Spyder Monkey
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Spyder Monkey

Chicago, IL | Established. Jan 01, 2004 | INDIE

Chicago, IL | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2004
Band Rock Funk


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



"Spyder Monkey ROCKS!"

Spyder Monkey was named "Band of the Month" by www.daddylikes.com for June 2005

They promise "a funky rockin' good time." Susie Lofton says: "We are happy to be part of this event. The arts in this country are in serious danger of extinction. We have a ton of talent in this town. We need to support each other more and put Chicago on the map. Unity is the key. There is strength in numbers, so lets make some noise!"

--Paul Barile for Pioneer Press

"...topped off by the smooth vocals of Susie Lofton who more than makes her presence felt, but doesn't overpower the overall sound of the group."

--Trevor Fisher for the Illinois Entertainer

"Bass is on his place. Guitar is very good and inventive – a very pleasant sound. Drums are creative too and they are singing, not just make rhythm. The vocal is great. It’s the kind of very attractive female voice and is handy as a pocket in a shirt with words. An all the rage song, easy to remember and a must have it."

--Review of Spyder Monkey's "Zuzu" from garageband.com
"Zuzu" won awards on garageband.com for "Best Female Vocal" & "Best Bass" for the week of March 28, 2005

"This is pretty, pleasant music that goes down easily like sipping a woody wine. The overall vibe is good and even a little funky. Interesting guitar work at about 2:58 into the song. Pleasant surprise on soothing vocals, first time I've reviewed a song here with a female singing. Lyrics don't always make the song good, but here you have nice lyrics and good music. I like that it is unique from other songs I've heard."

--Review of Spyder Monkey's "Fool 4 U" from garageband.com
"Fool 4 U" won an award on garageband.com for "Best Beat" for the week of March 28, 2005 - Rapscallion

"Local Reviews on GarageBand.com"

i got my lover and ill take him to the backseat :)
ok... it could very well just be me...but the intro reminds me of something that could be in the dukes of hazard soundtrack...awesome:) A+ on the vocals...i love a girl who can belt a strong blues sound to rock music... you hit me in the heart with this one...
the mix is good... all the levels are nicely portrayed...especially the transition from the versus to the chorus...its really smooth.
the guitar solo was real ear friendly. i listened to this song a couple times and it gets better everytime...and now its stuck in my head... good job:)
Reviewed by: Mandirene from Dayton, Washington

- GarageBand.com

"floydszeppelin on California Crazy"

love the chops

Nice intro leading to a female vocal with a strong voice sung with a lot of emotion and feeling..

Love the chorus with the chops that is different for a change liked that..

The production is first class screaming guitar and kick ass bass and drums make this song a WINNER A +++++++= extra credt
Reviewed by: floydszeppelin from Burlington, New Jersey - GarageBand.com

"Midwest Bands.com Review"

Spyder Monkey
Chicago, IL

Selected Tracks
(Self Released 2005)

Musicianship – 9 out of 10

Spyder Monkey is a cool band out of Chicago that is just coming into their own! Though they haven’t been able to put together a full EP or album yet, they have made some live recordings, and also have some studio tracks that they offer on their website! Susie Lofton, the vocalist of the group, was also kind enough to send us a CD made by her previous band Digable Cat! Evidently, Spyder Monkey does some of the tunes that Susie did with this band, so it was helpful to hear what she had been up to before her current band!

I like the eclectic and unique sound that Spyder Monkey generates! Guitarist Chuck Polanzani creates a cool vibe, with arpeggiated, distorted rhythm guitar riffs backed by bassist Jeff Blatherwick’s overdriven melodic bass lines! The percussion is off the hook too, as Mike Tooles bangs out lines that keep the tunes “California Crazy” and “Fool 4 U” hopping! ‘What about the vocals?’, you say? Well, Susie Lofton does an awesome job, giving her all as she sings edgy lyrics in a full on Rock style! She does a little bit of everything, bringing a soulful voice to the music that is also heavily influenced by the likes of Melissa Etheridge and Stevie Nicks! In short, she has a great voice, and is capable of singing just about any style brilliantlyl!

As you can see, I think Spyder Monkey is a great band that is destined to accomplish big things as they develop their sound more fully!

Songwriting – 9 out of 10

In addition to the band’s musical abilities, they also have a knack for writing cool tunes! Vocalist Susie Lofton is a great songwriter, and her collaboration with bandmates Polanzani and Blatherwick works very well! I think both music and vocals sound very intelligent, and have a great blend of Funk, Soul and Rock that causes Spyder Monkey to stand out among their peers!

Additionally, I have to point out a very cool song on the Digable Cat CD that I received in the mail! The song “Mary Poppins” is an awesome, with a great last verse that I wanted to share with my readers! I’m sure it’s possible to get a copy of the CD and hear it for yourself, but just in case you can’t, I want to include the lyrics of this verse in the review:

My Friend is Whiskey Walker
He likes to wear Black Labels
And he loves to come home with me
Lay empty on the floor

He keeps me up for hours
Acts like he’s always welcome

He thinks he’s my salvation

Well he’s the worst friend I have found

Those are incredible lyrics! Susie is a gifted songwriter, and with the help of her new band-mates, they are creating interesting, edgy tunes that fans are going to love hearing! I can’t wait to hear future material from Spyder Monkey!

Sound Quality/Professionalism – 8.5 out of 10

As a band that has not had the opportunity to go all out with a recording project, I have to say that Spyder Monkey has done a good job putting together the songs that they do have out there! Each instrument is recorded well, with a final mix that is ambient, giving the tunes a live performance flavor! I tend to prefer tight studio work, but for a band like this, I think it adds character to their sound. They are a performing band (if you have any doubts, listen to the live tracks available on their website!), so the sound suits them well. Overall, I am pleased with the band’s recorded material!

Packaging – N/A out of 10

I don’t really have any album packaging from Spyder Monkey, so I have chosen to refrain from comment on the subject. I will say, though, that the packaging for Digable Cat’s EP looked great, and Spyder Monkey’s website looks cool, too, so I suspect that future album art will look good!

Favorite Tracks (Spyder Monkey):

California Crazy
Fool 4 U

Favorite Tracks (Digable Cat):

Mary Poppins

Overall Rating – 8.5 out of 10

I am so thankful for the variety of music that we have available in the Midwest! Blues, Metal, Rock, Pop, Country, Rockabilly, Jazz, Classical, and Folk artists are a part of the rich landscape of musical talent we enjoy! There are also bands whose sounds are made up of innumerable combinations of all of the above, and I would definitely place Spyder Monkey in that category! Their smart Pop/Rock/Funk/Soul sense is enough to entertain for hours! I just wish that I was closer geographically to their Chicagoland stomping grounds so that I could catch them live! I have a sneaking suspicion that I would really enjoy hearing their work in a crowded club on the Near North side of the Windy City!

I would recommend that you navigate the Information SuperHighway, and make a lengthy stop at Spyder Monkey’s website! There, you will find a lot of information about the group, and enough recorded material to keep you occupied for a while! If possible, I would also recommend getting a copy of Susie’s former project, Digable Cat! They produced an equally smart P - http://www.midwestbands.com/review_page.php?id=340


Spyder Monkey CRC Sessions



Spyder Monkey is an eclectic fusion of music with influences from progressive rock, soul, funk, jazz, Reggae and American blues. With raw high energy, the Spyder Monkey family of souls is creating music that transcends a myriad of musical genres. They achieve the solitary goal of touching the hearts & minds of audiences’ here and abroad.

Fronted by Susie Lofton, a uniquely gifted singer-songwriter & clever lyricist, who sings compelling tales of the human experience. Her stories relate the struggle of natural man in search of spiritual connection, while exposing the world's hypocrasies. Described as "a girl who can belt a strong blues sound to rock music.." Susie's powerful "sweet & soulful" voice is noted to be reminiscent of notarious female rockers PJ Harvey, Blondie & Concrete Blonde's Johnette Napalitano.

Past projects include mainstage performances at H.O.B. Chicago, H.O.B. Back Porch Stage, Midwest Tour, UK Tour & MECA Music Conference & Festival. Susie has also recorded at world renown Fantasy Studios in Berkley, California with 4 Non Blondes drummer Dawn Richardson.

Holding down the groove are the players: Machine gun drummer Mike Tooles, hot rod guitarist Phil Alley, and the pop slappin bass work of Jeff Blatherwick. The three-headed monster ferociously scale the wall of sound by integrating their diverse backgrounds, taking no prisoners. With their forces combined they have forged a new dangerous breed of music heard the world over!

Band Members