Behind the Beat: Sludge Life

Every member of the Springfield band Crowrider is a music lifer. Whether by virtue of having played in previous groups, having written songs, or having recorded previous material, Chris Gaudreau (drums), David Buscemi (vocals), Nicole St. James (bass) and Dino Bambino (guitar) have all paid their dues. And now with the “Barbecue Metal” of Crowrider, the musicians are ready to take the Valley by storm.

Originally formed under the moniker Utah (short for “Utah, Get Me Two”), the band decided to change its name to Crowrider after Bambino wrote a song by that name.

“We were kind of thinking of changing the name anyway, just to not intimidate motherfuckers with the onslaught of awesomeness right off the bat,” he says. “[Then] I brought a song to the group called ‘Crowrider,’ which I was pretty proud of anyway, but the title alone was met with just the sweetest reaction. We really felt this magic moment of that kind of Spinal Tap finesse, being able to proudly, daringly walk on that razor’s edge of clever and stupid.”

From there, the group has cultivated its own unique sound that, despite featuring elements of traditional metal and hard rock, is difficult to place under the umbrella of any single genre. Tracks like “The Mouth of Olympus” and “Panspermia” include male and female vocals, and the latter song could be mistaken for an old Soundgarden or Audioslave outtake, complete with changing time signatures and a delicate guitar outro.

Bambino says, “Sometimes I think I hate talking about genres, but that’s not really true. I can talk about genres all day if it’s just for fun. I would describe us as sludgy, grimy, slutty, psychedelic blues metal, with hints of doom funk—sludge life.”  

Also of note is Crowrider’s interest in creating a band member-penned comic book (also called Crowrider), which follows the story of a microorganism that slowly infects its way up the food chain and in doing so begins to turn the tide of global culture.

“This is a concept I’ve been writing for a few years now,” Bambino says. “And Dave, our singer, who is also an amazing visual artist, should be done with issue number zero any day now. We can’t wait.”

There is new Crowrider music in the works as well, which, according to Bambino, could result in the release of a full-length album before the end of the year.  

“We just demoed all our new material, 11 songs or so, so we’re aching to get back in and record a full-length in the near future,” he says. “Until then, David and I will continue to work on the accompanying Crowrider graphic novel which, perfect world, would be out before summer, but realistically, we will definitely self-publish sometime this year.”•

Crowrider performs April 19 with Alottle and MOTO at The Elevens, 140 Pleasant St., Northampton,

For more information on Crowrider, please visit and

Author: Michael Cimaomo

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