Rekindled friendship spawns rock act's 'bigger, more mature' EP

About this time last year, Daymare singer/guitarist Dustin Rinehart and drummer Austin Spears weren't on speaking terms.

The two can trace their friendship back to 2008, when the musicians met through Myspace and began playing in a cover band. Later on they joined forces in local punk act the Garrison (with Rinehart on bass), but as time went on they were ready to branch out with a new sound that harked back to post-hardcore and alt-metal bands such as Quicksand, Helmet and Biffy Clyro.

By 2013, Rinehart and Spears had formed Daymare, recruiting Eric Lozier as a second guitarist and Kyle Hull on bass. For the next few years, Daymare toured regionally, snagged opening spots for national acts (Valient Thorr, the Struts) and released two EPs that landed the band some spins on local radio.

Then last year, the band imploded. “There was a lot of infighting, things going south relationship-wise. We didn't realize it at the time, but we needed a break from each other,” Rinehart said in a recent interview. “I think we were pushing ourselves further than what our natural limitations were. We wanted to go out and tour all the time, but everyone's got day jobs. … It was kind of public and ugly when it happened on social media. It was out there for everyone to see. It sucked at the time, and it was embarrassing.”

But good things were happening for Rinehart, too. He got engaged (to former Alive staffer Abernathy Miller), and while thinking about the pending marriage ceremony, he reached out to Spears, saying, “Man, you can't not be at my wedding. You're my best friend, so let's bury this hatchet.”

The wedding brought them back together, but before the two could start playing music again, the friendship had to be rebuilt. “That took some time,” Rinehart said. “We went to a few shows together to hang out one on one. It was awkward at first. … It felt like getting back together with an ex. Clearly it took a lot of effort on both of our parts.”

Eventually, with the foundation rebuilt, Rinehart and Spears hooked back up with Lozier and recruited new Daymare bassist Mark Nye. The foursome sought out Joe Viers at Sonic Lounge Studios in Grove City to help realize the band's vision for new EP Glow, which Daymare will celebrate with a release show at Spacebar on Saturday, June 9.

“The old songs were really riff-oriented,” Rinehart said. “There are still moments like that on the new EP, but there's more space there [and] a lot more of a pop sensibility than in the past.”

For the five tracks, Rinehart and his bandmates reworked some older, unreleased songs and also incorporated new material, like the EP's title track, which is inspired by the period of time when Daymare sat dormant.

“During that downtime, I spiraled into a pretty bad depression, and I couldn't really put my finger on why, but it was right in front of my face the entire time: I'm not doing the thing I enjoy doing the most,” Rinehart said. “‘Glow' is about that time and how I felt during that whole period, and how good it feels to get back to doing what you love.”