SILVERCHAIR co-founder and drummer Ben Gillies will release his first solo album today.
Under the moniker Bento, Gillies sings on all 12 rock and roll tracks from the album Diamond Days.
‘‘What I really like about Diamond Days as a first record is it gives the room to basically go anywhere musically that I choose,’’ Gillies said.
‘‘I see this record as that kind of first explosion of creative energy that’s been bottled up. Well, not bottled up but that first explosion of creative energy of all these old ideas, new ideas over a lot of time, so it is a mix of a lot of things.’’
Gillies, who is based in Newcastle with his wife Jackie, has been focused on Silverchair since he was in high school with only a couple of side projects.
He contributed to the writing on the band’s first two records but frontman Daniel Johns eventually assumed full creative control over Silverchair’s songs.
In May 2011 Silverchair announced an ‘‘indefinite hibernation’’ after 19 years, leaving the three band members to pursue solo projects.
Diamond Days was co-produced by Ben Gillies and Eric J Dubowsky (Faker, Art Vs Science) and features an array of Gillies’s muso mates.
Newcastle guitarist Adam Miller features in the video clip for the title track.
‘‘Adam was the only Newcastle guy,’’ Gillies said.
‘‘He is the husband of the producer of the clip, so his wife Holly Clayton was a friend. We were looking for guys to basically be the band for the clip. Adam is amazing so I just got him in the clip. It was just easy.’’
More information on Gillies’s new musical direction will be in the Herald’s Weekender magazine tomorrow.