Midnite Snake
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Midnite Snake


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Growing up nearby, but having never been to Pittsburgh during the 70's, the city had a certain reputation of being tough and working class. It was the home of sports champions and steel workers all hard-nosed and blue color. Today, it's a great looking city and the home of power trio Midnite Snake whose music would have you think otherwise.

Paul Quattrone's powerful and bombastic drums along with Jim Lingo's steady bass rhythms provide the backbone for the extended 60's lead guitar jamming from Alexei Plotnicov. There's just no let up during the eight songs of jarring distortion from these guys. I expected some lighter shadings in there like in the long version of Iron Butterfly's "Inna-Gadda-Da-Vida" to rest my rattling brain, but these guys just never let up. My ears hurt from this one.

There are no vocals, so it's similar to some of the extended musical sessions that many of the hippie bands like to do. I would think that tripping to Midnite Snake though would probably lead you to want to rip your own face off than hug your neighbor. Pot or some ludes may be the drug of choice if you wish to partake.

Midnite Snake is raw, dirty and like the soundtrack to a full-scale military assault.

Bottom Line: Powerhouse 60's stoner rock to melt your eardrums.

--Nailer 05.17.04
- Maximum Metal

Instrumental stoner rock is a rare breed indeed -- really, only Karma To Burn might have fit that description in their day, and this Pittsburgh trio sounds very little like that band. No, Midnite Snake is a raw, grungy, garage-y, stoner/acid rock fest, with a cool fuzzed-out guitar tone and generally drawn-out song structures. Some of the tunes are a bit repetitive, as these guys are going more for the groove rather than implementing complex riffs. The best audience for this kind of stuff is the stoner rock crowd, even though this is clearly not another Kyuss or Fu Manchu clone. A fine first effort. - BNR Metal

From Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, come Midnite Snake, a three-piece instrumental group that’s intent on carving their own niche in the wake of The Atomic Bitchwax.

Like Bitchwax, Midnite Snake have an affinity for classic rock. “Nitro-Turbo-Overdrive” captures the manic energy of the MC5 with the sound of greats like Blue Cheer and Hendrix. In fact, there’s a good chunk of the latter’s influence in guitarist Aleixei Plotnicov’s playing (especially on “He Ain’t My Brother, He’s Heavy”). But rather than mimic Hendrix’ playing, he’s a manic force of his own, soloing away on each song.

To the band’s credit, however, it doesn’t become the focal point. The rhythm section of bassist Jim Lingo and drummer Paul Quattrone keep an interesting and solid backbone to the songs. The only misfire is “Machinegun Cock,” which is more noise than rock. Compared to great songs like “Oral Sex Pt. 1” or “Acid Wash” (which could pass for a Delicious song, with its echoing feedback and meandering bass riff), it’s more of a distraction than anything.

Overall, it’s good psychedelic garage rock, and a welcome addition. As with all strong instrumentals, after hearing Midnite Snake’s self titled release, you wonder why bands bother with vocalists at all. - Stonerrock.com: John Pegoraro

Midnite Snake are no slouches in the business of overwhelming unassuming audiences with their fuzzed-out ritualistic jams. Chalk it up to their extended guitar freakouts, a relentlessly pummeling rhythm section and a hyperactive smoke machine that often all but obscures bassist Jim Lingo, guitarist Alexei Plotnicov and drummer Paul Quattrone in a pungent issue as thick and primal as the racket the trio summons up.... Plotnicov [unleashes] psychedelic, bluesy solos that sizzle like unstable isotopes atop Lingo and Quattrone's bedrock-solid riff-mantras. --Adam MacGregor, Pittsburgh Pulp - Pittsburgh Pulp


Midnite Snake discography:

1) Self Titled (2004)

2) Shaving the Angel (2007)

3) Live at Gooski's (2006)

4) In The Grass e.p. (2006)

5) Score for the theater production of "bug" (2007)



Midnite Snake are local heroes in the burgeoning Pittsburgh music scene. The band is made up of some great players from The Modey Lemon, Centipede E'ast, and Alexei & the Justins. In fact, Paul's band, Modey Lemon, was already signed to Birdman Records when he gave them a copy of some Midnite Snake tracks. Birdman Records picked them up immediately through which they released their debut self titled album.

2007 ushers in their second release titled Shaving the Angel, due out May 22. They hit the road for a mini tour in March where they played at SxSW in Birdman Records showcase as well as 10 other dates along the east coast. They are now ready to do a full tour with the newest release in tow!

The sound is massive, distorted, in the red and in your face. It's more "superfuzz bigmuff" than anything the kids at ozzfest would think of as heavy. A review of the album at Maximum Metal cautions, "I would think tripping to Midnite Snake would probably make you want to rip your face of rather than hug your neighbor".

As to how they sound so heavy without being metal, Plotnicov admits, " I didn't really listen to much metal beyond Black Sabbath, so I'm still trying to find out about metal."

He's more into Coltrane and "those modal jazz people from the '60s," saying, "I think that's more of an influence. And just having a rhythm section that's that responsive allows you to keep doing interesting things. If they were just kind of goofing off or something, it might just detract from the possibilities in the solos."

Midnite Snake were also sought after by Patrick Jordan to give a soundtrack to his theater production titled "Bug". The Barebones producer says it would have been really easy to have just found some pre-recorded music somewhere for "Bug," as past productions have done, but part of his mission is to try to promote Pittsburgh as much as possible, and he says the music scene here is "amazing."

"I had known Midnite Snake since they started playing," Jordan says. "I know these guys from the scene, and I'm a fan, so it was kind of a coup to get them in one place for a day."

What he wasn't looking for were pretty sounds, and that's exactly what he didn't get. Midnite Snake spent nine hours one day at the New Hazlett Theater laying down a score for "Bug" that's a dark, slithering piece of stoner rock with plenty of feedback and creaking sound effects.

Plotnicov, known for his psychedelic playing, read the script along with the other members of Midnite Snake and knew the group was right for it.

"Our music does lend itself to the kind of mood and atmosphere that the play creates, like delusions and chaos. There was one scene that gets really intense where Patrick just wanted a freak-out."

Midnite Snake gave a freak-out and various pieces of mood-setting music like one slow, minor-chord piece that's a departure for the band. Two of the tracks are intended as songs the characters would be listening to on the radio. One of the favorites is a track the members call "Beer Drinkin'."

Most recently, Midnite Snake opened up for Blue Cheer.