The power pop group is made up of singer/songwriter/guitarists Peter Holsapple and Chris Stamey, bassist Gene Holder and drummer Will Rigby. The musicians grew up in Winston-Salem, N.C., and formed The dB’s in New York City in 1978.
After the group released its debut in 1981, Stands for deciBels, and 1982’s Repercussion, Stamey left the band in 1982. The dB’s put out two more albums – 1984’s Like This and 1987’s The Sound of Music before parting ways in 1988.
Since The dB’s disbanded, Stamey, Holsapple and Rigby each recorded as solo artists. Holder worked as a producer and engineer on projects by Yo La Tengo, Luna and Steve Wynn, in addition to playing guitar for the Wygals and bass with Yo La Tengo. Stamey also worked as a producer for acts including Alejandro Escovedo, Le Tigre and Whiskeytown. Holsapple recorded as a member of the Continental Drifters and performed with R.E.M. and Hootie & The Blowfish. Rigby’s resume includes his two solo albums along with working as a stage and studio drummer for Steve Earle, Laura Cantrell and Matthew Sweet. Stamey and Holsapple also got together in 1991 to put out the duo album Mavericks.
In 2005 The dB’s reunited for a series of reunion shows and began working on new tunes together. Before completing work on the band’s new release, Stamey and Holsapple put out another duo album, hERE aND nOW, in 2009. The dB’s long-awaited fifth studio album, Falling off the Sky, will finally be released June 12 on Bar/None.
“In some ways, this feels like the record that we could have made between our first and second albums,” Stamey said. “There are, however, fewer angry songs. And more songs about transformation. It’s also the first dB’s album to be recorded primarliy in North Carolina, which is something that we’re very proud of.”
Stamey added that the band’s long recording cycle was OK with the group because “the focus was always on creativity and doing what we liked, rather than trying to get it out at a particular time.”
The dB’s return to the stage together for the 2012 edition of Austin’s SXSW. Up first is a March 14 show at The Dogwood.
Other shows on the itinerary include March 15 at The Stage On Sixth, March 16 at B.D. Riley’s, March 17 at Threadgill’s World Headquarters and March 17 at Maria’s Taco X-Press.
Check out the video for The dB’s new single “Revolution of the Mind,” below. The song features guest appearances from Django Haskins and Yo La Tengo’s Ira Kaplan.