Portland, Oregon, USA

eight53 is a guitar driven alternative rock band who sounds like a mix between Foo Fighters and Muse with classic rock influences like Led Zeppelin and Queen.


For the past three years, the members of Portland, Oregon’s eight53 -- vocalist/keyboardist Richard Shank, bassist Steve Gajdos, guitarists Roman Bilko and drummer Benzo Thomas -- have been perfecting their dramatic brand of alternative rock, a process that has currently culminated into the release of their first 6 song CD “eight fifty three”. Written and produced entirely by the band members, this 30 minute blast of high energy guitar riffs and passionate vocals carries the listener through a wide range of topics and emotions. eight53 is gaining a buzz as one of the most energetic and fun rock bands to see live.
The project started when Richard moved to Portland in February of 2009 from North Carolina. He had produced his first full length CD, “A Single Step” two years earlier and hoped to bring his music to the west coast.
A few years prior, Roman had moved to Portland from the Ukraine and was looking for a project. A couple of months before moving, Richard had contacted Roman about the possibility of playing music together. They met the day Richard arrived in Oregon and the two unloaded everything that Richard had moved with him, a story they still enjoy discussing to this day. After spending some time playing together, it only seemed right that they should collaborate together musically, at least on some level.
In March of 2010, they met Benzo, an Oregon Native. “I can still remember the first time we jammed with him,” recalls Richard. “He was the loudest damn drummer we had ever played with!” After that, Benzo’s hard hitting playing style started influencing the sound of the music. Rumor has it that Benzo was born the day after John Bonham’s death. They were soon gigging on a regular basis as a three piece. One night they opened for the band Steel & Glass with Steve on bass. After eight53’s set, Steve approached them asking, “Where’s your bass player?” With their first CD in the works, Steve stepped in to add the finishing touches and helped eight53 evolve into what it is today.

We are not the quiet whisper
we are the voice of dissent.

We are not the city lights
we are the electricity.

We are not the lost generation
we are the founders of our own freedom.

We are not what you think we should be
we are who we came to be.

We are not the innocent bystanders
we are the revolution.

We are not the religion
We are not the machine
We are not the politicians
We are not the regime

We are not a face in the crowd
We are not a mindless drone
We are not a numbered citizen
We are not a subjective servant

We are not just another number,
we are eight53!


eight fifty three - EP 2012

Set List

Lab Mice
Breaking Out
Svengali *New
Insanity *New
If I Could
City Lights
Eden Master *New