One of the most exciting bands to hit the Denver scene last year was The Fray. The Fray is a four-piece band comprised of the bandís two founding members, Joe King (guitar/vocals) and Isaac Slade (piano/vocals), along with Benjamin Wysocki (drums/percussion) and David Welsh (guitar). The Ear did a telephone interview with Isaac Slade late last month, just before the band left for a tour of the Midwest.
The Ear: When did the band start playing together?
Isaac Slade: Joe and I started playing together in the Spring of í02. About two years ago David and Ben joined the band.
The Ear: How did you get recognition locally and now nationally?
Slade: It started with Dave Herrera, the music editor for Westword Magazine. We were eating dinner one night and really hit it off. He gave us a good write up, and after that, we won a few awards from Westword. Thatís how the record label heard about us. After that, we got on the local radio.
The Ear: Do you have any studio albums?
Slade: We have one EP, which has seven songs, and we have a new record coming out which has 11 songs.
The Ear: Who writes the material?
Slade: Joe (King) and I write the material.
The Ear: Who were your influences as you were growing up?
Slade: I like a lot of old blues and jazz, and Iím a big fan of Van Morrison and Randy Newman. Rock band wise, Third Eye Blind was a big influence. We are a lyric driven band, and I think I get a lot of that from the Counting Crows.
The Ear: Whom do you guys listen to now?
Slade: We worship U2. Ben, Dave (Welsh) and I are really into Wilco and Pearl Jam.
The Ear: I heard that you recently signed a record contract.
Slade: We signed with Epic Records this fall and recorded our album in February. Our album is due out in September, but our single has done well in the markets itís been released in, so our album might be out in August.
The Ear: Do you guys know Rose Hill Drive, another local band that is getting noticed?
Slade: We actually opened for them a few times, but weíre a different genre.
The Ear: How would you describe The Frayís music compared to that of Rose Hill Drive?
Slade: Weíre melody driven rather than rhythmically driven. We have a huge focus on the melodies, and there is a lot more focus on the piano.
The Ear: Where do you see The Fray in five years?
Slade: Weíve watched a lot of bands that have been huge hits, and then disappear in a year and a half. So, in five years I would be happy if it looked like we were going to last another five years.
If you go
What: The Fray
When: 8 p.m. Wednesday
Where: Aggie Theatre, 204 S. College Ave., Fort Collins
More info: 970-482-8300; www.aggietheatre.com
What: The Fray with Patrick Meese and Starfuzz
When: 8 p.m. May 20
Where: Gothic Theatre, 3263 S. Broadway, Englewood
Tickets: Sold out