Gig Seeker Pro


Chico, California, United States | SELF

Chico, California, United States | SELF
Band Rock Reggae


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Esoteric RockInna Major Stylee"

Not many bands are ambitious enough (or skilled enough) to mix genres as dissimilar as hardcore and reggae. But the spirit of Pantera, Leslie Kong and Bad Brains shows itself in the music of Esoteric. Hoping to garner attention and a major label contract, Kenny Williams (vocals) Josh Mossi (bass) Doug Fletcher (guitar) Chris Anderson (guitar) and Matt Chomistek (drums) have been playing a huge amount of shows from Seattle to SoCal. They're about to release their third album, The Way, and Sythesis spoke with guitarist Chris Anderson about musical change, mingling and Orwellian politics.

For your last album, Contradiction System, you worked with Eric Broyhill (Deftones, Cake) in Sacramento and for the new album you worked with Tim Narducci (ex-Systematic) in Oakland. What was the difference in working with the two?

Eric Boyhill didn't offer much producing he mostly just recorded the album and we self-produced it, but Tim had some input and helped us produce by taking riffs out here and there- cutting and chopping, cutting and pasting a little bit. It's all our own music of course, but he was just amazing. He knows how hit songs are supposed to go and he kind of just chopped some of our stuff up and made it really good. We owe a lot to him, we thank him a lot. And now he's really helped us for our future albums. Also, when we did go down to Oakland to record, some of Tim's friends came by. He's friends with Paul Bostaph the drummer for Slayer back in the day, and he helped us tune our drums. He has a lot of friends who are pretty big in the music business and we're getting to meet all those people and start mingling with them. That's really exciting for us, too. Our drummer was really happy he got to meet his favorite drummer and have him help tune his drums on the recording, so it was pretty awesome.

In general, it seems to be such a different enviorment...

Yeah, recording in Oakland is like going to a whole other world. From Chico to Oakland, there's a big difference. We really liked it; actually, even though it's kind of a slum down there, it really helped with inspirtation for the record.

Even with this more honed sound, you didn't seem to compromise any of your music or the direction of your lyrics.

He didn't make us compromise anything. That's one thing we were scared of going in, being a band that's never been produced. We were scared that he was just going to take all of our good stuff and thow it out the window. It didn't really work like that. He really liked all the material we had, and he told us what to do with the important spots. It's hard to explain. He's genius. We learned a lot from him.

Have you gone through changes as you become more high-profile and share with big acts?

We've taken notes on some of the professionals that we've seen play. We've played with Kottonmouth Kings, opened up for Superjoint Ritual, we opened up for Pepper...we've gotton to see how real professional bands do it and we've taken notes and acted it out ourselves.

Are there any particular artists, new or old, who are influencing the direction the band is heading?

We like everything....One of our main influences, as far as the metal goes, is definitely Pantera and now we listen to all kinds of reggae. We've always listen to Bob Marley and now there are a lot of new artists that probably nobody will hear about or know of- Capelton, Michael Rose- guys like that are some of the reggae guys we get some of our influences from to change over from the heavy metal to the reggae.

I've always been a fan of artists like Mikey Dread and Lee "Scrath" Perry...

Oh yeah, all those guys.

You've been in Chico area since about 2000 and it seems like a good home base for you.

Other towns have a lot more to offer as far as big shows, but we always like coming back to Chico because the people here are really nice and we like the enviroment up here.

Arguably as a means of control, our country has suddenly traded fear of imminent global disater. How do you and the rest of the band feel about the current political climate?

Well, it definitely helps by giving us a lot of topics to write about. We don't like the political processes these guys use-we believe in a brotherhood of man and you should pretty much know what's right and wrong without any books or any laws to tell you how to live and that's why try to write songs: to share what we know with the rest of the people. That's what makes us feel good.

- Synthesis-Matt Matlock


A few issues back I had Esoteric as my feature band of the month, and now with their new CD coming out this well deserving band gets an interview to help spreak their remarkable talent. Now if you know me, then you know I love a good mosh pit and I love heavy fucking metal man. Esoteric is one of those bands that has created a genre of their own, I really cannot compare them to anyone else expect Esoteric and that's what makes them something special that will start a new path of others to try and follow.

Can you state your name and Band name for the record?

Chris Anderson, guitarist with Esoteric

How do you feel about the finished product of the new CD?

We are totally excited about the new CD "The Way", which reflects the bands personiality and we feel has the full potential to take us to much greater heights than we've ever attained before.

Can you tell me about the recording of the album, and what were some of the ups and down's during the process?

Recording the new album was much more of a undertaking than Esoteric has ever done before. It took from February until October to get the finished product down, but that's what it takes when you have the deveolpment of an album under the professionalism of someone like Tim Narduccci who was our producer for this album. We were very glad to have worked with Tim and record at his studio in the Bay Area, even though it meant many, many days on the road to make the album. Tim is very much a perfectionist, so certian things required a lot of takes to get them right, while others were done on the first take and sounded killer!

Who was the female I have seen at some of the recent shows, and actually appears on a couple of tracks on the new album, and what is her future with Esoteric?

The lady on the tune "I-Freedom" is a Chico gal named Becca Neunuebel, who had been singing since she was a little girl and has a dynamite voice. We do plan on writing some other tunes with becca invloved in the future and including them on future recordings. Also, we were able to procure the services of a local cello player to record on a couple of tunes that sound good. His name is M.O.B.

Describe Esoteric music for the people that have no clue yet about the band.

If you listen to an Esoteric album, it's really hard to pigeonhole and describe the music into a certian genre. We could just say that it is a unique sound that morphs metal with a dash of reggae and an underlying funky rhythm. Let's just leave it at that.

What message, if any, is Esoteric trying to send out to their fans?

The Esoteric message is totally about peace and harmony, not war and hate. Leave the other shit to the assholes.

In the event that Esoteic gets a record contract in the near future, is it going to be an issue to keep the band name since there is another band called The Esoteric?

Remember they are called The Esoteric. We are simply called ESOTERIC. And we do have some interested labels from what I gather.

What can we expect from Esoteric in say, the next 6 months.

One hell of a lot of touring and playing and getting the new album out to people.

What's one thing about playing music, that will keep you playing music?

Playing music is the most fun thing in the world to do, and if you can make a living at it and have fun at the same time, more power to you.

- Your Music Magazine- Benji Womack


"Contradiction System"- 6 song demo, 2004
"The Way"- full length release, 2006



-Esoteric Defined:
1. Understood by or meant for only the select few who have special knowledge or interest; recondite: poetry full of esoteric allusions.
2. Belonging to the select few.

Esoteric is a powerhouse 5 piece reigning from Chico California who have made a prominent name for themselves in the West Coast Hard Rock Scene by blending a unique mix of full-tilt progressive metal, power groove, and reggae; succinctly dubbed "ganja-core". Armed with a brilliantly original sound, and an impassioned devotion to their music and fan base, the band has been consistently growing and evolving as a unit since their inception in 1996. As a part of this career path, Esoteric has developed a philosophy of positive social and political movement within their sound, and have become reputably well known for rocking one of the most high-energy, professional live sets in the underground scene today.
The band's union throughout the past decade of pursuing their dream has brought them to call the Northern Sacramento Valley their home base, after having relocated from the Sierra Nevada foothills in 2000. Although Chico has been their main hub, they have spent a great majority of their time away on the road, boasting 300+ shows since their 2002 release of "New Sense". Upon its release, this debut album immediately received acclaim from Northern, Central, and Coastal California radio stations, including 106.7 Z-ROCK as well as KFM just to mention a few. After touring extensively to promote "New Sense", a lineup modification brought in Matt Chomistek on drums and Doug Fletcher as an additional guitarist solidifying the lineup as a five piece.
With this infusion of fresh blood, the band's style was further propelled in a unique, innovative direction that was quickly made very evident when they stepped into Sacramento's Pus Cavern Studios to track their second recording effort. With producer Eric Broyhill (The Deftones and Cake producer/engineer), they laid down the 2003 EP "Contradiction System". This second release received a great deal of acclaim as well, including praise from a number of reputable music publications, radio stations, fans, and club owners… all asserting a similar tone of stoke:

~ "I was blown away by this disc"…"they have a sound that gets the pit jumpin' hard with an energized aggression and a wicked pace." -Lars Logan, Synthesis Magazine.

~ "Esoteric's members push the variety of their collective individualities into a style that combines big, fat metal guitars with vocals that definitely evoke the passion filled yowls and rants." -Chico Enterprise-Record Buzz Magazine

~"The overall messages of the band and what it's trying to push is a positive aspect of things"…"a band that mixes head-banging heavy metal with the rhythmic sounds of reggae." -Yuba City Appeal-Democrat

As a result of the release of "Contradiction System", Esoteric's reach to bigger, better venues and shows was greatly expanded around the Western Corridor. From Seattle to the San Francisco Bay Area, all the way down to Southern California, Esoteric has shared the stage as support for such acts as The Kottonmouth Kings, Superjoint Ritual, Devil Driver, Lacuna Coil, Zebrahead, The Riddlin Kids, Insolence, Pepper, Long Beach Short Bus, and Mower to name a few; and they have rocked a number of noteworthy venues and events including but not limited to:

-The Roxy Theater and The Whiskey a Go-Go/ Hollywood, Ca.
-The Pound/ San Francisco, Ca.
-The Summerfest Music Festival/ Humboldt, Ca.
-The Boardwalk/ Sacramento, Ca.
-The Nowhere X Nowhere Music Festival/ Chico, Ca.
-The Roadhouse/ Sacramento, Ca.
-The Sawtooth/ Lake Tahoe, Ca.
-The Catalyst Club/ Santa Cruz, Ca.

All and all, Esoteric has proven to be a highly professional and respected group of musicians who's passion and perseverance will no doubt lead them on to the next level of success, exposure, and of course, musicality. November 29th, 2006 marked the release date for the LP release of "The Way". Recorded at Oakland, Ca's Sonic Room Studios, and produced by ex Systematic mastermind Tim Narducci, this album has a fresh, driving, well sculpted sound that is sure to be turning heads nationwide in the years to come! In short… expect to hear Esoteric continuing to combine a monster sound and an intelligent, conscious message that is a must see for anyone who has ever considered lighting up a spliff and burning down the system! Thanks for your time and support!


-Chris Andersen
380 E 17th St
Chico, CA 95926
(530) 570-8277


Band Members