Exclusive: Job for a Cowboy’s Jonny Davy Explains Why the Band Has Taken So Long to Make New Music
Job For a Cowboy released Sun Eater to riotous acclaim in 2014. Hailed as a prog metal opus by fans from all across the metalsphere and the press alike, the record landed on a multitude of year-end-best lists. Except from the small pocket of deathcore die-hards who comprised the band’s earliest fanbase, of course.
And then… bubkus. For reasons unexplained, Job For a Cowboy completely faded out of view upon the album’s release. They never toured the record at all (save one festival performance in Canada two years later), and remained all but absent from the press.
It’s been nearly six years, but frontman Jonny Davy has finally broken the band’s silence in an exclusive chat with MetalSucks, just as rumors begin to swirl of a new record.
“Yeah! That part of it is super interesting, we never expected the ‘hype’ considering we’ve been gone for so long,” Davy offers on how much interest a pair of cryptic social posts generated earlier this year. “I think the majority of us assumed that being out of the picture, out of the lime light, not making our presence known, that the ship would sail and people would just forget about us. Surprisingly it’s had the opposite effect.”
We ask Jonny the obvious: what the hell have you guys been doing all this time?
Normie life, as it turns out. “Tony [Sannicandro], the guitar player, is working on his medical degree,” he tell us, a most unexpected turn from the shredder and former MetalSucks columnist. “A couple of guys in the band went back to school,” he continues, “and I went back to college to work on my computer programming degree.” Jonny demurs when we ask what kind of work he does now with that degree in hand, not wanting to mix his “professional” life with his band, other than to say he does “scripting for large scale database management that’s essentially scaled all across the world.”
Then he drops the bombshell: “I got married, I had a kid, so that puts a lot of things on hold quite a bit. That was probably the biggest brunt of it, on my end. I know a lot of the guys wanted to tour but around that time my wife got pregnant so that just kinda put everything on hold.” After kid number one came kid number two, as so often is the case. Jonny’s little ones are currently five and two years old, keeping his hands busy when they aren’t on the keyboard.
Good old-fashioned burnout was also a factor in JFAC’s extended absence. After performing 250 shows in one year at the band’s height of activity, some of the members simply grew tired of it and craved stability. “At that point, we were all pretty burnt out, to be honest. I think a lot of the guys were kinda torn, I think the band was split half and half wanting to tour and the other half needed a break.” Jonny insists the lengthy break was not intended: “I don’t think any of us expected it to take this long, by any means.”
The flame to pursue Job For a Cowboy again was reignited when Davy, along with Sannicandro and fellow guitarist Al Glassman, put out a record under the Serpent of Gnosis moniker last year. Job For a Cowboy had been doing what Davy refers to as “on and off writing” over a period of three years, but getting together in a more serious capacity to make As I Drink From The Infinite Well Of Inebriation “was the catalyst of everything,” he explains. “We talked about [JFAC] here and there [before that] but I think once we got in the groove again [with Serpent], we got excited about doing another [JFAC] record.”
The bulk of that album is set to be recorded in October and November. Jason Suecof — who produced the band’s previous three album — will once again be handling production duties, as we already know.
The drums on the new album, in fact, have already been recorded. But by whom? The drummer on Sun Eater, Danny Walker, is currently persona non grata in the metalsphere at the moment.
For the answer to that question, check back on MetalSucks this Friday, September 11, for part two of our chat with Jonny Davy, in which he spills the beans on the highly-anticipated album that’s to come. Following that, we will publish the entire Q&A in full.