Between the Drops
'I tend to be quite reserved with my feelings and music is a way for me to channel all those emotions and let them out in a positive way,' says Justin Davis, the creative mind behind Gray Days Gone, the latest addition to the L.A. rock scene. Davis not only sings and plays bass, but also wrote all the material for the band's first album, Between the Drops. Davis is no stranger to the music scene but this is the first time he has served as front man and writer in addition to playing bass. Davis recruited an all-star team of musicians for the project including Vik Foxx (Vince Neil, Warrant, E'nuff Z'nuff) on drums, Dean Truitt (Seed, Color, Jason Falkner) on guitar and Frank Montoya (The Veronicas, The Bloodhound Gang, Motley Crue) providing additional guitar, mixing and mastering. Foxx also served as producer for the album. 'I never turn down an opportunity when it comes to music and when I met with Justin and listened to his ideas, I could see how passionate he was and I knew I wanted in,' says Foxx. The collaboration was a success and Davis raves, 'Vik really saw where I was coming from musically and raised the level of my game.' The material for Between the Drops was all written during the past year, which Davis describes as 'a period of major change.' 'I reached an epiphany where I realized that I wasn't leading the kind of life I wanted and it was killing me, but that I did have a choice and I could choose to change my circumstances and not be miserable,' he explains. Davis chronicled the ups and downs that occurred while making those changes and put them to music. Divorce, career changes, relocation and severing negative relationships fueled his writing. Listening to the disc from start to finish takes listeners on a journey from darkness to light as he endures the process of transforming his life. Gray Days Gone is undoubtedly rock, but it is difficult to nail them to a specific category. 'Both ethereal and driving,' is how Truitt describes their sound while Montoya adds, 'The music is very intense, even the more mellow laid back parts.' They draw from all things rock and their songs blend alternative, classic rock, pop, punk, and even a hint of industrial, with each song bringing something different to the mix. It's an eclectic album but it meshes well and Davis' passionate and powerful vocals give the album a sense of cohesiveness. 'There are multiple meanings to the title Between the Drops,' Davis explains. 'I write a lot and as a means to identify the stuff I track, I name all my discs. This one I started calling Between the Drops to indicate that this was material after the disc with my previous band 'dropped' and prior to the next one. Eventually the name grew on me as I realized it had other meanings as well, specifically that it reflects life's ups and downs. Right now, you're catching me between the drops.' The disc includes 9 primary tracks and ends with a bonus acoustic song. 'The two songs that really stand out for me are 'Waking Hour' and 'World on Fire,' says Davis of the album's opening and closing tracks. 'They represent point 'A' and point 'B' of this time in my life. 'Waking Hour' represents one side of the emotional spectrum - anger, repression and pain - and conversely, 'World on Fire' represents freeing myself from that repression and embracing passion. The other songs represent the journey to get from point 'A' to point 'B'.' Other standout tracks include the moving ballad 'No One Ever Gets to Go Back Home,' the playful 'Lost Without You,' with it's catchy hooks and tongue in cheek lyrics sure to be stuck in your head for days, and the hard rocker 'Blown Away' which Foxx cites as one of his favorites, claiming, 'The drum grooves are heavy and very cool to play.' 'Autumn Leaves,' a beautiful acoustic track, provides the perfect ending with optimistic lyrics proclaiming, 'I feel hope for the first time.' Between the Drops has a little something for everyone while still managing to keep a consistent sound throughout. Each individual track is strong enough to stand alone, but listening from start to finish captures the album's true essence. 'I think we've all experienced getting lost in life, finding our way again and the pain in between,' Davis says. 'What we do is not always connected to what we feel. It's like driving to a destination and being surprised when you arrive because you haven't been paying attention. My life gets like that and I often miss the journey. In the case of Between the Drops, I am finally reconnected with that journey and I hope that it will do the same for you.'