If ever there was a time to break out the phrase “Louisville’s supergroup,” now is certainly that time.
Dead Child is a band whose members have performed together in so many different incarnations over the years that its very existence necessitates a family tree, “Dead Child: Circle of Life” on its Web site. Its members — David Pajo, Todd Cook, Michael McMahan, Tony Bailey and Dahm — are or have been involved with Slint, Crain, Shipping News and Phantom Family Halo, among others.
Dead Child was conceived last March during Slint’s reunion tour, which is about as good a place as any for a new band to form. Shortly after finalizing the lineup, the guys wrote “Never Bet the Devil Your Head,” which they performed live for the “Burn to Shine” Vol. 4 DVD.
Supergroups can collapse under their own weight and fail to live up to their hype (Traveling Wilburys, anyone?), but with Dead Child, this isn’t the case.
The band members formed around an interest in exploring their shared metal influences, and the results are transcendent. Their music honors tradition and oozes nostalgia, but steers clear of kitsch and is quite innovative. Dead Child mixes metal’s old school credibility with a hip new outlook to give the genre the good name it deserves.
Dead Child recently completed work on an EP, which was recorded here in Louisville by Chris Owens of Lords. It will be available Feb. 6 on Cold Sweat Records.
Until then, Dead Child will tour the East Coast this month — including a stop Friday at Headliners — to wreak its aggressive aural assault on an unsuspecting world.
Prepare yourselves, Louisville. There’s a Dead Child among us, and it lives.
LEO: If you were Mayor, what would you do to help promote people like you in this city?
David Pajo: I would make Todd Brashear, of Wild and Woolly Video, Mayor of Louisville. Together we would get the state to fund the ultimate venue. And Dead Child would play regularly in Oxmoor Mall.
LEO: Which Louisville musician needs to get more attention?
DP: Britt Walford, Sean Garrison, Brett Ralph, Tim Ruth — so many amazing musicians in this town.
Dahm: The Kentucky Prophet (elegant rapper).
LEO: If music were food, what kind would yours be?
D: Hot candy apples with razor blades.
DP: You don’t want to eat Dead Child.
LEO: Tell me about one of your favorite works of art aside from your medium.
DP: I’ve been enjoying a lot of horror movies recently. I like the European version of “Dawn of the Dead” — the one edited by Dario Argento with the Goblins soundtrack.
Michael McMahan: The amazing Broadway Indi’s Restaurant fried “keel” selection. It blows most art away.
LEO: What do you want to say that you know you shouldn’t?
DP: Dead Child is the ultimate heavy rock band, and we’re only just beginning.
Contact the writer at firstname.lastname@example.org