Since busting onto the alt-rock scene way back in ’93, Dredg have never shied away from experimentation. In 1998, the band’s first full-length, Leitmotif, followed one man’s global travels to cure his unnamed disease. In 2002, the band released El Cielo, based on Salvador Dal- and his struggles with sleep paralysis. And in 2005, the band’s Catch Without Arms attempted to conceptualize contrasts and opposites in its two-part format.
Now, some four years later, the Los Gatos four-piece (made up of singer Gavin Hayes, guitarist Mark Engles, bassist Drew Roulette, and drummer/keyboardist Dino Campanella) return to the fold with The Pariah, the Parrot, the Delusion. The 18-track record draws from the band’s more prog-minded roots while remaining surprisingly listenable, incorporating everything from spiraling instrumental tracks (“Stamp of Origin: Pessimistic”) to pop-infused rock-outs (“Saviour,” “Pariah”). Oh yeah, and the whole thing is inspired by Salman Rushdie’s essay, “Imagine There’s No Heaven: A Letter to the Six Billionth World Citizen.” In fact, the band are slated to pair up with Rushdie this fall for an AIDS/HIV fundraising event called Liner Notes at the Housing Works Bookstore Cafe in New York City.
“Progress has always relied on bold and courageous efforts to cut the ties to old traditions, trends, and beliefs,” Hayes said in a recent press release. “Salman Rushdie is a living example of such courage and one of the reasons why we chose to use his essay : as an outline and inspiration for our new record and its artwork. We are extremely excited and flattered to share an evening with such a talent.”
Rushdie references aside, the band are very much hard at work, having recently hit the road in support of The Pariah. This Saturday, August 29, Dredg makes a stop at Velvet Jones (423 State St.) with fellow tourmates Rx Bandits and As Tall as Lions at 8 p.m. Known for their high energy and hard-rocking live shows-not to mention their legions of devoted fans-the band are sure to draw quite the crowd. For more info and tickets, call 965-8676 or visit ticketweb.com.