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The best kept secret in music


"SKRATCH "Vulture" review"

After listening to the first track on this disc, I was a bit
concerned that I might have to review AC/DC's wicked stepchild.
But after letting all 12 songs play, the band's divergent sound
thoroughly impressed me. I tip my hat to these guys for fooling me.
Somewhere in between pop, punk, and rock, VULTURE transcends any label
that could be imposed on it. There definitely is a modern edge to
this album, although I wouldn't throw a shoe at someone who told me
Scarlet Symphony was really a glam-rock band preserved by cryostasis.
For all of you morose music lovers who weep at the absence of fresh,
authentic-sounding rock bands that dish out danceable hits, cheer up.
-SKRATCH Magazine, Anthony, May 2005 - SKRATCH

"Scarlet Symphony on"

If you've never heard Scarlet Symphony, now is the time.
This San Diego outfit merge glam and punk into one cohesive mix.
Blurring the lines of what the San Diego sound was once about,
Scarlet Symphony are set to become one of the greatest bands
to come out of this Southern California city. -

"SD Union Tribune Top 10 bands of 2004"

THE SKINNY: Scarlet Symphony could have been superfamous by now. If the fashionable rockers signed a contract with Island or Sony Records like they almost did, the boys just might have been hosting MTV's New Year's Eve in Times Square. But, by choice, Scarlet Symphony did not sign a big record deal and the band will be playing their New Year's Eve show here at home. The quartet, whose oldest member is 23, felt that creative control of their schizophrenic music was more important than big money and becoming best friends with Paris Hilton.

Since forming a year and a half ago, this La Mesa-based group has been sparking up the music scene with its mix of rock, pop, jazz and electronic music. After playing close to three shows a week for almost a year, the band has the kind of loyal following that those big labels dream about. But the band has decided to release its upcoming album on its own label early next year. And if the guys can sell their old tour van, they might make enough money to get back to Japan, where they recently finished a small but successful tour.

Scarlet Symphony – which includes identical twin brothers Zach and Josh Wheeler – cites musicians like David Bowie, Patti Smith and Joh Coltrane as influences. "We haven't decided what kind of band we are," said Aaron Swanton. "We just play whatever comes out."

- Union Tribune

"Scarlet Symphony in Portland"

If there is anything sexier than raw, sweaty punk, it's the plastic
hard-on of glammy disco dance. Many have married the two before, but San
Diego's Scarlet Symphony flaunts its dual allegiance by cranking the
throbbing funk bass up to illegal levels and caterwauling the come-ons
like hoarse street hookers. This is pure, dirty-dirty, body quaking,
sound-crack--the kind of music that could make a quadriplegic stand up and
shake. Please, God, just let them be really, really cute in person, too.

-(KC) WILLAMETTE WEEK(PORTLAND, OR), September 15, 2004, Pg 51
- Willamette Week

"Painting "Schizophrenic" Sonatas"

Painting "Schizophrenic" Sonatas
It's 1 a.m. on a blistering midsummer's night and the crowd gathered
in Canter's Deli Kibitz Room is definitely seeing red. Whether it is
the crimson face of vocalist Gary Hankins as he dances around in
epileptic fits, the intense fire in the eyes of guitarist Aaron
Swanton or the heat generated from the connection between the twin
brother rhythm section of bassist Zachary and drummer Joshua Wheeler,
Scarlet Symphony mesmerizes with their punk, glam metal, funk, rock
'n' roll fusion and lives up to their colorful name.
Since the spring of 2003, high profile shows, swarms of media
attention and major label scouts have all been knocking at Scarlet
Symphony's door. Hankins remarks: "There's a lot of mosquitoes, a lot
going on. It's almost scary, but in a good way."
Playing to packed clubs and featured at this year's San Diego Street
Scene music festival, Scarlet Symphony is creating a local buzz, not
to mention one in Hollywood. "Going up to L.A. for the first time on
a constant basis, with two to three shows a week; we're happy," says
Hankins. "It's a process - working, playing, [and] being dedicated."
And with each successive week of their residency, the crowd at the
Kibitz Room steadily grows.
Scarlet Symphony has played with the likes of Rush and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs,
yet the band's music encompasses no single genre.
According to Hankins, they can "draw from all influences.
A problem with a lot of bands is that they're just drawing from one band."
Swanton quickly agrees with his bandmate. "We can play with lots of bands.
We're all from different musical backgrounds - schizophrenic musically."
Scarlet Symphony exhibits a true range of creativity in their songs,
from the funk stylings of "Sterling Rose", to the in-your-face rock
of "Purity & Poison", to the bluesy feel of "Sapphire". Hankins says
the band can easily incorporate all these elements into their
material because they "all just go piece bu piece, [by] what's going
on with our mood. Like a conversation or a painting, everyone puts
their part in and [it] eventually forms into one"
When you experience Scarlet Symphony's music, grab a neck brace and
dancing shoes because you'll surely feel the need to head bang and
shake your ass. Scarlet has truly produced its own distinct symphony
and will surely move you with their sensational mix of sounds.

--Yuri Shimoda, The L.A. Underground: A Guide to Southern California's
Favorite Local Bands, CAMPUS CIRCLE, July 28-August 10 2004, Pg. 15
- Campus Circle

"Scarlet Symphony on II"

"Perhaps the biggest breath of fresh air in to hit the San Diego music scene in years.
Scarlet Symphony are unprecedented in their sound and dynamics,
with a sound that lies somewhere between 70's glam and 80's punk.
They're San Diego's best-kept secret, and a band to keep tabs on."

"Artistry that breathes an incendiary storm"

The Chariot
Arts & Entertainment Section
"Scarlet Symphony: artistry that breathes an incendiary storm" by: Monica Reyes

"The first song they played exuded such magnetism and emotions
that it turned my soul inside out and made me want to jump out of my skin.
There is so much going on that it is hard to focus on only one element;
the lyrics,bass,guitar and drumming all come together in a form
that can only be described as three dimensional.
It lifts you to a level beyond yourself and offers you something you've never experienced."

"When asked to describe their band's style and sound in three words,
they left the response up to their friend Dave, member of local band The Robot Ate Me.
Dave carefully summed it up with very simple, yet powerful adjectives:
mysterious,danceable,and gritty."
- The Chariot

"Scarlet Symphony"

Fahrenheit San Diego -independent weekly
"Scarlet Symphony Will Singe Your Pubes Off"
by Jamie Moone
SCARLET SYMPHONY has been trying to get us to do a story about them for months,
and it took me that long to get off my lazy ass and go see them.
So, a few weeks ago, I'm standing outside Scolari's Office on 30th waiting for the band to set up.
Adam's leaning up against the storefront, by himself, one shop down so I go over and say hey.
"Hey Adam, what's up?"
"Ya know, same ol?. Hey, I was just talking to one of my friends
and he told me Scarlet Symphony might sign with Island records."
"No shit?"
"No shit."
Now, I like Adam a lot but I didn't believe him.
No way in hell. The band doesn't even have any music out!
Once they started playing, though, it all made sense.
Charismatic lead singer with lots of thick, curly hair.
Everybody in the band is really tall. A loud explosive sound that is, as our art director says,
kind of "like AC/DC meets the Faint meets the Pixies."
Fury, passion and a pushy rock 'n' roll posture.
Mic stand temper tantrums. It's more Iggy Pop than the Hives
and more Joan Jett than ... Joan Jett version-2004.
Dead set perfect for signing to the majors.
Smart kids that they are, Scarlet Symphony didn't end up signing with Island,
but regardless, this is a good time for bands like Scarlet Symphony,
so I hope their recorded stuff keeps getting everybody wet.
Me, I'm just satisfied being front and center when they play.
They are a band that breathes fireballs, and I like getting burnt.

- Fahrenheit

"A head or four above the rest"

".......Possibly it's because of the twins? psychic connection as a hammering rhythm section. Or Swanton's knack for hooks.
Or it's Hankins, the feral, poetic frontman with a hair mop of chaotic curlicues and an amiable, boyish face."
"all four Scarlet boys are redwood-scale"
-Troy Johnson-San Diego City Beat Dec 24th, 2003 - City Beat

"more @"

Visit for more audio and press..... - ..


Vulture LP
-live tracks at
-streaming on
-radioplay on San Diego fm94.9, fm91.1, and LA's Indie 103.1


Feeling a bit camera shy


“Somewhere in between pop, punk, and rock, VULTURE transcends any label
that could be imposed on it. There definitely is a modern edge to this
album, although I wouldn't throw a shoe at someone who told me Scarlet
Symphony was really a glam-rock band preserved by cryostasis. For all of
you morose music lovers who weep at the absence of fresh,
authentic-sounding rock bands that dish out danceable hits, cheer up”.
Scarlet Symphony’s Vulture first full length release encompasses the
band’s first era of rabid songwriting, artistically ranging from sexy
dance rock to subtler impressions to break your face punk. With an eerie
vocal vibe, reminiscent of Siouxsie or Bowie, and strong progressive
musicianship, Scarlet Symphony since 2003 has risen to become one of San
Diego’s top bands. Consisting of identical twins Joshua and Zachary
Wheeler’s solid and dynamic rhythm section, not unlike the Chili Peppers
or even Blonde Redhead, Aron Swanton’s hook endowed sonic guitar work,
evoking Jimmy Page and The Edge, and vocalist Simon Bell’s passionate
enthralling live performance abilities, Scarlet Symphony has garnered love
and respect from music connoisseurs, radio personalities, labels and
musicians, landing incredible live shows with Rush, Patti Smith, the Yeah
Yeah Yeahs, Louis XIV, The Killers, The Icarus Line and many others. A
2004 Japan tour solidified the release of Vulture, entitled Wrapped in
Plastic in the Asian market, on Tokyo’s Cordova Records. Vulture is a time
period piece, the recordings of three separate sessions from 2003-2005, a
compilation if you will, of this frenetic live band’s repertoire. The
band’s DIY ethics and the upcoming release of the Doppelganger 7” and EP
will lead them through consistent west coast touring, a U.S. tour and a
return to Japan.