Spotlight Band of the Month…DREAD ENGINE!!

Sam Stockdale of DE at Dillinger’s.

Columbus, Ohio’s, Dread Engine, is The Rust Belt Chronicles Spotlight Band of the Month for April. The six-piece ensemble made up of Sam Stockdale (vocals), Rick Kaercher (vocals), Jay Coughlin (drums), Jonathon Collins (bass), Tommy Sartin (guitar) and Jake Spears (guitar).

Dread Engine is a hardworking group of guys who enjoy what they’re doing and it shows if you have ever seen them live. Not only do they stay and intermingle with the fans, they also hang around to support the other act in which they graced the bill with. They show as much energy off the stage as they do on.

I recently had the opportunity to talk via e-mail with the guys and here is what the boys of Dread Engine had to say.


TRBC: Bands, whether national or local, evolve over time and that has been the case for Dread Engine. I’ve seen several changes since first watching you back in December of 2015 when you opened for Nonpoint at Alrosa Villa. Is the band pretty much set as of now, whether you play at home or score a touring gig?

DE: We absolutely plan to always learn, grow, and evolve. The music will certainly change but we feel the current lineup is the best yet.

TRBC: Where did the name Dread Engine come from? And is there a meaning behind it?

DE: Ultimately our band name has two meanings.

First, we believe that all parts of something greater are required to work in harmony for the success of all. Just as all engine parts must be in place and working correctly for the vehicle to move. We take this equality approach with not only our writing process but our fan engagement.

Secondly, the reasoning behind the darkness of our music stems from the concept of the internal combustion engine. Before a vehicle can take you anywhere or do anything productive for you, it must first create destruction by burning fuel. This; is the metaphor behind how we all take the darkness of our lives and burn it within our song writing process to create something positive from something negative.

TRBC: I know you just recently traveled to Florida to open a few shows for Bobaflex. What was the trip like and can we expect more touring from the band this year?

Tommy Sartin of DE at Dillinger’s.

DE: The trip to Florida with Bobaflex was nothing short of amazing! We really enjoyed spending time with Bobaflex on not only a professional level but a personal level as well. We look forward to doing more shows with them in the near future. We currently have a tour booked in June out to the New England area and we have invited our brothers 8lb Pressure to join us. We are also in the works of putting together another tour in the Midwest mid-2017.

TRBC: What was it like playing at Ink in the Clink last year? Did you get to talk with some of the touring bands?

DE: This, as well, was another fantastic experience in our first year as a band. We absolutely hope to earn a spot at the event this year. We had an amazing experience with all of the national bands including some face to face time with CJ Pierce, the guitarist of Drowning Pool. He was great to work with and one of our crew members Lesley had the honor of helping them with their merch booth. Lesley also mentioned having a great experience talking and working with Drowning Pool. Their performance was KILLER! All of the nationals were very welcoming and gracious towards us as co-performers.

Jay Coughlin of Dread Engine at Dillinger’s.

TRBC: Can you describe what a new fan would expect to hear when they attend a live Dread Engine performance for the first time?

DE: All we can promise any new live listener is that we will always play our heart out for you and any fan who comes to see us perform. Furthermore we can only hope that the new listener loves hearing it as much as we love playing it. I suppose we would like to think that we are a high energy band that brings excitement and intensity in each performance whilst deliver a devastating punch to your ‘feelins’. 🙂

TRBC: You have a new CD, “Deception By Design” coming out Saturday, what should your fans expect to hear?

DE: We would like to think we are getting ready to release a “true sequel”… Everything you loved about the original but even better.

Jonathon Collins of DE at Dillinger’s.

TRBC: I know you have a CD release party at Alrosa Villa to coincide. The lineup looks pretty bad (in a good way). Can you tell us a little bit about that?

DE: All of the groups chosen for this show are not only our dear friends and partners, but these groups also have new music to push right now and or new music on the way. We thought this would be an excellent time to pull all of us together for a push of new material for all the bands involved. We are truly trying to deliver a message of collaboration and unity with our brothers and sisters in music; not only for this event, but for everyone’s entire future careers in music. If you have not heard the bands that are performing with us please do us a favor and go look them up as soon as you can!


I’m sure that the release party is going to be an entertaining night with a lineup that is full of talented bands and individuals alike.

Jake Spears of Dread Engine at Dillinger’s.

Other bands that will be performing include 8LB Pressure, Scars Like Mine and The Tom Cline Project, all from Columbus, Cincinnati’s The World I Knew and Chase Beaire from Mansfield. Knowing the boys from DE, I’m sure they’ll be a few surprises as well.

You can’t beat the price for a ticket which is $5.00 in advance and $10 the day of the show. The doors to the all age’s event open at 6:00 p.m.

If you haven’t heard Dread Engine, go to their website at or their Facebook page and check them out. You can visit the Facebook pages of the supporting acts as well.

Until next time, this is Big L saying ‘keep those horns up and rock on’!! \m/ \m/



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Larry Ritter About Larry Ritter

Hello my name is Larry Ritter, or “Big L” to most of my friends. I’m a production supervisor for a major manufacturer of auto parts here in northwest Ohio. I received an Associate’s degree from Owen’s Community College where I graduated cum laude honors. I have a true passion for music, sports, photography and riding motorcycles. My love for these things are surpassed by just one thing, family, which includes two sons, a daughter and eight grandchildren.

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