SXSW Friday Interview
After 30 years, get ready for a new dB's disc!
The dB's9pm, B.D. Riley's
Inside the punk explosion of the late Seventies were a bunch of DIY acts making good, old-fashioned American rock & roll. From North Carolina via New York City, the dB's caught that demographic's attention with a gleeful garage-pop sound. The original quartet's first two LPs, 1981's Stands for Decibels and Repercussion the following year, remain undeniable ear candy.
Chris Stamey left in the aftermath of the group's sophomore effort, moving into the role of producer, in which he worked with Alejandro Escovedo and Whiskeytown, among others. Peter Holsapple, Will Rigby, and Gene Holder continued for two more charmed discs, eventually disbanding around 1987. Holsapple and Stamey have worked together since as a duo, but this summer, the original quartet releases Falling Off the Sky, its first new album 30 years.
"It didn't take as long as Chinese Democracy did it?," chuckled Holsapple.
After reuniting initially in 2005, the dB's knew a new album was inevitable even though the foursome had scattered to New Orleans; Cleveland, Ohio; Chapel Hill, N.C.; and New Jersey. Eventually, they found themselves in North Carolina writing and recording. Seven years later, they're ready to unleash new material on the world.
"We were trying to make sure we had the right songs for the record," stressed the guitarist. "The conundrum was, 'What does a dB's record sound like lo these many years later?'"
It sounds like a dB's LP: jangly, hook filled, crunchy, and bold. The band even brought in old friends Scott Litt and Mitch Easter to help.
"We've been friends forever, so it wasn't much of a stretch to get those guys involved," acknowledged Holsapple before revealing an exciting piece of news. "I think Mitch is going to be playing bass with us for the Austin gigs because Gene isn't able to get away. It's going to be very cool to have him with us."
– Jim Caligiuri
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