decker.'s Bryant Vazquez Gets Brutal with Vagabond Gods
If you don't know Bryant Vazquez from his solo work, you might know him from his three other projects -- as bassist in Sedona's decker. or as guitarist in Murdoch with Flagstaff indie rockers Them Savages. But his work with his brother, Chris Vazquez, under the moniker Vagabond Gods is definitely his most brutal.
Brothers Bryant and Chris Vazquez make up Vagabond Gods.
Bolstered by torn-up vocals and swampwater blues riffs, Vazquez tears into his songs like he tears into his musical lifestyle -- a relentless fervor not unlike a rabid dog. In the last year, he's recorded seven albums, some still pending release: Murdoch's 100 Beers EP, decker.'s fourth LP Slider, Vagabond Gods' self-titled EP and five solo releases. Yab Yum Music ranked him as their "Most Prolific Songwriter" and the year previous, gave him their "Spirit Award." Most folks, when they talk about Vazquez, talk about the "soul" in his music and it's easy to see, or hear, why. His authenticity shines through.
I spoke to Vazquez backstage at the TMI SxSW Showcase in early January, where we talked about the progress he's been making and how far he's come. On a number of occasions, Vazquez has claimed he could record and release an album a month if given the chance. Now, he's closer to that goal than ever.
"I'm really thinking 2013 will change things," Vazquez says. "The plan is, my contract with my job will be over in May, so with decker., we plan on touring a lot, doing off-and-on sort of stuff where it will pay for rent, so I don't have to have a job. I guess it depends on circumstances. If you're on a label of some sort that can support you, it's easier that way."
Originally from Yuma, Vazquez currently lives in Flagstaff in a three-bedroom house with six people, including his brother Chris and Them Savages duo Joshua Be and Ben Velazco. Needless to say, Vazquez describes the place as having "no personal space," but says, "We don't get many complaints -- although I got a complaint recently. I was probably playing a little bit too loud anyway."
Indeed, Vazquez likes it loud. Loud as fuck. His first couple bands were metal or grindcore instrumental acts, because as he puts it, "I wasn't brave enough to start singing." Vagabond Gods got their start when Bryant grew impatient waiting around for bass players or vocalists.