The Semitones is a group that makes loud music on the border of metal, hard-core
and alternative rock.
1 min 40 sec. - 196Kb.
song : Alexis Hendrickse
Producer : Watt'S On
Year : 1998
Record co. : Watt'S On
58 sec. - 110 Kb.
song : Alexis Hendrickse
Producer : Alex Hendrickse
Year : 2001
Record co. : Buzzville
It was founded in Brussels in 1992 (first as "STS - Sexual Tempest of
Sound"), and released its first material on CD in 1994 ("Body &
Soul", on Alternative Mad Records). From the beginning, the band was
making music in which genres as diverse as fusion, metal, hard-core, jazz, progressive
rock and crossover clashed with each other.
In 1998, they joined the alternative and small Belgian label "What's On
Records", a company that was founded by Dee J (one of the members of the
famous metal/rock band la Muerte). Their first release
for this company, the 6 track "Mr. Nice Guy", also provided the
Semitones with their biggest "hit" (up to this day) : "Tada
... Tada", a track that has all the anger of hardcore and the melodic
quality of say Living Colour united in one track. Radio 21, the rock-radiostation
from the South picked it up and kept on playing it ever since.
In 1999 they ended up fourth in the talent-contest "Court-circuit",
stood at the Dour-festival for the fourth time, and released their second full-CD
: "Higher". As it was reviewed in "Charlie's Hardies"
(Stage) "Influences from different genres ara artfully combined into an
excellent blend that's dripping with enthusiasm. The chaps are young and want
to be more than just a hardcore band. The violence of that music is combined with
alternative sounds, which could be a recipe for getting up high on the Belgian
The Dour-festival also gave a good description of the band in its programme-booklet
of 1999 : "The Semitones offer an alternative to those who though hard
music in Belgium was dead after the departure of Channel
Zero. Contrary to the name of the band, their music doesn't contain any "semi-tones"
at all. The music is ultra-melodic and powerful. The "death"-grunt is
ideally combined with a more traditional rock-voice. The band has songs that combine
both elements of the best hard music of the nineties (Sepultura of Machine Head)
as that of American rock of the seventies. Belgium's not only big in pop, it also
offers a lot in hard music!"
2001, The Semitones released their 6th album (the 3rd "real" full cd),
this time called "Glitch". The album came about after yet another
little change in the line-up (but as they say themselves : "Un nouveau
line-up par album, sinon rien : pas d'bras, pas d'chocolat, pas d'album!"),
and was self-produced by Alex Hendrickse. As rif-raf wrote about it : "Seven
years after it's debut, this band from Brussels, is now well and truly one of
the most respected bands in the European metal scene. And that does justice to
the fact that they hit us again with an album that's even more convincing than
"Higher", which already rightfull earned them some success. "Glitch"
flows over with metal pearls, alternating murder-riffs with more melodic passages
in which the vocals of Alexis Hendrickse work miracles". And the Dutch
magazine Oor wrote even "The Semitones (for men from Brussels) often sound
like their heroes Deftones, Faith No More and Tool, but thanks to the characteristic
riffs, singular breaks and great vocals, this never gets irritating. On the contrary,
these must be the most sincere and honest nu metal-band of all times. From now
on, the perfect combination of hard and softaller comes from Belgium".
A single from the album was "One Shot".
- Alexis Hendrickse (guitar, vocals)
- Pierre Chambin (drums + 2nd vocal)
- Tony Volin - Olivier Van Loo - Samuel Volan - Tony Désir - David Fisicaro
- Gal Aroch - Olivier Meuront (bass)
Buy CD's of this band at
- Body & Soul (Alternative Mad Records, 1994)
- When (mini-cd, Alternative Mad Records,1995)
- Yaakov's quest (mini-cd, Alternative Mad Records, 1996)
- Mr. Nice Guy ? (EP, What's On Records, 1998)
- Higher (What's On Records, 1999)
- Glitch (Buzzville Records / Suburban)
- Band concact : Alexis Hendrickse
or fax : 0032-(0)2-2231021
- The Semitones by Pierre
Royer (of the Belgian Band List)
- a short article on the Semitones at Netbeat.
- interview with metal-zine W-Fenec
- Studio technician Philippe
Chambin provides some inside info on the Semitones
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