Members: Walt Lafty, Evil Rob Bennett, Brian Weaver, Brian Kilian
It's unusual for a new rock band to sell out their first performance, but then again, AUTOMATIC FIRE isn't just another new rock band.
Molded from some of the best bands to come out of the Philly rock scene, AUTOMATIC FIRE has all the makings of a supergroup: famous band mates, devoted fan base, and a commercial sound that still retains freshness and originality.
Fans came from far and wide to check out the new act from frontman WALT LAFTY, who previously gained global visibility and immense industry recognition as the leader of his former band, SILVERTIDE. That band spent more than two years touring the world, opening for Van Halen, Motley Crue, Velvet Revolver, Shinedown and many others. Walt personally made appearances in the U.S. and U.K. singing with living legend Carlos Santana.
For his new act, Walt recruited longtime collaborator and Silvertide bassist, BRIAN WEAVER to turn some of his old acoustic demo recordings into full fledged electric rock songs. With a keen ear for orchestration and a strong and unavoidable bass line, Brian was able to help Walt arrange those tracks into something much louder and more defined.
Filled with new song ideas, they turned to fellow Philly rocker, ROBBIE BENNETT (AKA Evil Rob) for some much needed guitar. Evil Rob had spent the past few years playing with his band, PEPPER'S GHOST, and had recently joined Silvertide to rock the guitar for some of their famous live shows. Robbie's brand of fresh effects and arrangements gave the band an intense sound.
This intensity was ultimately matched by drummer BRIAN KILIAN - a longtime Philly musician who had been playing with various acts in Nashville since the early part of the decade. When the four got together to test out this new sound, the result was undeniable: an aggressive mix of lyrics and music that fit perfectly into the modern rock genre.
The name, AUTOMATIC FIRE, comes from that sense of aggression. It's meant to imply something strong, forceful and perhaps a bit out of control.
At the first performance, the tension was thick but the answer was clear. When AUTOMATIC FIRE took the stage, fans were met with a modern rock assault that didn't let up. As the band ended their set and began meeting the crowd, they were met by something truly unexpected - lifelong fans for a band that had played it's first show.
Ari Halbkram/Jared Polin