Absence of Despair’s Joe Reynolds: 5 Albums That Changed My Life

Photo by Eric Hooker

On September 13th, Providence, Rhode Island–based metalcore group Absence of Despair are set to drop their ripping new LP, Desolate. Before its release, we caught up with vocalist Joe Reynolds to find out what albums changed his life. Read below for his list and commentary and find out which LP reminds him of the first time he got punched in the face.

Mudvayne — L.D. 50

I was a young kid when this came out and was really one of my first more aggressive CDs. I was discovering screaming and finding an interest in it, and Chad [Gray]’s vocal and writing style inspired a lot of things you hear AOD. Seriously … one of the best fucking CDs, ever.

Slipknot — Slipknot

When anyone ever asks me what my favorite band is, I say Slipknot. Their self-titled album continues to carry me through my best and worst times in life. I could listen to it a million times and it never gets old. I made a Corey Taylor mask out of Duct tape, put it on, sang “Wait and Bleed” with a buddy at the school talent show. People were mortified, but fuck ’em — I’m a maggot for life.

Linkin Park — Hybrid Theory

What can I say is, the late Nineties/early 2000s inspired the hell out of me. Chester Bennington will always be an idol of mine. Vocal range, power, emotion … there was nothing like seeing him sing his heart out onstage. One of the greatest singers of all time.

Murderdolls — Beyond the Valley of the Murderdolls

Honestly, I just love this album. Catchy, dark, fun, some good jams right here.

Lamb of God — Killadelphia

It usually takes a lot for a live CD to grow on me and I don’t know why, but Killadelphia is sooo good. I have it memorized from beginning to end. Randy Blythe has one of those screams that when you hear it live people either run in fear or prepare for battle. Truly distinct sound, it’s incredible. Also, the first time I ever got punched in the face was at a Lamb of God show.