RYAN FLYNN — General Assignment Reporter
Local band Twelve Gage, fresh from nearly half a year’s hiatus, is back with a vengeance.
What was once a purely metalcore band has toned down their sound, taking on an alternative and nu metal feel.
The five-man band looks to record and eventually release their first full-length album later this year.
Lead vocalist Nico Paolillo compared the band’s new sound to a “heavier Deftones” or maybe a “lighter Limp Bizkit with more screaming.”
“We’re still basically trying to find our sound right now,” Paolillo said. “So, maybe down the road a little bit more we’ll actually know where we stand and who our influences were, because we’re still learning and growing and everything. So, it’s basically just, we’re finding all this [stuff] out as we go. We’re still very new.”
Three of the five members of Twelve Gage are originally from Hamden, with a fourth from New Haven.
Michael Gibson, lead guitarist and Hamden resident, said he was inspired by such guitarists as John Frusciante, formerly of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, as well as Stephen Carpenter of Deftones and Jimi Hendrix.
The band, formerly known as Twelve Gauge Ta Face has shortened their name and refined their sound.
“It’s definitely a lot lighter,” Gibson said. “The new [songs] are definitely going to excite people, I think.”
Gibson spoke to the catchiness of the new material as well.
Twelve Gage was originally formed by Paolillo and rhythm guitarist/vocalist Cortland Bonday, who both were already friends of Gibson’s.
“Me and Cortland had been trying to get a band together for like seven years,” Paolillo said, “and we’ve been begging this dude [Gibson] for those seven years and he kept saying ‘No, no, he wasn’t ready.’ Then [he] finally jumped on board and we found a drummer. And from that day on for like the next two years straight we were just in it.”
The drummer Paolillo spoke of was Josiah Evans, also of Hamden.
He, along with bassist Jeffrey Richard, made up the original band.
The original iteration of Twelve Gage wrote roughly 12 complete songs and recorded eight of them, which were released on a demo tape in early 2011.
A few of the members had a falling out that autumn, but put whatever qualms they had aside and reformed just a few weeks back.
The band, which returns all five members, will host a comeback show this coming Saturday the 14, at Side Street Bar and Grill in Hamden.
Side Street, located on 15 Dickerson St. in Hamden, will open the doors at 6 p.m., with Twelve Gage coming on at 8 or 9 p.m. The event is only for those 21 and older, and has a $5 cover, according to the Twelve Gage members.
The band will perform some of their old material, but will definitely make an effort to feature their newer style.
“It’s a lot less stressful actually knowing that people can understand your lyrics without having to read your lyrics,” Paolillo said, referring to how the band has dropped their old scream-o style. “We have like four [new songs] right now that we’re working on, so we’re going to see how people like those. They all have different feels. We really live up to the alternative music feel; we’re never the same. All of our songs are heavy or light, or have rap influences in them. We’re just—we’re all over the place.”