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Music / Lightning Bolt

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Lightning Bolt is a Noise Rock band from Rhode Island, USA. There are only two members: Brian Chippendale on drums, and Brian Gibson on bass. The band formed in 1994, and they originally had a third member, Hisham Bharoocha. Bharooch was the vocalist and guitarist until he left in 1996. They released their first album in 1999.

Key features in their music involve Chippendale's wild drumming and Gibson's heavily distorted bass. Gibson is known to shred on his bass in songs like "Bizarro Zarro Land." Despite the music being loud, chaotic, and aggressive, you can tell that the duo is having fun. When performing, the band prefers not to play on stage, and the crowd usually circles around them. The duo also seems to be very calm and relaxed when they aren't performing.

While the duo hasn't gotten much mainstream attention, they are very popular in the noise rock community. Their song "Dream Genie" from their 2015 album Fantasy Empire, was featured in the game Rock Band 4, and is an infamous song in the game's community for the insane difficulty.


Studio Discography:

  • Lightning Bolt note  (1999)
  • Zonenote  (1999)
  • Ride the Skies (2001)
  • Wonderful Rainbow (2003)
  • Hypermagic Mountain (2005)
  • Earthy Delights (2009)
  • Oblivion Hunter (EP) (2012)
  • Fantasy Empire (2015)
  • Sonic Citadel (2019)

Trope you in the evening, trope you in the dawn...

  • All Drummers Are Animals: Brian Chippendale is known for beating the crap out of his kit. Live performances often end with him being drenched in his own sweat.
  • Careful with That Axe: The vast majority of Chipppendale's vocals are deranged howling, sometimes going into Singing Simlish
  • Epic Rocking: "Zone" clocks in at an insanely long 32 minutes. "And Beyond" is also fairly long at 14 minutes.
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  • Lead Bassist: Brian Gibson is a Type A.
  • Lead Drummer: Brian Chippendale provides lead vocals on all of their albums.
  • Indecipherable Lyrics: Chippendale's singing style is... a little hard to understand.
    • This can be attributed to most of the vocals being shouted into a contact microphone inside a balaclava; the signal is then sent though an old-school telephone filter, causing the end result to be heavily distorted.
    • Many of the band's songs feature vocals that are just gibberish and warbling.
  • Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Very rarely do they go below an 8, and the majority is at a solid 10. However, "Horsepower" off of Fantasy Empire is a 7 until the end.
    • "The Faire Folk" off of Ride the Skies surprisingly stays at a 2 or 3 for most of the song, with the occasional jump to a 7.
  • Nobody Loves the Bassist: Inverted. The band doesn't have a guitarist, with Brian Gibson's bass playing being widely praised for its complexity and catchiness.
  • One Steve Limit: Averted. Both members of the band are named Brian.
  • Scary Musician, Harmless Music: Inverted. The duo look pretty unassuming, and they come across as well-adjusted off the stage, in stark contrast to the brutality of their music.
  • Sensory Abuse: Their music is so loud and chaotic that it's not uncommon for concertgoers to be unable to hear properly after attending a show.


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