Basim Usmani: Bass/Vocals
Mike Orifice: Guitar
Lindsay Champagne: Drums
"So then we took our final looks around and walked back through the mud and weeds to Basim's car, and Basim drove me back to the TJ Max where my Buick was parked, and I left him in his fearless taqwa-punk story-to live Jehennam-bound, start fights at shows, get drunk and defend Islam against the sober. He's likely to die someday in a pit under the Doc Martens of one gang of idiots or another, and I think he knows it. Whatever the Pen wrote, it wrote; there's not much else you can do."
â€” Michael Muhammad Knight, on Basim.
"Malice in Leatherland pervades the New England area with a unique style, pushing boundaries in new directions that few other local artists could conceive of. With their raucous-yet-polished hybrid of deathrock and funk, this band has amassed a growing fanbase and may be the one hope to bridge the gap between the increasingly-disunified punk and 'darker music' scene camps. Their charismatic live performance seals the deal, and it will not be long before Malice in Leatherland find themselves in a headlining slot at some of the better-known local venues."
â€” Anderson Mar, Independent boston-based music promoter
"Like us, you're all a bunch of drunks with attention spans shorter than a cocktail straw, but before you can decide to permanently replace us with a DJ sober enough to be competent, we'll be distracting your drunk asses with a live zombie punk set by MALICE IN LEATHERLAND. when you're in the front row for Blue Man Group you should wear a raincoat - for MiL you should wear a helmet."
â€” Purp, Promoter of "Bottle Rocket" in Allston MA.
Urgency typifies the early months of Malice in Leatherland, who came into being in Lexington, during the summer of 2003. Within two months of being together, they released their first single "Suburban Holocaust" on the IUMA mp3-hosting site. This was during the aftermath of MP3.com when IUMA was thriving, and with it's tongue and cheek wit and punk rock delivery, the single quickly nestled itself within the top ten of both the Hard Rock and Funk charts for a number of months. By November of that year, Malice in Leatherland had completed the recording of a four song EP, and was playing strings of four shows at a time all over the Boston, MA and Manchester, NH area. It was during this splurge when they performed for a packed bar in Boston with the premier International Gothic/Deathrock band, Cinema Strange, and saw themselves opening for legendary G.G Allen project, The Jabbers, at a huge punk/hardcore extravaganza at the Bombshelter in Manchester. However, The most important show for the band was the one they organized with the help of independent promoter Anderson Mar to benefit the AASRA facility (a South Asian run counseling center for battered women). The line up was diverse, featuring the Steve Albini-recorded punk troupe, The Hidden, dark wave darlings Twelfth of Never, and poppunk/progrockers, Saturn Effect (who helped get the event plugged on MASS's main independent radio station, WFNX). The event was called SAIYA, which means shadow to South Asians. The crowd that came out to SAIYA set the precedent for MiL; this band's strength is being able to appeal to a broad assortment of people.
Soon MiL began getting critical acclaim, most notably from published Goth Historian Mick Mercer. A regiment of heavy gigging and demo circulating earned the band a slot on the biggest Gothic rock festival in America - New York City's three day Drop Dead fest. The fest took place at The Knitting Factory, and exposed MiL to people who had come down all the way from Europe. Since being exposed at that show, kids from as far as New York and Virginia have made it down to MiL shows in Boston. Following the festival, the band was busy recording a 30 minute EP recorded on analogue reel. Growing to be one of the visible bands coming out of the Boston rock scene, Vocalist Basim Usmani was requested to help dispel myths about the misunderstood Goth subculture in a Boston Globe interview, complete with a profile photo. This article along with the profile shot ended up republished in Globe-affiliated News Papers across the country, in states as far away as GA. Following the Globe article, a Sony syndicated program called "Life and Style" requested Mr. Usmani's presence on a nationally broadcasted segment focussing on Goth culture. This gave the front man the opportunity to talk about his band, and the non-violent nature of the kids who call themselves its fans. It is the unfatigable spirit that's shared between guitarist Mike Orifice, drummer Lindsay Champagne, and vocalist Basim Usmani which will drive MiL to success. Their Pogo-tastic live shows, hard work underway on their debut CD, and a crowd who like to sing-a-long live are the fuel that will propel the band into notoriety.