SexTapes Bio by Blair from Toolband.com
What does Paris Hilton with a diamond-studded dildo and the Reverend Jerry Falwell with the blackest of Bibles have in common? Besides being unfit for public consumption even in a hopelessly out of kilter world, they both wanted their SexTapes (the latter’s featuring Tinky Winky). Well, we’ve got ‘em… unexpurgated, sordid, and with novel deviations to stimulate the jaded – a version of hard rock that conjures images of a Holmeseque beef bayonet mercilessly thrusting any stretchable pink through crotchless undies as captured by a pinhole camera on auto-focus (or IS that a bulldog eating mayonnaise?)
Like other unique musical endeavors, SexTapes originated out of sheer perverse amusement with a series of informal jams by Wheeler and Fox in a cluttered garage. There, amid a bewildering array of audio electronics in every conceivable state of condition, promising sonic experiments continued with slated vocalist Chris Pitman’s enthusiastic blessings, even though the former bowling alley mechanic and conceptual art aficionado was about to embark on a mammoth tour as an integral part of Guns N Roses. And why not… the resume of the three would show a shared musical history with less than a ‘six degrees of separation’ scenario: Prior to “Jane’s Addiction”, Wheeler had played (bass) with his then roommate Perry Ferrell in “Psi-Com”, a regular in the L.A. underground scene. Afterwards he brought on “Karmageddon” with Kali-armed drummer Danny Carey now of Tool notoriety. Chris, too, had been in various bands with his University of Missouri Conservatory of Music bro, Carey, both in their defiant K.C. days, and latter in the prog-tinged “Zaum”, with the polymorphous composer also adding synth textures on Tool’s multi-platinum album “Aenima.” On that same record, fellow Zaumite (and Danny’s paragliding buddy until their instructor got killed after being slammed against the side of a mountain), bassist Fox supplied the dramatic vocals used on the Gotterdammerung-like “Die Eier Von Satan.” But that was then…
With the addition of drummer Ryan Brown, the band moved from Marko’s garage into a more spacious studio lockout in North Hollywood. There, Kelly and Chris began cherry-picking from the early demos, keeping in mind their goal of creating a record that no “American Idol” contestant would ever be able to stomach. Beginning in 2006, drum tracks were laid down at “The Pass Studios” on Cahuenga, with Wheeler and Fox also tracking their parts with Chris’s Production. Finally back from being on the road with GNR, Chris began recording the lead vocals, afterwards enduring the meticulous process of adding multiple layers and, if not lush, roughly shimmering guitar-synths which, at times, are reminiscent of his masterful arrangements on Lusk’s “Free Mars.”
Fast forward to today. Reference mixes from “The Pass” were painstakingly remixed (and mastered) until the desired result was achieved. And what a result! Unwary listeners be warned, the SexTapes debut is not for puerile tastes (just listen a few dozen times and see for yourself), but an outright assault on defanged banality. And with its completion, the band finds itself duly prepared to cross that perilous chasm (on the electraFox or otherwise), including, if need be, fannish idolation, the taxman, and obligatory dealings with industry types (Marko at one time having at least one of every known species of snakes native to South Carolina). As enticing as a butcher’s window (that previously mentioned), and as audacious as spoiling the prize, here, then, is the realization of a blending of musical ideas that one might expect from a group whose individual tastes include cantaloupe and wine with Dali, curry with Dawkins, and steak and iced tea with Peckinpah and Crowley.
—Blair MacKenzie Blake
SexTapes is alternative future rock. Some say they sound like Hef’s Playmates caressed by the hand of Led Zeppelin, NIN and Muse while Jane’s Addiction blasts from John Bonham’s iPod. Take their newly released album for a spin and decide for yourself.
All songs written by Kelly Wheeler & Chris Pitman
Tone Riot Records™
©2011 Tone Riot Records™. SexTapes® is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved.