Hold Your Breath ... They're Back

Slowdrown is back!

The make-up of the band may be different, but the band's skull-pounding song delivery remains. The band recently replaced singer Dan Caputo with Rick Vazquez, and drummer Chris O'Brien with Ed Allen, formerly of Stem. The search wasn't easy, but the band is die-hard and doesn't shy away from the hard work that achieving its goals may take.

The band has been busy recording a demo with Eric Rachel at Trax East in South River, New Jersey, whose clients include Skid Row, Patti Smith and the Misfits. The plans to release the CD are set for December, bassist George Pond said. Rhythm guitarist/backup vocalist, Adam Taylor said the four songs to be included will be "Beautiful When You're Broken," "Intro to a Breakdown," "Diffuse," and "Regret."

Vazquez's vocals are more melodic than Caputo's, but still heavy and razor sharp. Allen brings versatility, experience and dynamic-friendly drumming to the band.

Slowdrown be playing with Hat Trick of Misery, Resen and Superkid, who are from Connecticut, at Asbury's The Saint on Saturday, November 16.

The future will tell if the band can regain its momentum with a new line-up, but the past has shown this outcome to be likely.

Chorus and Verse recently asked Pond what's in store in the weeks to come.

So how did you find your new band members? I know you went through a pretty long process with the singer and the drummer you knew beforehand.

Well, it was a pretty easy choice for the drummer. We knew Ed Allen for a few years. We used to watch him beat the shit out of his drums while he was in a band called Stem. They were signed to Ignition Records. He was interested in joining as soon as he heard the music. So that was an easy choice for us.

Now, as for our new singer, Rick Vasquez, it was a very long process! We held approximately 30 auditions, but we knew as soon as Rick picked up the mic that he had the kind of pipes we were looking for.

How did carefully choosing the singer work to your advantage?

Well, I think that by waiting you give yourself a lot of choices. Not only that, but I don't really think we knew exactly what kind of singer we were looking for. We just wanted someone who kicked ass at what they did.

How do you think they will add to the band?

So far they have been an awesome addition! These guys have added incredible talent, melody, diversity, dynamics and work ethics that match no others.

What are some of your band's plans for the near future with the new line-up?

I think we just want to get out and show everyone that we have a lot to offer. We also want to get this new CD out there so the people that have stuck by us through all of the changes can reap some of the benefits and crank us in their cars.

How has your music changed with new musicians?

I think it will be very evident to everyone how we changed. I think we are more melodic, more dynamic, more emotional, and just plain better.

What difference have they made to your live show?

Hmmm ... Well, I don't think it has changed that much. Although there are things that I am sure the die-hard fans will pick up on, we still have a well-rehearsed show that is very energetic. I promise that when you see us live it will be money well spent!

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Josh Davidson

Josh Davidson has written music feature articles for Jersey Style and served as the Jersey Shore rock columnist for Steppin' Out Magazine. Other music writing credits include Aquarian Weekly, Jersey Beat, Backstreets and He has written free-lance for the Asbury Park Press' Community Sports section and has written featured articles for its news section, as well as covering campus news and sports weekly for the Signal, the College of New Jersey's (formerly Trenton State College) student newspaper. He has worked as a staff writer for The Independent, and his work for Greater Media Newspapers has also been published in the News Transcript. He is a former beat reporter for the Ocean County Observer who presently is a news writer for Symbolic Systems Inc. supporting the US Army's Knowledge Center. His music writing covers a vast range of topics, from the current cover band craze, highs and lows of the original scene, to the early days of the Jersey Shore rock scene in Asbury Park. He is also a musician, having written hundreds of songs as a singer/songwriter, and playing them out as a solo/acoustic artist. He has also played with cover bands, including It Doesn't Matter, and several original bands, including as the guitarist for the solo project of singer/songwriter Dave Eric. He continues to work on solo material and is presently the guitar player for Jersey Breeze.