Replicator (band)

Replicator (band)

Infobox musical artist |
Name = Replicator
Background = group_or_band
Origin = Oakland, California, USA
Genre = Noise rock
Math Rock
Indie rock

Instrument =
Years_active = Late 1999 – April 2008
Label = Radio is Down,
Substandard Records,
Feedback Loop Industries
Current_members = Conan Neutron
Ben Adrian
Chris Bolig
Todd Grant
URL = []

Replicator was a noise rock band from Oakland, California, featuring Conan Neutron (electric guitar/vocals/tape deck operation), Ben Adrian (bass guitar/vocals/keyboard), Chris Bolig (drums) and occasionally with Todd Grant on rhythm guitar for live performances.

The band members are advocates of the DIY punk ethic, as popularized by bands such as Fugazi and The Minutemen. Replicator started as a bay area Indie rock band of little distinction before finding their signature sound, often compared to bands such as Shellac, The Jesus Lizard, Steel Pole Bathtub and The Melvins.


Replicator had a sound based on unusual and urgent time signatures, dissonance, repetitive heavy rhythms, an often angular guitar sound, and Neutron and Adrian's urgent, sometimes dueling vocals. The songs did not have traditional verse/chorus/verse structure and the arrangements were, at times sparse and at other times chaotic. Replicator's sound was often associated with science fiction, paranoia, and somewhat obscure pop culture references, the band frequently cited the fact that they did not have any love songs in their press materials.

Straddling the fine line between "social commentary and smart ass revelry" as well as "technical precision and reckless abandon," Replicator used analog tape deck to play samples live until switching to a laptop computer with the [ Bludgeonsoft] software [ Back to Basics] for sampling.

The band recorded their first record "Winterval" with Bob Weston of the band Shellac, triggering understandable comparisons to that band that would hound Replicator for years to come. Shortly afterwards, bass player Dan Kennedy left the band. The lineup solidified in 2001 when Indiana expatriate Ben Adrian [] joined the band on bass guitar. Adrian often joked that he was still "filling in" on bass 6 years later. 2002 and 2003 saw the band tinker with sound effects, taking the sampling (or "grand theft audio" as Neutron put it) practices of Steel Pole Bathtub and adding this to their developing aggressive and chaotic sound, as well as keyboard. This sound was represented in the album "You Are Under Surveillance". Frequently cited [] [] [] , as chaotic, dense and paranoid, Surveillance was apparently a loose concept album based upon the ideas of "paranoia, lost freedom of choice, airborne revenge, the end of the world, the problems and consequences of an overgrown consumerist, bottom line-oriented culture; and the merits of applied righteous indignation" []

In September 2004 on one of their "ReplicaTours" [] , Replicator's van was broken into and their guitars and keyboards were [ stolen] . Luckily they were able to borrow the equipment of their tourmates Greenlight the Bombers and continue. This theft occurred during the 2004 rash of equipment thefts that plagued many working musicians.

2007's "Machines Will Always Let You Down", seems to also be a loosely based concept album, this time around the conflict between man and machine. The press materials state that it is: "10 songs about Nanotechnological assassination, time travel, building sex robots, the eternal battle of man vs. machine and other things". [] [] []

This record was recorded by Vern Rumsey of the band Unwound and was released on Olympia's [ Radio Is Down] record label.

2008 also saw several more US Tours, including a full us tour documented in a [ tour journal] on the music website [] .

On January 2 (2008), an announcement [] was made on the Replicator website that "After 8 years, 3 albums, 2 eps, 4 vans, almost 200 shows, a handful of compilation appearances, and countless floors" the band had agreed to an amicable mutual break up. After recording a final ep [] , (Including a cover of Babyland's Arthuer Jermyn), released again on [ Radio Is Down] , Replicator played their last show at The Hemlock Tavern in San Francisco on April 5th (2008). []


* Replicator's second record "You Are Under Surveillance" was frequently cited as "paranoid" sounding in many music reviews, ironically according to "The New York Times" [] , Neutron himself was under surveillance at the time for his activities as head of Bands Against Bush. Said Neutron in response: "I'd hate to think what they would have done if we were doing something more nefarious then putting on shows and registering voters." []
* The end of the band The Arctic Monkeys 2006 song "Perhaps Vampires Is A Bit Strong But", bears a remarkable resemblance to Replicator's 2001 song "Ka-Tet", so much so that some fans [] [] have questioned if it is a case of simultaneous inspiration or indeed a case of (unlikely) musical plagiarism, Replicator has thus far laughed this off.
* The band has a handful of famous fans from other creative areas including comedian Patton Oswalt and comic book author Warren Ellis []
* Neutron is cousins with NY comedy rap artist Schaffer the Darklord and photographer/ [ documentarian] [ Virgil Porter]
* 2/3 of the band (Bolig and Adrian) is vegetarian.
* The band frequently has long, or amusing song titles such as: "Bawkbakwak Bawkbagone", "Warrior Needs Food, Badly", "Frank Lloyd Wrong" and "Login with my fist", however according to band members in multiple interviews [] [] , the song titles almost always are inspired by or inspire the lyrical content of the songs, unlike other contemporary bands with similar song titling such as Don Caballero (who do not have vocals) and Minus the Bear.
* The band has multiple songs influenced by literary works, including those of Kurt Vonnegut, Stephen King, Philip K. Dick and Neal Stephenson



* "Winterval" (2001)
* "You Are Under Surveillance" (2004)
* "Machines Will Always Let You Down" (2007)

ingles and EPs

* """ EP" (2002)
* "DDBBLLVVZZNN" split ep with Lower Forty-Eight (2003)
* "Whangbar Province ep" Whangbar Province Ep (2008)


* "Tired of Standing Still" (Journey to the End of the Night, Pt. 2) Highpoint Lowlife, 2001
* "bEASTfest 2001" (Ka-Tet) Whole Enchilada, 2001
* "bEASTfest 2002" (ft. Jesus ) Whole Enchilada, 2002
*"Wäntage USA's 21st Release Hits Omnibus" 2XCD (Alert Status: 0), Wantage USA, 2004


* [ Machines Will Always Let You Down review] Skinny Mag review, spring 2007
* [ The Howling, live preview June 25th, 2004]
* [ Cafe Du Nord, live review 3/24/2004]
* [ You are under surveillance review] Splendid E-zine
* [ You are under surveillance review] Aversion zine
* [ you are under surveillance review] SF Weekly
* [ You are under surveillance review] Lowcut #18
* [ "" ep] Razorcake review
* [ "" ep review] Splendid e-zine
* [ "" ep review] delusions of adequacy
* [ Winterval review] Delusions of adequacy
* [ winterval review Allmusic guide]

External links

* [ Replicator website]
* [ Replicator myspace page]
* [ Replicator page on Radio Is Down]
* [ Radio is Down (label website)]
* [ Revenge of the Nerds feature article San Francisco Bay Guardian] June 2007
* [ 5 Questions with Replicator, Superstarcastic January 2007]
* [ Playing in Fog] , 8/19/2005
* [ Cafe Du Nord, live review 3/24/2004]
* [ Tablet Magazine 9/30/2003]
* [ Pointless Questions with Replicator, Splendid E-zine]
* [ Drowning in Culture September, 2002]
* [ "Everyday People" feature interview with SF Weekly 7/4/2001]

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