I recently discovered a band all the way from Morgantown, West Virginia, who had me intrigued when they described their sound as a merge of three of the bands that initially forged my interest in punk and metal music.
Jared Miller, guitarist in Worst Kept Secret, describes their heavy southern punk sound as: “It’s aggressive but catchy. We are too light to be ‘metal’ and too heavy to be ‘punk,’ it’s like if you mixed Every Time I Die with Atreyu and threw in some Rise Against.”
He had my interest peaked and when I went to listen to them, I was hooked – there’s huge riffs, big catchy choruses and some crazy heavy screams and big musical breakdowns. But it’s not just me that thinks so, in their US homeland the band has already opened for the likes of Drowning Pool, Sworn Enemy and Hawthorne Heights.
Since starting out in June 2014 the band has gigged relentlessly, racking up around 90 shows in that time, released debut EP Nuff Said and launched it at a sold-out hometown crowd, and landed endorsements with Coldcock Whiskey and Big Timber Brewing.
Said debut EP is a great heavy punk, bordering on metal listen, particularly for the moment opening track Nuff Said opens up sounding all country rock only for a much appreciated call of “fuck that shit” and a blast of big old rock-meets-metal guitar.
But the standout song for me is closing track Bill Nye Was Right. Big heavy guitars are intertwined by flowing riffs in a minute-long musical intro, which is brought to an abrupt end by a huge scream and relentless riffing. Heavy vocals follow with cool riffs flown around throughout and the track is brought to an end with a couple of epic guitar solos.
They most recently released a cover version of Goo Goo Dolls’ Broadway, which shows a completely different side to the band. It’s overall less intense and far more punky, with awesome bursts of guitar excellence throughout, but eventually does show signs of the brutality we see elsewhere in their sound. Check out the video below:
So how did all this come about? Jared tells me: “We were all skaters growing up, so we didn’t really fit in and our music choice was taboo compared to what was popular then. While most people were listening to stuff like Lil John or Usher or rock like Nickelback we were listening to stuff like Millencollin, Rancid, early Avenged Sevenfold, Coheed & Cambria and stuff like that. We just thought it would be cool to play music like that, what most people wouldn’t know. That’s what we liked.”
Worst Keep Secret are the polar opposite of your stereotypical punk band. As Jared puts it: “Honestly inspiration strikes out of nowhere for us. We aren’t typical in writing because we don’t really write about breakups or a bad upbringing or anything. We want our music to be fun. We will write about current events, TV shows or like our song Follow The Buzzards, which Shawn and I wrote after I watched the Pro wrestler Bray Wyatt cut a promo. I was like ‘this dude is blowing my mind right now.'”
Given their shows with some big names in the US, I asked Jared if they had plans to expand beyond the US. He said: “We would love to, the passion from European fans is crazy. I see bands in the States that do OK at club shows and then they go overseas and the shows look wild. They play to stadiums. It’s so refreshing and encouraging to see fans that rabid still. So if you’re reading this and you want to book us in Europe please get a hold of us!”
Things are certainly looking up for this fun, intriguing band, with a new album revealing a new sound out on 31 March, more touring and a music video on the immediate agenda. Jared said: “Our goal is to constantly move forward, we don’t really ever take time to take in what we have accomplished. it’s always ‘what’s next.’ This is only the beginning for us, so if you like what you hear please share it to a friend, help us grow and stick with us. We won’t let you down.”