Filter Completes Evolution

Excerpted from the magazine for

"I am the boss -- I have to admit that," Richard Patrick, founder of Filter, says. "But I always wanted to be in a band. After 22 years of looking, I finally feel like I'm in a band, with the four guys I'll be with for a long time." The latest stage in Filter's evolution comes with the act's third album, "The Amalgamut," due July 30 on Reprise.

Filter first emerged in 1995 with "Short Bus," an album that spawned the hit single "Hey Man Nice Shot," which reached No. 10 on Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks chart.

Still, the Filter of 1995 was a largely a solo affair for one-time Nine Inch Nails member Patrick, who played almost all the instruments on the album, with some help from programmer Brian Liesegang. Having developed into a quartet by the time of 1999's RIAA-certified platinum "Title of Record," the album featured songwriting from Patrick's bandmates.

After that "litmus test" proved the potential his cohorts offered, Patrick encouraged them to write for "The Amalgamut." This time, Patrick was more confident with his support, telling them, "You can write, you are good -- go for it!"

Guitarist Geno Lenardo says, "I can't wait to try out the new material on people. I wrote a lot more on this album -- I want to see how people respond." One of Lenardo's collaborations with Patrick, first single "Where Do We Go From Here," has been serviced as a radio single to U.S. active and modern rock stations; the cut is currently at No. 14 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart.

The concept for "The Amalgamut" grew out of Patrick's adventures on a cross-country road trip. While traveling the U.S., he began to appreciate the juxtaposition of fast-food culture alongside the local charms of the country's different regions. "'The Amalgamut' is the American melting pot come to fruition," he says. "We've melted, we're together. As much as the country has homogenized itself, there are a lot of special individuals out there."

Looking at the album, Lenardo is most proud of the diversity. "There are great melodies, great choruses, and sonic landscapes and pop songs and metal songs."

The enhanced CD will feature a companion short film, the John Cook-directed "Plague of a Thousand Deceptions," which Patrick says describes the album concept well. "[It] is one of the most incredible pieces of film I've ever seen. It's gorgeous. It's about 'The Amalgamut.'"

In addition to 'Plague,' which will be included on the disc, the CD will include secure links to exclusive downloadable content, including a 16-minute home video with scenes from the recording studio and the "Where Do We Go From Here" videoclip, directed by Patrick and Alexander Kosta, which explores the teenage fad of backyard wrestling.

Filter returned to the road June 27 with Sevendust to co-headline the Locobazooka tour, a daytime festival running through July 21. That jaunt will be followed in mid-August by a headlining club tour and a number of European festival dates. The band has added a fifth member -- rhythm guitarist Alan Bailey -- for this summer's tour.

Excerpted from the July 27, 2002, issue of Billboard. The full original text of the article is available in the members section.

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