8th-Grade Heavy Metal Band Snags Million Dollar Record Deal


Okay, so for those of you who feel like you’ve wasted the best years of your life, let me hit you with a whammy. A group of eighth grade boys just inked a deal with Sony records that could net them approximately $1.6 million. In actuality, they receive $60,000 upfront and royalties if the album breaks 250,000 record sales.

They go by the name of  “Unlocking the Truth” (though they competed on the Apollo’s Amateur Night as “Tears of Blood”) and they are Brooklyn-based heavy metal band made up three 8th grade boys: guitarist, Malcolm Brick House, bassist Atkins, and  drummer Jarad Dawkins.

Now, if you’re thinking this 2-album recording contract with Sony is beginner’s luck, it wasn’t. As with all worthwhile endeavors,  this one took years of commitment. The boys have been gigging throughout New York City, particularly Times Square and Washington Square Park, since 2007… yes, since they were 6. (For the record, at 6 I was taking ballet at Marie Wildey’s School of Dance and playing with Barbies)

Malcom and Jarad have known each other since they were infants. The friends met bassists, Alec, in daycare. They rehearse in the basement of Malcom’s mom’s  house, and the kids also refer to her as “momager”.

The boys have unleashed their adolescent riffage at venues like Webster Hall and the Coachella music festival. Unlocking the Truth is currently touring the country as a part of the Vans Warped Tour and recently took time off from pre-algebra class to open for Gun N Roses in Las Vegas.

The group is unique both for their age, their sound is being coined “childcore”, and for their race. The African-American trio is making waves in heavy metal, a musical genre with a largely White fan base.

An “Unlocking the Truth” book about the band’s rise to success will be released by Penguin around Christmas, and a documentary about the group’s experiences is also in the works.



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