The Washdown drop the dead

Local rockers The Washdown return to The Orpheum Monday to join a buzz-worthy bill that also features national touring acts Paris, Texas and The Dismemberment Plan. The latter plays an engaging brand of eclectic, melody-driven rock that has made them one of the most promising bands on the indie scene.

The Washdown are attracting a lot of attention around the bay area and in New York City, where their manager is based with their sassy vocals and propulsive, hook-laden rhythm section. Their members include Ryan Hess (vocals), Heath Dupras (drums), Bryan Bates (bass), Michael Waksman and Gregg Schmidt (guitar). The last time the quintet played The Orpheum, in March, they were calling themselves The Dead America.

“The first name was being used by two other bands so we figured that was a problem we didn’t want to concern ourselves with down the road,” Hess said while lounging at his home. Hess also explained that due to post-9-11 sensitivities, he did not want the band’s name to distract from their tuneage.

“We didn’t want to be defending the band name instead of talking about music,” Hess said.

The Washdown will bring their sassy, hook-laden rock to the The Orpheum Monday and again on May 1 before embarking on their first tour. The quintet will start down in Miami then head north to New York City for several shows.

“We love our fans here (in Tampa Bay), but it will be nice to play to some new people,” Hess said. “I think a mistake a lot of local bands make is not getting out of town to play.”

Hess is enthusiastic about playing The Big Apple.

“I’m totally psyched – I love New York City,” Hess said.

The Washdown perform at The Orpheum in Ybor city with Dismemberment Plan and Paris, Texas Monday at 9 p.m. Tickets cost $9.

n Contact Wade Tatangelo at