Since The Company Band first got together in 2006, the group has solely existed through semi-annual corporate retreats. These meetings developed into an organization of odd fellows featuring vocalist Neil Fallon from Clutch, drummer Jess Margera from CKY, guitarist / vocalist Jim Rota from Fireball Ministry, bassist Brad Davis from Fu Manchu and guitarist Dave Bone. Since the beginning, the group has rarely surfaced to show their hand. In 2007 it was the “Sign Here, Here and Here” EP. In 2009 it was “The Company Band” album along with the “It’s A Confusing World / Not Fragile” single. And after a recent retreat at a beach house in Venice, the group have a new five song EP ready entitled “Pros & Cons”.
“The music on this record is our most platinum influenced. Early 80’s hard rock and classic metal. Bands like AC/DC, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden and some Aerosmith. But it’s become a melting pot. This is the stuff where we really found our sound,” says Dave Bone. Jim Rota goes on to describe: “It’s like that point in life when you finally say, I’m trading in the Kawasaki and going full Harley. We went full Harley on this one.” Brad Davis points out that maximum sound quality was of utmost importance: “We did a lot of the EP live in the studio. Working with producer Dr. Andrew Alekel at Grandmaster Recorders is always a recipe for success. There’s no doubt, he’s an important asset to our team.” The recording for Neil’s vocals was done with J. Robbins at The Magpie Cage in Baltimore. “In the modern age, remote operations are crucial to productivity,” Neil said of the coast to coast recording. Guitar overdubs and background vocals were also done at Jim’s own Sword and Shield studio. “Having the ability to examine the product under your own microscope is indispensable,” Jim commented.
Not many have known the origins of The Company Band until Jess Margera finally opened up about its inception. “I crossed paths with Jim on tour and knew we should open up shop immediately. Do some instrumentals that could be valuable in the placement market. Then he suggested getting Bone involved. It’s then when we laid down our original presentation that we took to Neil. We hoped he could be a guest speaker on one of the tracks but it fortunately turned out that he wanted a permanent seat. Brad Davis came seamlessly into the fold later as he was already a compatriot with several of the members, musically and socially.”
With everyone’s bands creating such a difficult schedule, how do they make it all happen? “I don’t want to say we pay great attention to astrology, but…” said Neil Fallon trailing off. “On this one, I chose the spot for the retreat in Venice. A great location will not only bring the people out, but it will also bring the best out of the people.” And when The Company Band do get together, it’s an occasion not to be missed. The group can be seen performing limited live demonstrations toward the end of July.
The Company Band has shown the pursuit of leisure can turn into a subsidiary enterprise with just a few power chords. After two successful independent releases, “Pros & Cons” is sure to continue The Company Band’s “blue chip” streak. The EP marks a new partnership with Clutch’s own Weathermaker Music label. The label will be putting out a digi pack CD as well as a special audiophile, deluxe vinyl package on July 31st.
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