Necessity can be an interesting motivator. Offered a slot at the famed New York venue the Knitting Factory, drummer Joe Russo roped in old friend and multi-instrumentalist and keyboardist Marco Benevento, and the Benevento Russo Duo was born.
Since no songs were written for their initial gig, the Duo (as they were sometimes referred to as) began as a sort of indie rock jam band that occasionally drifted off into Led Zeppelin riffs. Eventually settling in as a (mainly) drum and organ duo, Benevento and Russo released a pair of album themselves, before signing up with Ropeadope in 2005. Their first full-length for the label, Best Reason to Buy the Sun was a critical success, and the band wound up spending the remainder of the year touring, as well as performing at Bonnaroo and SXSW. 2006 was rung in with a trip to Los Angeles to record their follow up, entitled Play, Pause, Stop. The band has also made appearances in other permutations: Drew Direwitz from Weezer occasionally appeared with Benevento and Russo to perform Zeppelin tunes under the moniker Bustle in Your Hedgerow and the Duo teamed up with Trey Anastasio and Mike Gordon and toured as GRAB. That particular act opened shows for Phil Lesh as well as headlining some of their own gigs. ~ Chris True, Rovi