Animals as Leaders is a Washington, D.C. based instrumental progressive metal project formed by guitarist Tosin Abasi in 2007. Their self-titled debut album was released in April 2009 by Prosthetic Records.
Animals as Leaders was formed "out of the ashes" of guitarist Tosin Abasi's previous band, Reflux. The heavy metal record label Prosthetic Records saw Abasi's guitar work and asked him to create a solo album for them. Abasi initially declined, feeling such an endeavor would be "egotistical and unnecessary". When Reflux disbanded, Abasi decided to take the label's offer. The name Animals as Leaders was inspired by Daniel Quinn's 1992 novel Ishmael, which addresses anthropocentrism. Abasi coined the name as a reminder "that we're all essentially animals".
The project's first album, Animals as Leaders, was recorded in early 2008. Abasi recorded all guitar and bass tracks on the album; drums and various synthesized effects were programmed by engineer Misha Mansoor. The album was released April 28, 2009 by Prosthetic Records.
Their second album, Weightless, was released November 8, 2011, with the addition of Javier Reyes and Navene Koperweis on rhythm guitar and drums, respectively. After touring in support of the record, it was announced that Navene Koperweis would be leaving the band. He was replaced by Matt Garstka for further touring duties.
It was announced in late December of 2012 that Animals As Leaders had signed a deal with Sumerian Records, who will release the band's next album in 2013. The album is going to be produced by Misha Mansoor, from Periphery.
Tosin Abasi: 7 and 8 String Guitars
Javier Reyes: 7 and 8 String Guitars
Matt Garstka: Drums