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Hot Snakes

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Hot Snakes consist of guitarist/vocalists John Reis and Rick Froberg, drummer Jason Kourkounis, and bassist Gar Wood. Reis is better known as Speedo, the vocalist for Rocket from the Crypt, but he'd also played in the acclaimed Drive Like Jehu with Froberg, who for his part had gone by the handles Rick Farr and Eric Froberg. Meanwhile, drummer Kourkounis had been affiliated with the Delta 72, but he may or may not have changed his name to J Sinclair for the new group. Confused? That's likely how Hot Snakes wanted it, as their twisting, convulsive mixture of punk revivalism, hardcore screed, and general weirdness is as royally screwed up as their genealogy. In 2000, the band issued Automatic Midnight through Reis' own Swami imprint; they returned to Swami two years later with Suicide Invoice. In August 2003, Hot Snakes' website featured a typically blunt message. "We are not going to tour," it read. "And we have no plans to do so." And they didn't. But Hot Snakes did rally for a new album, October 2004's Audit in Progress, regarded by many as their finest work. Audit also switched out drummer Sinclair for Mario Rubalcaba (ex-Sea of Tombs). A Snakes Peel Session appeared in early 2005, and the band began a spring/summer tour through Australia and Europe. Unfortunately, in July it was announced the tour would be Hot Snakes' last, as they were breaking up. Thunder Down Under appeared posthumously in August 2006, consisting of tracks recorded live at the Australian Broadcast Company originally for broadcast on Triple J Radio. ~ Johnny Loftus

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