The Terrors are a band that test the limits of contemporary music. This quartet from Cincinnati, Ohio, thrives off their live improvisations and recorded madness. Building a strong reputation locally, the band is quickly gaining notoriety as band with unlimited potential. With their debut album, 'Foolish Treasure Hunter', waiting in the wings, the mystical full-length album will soon be released through Yea Yea Yeah Music Productions. The highly anticipated debut album will surface October 28th.
"The band paints on the same sonic canvas as U2 with the psychedelic colors of Pink Floyd: big, sprawling -- albeit richly filled -- spaces that soar in Pace's guitar lines and in his harmonic vocal interplay with Mitchell. The classically trained sensibilities of Pace and Bighead also come into play in their intricate but not wanking melodies. Their sound is a panoramic vista of a forest in which the bark on the trees is finely detailed but the leaves are more abstractly rendered, the precision of oil paints and the freedom of watercolors combined to make a satisfying whole. The studied approach of Prog Rock blended with the abandon of Punk and applied with the energy and passion that comes from simply making music you love. Their live show is a testament to that passion: It has the endearing-but-passionate rough edges of a young band going for broke on stage, but it also has the sure edge of musicians who know exactly what to do with their instruments, if not always themselves. And that makes for exciting viewing as well as listening; visually, it seems as if everything is going to fly apart at any second, but the music holds everything together. It's a subtle give and take. The Terrors transport -- rather than whip -- the audience into a frenzy."
- Dale Johnson, CityBeat
Luke Pace - Vocals, Guitar, Piano
Shane Wingert - Bass, Vocals
Bighead - Percussion, Vocals
Nick Mitchell - Vocals, Piano, Synthesizer
Foolish Treasure Hunter (CD & DVD)
The Terrors Take Cincinnati
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When I first heard the Terrors' songs that were posted on the Sonicbids website, www.sonicbids.com/t...When I first heard the Terrors' songs that were posted on the Sonicbids website, www.sonicbids.com/theterrors, I was amazed. Listening to three songs, "Rex", "With the Flies", and "Swim Up", I realized this band had all the ingredients to make the transformation from four guys who just like to play music together, to serious musicians with a future. Don't bother to Google the band's name. What you'll find is night terror resource listing, a puppet terrors website and some band named Tommy and the Terrors out of Boston. Keyboardist Nick Mitchell explains, "The bands name came from the lyrics from one of Luke's songs." Luke Pace elaborates, "It's actually from a song 'Rex'. It was originally called 'The Terrors'. It sort of represents night terrors, you know, coming alive violently in the middle of the night". The band consists of Luke Pace on vocals, guitar and piano. Shane Wingert is on bass and vocals. Nick Mitchell does vocals, keys, and xylophone, and Bighead provides the drumbeats. Why the name Bighead you ask? "My mother calls me Bighead. My friends call me Bighead. Even my priest calls me Bighead. It's just the way it is." For the record, his driver's license does not say Bighead, nor is his head particularly large. Rest assured. Bighead explains how the band got started. "About a year ago, we had all played in previous groups together, and finally all of the things that we had been trying to do came together for us. It was really funny, and almost hard to believe. We all still have a lot of work to do. It'll be fun." Coincidentally, all the members of the band had known each other previously from other bands, and had already forged friendships. Mitchell explains, "I've been playing in bands with Bighead for about six years. I met Luke when he left the School of Creative Performing Arts and came here. We just hit it off really well. At the time, Luke was in a band called Phoenix Down with Shane, our current bass player. When the band folded, it created the opportunity for us all to get together." While in the band 42 Down (Luke, Nick and Bighead), a show at The Mad Frog sprung destiny in the form of Chris Schmidt. In addition to running Shepherd's Pie Recording, Schmidt also runs sound at The Mad Frog, and has been for over six years now. "Chris is a Godsend!" says Bighead, "He came up to us after a show at the Mad Frog and said, 'You guys are recording with me!' Chris and his wife Jen (Chicks Rockfest) are the reason The Terrors have come this far in only a year." Jen Schmidt, the bands acting manager, best friend, go-to gal, promoter, and booking agent explains her attraction to the band, "There are plenty of bands who are talented, there are plenty of bands who are organized, there are plenty of bands with performance skill and there are plenty of bands who are just nice, great and easy to work with as people. There are very few that have all of those things in one package. The Terrors have the whole package." For less than five thousand dollars, the band's first CD, Foolish Treasure Hunter, is completely recorded by Schmidt. With over ten songs written by the band, primarily by Pace, with help from Mitchell, the fate of those songs is still somewhat in question. Schmidt explains, "I really hope my version of The Terrors album, Foolish Treasure Hunter, sees the light of day. There have been some recent opportunities presented to them, and the record I have done here is absolute gold! I'd like to see them retain control of their first album before moving up and having to 'work' for someone. At least they would own a business card." With over a year and half spent recording the CD at Shepherd's Pie Recording, with Schmidt at the board, destiny once again arrived in the form of Erwin Musper. Musper, who owns the recording studio, The Bamboo Room, also owns a record label adn is in negotiations with the band to sign them to his label in the company of bands such as Chaselounge and The Kentucky Struts. Upon hearing the band's CD, Musper approached them. Drummer Bighead explains, "I emailed Erwin compliments on his new studio after checking out his website. I had read an article about him in Citybeat ("Studio Stud" written by Mike Montgomery, 3/16/2005). We had friendly chats through a couple of emails while he was in Europe. When he got home, he listened to our stuff and invited us over immediately. He is one of the most down to earth guys you'll ever meet. It's funny that he's sold over 80 million albums worldwide, and taking the time to sit down with bands from the area." That's the good news. Upon asking what kind of deal Musper is about to give the band, Pace explains, "Basically he's going to take this album, and we're going to try to do everything we can with it. If things go well, then we’re probably going to do two more albums with him.” Mitchell continues, “I think he, like Schmidt, sees something here [with the band]. I think he’s got all these connections, and I think through his connections he thinks he can maybe put us on with something even bigger.” “You never get to really see an upstart local band get this kind of quality out of their first CD, “explains Pace. “I just want to play and be able to record songs, and if he’s willing to finance it at a very professional level then that’s pretty much all I care about right now,” Mitchell confesses. At press time, attorneys for the band are reviewing the contract. For the past two years, the band has figured out what works and what doesn’t work in their band dynamic. “Getting along, shutting up, and playing an much as we can,” says Bighead. “We all fit together really well. It feels like an actual band,” explains Pace, “Not just singer/songwriters and some guys.” The concept of the band being one entity is illustrated in the band’s first name. “Our original name was A Unit because that was really the idea, together we are one, a unit, but it just was all too silly with the sexual references,” says Mitchell. Superman had a day job, as do The Terrors, and they disguise themselves accordingly during the day. Pace works at the Red Fish Restaurant, Mitchell works at La Rosa’s, Wingert works at Outback and Bighead works at Frames USA. Their plan is to do music full time. “We don’t want to get rich. We just want to make a living doing music,” says Pace. What makes these guys actually think they can make it through the music business maze as they follow their yellow brick road? “Never staying the same. I don’t want to be pigeon holed,” says Mitchell, “I want to be able to have a distinct sound where, when you’ve never hear the song before, you know it’s us.” When asked what advice they would give for bands that are just starting out, the band has some candid and poignant answers. “Write some songs and play as much as you possibly can. Play with people who you can explore with. Don’t be hatin’ on your band mates, and it’s ok if you mess up every now and then. Practice to perform, and don’t just go through the motions,” counsels Bighead. “Know your role,” says Mitchell, “Know what your strong points are, and know what your weaknesses are.” Pace adds, “There should be a time when every person in the band knows when to shut up. One problem I find with a lot of bands is that they’re at a static sonic frequency where the sound is constantly at one level the whole time. Dynamics are just a really important thing that get overlooked a lot.” “Songs don’t seem to be structured in such a way that will keep grabbing your attention,” adds Mitchell. “Also,” says Pays, “You should digest your influences, and not just imitate them.” Upon being asked about the record deal with The Terrors, Musper explains, “The contracts between The Terrors and my record label Yeah Yeah Yeah Music Production have been finalized, and I expect the signing to take place in a day or two. Although I can’t go into specifics too much, I can say that it will be collaboration for a maximum of three albums and three video clips. They will be signed directly to my USA label, but will also be represented worldwide through my European division. We are shooting for a late summer release. The ball will be rolling as soon as the ink is dry.” With a show booked at the mad Frog May 27th, the band heads out on a brief regional tour to Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and DC. You can catch The Terrors live at the Viper Room June 18th.
Naked Screaming Terrors
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The Terrors are an antidote to sonic eunthanasia. If your dream of music is a world in which Ashl...The Terrors are an antidote to sonic eunthanasia.
If your dream of music is a world in which Ashlee Simpson is unable to lip sync to her own caterwauling while her band soldiers on without her, then The Terrors are pretty damned frightening.
Melody, harmony and basic songcraft are not what one would usually associate with a band named "The Terrors." Due to their relative "newness" (the band formed in summer 2004) and the name, one might expect a noisy drone or a cacophony of bad tunings, barely competent playing and shrieking vocals. One might really expect this when one learns that the band has taken their name from "night terrors" -- the sudden awakening from an early stage of sleep with a feeling of unrestrained dread and horror. The Terrors are nothing of the sort though.
"We try to dabble in everything," says lead singer/guitarist Luke Pace on the band's sound. "If the four of us -- coming from different musical backgrounds -- can agree that (what we're playing) is really good, then that's our direction."
Well, yeah, you might say, who wouldn't agree on such a thing? However, considering that Pace and "Bighead" (drums) are classically trained and Shane Wingert (bass) and Nick Mitchell (keys/vocals) are more "from the heart" players, the statement takes on another dimension.
The band paints on the same sonic canvas as U2 with the psychedelic colors of Pink Floyd: big, sprawling -- albeit richly filled -- spaces that soar in Pace's guitar lines and in his harmonic vocal interplay with Mitchell. And, as Mitchell says, "The rhythm section's very Hip Hop," but it's a jazzy sip of gin 'n' juice rather than an MC's guzzle. The classically trained sensibilities of Pace and Bighead also come into play in their intricate but not wanking melodies. ("We're too ADD to overkill anything," says Mitchell.)
Their sound is a panoramic vista of a forest in which the bark on the trees is finely detailed but the leaves are more abstractly rendered, the precision of oil paints and the freedom of watercolors combined to make a satisfying whole. The studied approach of Prog Rock blended with the abandon of Punk and applied with the energy and passion that comes from simply making music you love.
Their live show is a testament to that passion: It has the endearing-but-passionate rough edges of a young band going for broke on stage, but it also has the sure edge of musicians who know exactly what to do with their instruments, if not always themselves. And that makes for exciting viewing as well as listening; visually, it seems as if everything is going to fly apart at any second, but the music holds everything together. It's a subtle give and take. The Terrors transport -- rather than whip -- the audience into a frenzy.
As mentioned before, the band identifies with Hip Hop, but a little bit more in theory than actual practice. "The juxtaposition is there," says Pace. "Hip Hop is just such an ambient thing with a story told over it, whereas Classical music is so intricate ... it tells a story without words. Our influences really don't come from what kind of music we want to play; we vibe more from feeling, or really good lyrics, or unconventional song structure more than anything else."
Currently, The Terrors are recording their first CD with Chris Schmidt of Shepherd's Pie Recording, who is providing direction and advice to the band. "I think (Schmidt) is excited about us because we're not just laying down some power chords," says Pace of the recording. "We're really going over it so (Schmidt) can have more fun with it. It's refreshing (for him), I think, to have someone who's into (the process)." The band estimates that the CD will be out by fall 2005, and they also have an EP in the works that will be out soon.
THE TERRORS are really nice guys...
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THE TERRORS have not been listening to the radio lately. And it shows in the almost impossible task...THE TERRORS have not been listening to the radio lately. And it shows in the almost impossible task of describing their musical territory. Let me try...Progressive in a classical way - dark but emotionally uplifting. You can't listen to their music without being transported into uncharted portals of your own brain. Music that stays with you long after the final chord has rung out....
Recording their first full album for the YEAYEAYEAH record label , they filled THE BAMBOO ROOM with a very unique blend of prog rock. Lots of inspired time signatures that somehow totally make sense with the very original melodies. Hard to play but easy to digest. While recording, THE TERRORS used the studio's extensive gardens to shoot their video, in which a lot of their friends played roles. As an hommage to those who did not mind to show more unflattering images of themselves for the camera , here's a picture of the bunch after the shoot had ended. Album and video will be released soon...
To the Point (Midpoint)
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The discriminating audiophile's wet dream, this quartet makes eminently listenable songs with bursts...The discriminating audiophile's wet dream, this quartet makes eminently listenable songs with bursts of oddball melodic and stylistic departures. Live, they favor improvisation that never sacrifices the qualities that make the songs single-worthy. The result is the ultimate gateway from popular music to more substantial fare.
20 Q's with Venomous Valdez
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20 Questions with Venomous by Venomous Valdez This week's victim: Nick Mitchell of The Terrors ...20 Questions with Venomous
by Venomous Valdez
This week's victim: Nick Mitchell of The Terrors
1. How long have you been playing music?
I was covering Nirvana and Queen tunes on my tape deck and Casio keyboard when i was 8. There's no way you could ever tell they were songs though, let alone covers.
2. What instruments do you play and which instruments do you wish you played?
I mostly play piano and what-not. I also play drums like I'm Animal from the muppets. My drummer friends hate when I get on their kits. I sparingly play glockenspiel, various hand percussion, and program beatzzzzzzzz. Instruments become my girlfriends. I study and abuse them for pleasure. I'm about to make the mandolin my new bitch.
3. What was your first musical memory?
If I think back, I can remember the music video for "Touch of Grey" by the Grateful Dead and all that classic 70s rock that my parents use to bump back when they had mullets.
4. What was your first album you bought and your first concert you attended?
First album would have to be Boston's self-titled debut and my first concert was probably 311. I wish I could say Miles Davis or David Grisman, but hey, we all start somewhere. I've learned to not let the suburbs keep me from finding that good stuff.
5. Which curse word are you partial to?
'Fucky'. A term adopted by our band's official artist, David Howard, as a matter of fact.
6. If this were a confessional, what would you confess?
I've attended hippie festivals.
7. If you could be any superhero or villain, who would it be?
8. What is one of your traits that your friends tease you about?
Being overly sarcastic.
9. If you could erase one band from musical history, who would it be?
The Rolling Stones (rubbish!).
10. What album do you own that would ruin your indie credibility?
Somewhere at my parents house, I probably have an old Jewel record. You heard me, Jewel. Those crooked teeth use to make me hot. Now that she's a model and shit, I don't know what I think of her anymore.
11. Name the top five live performances you've seen that blew your mind.
This gets hard. In no particular order: Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey, The Roots, Radiohead, The Mars Volta, and Umphrey's McGee.
12. What is the weirdest reaction you have received from a fan?
One time after a show, this old hippie told us "Thats what you get when you put 4 dudes with PHDs in one band".
13. What is your pre-gig ritual?
I hang with Mary Jane and Jack Daniels.
14. What should a crowd expect at THE TERRORS show?
Raw energy and dynamic exaggerations.
15. What is your favorite THE TERRORS song and why?
This is always changing... right now, I'd hafta say "CDLC Dracula" because it was my first chance to play a kazoo solo.
16. What is your best sales pitch for your new album entitled, Foolish Treasure Hunter?
I'm a terrible salesman but uh here goes...It comes with a DVD with surround sound. The videos are outstanding. They were done by Ben Brown, our very own visual art prodigy.
17. Which venue is your favorite to perform?
The Mad Hatter has the best sound and the Viper Room has the best environment.
18. What is the one thing you would change in the local music industry?
Cheaper drink prices for bands. Sometimes I have to pay for a drink. It's totally dogging the scene.
19. Name a few of your favorite Bands.
The Beatles, The Flaming Lips, Fiona Apple, Sole, Elliott Smith, Beck, Hella, Grateful Dead, Deltron 3030, and Syd Barrett.
20. Name a few of your favorite Cincinnati Bands.
Rumpke Mountain Boys, Animal Crackers, DJ Hi-Tek, Naked Redheads, Clouddead, Kris Brown, Norust, and Noctaluca.
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Progressive Pop four-piece The Terrors unleash their debut full-length, Foolish Treasure Hunter, on ...Progressive Pop four-piece The Terrors unleash their debut full-length, Foolish Treasure Hunter, on Friday with a show at The Mad Frog.
The Terrors are "Pop" in the sense that they produce indestructible melodies, but their adventurous arrangements belie such compact terminology. On Treasure Hunter, the group loads the songs with dizzying keyboard, synth and xylophone licks, dynamic guitar work and a powerful, creative rhythmic bite, drizzling unanticipated sound effects and quirks throughout to create a heavy, hooky brand of neo-psychedelia. While their sound has some of the trademarks of Prog (the keys get close to ELP territory on occasion), great songwriting and tasteful arranging keep things from getting wanky. Singer/guitarist Luke Pace-Scrivener guides the ship with his charismatic, high-ceilinged vocals, delivering towering melodies with a tone similar to Muse's Matt Bellamy. Besides the writing, the band's eagerness to experiment is what's most impressive about Treasure Hunter -- the skittish, circuitous "Let Teeth Break the Ice" is the album's catchiest track, but the song breathes with the eclecticism of a Tool song. Elsewhere, "With the Flies" finds the band getting heavier, with near-metallic riffage and a startling scream section that throat-shredders everywhere will be jealous of, while "Adjust Your Eyes" sounds like Supergrass in epic mode and "Crystal" is an elegant, blanketing ballad, which, given the many twists and turns of the album, is in itself a surprise given its directness. Animated and artful, Foolish Treasure Hunter (which includes a bonus DVD disc) shows The Terrors have the talent to match their admirable ambition. (theterrors.net)
Kari's Music Notes
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Produced at Erwin Musper's Northern Kentucky studio (www.studio thebambooroom.com), the Terrors have...Produced at Erwin Musper's Northern Kentucky studio (www.studio thebambooroom.com), the Terrors have put out Foolish Treasure Hunter, an epic, punk-influenced CD that's strong on fun keys, effects and vocals. It sounds great, especially for a band that's barely a year old.
Bands to Watch in 2006
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At the intersection of punk and prog-rock, The Terrors are riding high on the raves from their debut...At the intersection of punk and prog-rock, The Terrors are riding high on the raves from their debut album "Foolish Treasure Hunters," released in October on Yea Yea Yeah Records and includes a video for every tune. Garnering comparisons to Pink Floyd and U2 for their recorded work, their live shows are known for veering off into wild improvisation, but never at the expense of the song. Their signature sound is created by the intertwined vocals of guitarist Luke Pace and keys player Nick Mitchell with the rock-solid rhythm section of bass player Shane Wingert and a drummer they call Bighead. www.theterrors.net.
Setlist from the Holy Grail (Cincinnati, OH) (3-12-05)
2- Gaza Strip
3- Let Teeth Break the Ice
4- Begging its Moon
5- Swim Up
6- It Makes So Sense
8- With the Flies
9- Pied Piper
Setlist from Sudsy Malone's (Cincinnati, OH) (4-23-05)
2- Gaza Strip
3- Begging its Moon
4- Pied Piper
5- It Makes So Sense
7- Let Teeth Break the Ice
8- With the Flies
10- Swim Up
Setlist from Top Cat's (Cincinnati,OH) (4-28-05)
2- Swim Up
4- Let Teeth Break the Ice
5- It Makes So Sense
7- Begging its Moon
Setlist from the Mad Frog (Cincinnati, OH) (5-5-05)
1- Gaza Strip
2- Swim Up
3- Begging its Moon
4- It Makes So Sense
6- Let Teeth Break the Ice
Setlist from Dutch's Tavern (Louisville, KY) (7-29-05)
1- Adjust Your Eyes
2- Swim Up
7- Gaza Strip
8- With the Flies
Setlist from Top Cat's (Cincinnati, OH) (2-25-06)
1 - Last, We Panic
2 - CDLC Dracula
3 - Viscous Summer
4 - Carnage
5 - Gaza Strip
6 - Mother, Its On
7 - Polite Gorilla
8 - Goombella
9 - Zahmis
There are no upcoming dates at this time.