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"There's way too many other Theory bands," complains Snow, who claims to have collected "a list about eight miles long." Although his band's membership hasn't changed during the intervening years, Ralston offers, the sound certainly has.
"This isn't even close to the same band," he says. "Musically we've all moved on from that."
However, Legends of Rodeo have gravitated toward the middle of the road in many instances. To wit, Snow and Ralston don't hesitate to acknowledge that the band is trying to emulate a classic-rock stance, mentioning Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen, Guns n' Roses, and the Rolling Stones as influences.
"We're a rock band," Snow points out. "I don't know how we keep coming up emo."
That three-letter appellation may be the result of Ralston's energetic yelp and the softly sculpted guitar chords that remained after Recess Theory became Legends but are not as evident on the group's new material. The demo version of "What Song" veers from the mainstream directly toward tavern-band territory, and "The Devil Started Rock and Roll" isn't an old Bob Seger tune -- it just sounds like one. In conversation Legends' principals cough up philosophical asides that could well have been culled from the Silver Bullet Band's dog-eared playbook.
"If this is really what you love, you'll keep doing it," says Snow. "You dedicate your whole life to rock 'n' roll or you don't."
To that end Legends of Rodeo's members work or attend school, finding windows of opportunity to record songs at Ralston's place in Jupiter or mount a two-week tour. The other three live in Lake Worth, and save occasional gigs in Fort Lauderdale, the band has focused its energies close to home, performing in Miami just once in four years. West Palm Beach may not be an indie-rock nexus, Ralston admits, but he's not seeking his stardom anywhere else.
"There are bigger and better places," he allows, "but after you move to L.A., you move right back. I know because I did it. It's a matter of being a small fish in a big pond or a big fish in a small pond. It just worked better here."
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