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Free Reign  
Marc Colombo-Vocals/Guitar  |  Cory Procter-Drums  |  Justin Chapman-Lead Guitar  |  Leonard Davis-Bass

Free Reign is the first time in history that “jocks who rock” has been done right. Forget about any silly comparisons to the Chicago Bears doing “The Super Bowl Shuffle” or Shaq doing his best to rap – the members of Free Reign play like they mean it, and rock as hard as many heavy metal notables of the early 21st century. Comprised of two Dallas Cowboys (singer Marc Colombo and bassist Leonard Davis) and a Miami Dolphin (drummer Cory Procter), Free Reign is certainly a larger than life heavy metal crew. With the line-up rounded out by non-footballer and virtuoso Justin Chapman on guitar, the quartet debuted in 2010 with an EP, ‘Tragedy,’ and will be taking a major step forward in 2011, with their first full-length effort, Heavier Than Metal

“The new album for me is a more polished, confident Free Reign,” explains Colombo. “On the EP, we were a brand new band trying to navigate through the music scene – not really sure where we fit in. It wasn’t until the Golden God Awards that we felt like we fit in with the metal elite [Free Reign won "Most Metal Athletes" at the event]. We had a great response/vibe with some of metal’s elite – Rob Halford, Vinnie Paul, etc. It reassured us we were on the right path. We started in on the new album in the summer of 2010 with producer Alex Gerst. We worked with Alex on our EP and he really has a knack for pushing us to be great. I came as prepared as I could for our recording sessions, but there’s a ton of creativity going on in the studio where me and Alex would try some new things, some new styles, and just really feed off each other. I know the same type of creativity goes on while the rest of band records with him also.”

As evidenced by such hard-hitting standout tracks as the lead-off single, “One Step Away,” the Gerst/Free Reign union certainly paid off, which Procter also points out. “‘One Step Away’ is a great song, because of its meaning. Everyone is in a constant battle in life, to make that ultimate step into what we want our lives to be. ‘All in Vain’ has always been one of my favorites to play live, because it’s a heavy hitting song with great screams. ‘Bleed for Me’ is a personal favorite out of the new songs, because it’s heavy and has great licks!” Additionally, Procter firmly believes that Free Reign’s new material is an improvement over ‘Tragedy.’ “I really believe the musicianship and songwriting is the biggest difference. We’ve all progressed in those areas, and have a better understanding of how to communicate through our music. Our guitarist, Justin, comes up with great material that really jump-starts the writing process. I think with the extra experience we gained from live shows and insight from other bands, we were able to each contribute more to each song and really improve the whole process.”

Also, Heavier Than Metal is the first Free Reign release to be issued on their own label, DC Rightside Music. Colombo- “Riot Entertainment was our label under owner John Howarth for our EP. We accomplished a lot in a short period of time releasing a record worldwide in month’s time. Our agreement with them ended, and we both parted ways on good terms. Free Reign appreciated all they had done for us. With that said, we are a unique band to say the least. A great chunk of the year is spent playing on our respective teams, so we felt it best to take matters into our own hands in order to expedite the process. Our bassist, Leonard Davis, and I currently have a five store deal with Smashburger under the name DC Rightside LLC. We currently built out three of the five locations. We will release the LP under our own label DC Rightside Music, and we aim to further our DC Rightside brand with stepping into the music world, which we are passionate about.”

Despite having to let Free Reign take a backseat to their full-time jobs once the football season starts, the band will do all they can to support Heavier Than Metal with live dates. Procter- “Our tour schedule is still limited due to our current jobs as football players, and will be that way until we’ve all retired and passed that point in our lives. When that happens, we’ll collect as a band and hopefully do as many shows as we can. With every show we do the better get as a live band. We’ve had some great shows and great insight from other bands to help us create a better show for our fans. When fans come to our show, they can expect loud, heavy hitting music that will leave you banging your head, with your metal horns in the air!” And lastly, Colombo fills us in as to what fans can expect from Free Reign in the future. “Main focus right now is releasing the new album on our new label. It’s a ton of work, but hold on to your seats, ’cause you’re gonna be blown away!”