8 Sevendust Realities
Premise #1: If you think your band has a great name, think again. Somebody may already own it.
Reality: Sevendust formed in '94. The Atlanta group's line-up was Lajon Witherspoon (vocals), Clint Lowery (guitar), John Connolly (guitar), Vince Hornsby (bass) and Morgan Rose (drums). They developed their sound operating under the names Crawlspace and Rumble Fish. They were forced to change their name to Sevendust when a group from the West Coast claimed rights to Crawlspace.
Premise #2: It's extremely difficult for a local band to break into the "big time" without someone who has done it before. Often it's a name musician, producer or manager.
Reality: Sevendust recruited former Twisted Sister lead guitarist Jay Jay French to be their manager. He got the band signed to TVT Records. Later, they moved to Asylum.
Premise #3: It may be brutal but extensive touring yields big results.
Reality: Sevendust toured relentlessly in support of their first album resulting in major radio airplay and a twelve week run at #1 on the U.S. Metal charts. In the ensuing years the group logged over 1,000 concerts around the world.
Prior to the release of their sixth full-length studio album, '07's "Alpha," with lead single, Deathstar," the group launched a 57-date headlining tour. A year later, in support of "Chapter VII: Hope & Sorrow," Sevendust embarked on another extensive U.S. tour. Saliva opened most dates with Black Stone Cherry playing the remainder.
Premise #4: After making a series of scorching albums, selling millions of copies, a group records an acoustic live set.
Reality: "Southside Double-Wide Acoustic Live," recorded the previous year arrived in early '04. This followed a series of successful studio albums starting with Sevendust's self-titled debut in '97. Two years down the road "Home" came out, followed by '01 release "Animosity" and '03's "Seasons."
Premise #5: It's always better to work for yourself.
Reality: Sevendust released "Next" in '05. Then they decided to start their own label, 7 Brothers (7Bros.), under Warner Music Group's Asylum/Independent Label Group. "Alpha" was Sevendust's first effort on their own imprint.
Premise #6: Guest artists on your album always draws attention.
Reality: '08's "Chapter VII: Hope And Sorrow" has performances by Daughtry frontman Chris Daughtry ("The Past"), Alter Bridge vocalist Myles Kennedy ("Sorrow") and Alter Bridge guitarist Mark Tremonti ("Hope").
Premise #7: You can 'go home' again.
Reality: Lowery left Sevendust in '04 to join Dark New Day. He was replaced by Sonny Mayo. But when Lowery split from Dark New Day he rejoined Sevendust, resulting in Mayo's departure. "I'm beyond excited about sharing the stage with (Sevendust) again," claimed Lowery. "I wish all the (Dark New Day) guys the best and love them more than words can say." Rose added, "Clint has always been our brother and Sonny will always remain our brother as well."
Sevendust released an '08 limited-edition box set entitled "Packaged Goods" which consisted of "Next," "Alpha," "Retrospective 2 (CD/DVD)" and "Chapter VII: Hope And Sorrow." Each five-disc collection was personally autographed by the entire band.
The following year, Sevendust began work on their eighth album, "Cold Day Memory." Thanks to Lowery's return, the album marked the group's first with its original lineup since '03's "Seasons." From "Cold Hard Memory," which dropped in April, '10, "Unraveling" was a Top 10 Active Rock Radio hit becoming the group's highest charting single to date.
Premise #8: Side projects are creative outlets - but don't forget the day job.
Reality: Lowery and Rose formed Call Me No One. The group included bassist Rek Mohr and Shinedown touring guitarist Alan Price.
Meanwhile, Connelly and Hornsby launched Projected with Scott Phillips (Creed/Alter Bridge) and guitarist Eric "Erock" Friedman.
Call Me No One released their debut album "Last Parade" in '12. The set peaked at #19 on the U.S. Hard Rock Album Chart (#199 on the Billboard 200). "It all has a dark spooky twist to it; kind of Nine Inch Nails meets Foo Fighters," stated Lowery.
That same year, Projected issued "Human." But things came to a halt as Connolly and Hornsby returned to Sevendust to record '13's "Black Out The Sun."
"(The album is) a basic Sevendust record," explained Lowery. "There's nothing, like, too completely different than anything we've done before. It's got a darker vibe to it." The lead single was "Decay."
"Black Out The Sun" was Sevendust's first album to land at #1 on a Billboard chart - Top Hard Music Albums. That was followed by the '14 acoustic album, "Time Travelers & Bonfires," which sold approximately 15,000 copies in the U.S. during its first week of release to debut at #19 on the Billboard 200.
Plugging in, Sevendust issued "Kill The Flaw," featuring the track "Thank You," in '15. To promote the album, the group created "The Making Of Kill The Flaw," a series of five webisodes with exclusive content, behind the scenes footage and interviews.
Looking back, Sevendust celebrated the 20th anniversary of their self-titled debut album by playing it in its entirety at a special hometown Atlanta show.
2004: Southside Double-Wide: Acoustic Live
2005: Best Of (Chapter One 1997-2004)
2007: Retrospective 2
2008: Chapter VII: Hope And Sorrow
2010: Cold Day Memory
2013: Black Out The Sun
2015: Kill The Flaw
Sevendust ride Witherspoon's vocal barrage and the duel guitar attack of Lowery and Connelly. Tight, pummeling riffs drive the dark themes. They are practitioners of heavy, Heavy Metal where aggressiveness and blistering textures dominate.
Sevendust's premier effort is "Seasons." The title track is one of the best songs the group has released. It is both melodic and powerful. Their core sound is effectively displayed on "Disease" and "Enemy."