The band has unequivocal discipline and purpose in everything they offer, from the studio recording, to the live show, to their personal interaction and connection to their fans. Audiences instantly feel a bond to MODENA that transcends genre labeling and places the focus back on the music, rather than the labels.
Their dedication and raw emotion is earning them the respect of listeners everywhere they play while cultivating a loyal fan base, not just in their home town, but to thousands throughout the southeast as well as overseas.
Any music fan can ravage in Justin’s lead guitar, flowing perfectly over James’ original, catchy and melodic riffs. Derek’s percussion consistently remains in the pocket, intertwined with Stewy’s own simplistic, yet unique, style. The combination of two or more singers provides a deep and vast potential for their music as well.
MODENA doesn’t conform to a "blueprint,” so commonly heard in today’s new rock music. Their catchy, hard edged sound can not be defined by merely one classification. They are rock in its truest form, as committed to originality as to the rock scene itself.
“There is no rule or formula for writing our music,” James says, “Everyone is open to do what they please as long as it sounds right. There’s no such thing as a hierarchy in our band.”
With a complete lineup and an EP of original songs, MODENA stands poised at the forefront of a new generation of rock n’ roll bands, ready to return the Raleigh scene to its creative roots as a musical oasis and hurl rock back to the top of the artistic tier.
How do you describe your music to people, Jaymz?
An eclectic mix of everything with nothing you've ever heard before. We strive for perfection in everything we do. We don't want to sound "generic" or like anything you've heard on the radio before. Sure, you can certainly spot our influences but our drive for originality is what fuels our fire. A band is only as good as the sound it projects to its audience.
Tell me about how you originally got into your craft.
I started playing guitar when I was 15. My mom taught me a few chords, and from there I was able to learn the basics songs that I liked hearing on the radio. Eventually I got a teacher for a couple years who taught me how to branch out into more classic rock and blues (I was mostly into Metallica, Korn, and Limp Bizkit at the time). He showed me the prowess behind players like Clapton & Jeff Beck.
What is your favorite thing to do in the whole wide world?
To create something out of nothing!
What is your biggest challenge when it comes to running your business?
Getting our band past the "local" level and into the next tier of regional and national bands. That's what separates the men from the boys in this business: by finding the means and resources to stay sharp and ahead of of the game. But you also have to remember to have fun with it. Once I started treating my life-long passion like a business, I realized it became very easy to lose track of the original reason why I got myself involved with music business in the first place.
When you were a kid, what did you think you were going to be when you grew up?
Well as a kid I always wanted to be an astronaut. Then an NBA star. But after realizing I wasn't getting much taller than 5'7", I figured maybe starting a band couldn't be all that bad! haha
In what way has your community impacted your development as a musician?
I live in a town that's very rich in culture, art and music. Most of it is not my style or genre of music, but that doesn't mean it's not there. There are tons of classic clubs like the Cat's Cradle, Local 506, and Lincoln Theatre that surround Chapel Hill, Carrboro, & Raleigh respectively. People around here also tend to respect you a little more when they find out that you're an artist. Maybe because they respect that you're freely expressing yourself, or maybe because they're impressed. I'm just glad that I don't come from a community where that sort of thing is looked down upon.
What other artists out there do you love?
Wow, good question. Because there's a BIG difference between artists I "like" and artists I "love". I would have to say the top 3 most influential bands in my list would be 1. Nirvana, 2. Alice In Chains, and 3. Bush
I also love the blues. Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray, Leadbelly, Hendrix. Those guys really put a mark on my playing style. I'm more of a rhythm player and you can't get more rhythmic than the blues.
What does your future hold?
Hopefully success for Modena!! That's the dream at least. Maybe if it doesn't work out I can reconsider becoming an astronaut. Is there a height requirement to get into space? I hope not.
Recently, we just got done recording 3 new songs with Producer Jim Wirt (Incubus, Hoobastank, Live) that we plan to release this December on Filament Records. It will be titled MODENA: "Second Time Around EP" The CD Release show will be on Dec 11 @ Deep South The Bar in Raleigh, NC.