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The large-ensemble group the World Is a Beautiful Place & I Am No Longer Afraid to Die formed in 2009 in Willimantic, Connecticut, drawing inspiration for their somewhat atmospheric emo/indie sound from giants of the genre such as Sunny Day Real Estate and Cap'n Jazz, but also incorporating some of the drawn-out orchestration of Godspeed You! Black Emperor and Explosions in the Sky. The group went through multiple lineup changes but eventually centered around a core of vocalist David Bello, bassist Josh Cyr, guitarists Derrick Shanholtzer-Dvorak and Greg Horbal, drummer Steven Buttery, and additional musicians Julia Peters, Katie Shanholtzer-Dvorak, and Chris Teti. The group released a series of demos, singles, and EPs as well as a split LP with friends Deer Leap before releasing its debut full-length, Whenever, If Ever, in 2013. ~ Fred Thomas, Rovi