The Vermillion Road to greatness

Photo courtesy of Bandcamp


Throughout eight years, two names, and ostensibly infinite hours of hard work, the
Denver-based band Vermillion Road has fought to establish its reputation. Now, according to lead singer and CU Denver student Will Robison, the band seeks to achieve even greater goals.

Photo courtesy of Bandcamp

Vermilion Road was co-founded by Robison and CU Denver alumni Hunter Heurich in 2009 under the name Haphazard. Robison describes the band’s beginnings as humble, with the original members coming together during the Guitars Etc. Summer Rock Camp in Longmont, Color. The current band members are Hunter Heurich, Logan Hileman, Gil Leyva, and of course, Will Robison, and each member contributes to the band’s success.

While playing drums, Robison was approached by two other participants who Robison says were “very serious” about starting a band. Robison matched the offer with equal enthusiasm and joined the group as a drummer.

After a few years, Will and his bandmates decided that Haphazard needed a face-lift. “After three to four years, we decided we didn’t want to do metal anymore because our tastes were changing,” Robison said.

As well as taking on the new role of lead singer, Robison proposed a new name for the group. “There’s a real road in Longmont called Vermillion Road, and it was a special place growing up for all of us,” Robison said.

Vermillion Road is the archetypal rock band with 90s grunge influences that also draws inspiration from contemporary bands. “I’d definitely say it’s hard rock. An apt description of it would be is if Shinedown, Breaking Benjamin, and the Foo Fighters had a baby,” Robison said about the band’s style.

“As of recently, we’ve been working with a producer from Capitol Records,” Robison said. Since the release of Vermillion Road’s debut album Palaces in 2015, the band has met with big-name producers, gone on regional tours, and has been slowly building their repertoire.

With so many accomplishments, it is hard to say what the band’s greatest milestone has been so far, but even when the band was just starting out, their incredible work ethic has always made Robison proud. “We work hard,” Robison said. “If there’s anything that I’m proud of for this band it’s the depth of how we understand what it really takes to be successful in this industry.”

On top of striving to make it in the cutthroat music industry, the added pressures of college life present a unique challenge for Robison and his bandmates. Robison claims to barely be able to balance his student life and musician life, but the band’s achievements say otherwise. “I just kind of see what needs to get done for school, and then I see what needs to get done for the band,” Robison said. “I used to sleep more, now I don’t really sleep all that much. It’s so demanding.”

Nevertheless, a passion for music and driving determination continue to push Vermilion Road to new heights. The band recently headlined at the Marquis Theatre in Denver and will be opening at Summit Music Hall on Oct. 20. Vermillion Road has come a long way since its founding in 2009 and lovers of local music can expect an energetic performance by a group of artists who are truly passionate about their work.

Listen to Vermillion Road

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