The Ghost Inside Explore Their Full Potential On 'Searching for Solace'

The Ghost Inside Explore Their Full Potential On 'Searching for Solace'

- By Creative Team

Members Andrew Tkaczyk and Jim Riley reveal how making their most accessible record in their catalog was also their most ambitious effort of their career. 

Words by Kevin Diers / Photo by Markus Hauschild

The Ghost Inside is going for it.

Set to surpass a major milestone, this Southern California-born melodic metalcore group will mark the 20th anniversary of the band – originally named A Dying Dream - with their most ambitious album to date, Searching for Solace. Don’t be surprised when you see their name pop up aside festival headlining heavyweights like Falling In Reverse and Beartooth, or even active rock radio staples like Shinedown and Alter Bridge.

“I fell in love with Korn and Deftones and Slipknot and Mudvayne …all the nu metal and rock of the 2000’s,” explains drummer Andrew Tkaczyk when asked about their drive to push their music to new and unfamiliar audiences. “I just could not live with myself if we didn't try to see if our band can live in that world.”

While certainly not a baby band in any sense of the word, the polished, anthemic hooks, slick production and even a full-on ballad on Searching For Solace marks their first real step into the world of Sirius XM and mainstream radio success. And the guys couldn’t be more excited to take this leap.


“I saw a comment on ‘Wash It Away,” says Tkaczyk. “These kids were joking ‘Coming up next on Q106 it’s The Ghost Inside”… like, laughing about it. I commented back ‘That's my childhood radio rock station from Lansing, Michigan. If we got on that. That's an absolute life tip for me. Like… I made it.’ And here you think that is offending me. Are you kidding me?”

Longtime fans of the band need not worry, though. This isn’t an about face, 180 degree turn into a completely different direction. In Tkaczyk’s words, consider this a The Ghost Inside sandwich. We start and end with their tried and true familiar sound on “Going Under” and “Reckoning” and fill the album with some new dynamics.

“I think we've done a great job on this record of mixing these new areas with the classic DNA of The Ghost Inside,” Tkaczyk says. “And it turns out it's my favorite record of the band.”

This was the first time The Ghost Inside collaborated with more than one more producer to help craft the songs.


“It was neat to go to a person like Dan Braunstein who has known the band for 15 years and have him go, ‘I love what you guys have been doing and this is what I see as the next step,’” says bassist Jim Riley. “Or to get in a room with someone like Cody from Wage War and have him be like, ‘I love your band. I wish you guys would do something like this.’ To go into writing a song with those guys from that place was …it was really cool. It was really liberating. And I think it also just added to the range that this record has.”

Tkaczyk explained they all went into this record with a “nothing’s off the table” type of approach.

“We're gonna just not overthink,” Tkaczyk says as he looks back on the making of the album. “We're going to go in and if we're vibing it we're going with it. If not, we try something else. That was super liberating and also made for a very easy process when writing with all these different people.”

Coming from the DIY, van and trailer, road-dog background, Tkaczyk admits it wasn’t easy to convince the guys to lean into the new direction. But as the record started to take shape, it just felt right.

“I sort of took the lead and was really pushing the rest of the guys and trying to convince them that this was the route to go,” Tkaczyk admits. “It took a little bit of time and a little bit of convincing to get everyone on board. I think as the record started to unfold and the songs started to come out, everyone started to see that it made the most sense to go this way.”

Funny enough, as Tkaczyk describes, the band initially went out of their way to write the most old-school sounding material, until realizing it just didn’t feel right.

“We set out and specifically tried to write a song that sounded like something off of our second or third record,” Tkaczyk says. “It just wasn't working and it felt disingenuous. It felt like we were trying to cater to something that didn't feel real and these newer ideas is more where we've gone and more what came out naturally. There was definitely some nervousness in the camp. But I think that we all just finally decided it was time to take a bold step and see it through”


As much as he believes in the album, Tkaczyk is well aware the more polished sound would come with some hate.

“I remember even saying to [Jonathan] Vigil (vocalist) ‘Hey, get ready, because there's negativity coming. We're gonna see negative backlash from this, but we have to rise above it.’”

Many of this generations heavy rock bands topping the radio charts and hitting streaming milestones have crossed paths with The Ghost Inside on their way to the top, some even got their start touring with them.

“We've been really fortunate to watch some of our friends make this growth and transition over the last 10 years,” says Davis. “We only put one record out in the last 10 years. We've watched Architects, Parkway Drive, Bring Me the Horizon, Wage War, Beartooth… all these bands that were our peers 10 years ago when we took a step away…. they got to progress inch by inch over the course of three or four or five records. We saw how they handled the backlash. Both gracefully and less so at times. So, we prepared ourselves for the kinds of comments that we would see. You just go, ‘You know what, man? We've always done this for ourselves, we're going to continue doing it for ourselves.’ And I would say 97% of people who already love The Ghost Inside are excited to see where this stuff goes.”

The period Davis is referring to, when they were forced to take a step away, wasn’t one to have children, work their 9 to 5’s or go to college.

On November 19th, 2015 The Ghost Inside was involved in a tragic bus accident that resulted in the death of their driver and numerous injuries to the band. Frankly, it’s a miracle the band is still alive to talk to me and even more of a miracle they are able to play music today.

“We’re lucky to be doing this,” Tkaczyk says. “We damn near got it ripped away from us. The fact that we are able to be here and we can still even physically and mentally handle doing this…to write music and play shows…I don't want to squander that. I want to take it further than any of us could have ever fathomed. I'm fully fucking determined to get there. I don't care what it takes. We got a lot of work to do.”

The crash resulted in Tkaczyk losing one of his legs.  But thanks to a unique device invented by his father, he was able to continue drumming.

“I get up on stage and I have to take my leg off in front of 9000 people,” Tkaczyk says.  “And when we get off stage, I gotta put this leg on and take a wedgie out in front of 9000 people. It's so different now.”

Tkaczyk explains that immediately after the accident, he felt the fate and the future of the band relied on him.

“I felt responsible to be the one to be the motivator,” Tkaczyk says. “I didn't want it to end because of some accident. I want this band to be done when the five of us are ready for it to be done. It just didn't sit right with me to have it end that way. I felt I felt like it was kind of on me. But all that did was help push me to get better, so that we can get back on stage.

The rest of The Ghost Inside fed off this.



“Watching Andrew work so hard to get back to being able to play made it so that none of us could quit along the way, either,” Riley says.

After nearly three years of rehabilitation and re-teaching himself how to play drums, Tkaczyk joined the rest of his band for their first practice back.

Sharing his story in real time, Tkaczyk has become a true inspiration for fans worldwide. Riley reflects on the story a child who attended one of their shows recently.

“We were just in South America and a kid came to the show with the same amputation as Andrew’s,” Riley says. “His Dad helped him build a device to continue playing drums and …if Andrew doesn't push through and continue this story, that kid might give up on his dream of playing drums. We feel inspired by the impact that continuing has had on other people to keep continuing. It's like this cycle. Every time we push a little bit someone comes to a show and makes us realize that it's worth it and we push a little bit more. It has become self-perpetuating.”


Searching for Solace is now available via Epitaph Records.
Order the album - HERE
In celebration of the arrival of the album, The Ghost Inside have recently begun their spring Borth American headlining tour. The run includes a strong supporting slate consisting of Paleface Swiss, Bleed From Within, and Great American Ghost. The band will make festival appearances at both Welcome to Rockville and Sonic Temple later this spring. See dates and cities below. Get tickets - HERE

The Ghost Inside On Tour


Apr 23 - Minneapolis, MN - The Fillmore   

Apr 24 - Bloomington, IL - The Castle Theatre  

Apr 25 - Chicago, IL - Concord Music Hall 

Apr 26 - Detroit, MI - Majestic Theatre 

 Apr 28 - Toronto, ON - History 

Apr 29 - Montreal, QC - MTELUS   

 Apr 30 - New Haven, CT - Toad's Place  

May 02 - Sayreville, NJ - Starland Ballroom  

May 03 - Worcester, MA - The Palladium   

May 04 - Baltimore, MD - Baltimore Soundstage  

May 06 - Pittsburgh, PA - Stage AE  

May 07 - Indianapolis, IN - Egyptian Room  

May 09 - Louisville, KY - Mercury Ballroom  

May 10 - Charlotte, NC - The Fillmore    

May 11 – Columbia, SC – The Senate 

May 12 - Daytona Beach, FL - Welcome to Rockville* 

May 14 - Atlanta, GA - The Masquerade   

May 15 - Knoxville, TN - The Mill & Mine    

 May 16 - Columbus, OH - Sonic Temple* 

*festival appearance 

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