|Arsis was started by James Malone and Mike Van Dyne in 2000, who met while attending the Berklee College of Music in Boston. They recorded two demos independently in 2001 and 2002 (which were later officially released via Negative-Existence Records), signed to Willowtip Records in 2003, and released two full-length albums and an EP from 2004 to 2006. During this time, Arsis performed on their first national tours with Misery Index, Incantation, Necrophagist, Neuraxis, Alarum, Dead To Fall, Misery Signals, The Faceless, All Shall Perish, Napalm Death, and A Life Once Lost, as well as performed on the main stage at the 2006 New England Metal and Hardcore Fest and the First Annual California Metalfest.
The band's main composer, singer/guitarist/songwriter James Malone, wrote and performed all the guitar, vocal, and bass work on the first studio album, A Celebration Of Guilt, as well as the follow-up, A Diamond For Disease. Malone also composed and performed a score for the off-Broadway ballet company Ballet Deviare, which was featured on MTV2 Headbanger's Ball. He has a signature model for Washburn Guitars, and has cited King Diamond, Mercyful Fate, Racer X, Iron Maiden, Emperor, Queensrÿche, Death, Dimmu Borgir and Dissection as being influential to him.
Mike Van Dyne performed drums on all of Arsis' releases/tours up until early 2007, when he temporarily departed to work toward his degree in the medical field. During his hiatus from Arsis, Van Dyne performed briefly with the hardcore outfit Crimson Mask. In 2008, they released a 2-song digital single and performed shows in upstate New York with Merauder, Madball, Wisdom in Chains, Burning Human, and Brick By Brick. Van Dyne has noted his primary drum influences as being Scott Travis, Gene Hoglan, Dave Lombardo, Paul Bostaph, Vinny Appice, and Mikkey Dee.
The band signed to Nuclear Blast just before Mike Van Dyne departed. He would not appear on the first record with their new label and was replaced by Darren Cesca. Noah Martin, who performed bass on United in Regret, and Ryan Knight were also added to the line-up to record We Are The Nightmare.
Darren Cesca was let go in 2008. His dismissal was cited as to differences in musical direction among him and the other members of Arsis. He was replaced on tour by Alex Tomlin of Battlemaster and later by Shawn Priest.
Noah Martin quit the band in the fall of 2008. He left the band to finish his college degree.
In late 2008, Nick Cordle and David Kinkade joined the band for bass and drum duties, respectively.
On December 21, 2008, Ryan Knight announced his departure from Arsis to join The Black Dahlia Murder.
On March 18, 2009, James Malone issued a statement explaining and apologizing for recent tour cancellations and lineup changes, citing personal reasons. Soon after, it was announced that original drummer Mike Van Dyne would return (although due to career commitments, his ability to tour with the band may be limited).
In July, 2009, it was announced that work was ongoing for their next record, Starve For The Devil. In September, recording sessions began with Nathaniel Carter performing bass and production being handled again by Chris "Zeuss" Harris. The record was released on February 9, 2010, and went on to land at No. 13 on the Billboard Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart for selling 1,800 copies in the U.S. during its first week of release.
In October and November, 2009, Arsis toured Europe with Behemoth, DevilDriver, and Scar Symmetry on the Neckbreakers Ball Tour.
In January, 2010, Arsis released a music video for "Forced To Rock", the first track off Starve For The Devil.
In January and February, 2010, Arsis toured the U.S. and Canada with Arch Enemy, Exodus, and Mutiny Within on the Tyrants Of Evil North American Tour.
On March 6, 2010, Arsis performed at the Eye Scream Metal Fest II in Mexico City (the band's first ever performance in Latin America) with Sacred Reich, Cynic, Municipal Waste, and Dying Fetus. This festival, the Tyrants Of Evil Tour, and the Neckbreakers Ball Tour are the only times the full Starve For The Devil recording lineup performed live.
On May 13, 2010, James Malone announced that Noah Martin was rejoining the band. Martin is still enrolled in college and thus may not be able to participate on long tours.
In November, 2010, the lineup of Malone, Cordle, Martin, and Van Dyne toured Europe extensively with Misery Index, Grave, The Last Felony, and The Rotted, followed by a U.S. headlining tour in December with Powerglove and Conducting From The Grave. During their headlining dates, Arsis performed the 12+ minute track "A Diamond For Disease" in its entirety for the first time ever.
On May 23, 2011, Arsis released a brand new track online called "Since The Shadows". The song features Nick Cordle on all guitars, James Malone on vocals, and Mike Van Dyne on drums.
On August 9, 2011, a remastered version of Arsis' debut album A Celebration Of Guilt was released via Willowtip Records.
On September 20, 2011, James Malone announced that he would not be performing with Arsis on previously-confirmed tour dates.
In early 2012, it was officially announced that guitarist Nick Cordle joined Arch Enemy. Shortly after, it was announced that longtime drummer and founding member Mike Van Dyne was departing Arsis to concentrate on his career full-time.