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Local Music - Badride 

by Alexandra Holt

Four young men arrived at the Battle of the Bands in 2001 without a name for their group. When one of their "redneck friends" used the expression "badride" as a verb or description in every other sentence of his hippie dialect, the foursome thought it was hilarious.

Thus was Badride born. By now, it is tearing up stages in Spokane with "high-energy alternative rock" music.

Playing at venues from Caf & eacute; Sol & eacute; to Mootsy's to the Cotton Club (Feb. 8) and with such other local bands as the Federales and 10 Minutes Down, Brian Savage (lead vocals/rhythm guitar), Eric McNees (lead guitar/backup vocals), J Groves (bass guitar/backup vocals) and Brian Dempsey (percussion/backup vocals) compare themselves to "the blob."

"We're just going to spread," Groves, nicknamed "J Man," says. "And you won't be able to clean up after us."

"Like a horrible infectious disease," Savage (aka "Beano") adds.

Their loose behavior on stage is a definite crowd-pleaser, with Dempsey ("Polar Bear") pounding his drums with his tongue hanging out, McNees' energetic stage presence, Groves' solid bassist skills and Savage's comfort on the mike.

"We're pretty raw live," Savage says. "As far as our sound goes."

Badride all agreed that their sound is similar to the mainstream band Sum 41. They've all had different influences in their musical dreams, from Radiohead to the Deftones to Spine Shank -- a band "too violent for radio-type music," says Groves.

McNees (also called "The Chief"), Groves and Dempsey have known each other since before high school; Savage is the band's newest member and now lives in a large house along with the rest of Badride. Savage has tied the band's sound together with his hypnotic voice.

The next adventure for the four young gents is to take their show on the road to Wenatchee and Richland on February 21-22. They'll be back in Spokane at Caf & eacute; Sol & eacute; on March 6 for an all-ages show.

Publication date: 02/06/03
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