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Archive for Thursday, March 26, 1998

A ROCK BAND PUMPS UP THE VOLUME WITH THREE GUITARS.

March 26, 1998

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From Auburn, Ala., come The Quadrajets, a triple guitar-fueled band that plays sonic rock `n' roll influenced by everything from jazz to `70s monster rock.

The band just released its third album, ``Pay the Duece,'' on Estrus, the Washington-based record label that champions garage rock `n' roll.

Quadrajets shows are explosive, high-energy events marked by either exceptional, pile-driving guitar work or complete mayhem -- all stemming from their use of three guitars.

``There are a lot of trios and quartets out there, but there aren't a lot of people out there playing with three guitars and it does a lot of weird stuff,'' said guitarist Chet Weise. ``If you get all those guitars wound up and feedback going and distortion, it's kind of like this crazy sonic wall of sound.''

Weise cites `60s producer Phil Spector, who created the studio ``wall of sound,'' as an influence and said the band tries to recreate live what many people do solely in the studio.

``He used, like, three pianos and two drum sets when recording, to get a thick sound. Since we're pretty much a guitar rock band, we decided to just do it for real,'' he said.

The number of guitars also allows the musicians freedom to improvise during sets. Sometimes they hit the mark and other times are, well, less smooth.

``Having that many guitars onstage and then a bass ... everybody really has to be trying to work together one way or another. There's no in-between. It's either totally on -- the biggest rock `n' roll sound you can have -- or the audience just gets to see a total exercise in chaos,'' he said, with laugh.

Last year when the band performed at Estrus' famous Garage shock festival, one guitarist hyperextended his knee and ended up in a brace while another suffered a slipped disk after a row with the drummer during the show.

``That whole set was a blur to me,'' Weise said. ``I kept my head down and tried to keep playing and not get hit by flying guitars or feet.''

Weise promises a cathartic experience when the band returns to Lawrence Sunday night.

``It's all about energy -- it's totally high-energy music,'' he said. ``We play hard, we perform hard. It's physical, it's musical, it's sonic, with all the feedback and guitars and screaming and yelling. It's a total release of energy.''

-- The Mag's phone message number is 832-7146. Send e-mail to biles@ljworld.com.

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