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The Hiss

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One of a very few bands to list garage rock and surrealist art as their inspirations, the Hiss formed in 2001 out of the ashes of vocalist/guitarist Adrian Barrera and drummer Todd Galpin's previous outfit, Centipede. Originally from Gainesville, FL, the duo moved to Atlanta and hooked up with guitarist Ian Franco and bassist Mahjula Bah-Kamara. The band began practicing and performing locally, and also ventured into the studio. The garage rock craze started by bands like the Strokes and the White Stripes also added momentum to the Hiss' career, as well; a U.K. tour with the like-minded Sights resulted in the Hiss becoming the first signing to Polydor's Loog imprint. The band spent early 2003 recording their debut full-length album with Oasis producer Owen Morris. From there, the band was picked by Noel Gallagher to support Oasis on the German dates of their 2003 European tour, and by the White Stripes as the opening act for their appearance at 99X's Big Rock Festival that June. Singles like Triumph and Clever Kicks paved the way for that summer's full-length, Panic Movement, which was named after an obscure branch of the Surrealist art movement of the '60s. The group's U.K. success continued that fall with the release of the Back on the Radio single, and with appearances on NME's Rock 'N' Roll Riot Tour with the similarly garagey Jet. Panic Movement made its US debut in early 2004. ~ Heather Phares