Genuflect rises from Reveille’s ashes
Nearly a decade ago, central Massachusettsbased band Reveille was on the cusp of stardom, riding the rapmetal wave onto the massive stages of Woodstock 1999 and Ozzfest.
But label pressure, industry drama and internal conflicts led the young band to call it quits in 2003.
Now ex- Reveille frontman Drew Simollardes is taking another shot with his new band, Genuflect, which opens a 50- city tour tomorrow at the Middle East in Cambridge. This time he’s bit more mature and wise to the ways of the rock world.
‘‘ It was definitely surreal,’’ Simollardes, 27, said of breaking with Reveille as a teenager. ‘‘ I got used to it real fast. You’re onstage in front of so many people. I really didn’t know anything else. That was right out high school. It’s all knew.’’
Reveille, along with fellow Massachusetts bands 7th Rail Crew, Gangsta Bitch Barbie and Eastcide, caught fire at the same time bands like Korn, Limp Bizkit Rage Against the Machine were, well, all the rage. Formed in the town of Harvard, Reveille toured with Pantera, Godsmack and Sevendust, built a huge fan base
moved to Los Angeles before collapsing under record company pressure make pop- friendly music.
‘‘ We had a really good run,’’ said Simollardes, speaking from his Waltham home. ‘‘ Our biggest problem was always battling with the people at the label. They were kind of trying to market us to 12- year- old girls and it didn’t work. That was our big problem with them.’’
The politically charged rap- rock of the ’ 90s faded, but Simollardes thinks there are still pockets of fans ready to once again embrace serious hard rock. He and Reveille guitarist Greg Sullivan joined forces with ex- 7th Rail Crew drummer Jeff Lawn and bassist John Boudreau to form Genuflect. ‘‘ We have somewhat of a different mission this time around,’’ Simollardes said. ‘‘ The songs are much more on a political and social level. More people care about who wins ‘ American Idol’ than we drop bombs on. You listen to rap or rock and everyone’s talking about going to parties and cars. No one’s saying anything.’’
Genuflect’s self- released debut, ‘‘ The End of the World,’’ is less rap and more metal than Reveille, but stays true to hardcore sound that gave Reveille its edge. Street- smart songs such as ‘‘ Potent’’ and ‘‘ Kill Shot’’ delve into societal ills like crime and drugs with genuine passion and explosiveness.
Could a rap- rock resurgence be upon us? ‘‘ We’re looking to take things as far as we can,’’ Simollardes said. ‘‘ We’re not really break mainstream. We’re just trying to get out there and find the people that really want to hear what we have say.’’
METAL MEN: Genuflect brings politically tinged rap- rock to the Hub.