2nd Half
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"Indie's Top 10"

Cleveland's 2ND HALF is as heavy as they are poppy and as gritty as they are fun. You'll find their brand of modern hard rock tightly-arranged and refreshingly angst-free. Despite dating back to the 90's, the latest incarnation of this dynamic group feels like the 2nd half of a brand new journey.

Not many bands can straddle that fence between Power Pop and Hard Rock the way Cleveland-based quartet, 2ND HALF can.

Whether upbeat and fun or downright gritty, these guys always stay true to strong, filler-free melody and well-placed harmony. I'd bet the house they're fans of the Meat Puppets- a band that similarly found home in that grey area between genres and likewise enjoys generous helpings of harmony with their crunchy guitars. 2ND HALF began as a two-piece venture, releasing two albums-
'Now It's Real' (2003) and 'Left Behind' (2006) - before adding members to form a bona fide band. Their first release as a four-piece, 'Neverville', has received wide circulation across the internet, appearing in compilations and gathering accolades along the way. Instantly accessible to those who crave the hooks and always available to those who like to bang, 2ND HALF is a welcome addition to our #1 slot this month and awaits you with their single,
'Two Wrongs' from OurStage.com today!
- Mike Cameo - www.indiestop10.com


"Straight Outta Cleveland – CD Review: 2nd Half “Neverville”"

For over a decade, there has been the phenomenon of two musicians getting together to form a band. There has been a lot of music produced with only a drummer and some other musician as partners in a group over the years. The best known of these groups are The White Stripes and The Black Keys. However, other duos exist today that are currently trying to make a name for themselves. One such band is a group from Cleveland, Ohio that is known by the name of 2nd Half.

It has been almost fifteen years that Ed Gandolf and Drew Scalero have been entertaining music lovers in the Greater Cleveland area. And while some duos that create music may sound a little sparse as far as their sound is concerned, that has never been a problem for 2nd Half. Even though it was only Gandolf on guitars and Scalero on drums when the band would take to the stage, thanks to some creative production and programming, the band sounded like a full band when in concert.

For the majority of the band’s existence, 2nd Half existed as the duo. While Drew Scalero would handle the drum parts for the group, Ed Gandolf would write and perform every other musical part to their songs to fill in the guitars, bass and keyboards in their songs. Together, Scalero and Gandolf have written many songs that place the band’s style in the rock/modern rock category. Together as a duo, they have produced two albums: 2003’s Now It’s Real and 2006’s Left Behind.

While 2nd Half had a great sound and style that could be called uniquely their own, the problem ended up being live in concert: While the programming that was created helped shape the songs and filled out the band’s sound, it also was a limiting factor on stage. Each and every performance the duo gave was based around the pre-programmed music that helped create the concert experience. This left little to no room to improvise on stage. Recently, the duo solved that dilemma:

Having existed for a vast majority of their career as a duo, Cleveland’s own 2nd Half recently took the next step in their evolution and brought in two more musicians to help create the music for the band, both in the studio and on stage. To complete a new foursome version of the band, Ed Gandolf and Drew Scalero welcomed guitarist Matt Majoros and bassist Mike Bernot into the band. The newly-expanded band just recently celebrated the release of its first full-band album called Neverville.

Neverville is 2nd Half’s third album release. To the amazement of longtime fans of the former duo, the new release from the group sounds and feels just like it was crafted by the two founding members of Gandolf and Scalero, keeping the band’s identity intact.

The album starts off with the first single, “Two Wrongs”. The hard rock song lets the listener know that the band can create music that will make you want to move while enjoying the songs. The next track of “Memory of You” is just what the fans of the group needed to hear: This song makes a statement that says: ‘Even though things may have changed, they haven’t changed all that much.’ “Memory of You” is a song that features the band’s signature style of combining equal parts hard rock and melodic pop rock. And the ever-present programming is included, making the song instantly recognizable as a 2nd Half song.

The newest album from 2nd Half spends its time split between the band’s hard rock sound and its hard rock/pop rock combination that fans of the band have come to love for these many years. One of the best tracks on the album is “One Night Alone,” a song that definitely NEEDS to be heard by the music-buying public. The song contains one of the best lines on the album: “One night alone, you’ve got me feeling so low” (or is that “solo”). While the makeup of the band has changed, certain things remain the same for 2nd Half. One of the main things that ensured that the band’s sound would remain unchanged was the fact that the new album was once again produced with the help of internationally known Cleveland-based producer Ben Schigel. As with the other releases by the band, Schigel keeps 2nd Half sounding like 2nd Half, no matter how many people make up the group.

Doing something as dramatic as going from a duo where the two musicians have complete control over the sound and style of their music to a full band where more people have feedback can actually change or even harm the makeup of a band’s music; however, 2nd Half seems to have transitioned very smoothly from duo to full band with little or no noticeable difference in their music. And the band’s new album of Neverville is just as strong and enjoyable as the rest of the band’s catalog of music.
- Matheson Kamin at The Rock and Roll Report


"How Cleveland's 2nd Half Lives"

Local band expands its lineup for hard-hitting new album

2nd Half is both a brand-new band and one of the Cleveland music scene's veteran groups. The band was started by singer-guitarist Ed Gandolf and drummer Drew Scalero back in the mid-'90s; by the time the group released ita first album, Now It's Real, in 2003, they were the only members. In 2006, Gandolf and Scalero released Left Behind and played live shows with electronic augmentation and projections to keep things interesting.
But between that release and their new one, Neverville (which they'll celebrate this weekend with a show at Peabody's), they expanded and became a "real" band, adding bassist Mike Bernot and guitarist Matt Majoros. The eight-track album features songs like "Invincible" and "Memory of You" that combine strong, smooth, mid-tempo, almost pop-like melodies with propulsive, heavy music. Gandolf's sleek vocals give the songs accessibility, and the band's hard-driving music and the tracks' layered sound gives them heft. The bristling, uptempo "One Night Alone" adds some pop-punk feel to the mix.
"We have a harder sound now," says Bernot. "Prior to having us in the band, they streamlined it by having a lot of programming. They still had the dynamic of a band, but they didn't have the energy because one guy was stuck behind the drums and the other was behind a mic. They got a decent buzz for being a two-piece."
But there were clearly limitations to that format. Through a practice facility they shared with Bernot's brother, Jim, Gandolf and Scalero hooked up with Bernot and Majoros in the summer of 2007. Shortly after, they began recording what was intended to be an EP with songs the original duo had written. But the band was writing new material and decided to keep recording. After finishing eight tunes in their practice place with Jim Bernot engineering, they sent the songs to old friend Ben Schigel, of Spider Studios, for mixing.
"We let him work at his own pace," says Bernot. "Being a friend of ours, we wanted to make it a pleasant process without deadlines. We just wanted to get it out by end of year."
With a new record and a full lineup, the band's plan is to start playing regionally as much as possible and to get their music out via the Internet and hopefully some soundtrack or videogame placements.
"We're all in agreement that we just want to come to whatever level is next," says Bernot. "Our plan is to send this to a couple of different cities to see if we can get any kind of buzz. We'd like to get to nearby cities like Pittsburgh; a Dayton-Cincinnati weekend would be good. Having full-time jobs during week, we have to be strategic about our planning. The Internet has been a valuable resource to get our music to people who might not have heard it. Someone in England found us and asked to use a song of ours on a sampler. It makes everything more accessible and exposes people to more culture."
But Bernot says the band's heart is in Cleveland, and he strongly believes in and supports the local music scene. He attended college in Dayton but opted to return home after graduating.
"People who persist in the face of adversity, pursue what they want to pursue — that's what I feel Cleveland is all about," he says. "It's why I came back. We love Cleveland; we love the other bands around here. It can be almost cutthroat at times because people are so passionate about their music."
He mentions Ohio Sky, who practice in the room next door, as well as Audiblethread, Rosella and Chimaira, as bands he considers to be friends. He's a big fan of Forged in Flame.
"There's so much that's offered around here," he says. "The Grog Shop brings good national indie touring bands; so does the Beachland. Peabody's has some really good heavier acts. Everybody's trying, despite how things are with the economy."
- Anastasia Pantsios - Cleveland Scene Magazine


"2nd Half - "An Audio/Visual Experience of Epic Proportions""



2nd half began in 1997 as a fourpiece Cleveland-based band and consists of founding members Ed Gandolf (vocals, guitar) and Drew Scalero (drums). Matt Majoros (guitar, backing vocals) and Mike Bernot (bass) joined the band in 2007.

In 2002, after five years of being a four-piece band, the original rhythm guitarist and bass player decided to pursue other opportunities, and Ed and Drew were suddenly faced with a critical decision; carry on as a duo or start over from square one.

Most bands would have fallen all
to pieces while faced with such a daunting task, but Ed and Drew
made a bold and courageous move
and opted to forge ahead even
though their number had been cut, literally, in half. One year later, in 2003, Ed and Drew proved that they could indeed succeed as a two-piece 2nd Half, and they released their record “Now It’s Real” with the assistance of longtime
friend and producer Ben Schigel (Spider Studios).

While Ed and Drew continued to
perform and record together, they realized they were lacking the onstage presence they once had as a four-piece band, so the duo engineered a stage show to take their live performance to a whole new level by incorporating audio and visual elements that were unlike any the Cleveland music scene had ever experienced. Beat for beat, frame for frame, second for second, each set was meticulously planned down to every small detail, and Ed and Drew played countless live performances and gained a solid and loyal fan base in the Cleveland and Akron areas. The duo performed with an energy that was mind-boggling, and each
stage show was a layered soundscape guaranteed to hold their audience captive and leave them wanting more.

Ed recorded and produced the
duo’s second album, “Left Behind”, in 2006 and the music stayed true to 2nd Half’s powerpop/rock feel that had defined the band for the past three years, but they took their songs to a new level by
adding more melody, layers, and
hooks. The new record displayed
greater song-writing complexity
and brought with it an even more
intense live stage show. The duo
continued to astound audiences
with their perfectly synced audiovisual performances.

In the summer of 2007, five years after making the decision to carry on as a two-piece, Ed and Drew opted to return to a more traditional lineup, and they enlisted Matt Majoros on guitar and Mike Bernot on bass, both from the band Slow Motion Soldier. Matt and Mike immediately fell into place, and the band continued to give their fans high-energy, enthralling live performances,
but now it was times four. The addition of Matt and Mike
into the lineup added new character to the band, as well as a slightly harder audible sound. 2nd Half has expanded their fan-base both
geographically and numerically,
and they continue to write guitar driven songs with an energy that is guaranteed to make you take notice.

2nd Half is currently working on
their first record as a four-piece, which is scheduled for a March 2009 release. You can go to myspace.com/2ndhalf to hear the first single from their forthcoming EP. Downloads are available at iTunes and aol music, and 2nd Half albums are for sale at amazon.com and CDBaby. You can also go to
their website, 2ndhalf.cc, for
updates on the new EP and tour
dates. 2nd Half will be playing a free, all ages show on Friday,
January 30th at Peabody’s.
Ed Gandolf and Drew Scalero took
a gamble in 2002 when their fourpiece outfit suddenly shrank to a duo. They chose to continue their careers as 2nd Half despite overwhelming
odds at succeeding. But succeed they did, with critical acclaim and a solid fan-base of people who were captivated and held in fascinated awe by the fact that two men could create a live stage show that not only sounded
amazing, but looked amazing too.
And now, with a full lineup and a new EP in the works, 2nd Half is bringing something back to
Cleveland, something that sometimes seems to be lost…… The
local scene. - Rhonda Readence - Exciting City Magazine


"Christmas in October?"

The third performance was 2nd Half a hard rock, power pop group that played equally as long. 2nd Half co headlined the show with Chimaira. The four members seemed to possess a unity that is almost unheard of from a local, unsigned band. This type of collaboration usually comes from years of touring and recording. As 2nd Half performed, various video screens project computer generated videos. The band seemed to be in total unison with the screens. It is truly a site to see. I could not help but notice the warm, fuzzy, feel good mood that overwhelmed the crowd. A vast mix of people stood happy and content. No fighting and no arguments ever occurred. The crowd response was not the only thing that amazed me. The timing of all the band members was impeccable. 2nd Half will also be playing at the Cambridge Room located inside of The House of Blues for Chimaira Christmas on December 30. - Spider - North Coast Crew Newsletter


Discography

Now It's Real (2003) - LP
available on iTunes, CD Baby, and through www.2ndhalf.cc .
Left Behind (2006) - LP
available on iTunes, CD Baby, and www.2ndhalf.cc .
Neverville (2009) - LP
available on www.2ndhalf.cc .
Songs of each album are available for streaming on music sites: Myspace, iLike, Reverbnation, Pure Volume, Garageband.
Select songs can be heard on Cleveland radio's 92.3 show The Inner Sanctum.

Photos

Bio

Hailing from Cleveland, Ohio, 2nd Half is a modern rock band with instant accessibility. With songs firmly grounded in melody, structure, and arrangement, the band appeals to a wide range of listeners from fans of heavy music to upbeat pop. Spectators and concert-goers often refer to 2nd Half’s live show as "extremely energetic", "super-tight", and "epic" after watching the four member’s consistent head-banging and inter-play onstage. More than anything else though, 2nd Half is a band built on fun and unification, striving to connect people through their music while creating memorable songs that people carry with them.
Originally founded in 1997 by Ed Gandolf and Drew Scalero, 2nd Half was a two-piece venture for the majority of the band's existence. After releasing two albums as a duo - Now It's Real (2003) and Left Behind (2006) - and performing a meticulously engineered live stage show which included video projection and audio programming to give a full band sound, Mike Bernot and Matt Majoros were enlisted to add energy and heft to the music, round out the line-up, and contribute in the studio. The four-piece 2nd Half independently released the album Neverville in November of 2009 and have been performing in support of it since,
acquiring new fans at every opportunity. The first single "Two Wrongs" has received great response across the internet which has provided the band with recent opportunities that include spots on an Apartment Records (United Kingdom) sampler, the Quickstar Productions: Quickstar All-Stars Vol. 1 compilation, as well as a finalist's position in Airwalk's annual Unsigned Hero contest. 2nd Half is all heart, and with nowhere to go but up, the four members put all they have into their music and performances to make sure that every listener in every crowd knows how much fun they're having doing it.

2nd Half has opened for: Chuck Mosley (ex-Faith No More, Bad Brains), The Hexum Brothers, 311, Chimaira, Jimmy’s Chicken Shack, Local H, and Red Wanting Blue.

2nd Half’s songs have been featured on the
sountracks of: BikeStyles Vol. 1 & 2, Patrick Stephens: Freestyle, Braaap 6 (Trailer), 7 & 8, and others.

2nd Half has also been featured on compilations by Pabst Blue Ribbon, and A & R Worldwide.