Dallas-based heavy metal group Drowning Pool was one of the most promising bands of the early 2000s. Their debut album, Sinner, was certified platinum within six weeks of its release, while their first single, "Bodies," was one of the most frequently aired videos on MTV by a new band. They reached out to an ever-greater audience with dynamic performances at Wrestlemania XVIII and Ozzfest during the summers of 2001 and 2002. Unfortunately, their streak of success was not to last. Shortly after rousing the crowd at Ozzfest in Indianapolis, Indiana, on August 3, 2002, vocalist Dave "Stage" Williams was found dead of natural causes on the tour bus.
Drowning Pool represented the vision of drummer Mike Luce and guitarist C.J. Pierce, who formed the band after relocating from New Orleans to Dallas and hooking up with bassist Stevie Benton. Although they initially performed as an instrumental trio, their sound coalesced with the arrival of Williams as vocalist. Drowning Pool experienced success from the outset. When a copy of their first demo reached members of Sevendust, they were invited to tour with the industrial metal group. Tours with Kittie and (hed) p.e. followed. Their second demo, recorded after two years on the road, reached the Top Ten on Dallas radio station KEGL and led to a contract with the Wind-Up Records label. Produced by Papa Roach, Orgy, Godsmack, and Coal Chamber producer Jay Baumgardner, their first album, Sinner, became an instant hit. A DVD, Sinema, featuring more than two-and-a-half hours of concert footage, was released in late 2002. In January 2004, the band announced the addition of singer Jason "Gong" Jones. Their sophomore effort, Desensitized, followed several months later. In 2006 Ryan McCombs assumed the vocal duties, and a year later they released Full Circle, followed by a self-titled album in 2010. McCombs, the only singer to ever record more than one album with the group, departed the following year, and was replaced by Suicide Hook vocalist Jasen Moreno, who made his official debut on 2013's Resilience. ~ Craig Harris
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