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"Exit 420 CD Review"

-ITIS: Exit 420
American Melodic Rock
Rating: 4.0/5.0
Hat Light Records

Sometimes, usually from out of nowhere, I receive music so incredibly fresh and original that I'm simply blind sided. The music by Colorado based rockers -ITIS and their new release 'Exit 420' is a perfect example. This is not your mass-produced, cookie cutter and force fed American shit rock that you hear everyday. Their music is clever and original thanks, I believe, to their varied influences: metal, rock, reggae, funk and probably much more. And this crew has the true talent to pull off music that incorporates these styles. Yet, in t negotiable he end this is just great rock and roll; and I like it.
I knew I was in for some surprises while listening to the opening cut, 'Hey Mom, I Smoke Pot.' This funky rock mix tribute to Cannabis sativa would please even Bob Marley. Actually, this has got to be funniest rock song I've heard in years. I was grinning from ear to ear. What follows after this is 16 tracks of unpredictability and brilliant ingenuity. I can't say I enjoyed every song on 'Exit 420,' but I did want to keep listening only to hear what -ITIS was going to pull off next. The first half of 'Exit 420' follows the style of mixing melodic rock with some funky grooves. By the time you hit 'You Did It Again' and 'In God We Trust,' you find -ITIS veering more towards straight rock with some metal edges. Both are very good songs. 'Jerkin' Off,' despite its obvious juvenile content, is an example of -ITIS' singular creativity: great riffs, astounding arrangement, and an enjoyable chorus.
The breadth of -ITIS's versatility continues when you arrive at 'Wasting Together' and 'Thoughts.' These songs are pure and smooth melodic hard rock. 'Thoughts' reveals some real inspiration particularly in Mark Alan Rodio's stunning vocals and Craig Soderberg's soothing guitar solo. For me, this is the best song on the album, truly great. 'Exit 420' rounds out with 'Problem,' a rollicking rock and roll number and 'Azz Go Boom,' an unwelcome, raunchy, and worthless satire of female-degrading rap music. I don't like the real stuff and I certainly don't need this.
In the end, the real question is, where have these guys been all this time? -ITIS is inspired, creative and talented; they should be on the short list of new recruits for any major label. But, alas, they're not. So this is what you need to do: go to their web site and purchase 'Exit 420,' play it and enjoy. This is some great rock and roll.
Very recommended


Tastes Like Chicken
You Know...For Kids
It Is...Isn't It?
Itis - Alive
Love Songs and Life Lessons (Greatest Hits)
Exit 420



Formed in 1994, the band toured for most of '95 and recorded a 21-song CD entitled "Tastes Like Chicken!" They released the CD in December of '95 and followed with a nine-week tour of Europe. After returning to the U.S. in March '96, the band continued to tour in support of "Tastes Like Chicken" throughout the western U.S. in such states as California, New Mexico, Colorado, and Arizona.

The band continued without a break and went back into the studio in January of 1997 to record a 17-song masterpiece titled, “It IS…isn’t it?” Three of the tracks on this CD feature Grammy award winning violinist Jamii Szmadzinski. Upon releasing this CD, the band took on a five-week tour in Europe during January & February of '97, then toured eight months all over the U.S. during 1997 and finished off the year with another four-week tour in Europe.

Over the next few years the band continued to release a new CD whenever they had a break from touring the US and Europe with such CD titles as “Nutbag”, “Laid”, “Eatus” and “Dunce”. In 2003, with over 60 songs in the bands catalogue, they decided to release a live CD titled “Itis…Alive” and a Greatest Hits CD titled, "Love Songs & Life Lessons" which feature some of their most commercial songs as well as fan favorites.

After taking a short break in 2006 to edit their 4-hour –ITIS DVD, the band returned to the road by playing three nights in Negril, Jamaica as well as the South By Southwest Festival in Austin, TX as part of their US tour. The band is also featured in the new Larry Pierce documentary feature film, "Dirty Country" as Larry’s backup band, which recently led to appearances on the Howard Stern show. The new -ITIS CD titled, Exit 420 was officially released in Dec. of 2007.

"-ITIS" has sold well over 30,000 CDs at their concerts and over the internet without any label support. Their ten albums, along with their extensive touring history, prove that "-ITIS" is prepared for anything. They always give 100% and try to make every show entertaining, because if the band is having fun, the crowd is having fun...but then again, if the crowd isn’t having fun, you can guarantee "-ITIS” is probably having a blast!

For more information on –ITIS, visit their websites at: and