By Matt Ascone, Staff Writer
What exactly does a band gain when one of its founding members decides to leave? If Breathing Blue’s latest single “What I Gain,” is any indication, the answer is a whole lot of perspective and wisdom. “And I remember when we first said/This was all we ever wanted” sings lead vocalist and keys player Justin Sanford, echoing sentiments that many band-mates have found themselves thinking at one time or another. Guitarist Matt Basilotto briefly left Breathing Blue during the summer of 2011 for personal reasons, causing the band to rework itself into a four-piece lineup. Featuring AJ Perdomo of The Dangerous Summer on guest vocals (who does a wonderful job adding depth to Sanford’s soaring voice), the lyrics of “What I Gain” tell how the band dealt with this difficult transitional period, but resolved to continue pursuing their musical dreams. “I’m not worried/We shouldn’t worry/Find your own way home now” – and indeed Basilotto has done just that, as he has recently rejoined the band on a full-time basis (his first show back was on New Years Eve at the Brighton Bar).
One thing is immediately apparent when you listen to any of Breathing Blue’s catalog: This band has immense talent. From Sanford’s pitch-perfect vocals to the searing riffs and licks of guitarists of Basilotto, Rob Bost, and newest member Rudy Meier, to the intricate rhythm-keeping complexities displayed by bassist Chris Dechert and drummer Tyler Moellmann, it is clear from the first note of one of their high-energy live performances that this band is incredibly proficient at their respective instruments.
Based out of Ocean County, NJ, Breathing Blue combines arena-ready hooks with sing-along choruses and hard-rocking riffs that make the listener wonder just how long it will take before this band’s popularity boils over and reaches the masses. That time may be coming sooner rather than later – Breathing Blue has already played the Bamboozle festival twice, thanks to following up a second place showing in the 2010 Break Contest by taking home the championship in 2011. The band is currently in the studio working on their full-length debut, Inner Animal, which is scheduled to be released sometime in early 2012.
Catch Breathing Blue tonight at Frankensound Studio tonight in New Brunswick…Admission is $10.