Out of Sight

Blynd's credo: Rock 'til you puke!

Towards the end of a blistering performance at the now-defunct Gotham, singer Jon Russell of Blynd suddenly felt light-headed and nauseous. Despite an effort to keep his stomach calm, he puked all over himself.

As Russell shook off the wave of sickness, a couple of happy metalheads in the front row reached out for him.

"Shake my hand, bro," yelled one, undeterred by the sight of a rock star's vomit.

During the next band's performance, the singer went to scream into the microphone. Realizing the mic had an odd taste, the singer looked towards Russell, who decided it was a good time to hang elsewhere.

That's what Blynd is all about: Rock until you puke!

The five-member band--Russell, drummer Ryan Larson, guitarist Sean Terry, sampler/percussionist Ryan Maynes and bassist Scott Drawz--mixes Meshuggah, Incubus, Mr. Bungle and Tool to produce a sound that Russell calls "psychedelic anger-porn."

Or, as Maynes puts it: "We try to create something you can enjoy hearing." Of course, that depends on your definition of the word "enjoy."

Drawz describes the band's creative process as a "cluster-fuck." The group practices twice a week in a 15-by-15-foot downtown apartment.

"Usually, someone brings in an idea, and we work from there," says Terry. "We try to do something different every time we write a song."

Lyrically, Russell likes to write for himself as well as represent his bandmates.

"I try to write something we can all relate to," said Russell. "I maintain and focus on the positive; there's no 'fuck the world' type of message."

When it comes to live shows, the band consciously avoids falling into a pattern.

"Our shows are never the same," said Larson. "Ryan will make different intros for the shows, and we always mix up the set list."

"We also try to cater our shows to the crowds we're playing for," adds Russell.

Those have been some diverse crowds, both here and on the road in Phoenix, Southern California and Mexico. Over the years, Blynd has shared the stage with nationally recognized bands such as Otep and the Phunk Junkeez. They've played the Pima County Fairgrounds, a performance memorable for the bikini contest and numerous fights in the audience. And they distinctly recall a Club Evolution gig that involved wrestling matches with strippers and midgets.

"The bands we've played with have been real cool and seem to dig what we do," said Maynes.

Unlike most bands that have a manager, Blynd has done a lot of self-promotion.

"We pay for our shows out of our own pocket," said Maynes.

In May of last year, the group released a five-song EP, Insight, at Tucson's Avalanche Studios. Although it took only three days to record, the entire process took more than a year due to tight finances and lineup changes.

In the near future, the group hopes to record a full-length album. In the meantime, they urge fans to get to their gigs and check out the EP.

"Don't be a dick; support your local music," says Terry.

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