AlternativeAddiction recently conducted an interview with guitarist Clint Lowery of Atlanta, Georgia's SEVENDUST. The chat is now available for streaming using the audio player below.SEVENDUST — Lajon Witherspoon (vocals), Morgan Rose (drums/vocals), Clint Lowery (guitar/vocals), Vince Hornsby (bass/vocals), John Connolly (guitar/vocals) — will release its eighth studio album, "Cold Day Memory", April 20 on the band's own 7Bros. Records, through Warner Music Group's Independent Label Group. The CD — produced by Grammy Award winner Johnny K (DISTURBED, STAIND, 3 DOORS DOWN, PLAIN WHITE T'S) — is the group's first new album with its original lineup back together with Lowery's return after his departure in 2003.
The LP's first single, "Unraveling", is already getting a great reaction at rock radio and is currently #20 on the Active Rock chart (it's jumping to #18 next week). The song is currently available on iTunes and is can be streamed on the band's MySpace page. A video is also in the works. With back-to-back double-digit add weeks at Active Rock before its actual add date, this is the best-received SEVENDUST track in the last decade. While SEVENDUST's last few efforts were mainly heavy and rhythmic, the new songs balance brutality with textural passages and infectious counter-melodies. There are even fleet-fingered guitar solos. But whether confronting the listener with double-bass drums and staccato power chords or using melodic arpeggios and soft brush strokes to sweeten the sound of Witherspoon's multi-faceted vocals, SEVENDUST sounds excited, energized and ready to take on the world.
All five band members contributed to the lyrics on "Cold Day Memory", and the songs were works in progress up until the moment they were recorded. In the end, the band crafted songs that encapsulated their experiences with the world and one another. Witherspoon, who recently became a father, penned some lines about commitment and responsibility, while Rose, who was going through a painful divorce, wrote lyrics about heartbreak and disillusionment. The album's first single, "Unraveling", was co-written by Lowery and Dave Bassett (SHINEDOWN, PUDDLE OF MUDD) and is about the collapse of a relationship, while "Confession" indirectly addresses Lowery quitting and returning to the band.
"Since we all write, it's hard to tell exactly what each song is about, but we like to leave it up to the listeners to decide for themselves," Rose says. "It's funny because in the end you almost don't know what you wrote. I remember telling John one time, 'Dude, that was an amazing line you wrote,' and he went, 'What are you talking about? You wrote that.' We wanted to change the template completely from what we did with our last album, 'Hope And Sorrow'. We were going, 'Let's bring back those other elements Clint brought in that made us what we were.' So we sort of made a silent agreement that we were going to let Clint run wild. We said we'll jump in when it's time, but if you've got an idea let's go with it."
There's something almost intangible about a band with strong chemistry. When the guitarists vibe off each other just right, the bassist is lock in step with the drummer, the music almost transcends the musicians. And when the vocalist is feeding off the power of the other players, almost anything is possible. It's something SEVENDUST learned early in its career when guitarist Clint Lowery joined forces with the eclectic Atlanta group.
"I knew once I got him in there that he could definitely change the band fully," says Rose. "His background vocals and his writing style and guitar playing were the final ingredients for us to become the band that we needed to be."
With Lowery as a major contributor, SEVENDUST released four albums that stretched the limits of hard rock and metal, combining elements of thrash, classic metal, southern rock and soul into songs that were both sinfully tuneful and ruthlessly aggressive. Then in 2003, after the release of "Seasons", the guitarist quit to focus on his other band DARK NEW DAY. SEVENDUST continued for three more albums, and enjoyed considerable success, but something was clearly missing. So, when the band reunited with Lowery in early 2008, it was like the missing piece of a jigsaw puzzle was finally reinserted and the picture was again complete.
"This record personally has been one of the most difficult, but most rewarding records I've ever worked on," explains Lowery. "I put a lot of pressure on myself to contribute good material to the guys after being gone for last three records and that helped me focus more than I ever had." Adds Lajon Witherspoon: "I feel this album shows new growth for the band. We're very happy to have Clint back and are looking forward for everyone hearing the magic that's made when we're all together!" Clint Lowery interviewed by AlternativeAddiction (click on player below to launch audio):