When heavy metal meets melody, when class merges with power, and when energy melds with musicianship and creativity, the resulting force can be summed up in just two words: Musical bliss!
DRIVER is a classic heavy rock outfit that was formed in Los Angeles, CA out of the ashes of Joshua and Gypsy Moreno. The band was one of the top local acts at the height of melodic hard rock in the late 1980's and issued a widely circulated 5-song cassette EP demo in 1990 that garnered the band a dedicated worldwide following. DRIVER was ultimately denied by major labels with the emergence of the grunge rock scene that dominated the musical landscape during the early 90's, yet DRIVER has attained cult status as one of the most underrated hard rock acts of their time, and it has held steadfast throughout the years. Since then, the two main writers and members of Driver, powerhouse vocalist Rob Rock and acclaimed guitarist/producer Roy Z, have forged ahead to garner long successful careers in the music business.
Coming together to reform DRIVER in 2008, Rob Rock and Roy Z will finally get a chance to release the album they intended to deliver back when. With original drummer Reynold “Butch” Carlson” and seasoned players Ed Roth keyboards and Aaron Samson on bass guitar rounding out the line-up, DRIVER has resurrected their own musical niche that originally established the band as a timeless force to be reckoned with. This comes as no surprise to any lover of melodic hard rock, considering the backgrounds of the individuals involved.
Vocalist Rob Rock first came on the scene via the “M.A.R.S.: Project: Driver” record that was released in 1987 and enjoys international acclaim to this day. Recording with various bands and projects over the years, Rock is currently well known as one of the very few hard rock/metal singers with a successful solo career. Rock has added his writing and vocal talents to many great albums from Impellitteri, Joshua, Warrior, Avantasia, and Axel Rudi Pell, as well as his four solo albums. Dubbed by the press as “The Voice of Melodic Metal”, Rob Rock’s vocal range, phrasing, and unforgettable voice defines the vast variety of songs in the DRIVER repertoire.
Guitarist Roy Z handles the all important guitar duties as well as the production chores for DRIVER. Roy is currently one of the most sought after producers, with a resume that includes artists such as Bruce Dickinson, Rob Halford, Judas Priest, Sebastian Bach, Helloween as well as his own group, Tribe of Gypsies. As a producer, songwriter and guitarist, Roy Z has always understood the value of songs as opposed to self-indulgent riffing and his work with DRIVER is the proof of that. With enough tasty chops to fill a meat freezer, and a plethora of crunchy riffs that distinguish the DRIVER sound as unmistakably unique, Roy Z is a guitar hero’s guitar hero.
Drummer Reynold Carlson supplied the beat for the Joey Tafolla record “Out of the Sun” that demanded not only somebody that could supply a fierce skin beating but perfect timing and versatility as well. Reynold supplied both with a vengeance, and with DRIVER he is called upon to deliver a hard driving beat and rock solid rhythms as well. Carlson has toured and recorded with artists as diverse as Jag Panzer, Tribe After Tribe, Missing Persons, Rob Rock and Kollarbone and is an avid drum collector, supplying vintage drum equipment for television and music productions throughout Los Angeles.
Edward Harris Roth’s soulful keyboard playing has made him the top choice of artists, producers and musicians worldwide. Roth’s instinctual feel has allowed him to amass credits in all sorts of musical genres. Edward has recorded and performed with vocalist/bassist Glenn Hughes of Deep Purple fame, guitar legend Ronnie Montrose, and metal god Rob Halford, as well as noted pop and R&B artists such as Sheena Easton, Coolio, the Brothers Johnson, and Sophie B. Hawkins. A friend of Rob Rock’s since their touring days with Impellitteri, Ed Roth was hand picked by DRIVER to add his distinct keyboard stylings to enhance their commercial heavy rock sound.
Bassist Aaron Samson signed his first record deal with the L.A. based metal band ODIN and was playing sold out Hollywood clubs shortly thereafter. After several recordings, an MTV video, and a “Decline Of Western Civilization - The Metal Years" movie appearance with Odin, Aaron began working as a professional sideman and formed his own original projects. Aaron has performed and recorded with many well known artists and producers including Andy Johns (Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones), George Lynch (Dokken, Lynch Mob), Rowan Robertson (Dio), and John 5 (Rob Zombie, Marilyn Manson). With his extensive touring experience and musical talent, DRIVER recruited Aaron to supply his massive four-string attack to the bands new recordings.
Take first class vocals, add some gargantuan guitar playing, set it on top of a thunderous rhythm section, and mix in some subtle keyboard colorings and textures, and the result is the freshest and most exciting sound to ever permeate the classic melodic hard rock landscape.
DRIVER has stood the test of time, and will now finally see the light of day with their 2008 debut album recording.