Recorded in 2003 and 2004 and featuring Constantine on vocals, Joao Joya on guitar, Taylor, C.R. on bass and Hamboussi on drums, the album was completed before the American Idol finalist decided to try out for the Fox show.
According to KOCH, the band sounds "distinctively like a NYC city band should sound like: intense, raw and powerful," with KOCH Records General Manager Alan Grunblatt (obviously, a less-than-impartial judge) stating that "Pray For the Soul of Betty is one of the best rock bands I've heard in years." In an interview with MTV.com, Hamboussi (yes, one word only) stated that while the ten-track album is "definitely heavy," it also "has hits on it too -- there's a ballad."
While the previous success of Hung's novelty album (at last check, it had sold over 100,000 units) would seem to have played a significant role in KOCH's decision to sign some more Idol-affiliated talent, the members of the previously unsigned band don't seem to mind -- after all, a record deal is a record deal. "Being with a company as dynamic and independent as KOCH is ideal for Pray for the Soul of Betty -- we've always carved our own path, just like KOCH has," Taylor, C.R. said in a statement.
KOCH Records' Grunblatt also has big expectations for the release. "Considering how popular Constantine Maroulis is, we should go gold for sure!," he gushed in a statement.
As for Constantine's future with the band, Hamboussi (perhaps delusionally) told MTV that even if Constantine wins the fourth season of American Idol, he expects Constantine to remain with the band. "I'm sure he'll make time for the band," said Hamboussi. "Usually, when you get to a position like [this], you have a little push and pull. So even if they have him tied up for several months, I'm sure we'll play and record on his downtime. If they don't make him happy, he can say, 'I'm done with you guys -- f--- you.' As long as he wants to be in our band, he can do whatever he wants."