Madina Lake
Media Player
Latest Release
November 15, 2009
Tour Dates
Band Members
Nathan Leone
Mateo Camargo
Matthew Leone
Daniel Torelli

For Chicago’s Madina Lake, working with esteemed producer David Bendeth (Paramore) on the eagerly-anticipated Attics to Eden, the experimental follow-up to their 2007 Roadrunner Records debut From Them, Through Us, to You, was an honour. But by the same token, the two months the band spent with Bendeth -- within the platinum plaque-lined walls of his House Of Loud Studios, planted smack dab in the desolate thick of Elmwood Park, New Jersey -- completing the record was ultimately humbling. That’s because crafting and tracking what would become their sophomore full-length was an experience tantamount to rock and roll boot camp, according to bassist and backing vocalist Matthew Leone.

“David broke us down - he was like a drill sergeant,” Matthew said, of the first time Madina Lake played some of the new material for Bendeth. “I was totally frazzled by the end of the first day. We thought it would be easy, because we knew the songs were there. We just thought we’d come in, and record them. But when we played them for him that first time, he just ripped us apart. He completely deconstructed us, and it hurt bad. But the pain was well worth it.”

“It was challenging making this record,” echoed brother and lead vocalist Nathan. “But at the end of the day, we are super proud of how it came out. I think we blew the first album out of the water. I guess artists are artists, and in our experience, you bump into people who…let‘s just say some have a level of talent that qualify their attitude, and some don’t. Bendeth is clearly a guy who does.”

By the end of it, Madina Lake had created a monstrous collection of impassioned and infectious tunes which often meld the ethereal, hypnotic elements of Muse with the riff-rife potency of Linkin Park. And the band also found its true sound through the experience. “The first record was us exploring,” Matthew elaborates. “With more life and experience under our belts, discovering who we are as individuals and as a group, we made the record that fits who we are now. Every artist and musician, it takes them a minute. We took that time, we toured, and now, we know who we are and that’s the record we made.”

Attics to Eden is an album that proves maturity comes with experience. One of rock’s most promising young acts takes the listener on a unique auditory voyage across layer upon diverse layer of sound. The 12 songs on the album -- including “Never Walk Alone,” “Let’s Get Out of Here,” “Legends,” and the guitar-less “Friends and Lovers” -- are replete with otherworldly atmospherics, epic guitars, intricate and often punishing drum-work, melodic choruses, imposing bass lines, audacious instrumentation, and Nathan’s unpredictable, inescapable vocals.

It’s a rock and roll assault on the senses, and Matthew says that’s just what the band -- rounded out by guitarist and programming genius Mateo Camargo and drummer Dan Torelli -- was aiming for.

“Our favorite records were ones that didn’t have one dull moment,” Matthew said. “We wanted to make a real record, a genre-less record and a timeless record. I think there are musicians like the White Stripes, where less is more -- undoubtedly. Then there are bands like the Smashing Pumpkins or Nine Inch Nails, where they want all of these components attacking the ears from different angles, at all times. We’re the latter, the kind of band that wants as many components as possible.”

Their first major tour in the U.S. came in 2007, as part of Linkin Park’s Projekt Revolution (also featuring My Chemical Romance and Taking Back Sunday, amongst others). They’ve hit the road with Paramore and Gym Class Heroes, and have just landed a major slot on this summer’s US Warped Tour.

The band’s first LP bore the modern rock radio hit “House of Cards,” and the follow-up single “Here I Stand” garnered heavy rotation on MTV and Fuse. Madina Lake’s Leone brothers, whose mother tragically died when they were teens, pour their life experiences into their songs, and that helped them quickly rise from basement gigs to some of 2007’s biggest festivals.

In Madina Lake’s earliest beginnings, the band set out to release three albums which would congruently tell the story of Madina Lake, a small town of their own creation, which would serve as the canvass for a much larger message. The first chapter focused on the town socialite, who goes missing, and the reaction the town’s inhabitants have. “We wanted to make three installments of this sort of grandiose statement we wanted to make,” Matthew says. “The first one was a statement about celebrity obsession, so this is part two of that, which just continues on the mystery.” “This one goes completely surreal…like universal,” Nathan added. “There’s elements of spiritual escape, and almost science fiction elements to it that we went with on this one, but at the end of the day, we’re sticking very closely to our main objective with the whole story, which is good vs. evil. We didn’t want to repeat anything we did on the first one; we didn’t even really want to touch on the same topics. But you have to put faith in the people that support your band to see your vision out and develop with you.”

But one need not know the story to appreciate Madina Lake’s poetics. “I think people have the same basic sets of emotions,” Matthew comments. “The spectrum of emotions is not that big, so whatever you’re talking about, I think people can file it under their own experience.”

“If you do something that’s not true to your heart, it’s going to be contrived and it’s not going to connect. As much as we try to follow this story line, we make sure they’re based on real events and real things that we’ve gone through; things we’ve experienced and feel passionately about. I think people around the world can connect to a similar string of emotions that they go through, whether they’re in China or Italy or Belarus. People go through the same gamut of emotions and that’s first and foremost in our songwriting.”

Promo Live Shots Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Hard Rock Cafe, London, 10th March 2009 by Nigel Crane Katie Anderson Atticus Secret Show 12th June 2008 Katie Anderson Atticus Secret Show 12th June 2008 Katie Anderson Atticus Secret Show 12th June 2008 Katie Anderson Atticus Secret Show 12th June 2008 Katie Anderson Atticus Secret Show 12th June 2008 Katie Anderson Atticus Secret Show 12th June 2008 Press KERRANG! 1258 / 25th April 2009 Other Madina Lake announce signings 2009 In the studio, September 08 Jeezy and Bendeth Tokyo, Japan, December 2009 Some shots from the bands recent visit to Tokyo.