The Second Guess
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The Second Guess

Band Rock Alternative


This band hasn't logged any future gigs

This band hasn't logged any past gigs

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This band has not uploaded any videos


The best kept secret in music


Minimalist pop-rock group the Second Guess is new to the Detroit rock scene, but founders Dave Conger and Paul Briles have known each other since they were children.

"Paul taught me how to play (guitar)," says Conger, 21, who lives down the street from Briles and attended Grosse Pointe North High School with him. Drummer Matt Mayotte of Taylor rounded out the original incarnation of the Second Guess in 2003. With the addition of bassist Jason Smith of Romulus a year later, the band began playing around town.

While sound clips on the Second Guess Web site reveal the band writes interesting and catchy pop-rock songs, it isn't breaking ground musically. The band entered The Detroit News' recent Sonic Summer battle of the bands contest and made it to the top 30 finalists out of more than 100 entries. The Second Guess, which plans to release its first EP in November (it was self-recorded and produced in Conger's basement) has performed at hip rock venues such as Small's and New Dodge Lounge in Hamtramck, the Modern Exchange in Southgate and Detroit's Cadieux Cafe.

"Locally, we'd like to eventually be big enough to play the Magic Stick," says Conger, who says he named the band Second Guess because it is the second band he's been in. "I just though it was clever, I guess," he adds, laughing.

The Second Guess will play tonight at the New Dodge Lounge, 8850 Jos Campau St. in Hamtramck. The band will open for Sons of the Gun and the Badways. The show starts around 10 p.m. and the cover charge is $5. Call the New Dodge at (313) 874-5963. The Second Guess also will play an all ages show Sunday at the Modern Exchange, 12219 Dix-Toledo Road in Southgate. Call (313) 284-2547. Doors open at 8 p.m. and cover is $5. For more show dates and sound clips, visit www.thesecondguess .com. - The Detroit News (by Melody Baetens)

A sixties-ish sounding band name? Check. Garage shaking rock and roll? Check. The men of Second Guess met while attending Wayne State. No wonder they've got that "Cass Ave" sound down pat. The Second Guess want to rock you baby,...and make garage rock dangerous again. - Real Detroit Weekly

What do a hair stylist, an employee from Sack 'n' Save and two Wayne State University students have in common? They make up the local Detroit band - The Second Guess.

The band made a special trip to the University of Michigan-Dearborn to promote their new album, My Life this Year, which was released this past Friday at a concert at Smalls in Hamtramck. The band was interviewed on the air by the General Manager of WUMD, Lauren Roberts.

The guys were laid back and just wanted to get their name out there on campus. Every answer they gave had a "the second guess" thrown in for good measure.

The band came together when Dave Conger met Matt Mayotte in an engineering class at Wayne State University. They started playing together to relieve some school tension. Since then they gained two other bandmates - Paul Briles and Jason Smith.

The got the name The Second Guess, after Dave's group, The Guess, flopped.

The band has been together for about a year and practices about twice a week, unless there is a big show coming up. They started out doing a bunch of basement shows and they do an annual Halloween show.

The band has written over 35 songs but their new album showcases only seven of their songs. "I'd say I write about 90% of our songs and Paul writes 10," Conger said. "But his are better."

The band is heavily influenced by the White Stripes, Jet, the Killers, the Strokes, the Blues Brothers and some classical music. The band said, "We like that garage rock sort of feel."

Many of the bandmates were members of their high schools' marching bands and symphonic bands.

During the break, a few songs were played off their album, including: "Newborn," "Get you home" and "Washed up Honey."

You can listen to their music on their Web site: You can also buy their album online and eventually their music will be on iTunes.

They don't plan to go on tour yet. "We're concentrating on our fan base in the Detroit area first," Conger said.

They've played with several bands, including The Bad Way, The Links, Sugar Brown and Sons of the Gun. One of their favorite places to play is at the Village Idiot.

They would love to play with a nationally known band such as the Hives, the Killers or the White Stripes.

"They were cool guys and were really enthusiastic about being here," Kevin Beahon, the music director of WUMD, said. "They played some cool music."

A typical day for The Second Guess involves waking up, taking a shower, driving to school, playing scrabble on a PDA during class, thinking about the band, writing new songs on the guitar, updating the Web site and going to sleep, accoring to Conger. Mayotte said, "I had to rake today; that sucked." Smith talked about his volleyball class that he rarely goes to. It just proves that these guys are your average college students.

"The Second Guess is one of the best new up-and-coming Detroit bands and we were honored to have them at WUMD," Roberts said. "We look forward to having them play at our program guide release party."

You can catch The Second Guess at Jacoby's in Greektown at the corner of Brush and Congress on Saturday, Nov. 26. Doors open at 8 p.m. There will be a $5 cover. Anyone can come, and there will be free raffles and food but donations are always welcomed.

There will be three bands playing that night: Edward, Ethos and The Second Guess. DJ Perry will spin after the bands are done with their sets. - Michigan Journal (by Katie Evarian)

3 stars
The Second Guess
My Life This Year

It's nice when modern rock bands tastefully remember that guitar hooks and solos aren't just for the heavy metal set. The Second Guess kick out some quirky shout-along jams punctuated by fine quality riffage. From the sound of it, this stuff could really come together when played live. - DM - Real Detroit Weekly


My Life This Year EP (November 2005)
Demo 01/05 (January 2005)

Radio Airplay:
"Get You Home" (11/05, 88.7 CIMX)
"Washed Up Honey" (10/05, 2/06, 88.7 CIMX)
"Yeah, That Ain't Right" (1/05, 89.3 WHFR.FM Dearborn)
"Washed Up Honey" (7/05, 89.3 WHFR.FM Dearborn)


Feeling a bit camera shy


The Second Guess formed in 2003 when Dave Conger (Lead Vocals/Guitarist) met Matt Mayotte (Drummer/Backup Vocals) at Wayne State. What started off as occasional jam sessions to ease the stress of school, soon became more organized when Paul Briles (Vocals/Guitarist) originally joined as the band’s bassist. Right from the beginning, the band strived for originality and was constantly writing new songs. By 2004, after playing several basement shows, The Second Guess had over 20 original songs and was developing a fan base. But there was only one thing missing. In Fall 2004, Jason Smith took over on bass, and Paul switched to a more familiar spot on the guitar. Since then, The Second Guess has kicked it up a notch and has been rocking out crowds in bars around the Detroit metro area, getting livelier with every show. In January 2005 they recorded their first real demo including fan-favorites, “That’s Right, Girl” and “Yeah, That Ain’t Right” which received some radio play on 89.3 WHFR.FM in Dearborn. And the urge to keep creating is still alive as The Second Guess just finished producing their first album, My Life This Year EP, which is set to be released in November 2005. "Washed Up Honey" has already had some airplay on 89X in Detroit, as well as on WHFR.FM. But the new, seven-song EP includes only a handful of rockin’ original songs, as the band has now written over 35 of their own. Expect to continue hearing great things from this band in the future as they keep experimenting, writing, and rocking!