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San Diego, California, United States | INDIE

San Diego, California, United States | INDIE
Band EDM Rock


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



"Northeast Magazine"

Few people can honestly say this, but being hit by a drunk driver may have been the best thing ever to happen to Gene Padigos, or at least the best thing for his music career. Padigos, a.k.a. Rise of the Speedmen, invested his insurance payout in a Tascam 8-track and began recording his own lo-fi compositions in his garage while he recovered, playing all of the instruments in the guitar, drum, and synth combo that is ROTS.

He soon discovered the electronic music scene and digital processing, but his music still clearly evinces his analog roots. His tracks still feature his own live instrumentation, and only the occasional bleep or programmed drum line remind the listener that he is working with more than just a mic and a tape.

While Rise of the Speedmen cites My Bloody Valentine and the Smiths as influences, the resulting product sounds more like Beck's more contemplative work or Department of Eagles without the irony and New York edge. Most tracks move along in a dreamy lurch, underpinned by complex, insistent drum patterns that seem to keep the melodies from dissipating into the ether. The vocals float along a few steps behind, subdued and often low in the mix, sounding as though Padigos is behind the next wall, quietly singing a melancholy ditty to himself in the shower.

While the tracks showcase a variety of textures and tones, they're never too down tempo, yet never too energetic. Indeed, Rise of the Speedmen seem to abide in the borderland between resignation and abnegation, in the luminal state between the dream and the opened eye.

The final analysis: ROTS makes spacey indie-pop that never sacrifices complexity and depth for accessibility, but is accessible all the same. As a result, it makes for great walking music in the headphones or solo mood music for a relaxed Saturday afternoon at home. Recommended for the artsy set, shoegazers, or anyone that likes to look (and think) twice before leaping

- Northeast

"San Diego Reader Feature"

Rise of the Speedmen began as Gene Padigos’s one-man stage show, featuring electronic prerecorded music accompanied live by various instruments, from guitar to synth, bass, and drums.

“I got most of my gear with insurance money after getting hit by a drunk driver,” says Padigos. “The recording equipment turned out to be the best investment I could make. The whole homemade, bedroom-album thing was just starting, but I wanted to do something that sounded more like a band and less like some guy with a hard-drive full of samples and a drum machine.”

In 2008 Padigos recruited bassist Nick Shingle and drummer Rea for the band, both from local punkers Fifty on their Heels.

“I’d call our music electro-rock,” says Padigos, a native San Diegan. “It’s scientifically designed for the vocals to be sung in a low-reverberation wave fragment with minimal poetic lines, underlined with lots of beat-down, driving, electronic percussion.”

The songs manage to sound both old-school and cutting edge. “I like to take the structures of pop music and the minor-chord progressions of goth and top it off with the instrumentation of guitar and synthesizers. Vintage synthesizers, to be specific…only the retro gear has that real, old-fashioned, funky-worm sound.”

The band is so devoted to retro, in fact, that their 2009 album takes its cue from a 50 year-old TV series. “Our album The Real and the Shadow was actually inspired by a Twilight Zone episode. I remember waking up from a nap with the TV on, still half asleep, and finding myself in the middle of the episode where the main character, a trumpet player, is being told by this archangel about how he just got hit by a truck [A Passage for Trumpet]. Although he’s not dead, he is caught somewhere in between ‘the real and the shadow.’ That line seemed so surreal when I heard it, and it just stuck with me when I was working on the album.” - San Diego Reader

"Introduction Album"

Excellent groove oriented indie guitar crossed with electronica stuff that is totally original and refreshing, yet combines elements of everything great. For fans of Languis, The Sems, etc. - Tonevendor

"Introduction Album"

"Second impression" is probably my favourite tune on the album. The way it starts immediately grabs your attention, and again there are Grandaddy-styled effects in there - The Mag"


LP- Introduction
LP-Arrows and Bridges



Rise of the Speedmen creator, San Diego native ,Gene Padigos Jr.. An evocative investigation into electronic sound, ROTS seems to have opened a pandoras box of digital sound bites. Placed cleverly amidst alluring guitar melodies and tangible drum loops this experiment in sound becomes startlingly accessible.
Padigos began playing piano at age 10, and soon found himself enrolled in a performing arts school where he received classical training in the cello and string bass. One day on his motorcycle, Padigos had an encounter with a drunk driver, or more aptly with the hood of his car. The ensuing insurance settlement led to padigos’ first major musical purchase: a Tascam 8 track. Thus began the Rise of the Speedmen. Playing each instrument himself, Padigos passed countless hours in his garage creating lo-fi compositions and developing his Indie/post rock sound.
In 2000, Padigos relocated to Hawaii and quickly immersed himself in its budding electronic scene. It was here that Padigos met his other half: a laptop. Falling deep in computer love, Padigos eagerly answered his call to digital sound. The transition was a natural one, as his do it yourself approach became much more realistic with more control to orchestrate, manipulate, and filter the very root of sound and its placement.
Padigos returned to San Diego and his love affair intensified. new techniques and new equipment led to new levels of sound application and ingenuity. In 2005 Rise of the Speedmen finally broke out of the his studio with its debut release “Introduction.” Padigos then introduced his performing skills throughout southern California with live percussionist Rea Concepcion and keyboard/bassist Nick. Electrifying performances, high critical acclaim, and international distribution produced a loyal following both at home and overseas.
Ceaselessly exploring the limits of his craft padigos has continued to push the boundaries of electronic music today.