When The Drowning Men formed back in 2006, the product of a childhood friendship between Bardeen, Dolan and Eisenkerch, the idea wasn't to make a career, but to make music. The band, who added Messer and Smith into the mix, musicians who were equally instrumental to the formation of the group, practiced at least three days a week and a self-released an EP, "Kill the Matador," in 2007. The group's debut album, "The Beheading of the Songbird," followed in 2009, again released on their own. Bardeen, a prolific songwriter who is always penning new tunes, was ready again with new music by 2010, encouraging the band to begin work on what would eventually become their second full-length, "All of the Unknown."
Initially intending to record an EP, the group headed into Hurley Studios in Costa Mesa, CA in January of 2011 where they recorded five new tracks with producer Billy Mohler (Macy Gray, Jimmy Chamberlin Complex). In the studio Mohler became like the sixth band member, helping the musicians expand upon the tracks they'd been working on. "He brought a lot to the table," Smith says. "Billy is an amazing communicator. He thinks really fast musically and he's great at hooks and choruses. He would just do really simple things to make a good song great. He could give the song exactly what it needed all along."
In the studio it became clear that The Drowning Men were actually crafting tracks for their second full-length, but before they had time to write and record additional songs touring opportunities poured in. The group spent the rest of 2011 on the road, opening for Alkaline Trio, Airborne Toxic Event and, most notably, Flogging Molly, who liked the band's music so much they signed the group to their brand new label Borstal Beat Records. The label re-released "The Beheading of the Songbird" and sent them back into the studio in early 2012 to finish its follow-up.
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