By Nikki Hedrick
Gone With the Flesh formed in 2006, but the band recently began a new chapter.
Vocalist and rhythm guitarist Jonathan Schlager has been playing music since the mid-1990s. “I got stationed out here on active duty here at Hurlburt Field back in 2003, and in 2006 I reached out to some people on base.”
Schlager found drummer Joe Sumrall through an online ad. They are the two founding members still active in Gone With the Flesh.
Schlager says the band’s name originates from a slight mishap. “I’ve always listened to heavy metal since the earliest I can remember. I was trying to come up with a name, something that kinda symbolized metal. I was shaving one day and I ended up cutting my face, and I was like, Hey, that’s kinda cool—Gone With the Flesh. You know, it was just one of the things, I threw it out there for Joe and some of the other members at the time and they said, ‘Hey, that sounds good. Let’s roll with it.’
“We’ve gone through several lineup changes because we’ve had a lot of active duty (military) members,” says Schlager.
Bassist Bob Wallace found his way to the band through an ad for a short-lived local project. “I came back from Germany and retired from the Army, and we moved back here to our house. Originally, I saw this ad for a bass player for this Metallica tribute band and so I tried out for it. I got it, and then we went through three drummers. Then Joe (Sumrall) showed up and we started playing, and a little bit later, Joe goes, ‘Hey man, would you mind trying out for our band?’”
When it comes to Gone with the Flesh’s sound, Schlager says, “We tend to refer back to the old standard when it comes to breakdowns with long riffs, along with some punchy riffs, and some stop-start. We try to go back and stick to the roots, because everything just seems to come full circle after so many years.
“We were recording most of last year,” Schlager says of the band’s recent flurry of activity. “It took us about two years to record. We did it ourselves because we just got tired of spending money on a studio, getting a product that we weren’t completely happy with, and feeling rushed. We’re trying to push ourselves out there and look at it more like, let’s ride this wave out and get out there because people are actually enjoying our music.”
One song, “Night of the Dead,” has garnered particular attention. “That song is representative…with us all being combat veterans, the things that we’ve seen, I’ve seen, or that we’ve had friends see. That’s just kinda one of those things that people don’t talk about,” says Schlager.
“You always hear about veterans committing suicide as a result of PTSD, and it’s something that’s very serious… We decided to put it out there in the music to where people could listen to that and hear the lyrics and kinda relate to it. You know, especially with it being so aggressive with a lot of the metal themes in it where they could just kind of let that out…”
With a growing list of gigs in the region, a new self-titled album on all online platforms, and fresh material in the works, Gone With the Flesh do not plan to fade away anytime soon.
“We support local music.” Schlager calls the recent Next2Rock battle of the bands “a great experience. We didn’t win it, but it was great because we got to meet other local musicians. We’re always down to meet and play with other musicians, book shows, and get shows. I mean, it’s all about music. It’s not just about us. We’re trying to get this thing going again and make it as big as we can—not just for us but for the other bands too.”
If you’ve never been to a metal show, Schlager’s advice is to just give it a go. “It doesn’t matter what race, religion or sexual orientation…when you go to a metal show, everyone there is there for the exact same reason—to listen to the band. I would just encourage everybody to step outside their comfort zone.
“The atmosphere—you’re not going to experience anything like a metal show. There’s just a conglomeration of different types of people coming together for one goal, to let out some aggression and hear some aggressive music. I mean, it doesn’t get more beautiful than that.”
Discover more at gonewiththeflesh.com.
- Art Classes & Workshops
- Art Events
- Art Galleries
- Artist Joey McKenna Steps into Nature This Month at SoWal Library
- Call to Artists
- Adopt a Family for the Holidays
- Community Bank Invests $15,000 in NWF State College Students
- Making an Impact: Over $500K Awarded to Local Nonprofits
- Caring and Sharing: Café Thirty-A’s Annual Christmas Charity Ball
- Hold the Dishwashing, Please… Thanksgiving Dining Out Options
- North Beach Tortilla Co. Offers Sand and Sunsets in Santa Rosa Beach
- Overproof, Full Proof and Navy Strength Rums…and the Cocktails That Love Them
- Restaurant Guide
- Rosemary Beach Prohibition Repeal Wine Dinner Set for Dec. 7
- Where to Spend Your Happy Hours
- It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Hallmark!
- Local Film Screenings
- Reviews: Dafoe and Pattinson Shine in “Lighthouse,” Eddie Gets His Dolemite On
- Eric Paslay’s Favorite Live Tracks
- Live Music
- Rock Stars of Comedy… Gallagher Is Coming to Town
- The Pauseandplay.com Record Roundup
- The Record That Changed My Life: Al Alvarado
Harbor Docks Celebrates 25 Years of Thanksgiving Tradition
By Chris Manson Former Harbor Docks owner and Beachcomber contributing writer Charles Morgan credits longtime employee Ann Jones (a/k/a Miss Ann) with the idea of opening the restaurant on Thanksgiving Day....
Where to Spend Your Happy Hours
Baxter’s Bar & Grille 605 James Lee Road Fort Walton Beach 850-812-6868 When: 3-6 PM and 10 PM-Midnight daily. Closed Mondays (for now). Drink Specials: $3 wells, $2 drafts. Camille’s at Crystal...
North Beach Tortilla Co. Offers Sand and Sunsets in Santa Rosa Beach
By Lauren Sage Reinlie Northwest Florida has a new spot to unwind and soak up all the beauty the area has to offer. Chef Jim Shirley’s North Beach Tortilla Co....
Bob Luongo writes: “Two years ago my Jack Russell friend of 15 years died. Penny was my constant companion. For the last two years I’ve had many recurring dreams where I was...
Rock Stars of Comedy… Gallagher Is Coming to Town
By Nikki Hedrick Not many comedians reach household name status. Gallagher, by his account, has logged over 4,000 shows and over a dozen comedy TV specials, and has only been slightly...
Upcoming Stage Shows
FRIDAY, NOV. 8-SATURDAY, NOV. 9 STAGE CRAFTERS’ “THE PAJAMA GAME” Fort Walton Beach Civic Auditorium, 7:30 PM StageCraftersFWB.com Tickets are $25. Cast includes Tim Bartley, Terry Carnathan, David Chancellor, Gabriella Dedmore, Azhia...