their long awaited third album, 'The Will To Power.'
Produced by Jocke Skog, the album took the band in new directions whilst maintaining the sheer aggression, brutality and impact of their former releases.
Marco Aro - Vocals
Rickard Dahlberg - Guitar
Joakim Hedestedt - Bass
Christofer Barkensjö - Drums
Joacim Carlsson - Guitar (1994-2006)
Erik Thyselius - Drums (2004-2006)
Håkan Ericsson - Drums (1997-1999)
Peter Stjärnvind - Drums (1995-1997)
Richard Bång - Drums (1993-1995)
Niklas Ekstrand - Guitar (1994-1995)
Alex Linder - Guitar (1993-1994)
Henrik Blomquist - Audio Warfare (1994-1996)
One Eyed Man (Demo, 1994)
The Twisted Rule the Wicked (1997)
The Will to Power (2005)
2) Face Down is also a French southern-metal band.
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