By Joe Bachman
The City Times sat down with Alexis Walton from ‘HYDE’ to discuss their upcoming performance this Saturday at Octane Bar & Grill.
Who is HYDE?
“HYDE is a Wausau based band consisting of 5 talented members, which have over 30+ years of performing experience between each member. From most of HYDE’s members opening for extremely well known acts and touring with other successful bands and groups, one member performing different genres and also musical theater, and one even having some aerobic instructor background. HYDE definitely is a diverse yet creative and talented group of Rockers.”
Brad Warning – Guitar and vocals
Randy Gantner – Drums
Michael Pries – Bass
Tom Wroblewski – Keys and vocals
Alexis Walton – Lead vocals
Shon Falherty – Sound
Doug Walton – Lights
How long has HYDE been together?
“HYDE started in 2008 with founding members Randy and Brad. With many member changes over the years, this current group surely has what it takes to not only make top notch music, but stick together as a group. Bands/musicians have a tendency to go through struggles with members from time to time due to power struggles, inability to compromise and egos. This version of HYDE demonstrates what a band is truly supposed to represent: a truly functional family. We respect one another, love one another and believe in each other.”
What influences does the band draw from?
“Pretty much any 80’s hair band.”
“We also do a mixture from Ozzy & Metallica to Heart & Janis, REO & Foreigner to Joan Jett & Pat Benetar. We have found that adding some “HYDE SAUCE”, which is our own twist and special touch to songs add a lot to songs. We hear a lot that people like our versions of songs better than the originals.
“And speaking of originals, our writing bug has bitten us. We have taken some songs you would never expect and completely rewrote them, on top of working on true originals Brad has had stored away. We intend to write songs that people will truly crap over; not just be a band that can say ‘oh we write originals.’ If we can’t picture something on the radio, or the crowd truly going nuts, in our opinion, it doesn’t matter if you wrote it or not. It needs to truly move people or why bother?”
What makes the Wisconsin Rapids music scene among the best in the state?
“Rapids is not only full of talent, but establishments/bars that welcome performers with open arms. Luckily most bands support each other by attending shows when there might be a night off, or promoting each other. FRM (Friends of Rapids Music), on Facebook, is evident of the support for the Rapids music scene.”
Any crazy experiences you’re willing to share to the public?
“Well of course there is the band truck breaking down during the bitter cold and no auto repair place open in the area.”
“Having police called for “noise ordinances” to just about every outdoor event because fans demand an encore and then posing with the police for pics or giving them autographs.”
“The best bar crowd we’ve ever had were 70+ year old casino travelers. It felt like we were in a real life version of the classic movie “Cocoon.” It not only taught us to never judge a book by its cover, but watching them walk around with successively placed stickers helped us develop our sociable phrase “Suck It.” (which we have on our can koosies)”
Is there something your fans may not know about HYDE?
“HYDE is one of the only bands in the area with one lead singer doing all the singing — and a chick singer none-the-less.”
Additional Fun Fact: Alexis is the voice of the Carpet City jingle.
Finally, describe HYDE in three words:
“Talented. Exciting. Meticulous.”
Here are some other bands playing this week in the Wisconsin Rapids area.
Friday, Jan. 27
Acoustic Open Mic — 7:00 p.m.
-Karen’s Wines & Steins will be hosting an acoustic open mic night on Friday. They are located at 160 1st St. North.
The Recliners — 7:00 p.m.
-The Recliners will be bringing their unique sound to Whiskey Rapids on Friday. Whiskey Rapids is located in downtown Wisconsin Rapids.
The Suspenders — 7:00 p.m.
-Get your fill of jazz and classical with The Suspenders. They will be playing the Hotel Mead, located at 451 E. Grand Ave.
Saturday, Jan. 28
Bootleg Hollar/Branded — 1:00 p.m.
-Bootleg Hollar and Branded will play the Casey Benz benefit, at the Ridges Golf Club, located at 2311 Griffith Ave.
Gray Katz — 8:00 p.m.
-The Gray Katz will be playing in Stevens Point at Rhody’s tavern on Saturday night. Rhody’s is located at 2301 Church St.
Relentless — 8:00 p.m.
-If you’re in Marshfield, head over to Rose Bowl Lanes, located at 1600 N Central Ave to catch Relentless, live.
Vada’s Rockhouse — 9:00 p.m.
-Catch rock band Vada’s Rockhouse at the Pourhouse on Saturday night. The Pourhouse is located at 3140 Lake Ave. in Wis. Rapids.
HYDE — 9:00 p.m.
-Local favorites Hyde will be taking the stage to rock your through the night at Octane Bar & Grill. Octane is located at 9047 8th St. South.