Malacoda started as a recording project based out of Oakville, Ontario in 2014, by multi-instrumentalist and music producer Lucas Di Mascio. Early-lineups consisted of some great local musicians from the Greater Toronto Area. The self-titled debut was hailed as a dark modern melodic metal take on popular music trends. As each new record progressed into different territory, the lineups shifted to meet the demands of the specific sound Lucas was trying to achieve- for Ritualis Aeterna- a heavier and more symphonic take on their dark and melodic sound, musicians known for their extreme heavy metal credits were brought into the fold to create a truly visceral listening experience. This release in 2016 saw the first official Malacoda music video for “Penny Dreadful”, and it set the bar for what the band’s conceptual visuals would be.
The band would get signed by Rockshots Records in 2017 and would re-release Ritualis Aeterna in 2018. The next record, Restless Dreams, would then be put out through Rockshots in 2018. Restless Dreams was a concept album that played on the boundaries of Gothic, Progressive, and contemporary rock elements. The album was produced and recorded entirely at Lucas Di Mascio’s Old Haunt Records in Oakville, and masterfully mixed by Jon Howard of Threat Signal and Imonolith fame. Restless Dreams is a love letter to the classic Konami horror game Silent Hill 2, and the music reflects on the dark journey of the main character as well as the way the band interprets its many deep themes of loss, guilt, abuse and the occult.
In the fall of 2018 the band embarked on The Northern Laments Tour and got to meet some of their fans across Ontario and Quebec. Shortly after this, the band would go into hibernation as new material was developed by Lucas for another project. That project never saw the light of day, and after much deliberation on how to grow the band’s live show and marketing, it was decided that the search for dedicated band members was needed. Early 2019 was spent mostly figuring out who the lineup would consist of. Not wanting to rush this crucial aspect of the band’s development, it would take quite some time for the lineup to coalesce into a solid foundation.
Zak Stulla would join in the spring of 2019, and after a long search for the right guitarist for the band, Wes MacDonald would join as a permanent member. The summer of 2019 was spent preparing for a final run of live shows in support of Restless Dreams. The band would then head into the studio and take a look at the songs that Lucas had written that never got released. After some fine tuning and writing a few more, the band would enter Old Haunt to begin production. A great group of session drummers lent their skills to the recordings right before the pandemic hit in early 2020. The band would continue to record remotely for the rest of the 2020 as they geared up to release a slew of new music in 2021.
Two years within the pandemic would prove to be quite difficult. The line up wasn't working well together when it came to collaborating in this new environment and the drive to create new material was intermittent. While 2021 saw the release of three EP's - Crawling Chaos, The Strain and The Year Walk respectively, the majority of the material had been written and produced long before this lineup. A shift in focus was needed and the lineup would be shaken up, with Lucas taking over guitar duties and a permanent drummer finally coming into the fold- Kabir Ahmed. The new lineup provided the breath of fresh air the band needed to start writing and continue on.