Senses Fail Biography

Review The Artist (26)

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Not many musicians influenced by punk, hardcore and metal are also well versed in poetry, literature and comparative religion. Then again, not many musicians are in Senses Fail.

While dozens of their peers continue to create soul-rendering music about the girls who shattered their hearts and ruined their lives, the Bergen County, New Jersey five piece takes a more intellectual approach to sonic catharsis. Even the name Senses Fail comes from frontman Buddy Nilelsen's interest in spirituality.

"In Hinduism, they believe that being alive is hell, and the only way to each Nirvana is to ultimately have no attachments to anything," he explains. "So, people go out and live in the middle of the woods and they don't eat and don't drink. They just meditate because they've reached such a high level where they're not attached to love, relationships or anything. And if you want to reach the highest level of being and see God, you have to have all your senses fail."

The band's full-length debut, Let It Enfold You, is a melodic and an emotionally revealing slugfest that dives into unusual and refreshing subject matter. The title track is named after a poem by nihilistic author and poet Charles Bukowski, "The Irony of Dying on Your Birthday" draws from the work of mythologist Joseph Campbell and the lyrics of "Slow Dance" are comprised of lines from Dao De Jing.

"I was really into Daoism for a while and I really wanted to write a song explaining what it was about -- the idea of living a pacifist path. You let things come and you let things go. You don't get overexcited or overly upset. I'm a very emotional guy. I'm either really upset or really happy. There's no in between. So I'm always trying to find that middle ground where I can be happy."

Fourtunately, Senses Fail's brains are matched by their brawn. Let It Enfold You is a powerful, inviting and triumphant manifesto of youthful energy and turmoil. From the tumbling rhythms and piercing guitar fill of the storming "Tie Her Down" to the tuneful vocal harmonies and blood-chilling screams of "You're Cute When You Scream" to the surging, stop-start rhythms and pointed vocals of "Bite To Break Skin" the band delivers with the consistency and power of veterans, not an outfit that has only been around since 2002.

A year before Senses Fail were officially born, Nielsen posted an ad for band members on a musician's Web board. Guitarist and background vocalist Garrett Zablocki responded, and the two started jamming with guys Zablocki knew from a previous band he had been in. Guitarist and background singer Dave Miller and drummer Dan Trapp joined when their other group broke up, and after going through a couple bassists who didn't work out, Senses Fail nabbed ex-Tokyo Rose member Mike Glita. The band wrote and practiced a bunch of originals, and lined up gigs at VFW halls and small clubs throughout New Jersey.

Then Senses Fail entered the studio in 2002 with producer John Naclerio, recording two three-song demos. The material turned into an EP called, From The Depths of Dreams. The response to the disc was so strong that just a couple weeks after its release, the band was being courted by larger labels. The collection sold well, and the band supported it with numerous well-recieved tours, including Finch, Millencolin, and The Starting Line. From The Depths of Dreams would later be re-issued with two bonus tracks.

After they finished touring, Senses Fail returned to the studio with Saves The Day producer Steve Evetts to record Let It Enfold You, their most challenging and rewarding experience to date. "We killed ourselves over and over trying to say what we wanted, and make the record the best it could be," Nielsen says. "I just feel like we got lucky to be where we are now, and now we have to prove ourselves and really earn it."

Senses Fail preceded the release of the album with a prominent spot on the Warped Tour and will tour exhaustively through 2004. In addition, Senses Fail are writing music for their next record, and Nielsen spends whatever spare time he has scribbling new poems and passages. When things are so busy, Senses Fail aren't interested in living in the past, or even the present. They've got their eye on the promising future and are determined to capitalize on their vast potential.

"We just love making music and writing good songs," Nielsen said. "I feel like I've got a lot more to say and we've got a lot more to contribute. But even if things ended tomorrow, we've gotten 10 times further than we ever expected to get and that makes us feel like we've succeeded regardless of what happens from here on."

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great band | Reviewer: Jay | 3/14/11

I first saw Senses Fail play in Minneapolis in early 2004, along with Rufio, Autopilot Off and Don't Look Down. It was a fantastic show. So much energy and stage presence. I have been a big fan of the band ever since, there are very few musicians out there these days that put as much passion into their music as these guys. Poignant lyrics, awesome guitar... the list goes on. Keep rocking guys, I look forward to more albums from you.

Senses fail | Reviewer: sy man | 2/16/11

I have been a huge fan of senses fail since i was 18/19 im now 24 and i am so so stoked there are coming over to the uk to play in bristol . there music really helps with my life and every girl problem to even coping with my family issues and even lossing my son its always been senses fail that have been there and also been a big influence on me in writing music too my favi song is also tattooed on my knuckles too ''sick or sane '' and if i see buddy i really want to thank him for every lyric hes wrote cos its all kept me alive to be honest so buddy if you read this before thanks man :)

i love senses fail!!!!! | Reviewer: theresa | 1/16/11

I've been going every year to watch them at this little club in allentown pa and im from jersey I love them that much! Their lyrics r sooo different and meaningful....I can't wait to hear buddys new album! U guys r awesome!!!!!!!!!!

King of Kings | Reviewer: Josh Dieterich | 9/15/10

My buddy Justin got me into this band like 4 years ago and I have been hooked ever since. From there lyrics to the instrumental play to the singing. Put all that together and you got talent. The screaming is so clean, the drumming, bassist to the lead. You guys will forever be in my life, EMOTIONALLY and PHYSICALLY. You guys have effected me in both those ways. LIVE FOREVER AND DREAMING WELL. YOU GUYS FUCKING ROCK!!!!!!!

"hi, Im Buddy Nielson and I'm friggin' awesome~!" | Reviewer: Katrina | 5/17/10

I can't believe that like none of my friends have heard of Senses Fail...
I must educate them
Its amazing how a band can have such meaningful but also sweet lyrics, especially "The Ground Folds" and "Dreaming A Reality"

One of the Most Iconic Rock Bands of all Time | Reviewer: Unnatural Brutality | 3/17/10

Brilliant . Utterly wonderful an iconic band . I could never have had any other favourite band . If only I could see them live ... Well , this was good for reading . I thoroughly enjoyed it , and I thought the quotes were awesome . Nielsen has really gotten himself , and his fellow band members real up top in the music world . Once again , great band , a great read too there .

R.J McGeough

Your Lyrics-- Is me! | Reviewer: Libertie | 7/3/09

Oh my gosh! I love Senses Fail! It is without no doubt my favorite band. Their music just moves me! I love it and can't get enough of it,, most of your lyrics matches my personality so much! It's so deep, and very inspirational!

badass | Reviewer: XxtootsiexX | 3/9/09

i love senses fail. my ex boyfriend got me listening to them and i love it. im really emotional and it helps me deal with my emotions. i hope they come to my town soon morrisonville, new york or plattsburgh,new york!!! :)

SF is the best | Reviewer: Tom | 11/22/07

I love senses fail, and a lot of people are right how you can just feel the emotion they have from the lyrics and ther music. i want them to come to chicago again soon, or even better my home town batavia!

you guys | Reviewer: emerie | 9/26/07

are amazing. you are one of my favorite bands. i cant say that im your biggest fan beause ive only been listening latly when my brother got me hook. like he does with most music but ive been listening long enough to know that you are amazing. im so inlove with you like sand to wet feet : ]

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