“...when you record your own album that you release on your own label, utilizing a multiplicity of inventive songwriting skills to coalesce into this musical shape that couldn’t be molded better with soft clay, you have defined a new meaning for ‘ingenuity’...The amazing thing about Thereaphosa is how they have riffs that are stolen straight from ‘The Edge’s’ playbook and how they mix in competing sounds for something truly special and electric. Frustrated musicians should avoid this album entirely, as not only is nothing half-assed but indeed everything from the artwork to the finest of details in recording technique could easily take a lesser creature a decade to refine. Not often am I totally stunned after listening to an album but this musical pepper spray had me planted against the wall.”
--SMOTHER (Summer 2004)
“From the start of this album one thing that seems clear, Theraphosa
wants to pump new blood into the now increasingly stale hardcore scene. They want to avoid becoming another band stamped from a tired mold. Each member demonstrates command over their instrument, and seeks to expand the boundaries of their genre through experimentation.”
--INDIEWORKSHOP (August, 2004)
“...way musically intense in the best way possible. These guys trapse
through the backyards of the best: U2, Peter Gabriel, Psychedelic Furs, TV On The Radio, Shellac, Soundgarden, Pretty Girls Make Graves (musically, not vocally), and a few other really heavy hitters without ever falling into blatant copycatting of one band or another. Also totally impressive is that that this trio did all of the recording here themselves. In any event, if you are down for sludgy bass, mathy, sometimes dub influenced drumming, and razor sharp guitar work, perhaps a roadtrip to Cincinnati is in order...and make arrangements to get blown away.”
--BETTAWRECKONIZE (Spring, 2004)
“Breaking the code of bold letters spread throughout the lyric sheet reveals the tip: When you know how your suffering came to be, you are already on the path to emancipation. Theraphosa’s freedom from its suffering is a long way off. This band has enough devils running through its bloodstream that any visible cuts are clotted with pitchforks and bifurcated tails. Pessimistic and dark, they run with their insecurities. (SM)”
--PUNK PLANET NO. 63 (September/October, 2004)
“These guys play rhythm-heavy, experimental indie rock with a twist of death disco and art punk. The vocals remind me a little of Pere Ubu and Bob Mould - low in the mix and echoey, cathartic and yowling.”
--READ MAG (Summer, 2004)
“Most people I talk to, especially people in bands, mention Theraphosa in their list of favorite[s]...the energetic trio’s sound easily weaves between hook-laden straightforward rock and more experimental, atmospheric sounds...once you hear it, you’ll have to see it live--or maybe vice versa, if you see the band and then get the disc.
--CINWEEKLY (Summer, 2004)
“...Waves of intricate drum beats push the pulsing bass and stabbing guitar lines forward while bursts of strained lyrics cut jagged swatches of melody from the overall canvas...Blondi is undeniably one of the most unique and inventive discs of recent memory, and Theraphosa are without a doubt one of [Cincinnati’s] best kept secrets.”
--CITY BEAT (March 17, 2004)
“Members of the late greats Autumn Rising and Feasts of Merit have joined forces to create the powerhouse of experimental rock that is Theraphosa. Though the band’s sound contains lingering hints of Autumn Rising’s angular, pulsating math-rock, the songwriting has matured into something far more complex: the rhythm section is tight, efficient, and perhaps a little angry. The haunting vocals weave in and out, often colored with flanges and various other effects. Guitars are brittle and shimmering, like animated glass figurines of bizarre little creatures who crawl up on your shoulder while you’re at work and whisper accusations. Like the poisonous spider I take to be their namesake, Theraphosa are at once beautiful, terrifying, and absolutely fascinating. Recommended If You Like: early Genesis (the Peter Gabriel era), Autumn Rising, Shellac.”
--CINCINNATISHOWS (March 2004)
“...this is indie-rock, to be sure, but it’s the eccentricities that help to shape a sound that isn’t entirely formulaic.”
--SPLENDID ZINE (December, 2004)
released July 1, 2003
JERRY DIRR - drum kit, percussion
ROBYN ROTH - bass, vocals, strings, percussion
ROBERT STEVEN BILLUPS - guitar, vocals, keys, percussion
Tracks 1-8 make up the "blondi" full length. It was originally released on the band's own, Save Your Servant Recordings imprint. In an effort to keep the music alive, Phratry Records acquired the album and added it to its catalog in 2004. Long out of print, the album is currently available as a digital release.
"blondi" was created and written January 2002 through March 2003. All songs recorded and mixed by the band on an 8-input, Yamaha AW16G 16-track digital workstation March through June 2003.
Track 9 was written and recorded in 2004 for a compilation release using the same 16-track setup.
Album art by Robyn Roth.
Theraphosa was comprised of both current and former members of Knife The Symphony and Autumn Rising.
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