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Clutch making music on its own terms

for Journal Register Newspapers

» See more SOUND CHECK

It's been nearly three years since Maryland hard rockers Clutch released their last album, "Strange Cousins From the West." But frontman Neil Fallon says that during the past 22 years the quartet has learned nothing if not patience.

"We just follow our instincts and don't overthink anything," explains Fallon, 40, who took over as Clutch's lead singer after original frontman Roger "Peanut" Smalls missed a show in 1990. "We just start doing it, and the fun part of making a record is when it starts to reveal itself. You can't rush that; you just have to let it happen."

Fallon and his mates have hardly been idle, however. Besides touring and working on new music, they've also been running their own Weathermaker record label, which released "Strange Cousins..." In 2011 the label re-released Clutch's 2004 album "Blast Tyrant" and will continue to be the home for Clutch and the members' instrumental band the Bakerton Group.

"It's liberating," Fallon explains. "Musically we've always done what we want but ended up sometimes bickering with people we were in business with, meaning record labels. But now, because of a lot of hard work and living in a day and age where we can get in contact pretty much directly with our fans because of the Internet, we can do it like this, on our own.

"I feel very fortunate we're in a position to do that."

Clutch performs Saturday, May 12, at Saint Andrews Hall, 431 E. Congress St., Detroit. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20. Call 313-961-6358 or visit www.livenation.com.

Web Site: www.livenation.com

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