American indie rock trio Quiz Show has announced that, in March, they will release their eponymous debut album, which sees two alt-rock / hardcore music legends return to the mic with new electrifying output after quarter of a century on hiatus.
Ahead of this album, which will be released via Montclair, NJ-based Magic Door Record Label, the band are previewing the tracks ‘Dime A Dozen’ and ‘What If?’.
Today the trio is made up of Chris Matthews (founding member of legendary DC alternative rock band Shudder To Think) and his powerful rhythm section, bassist Jesse Krakow and drummer Joe Billy. But Quiz Show is not just any band – it’s a continuation. After picking up his guitar and again writing songs, Matthews formed Quiz Show with former Shudder To Think drummer Kevin March (Guided By Voices, The Dambuilders).
The ‘Quiz Show’ LP brings together the singles the band recorded with award-winning producer Ray Ketchem (Guided By Voices, Luna, Versus, Elk City, Gramercy Arms) between 2017 and 2020 at his Magic Door Recording Studio in Montclair, NJ. Ketchem also re-mastered these tracks for this release. Interesting fact: through this process, Matthews discovered that he enjoys singing as much as playing guitar.
When Matthews and March learned that they both lived in Montclair, they joined bassist Frank Gibbons and headed to Ray Ketchem’s studio. In 2021, Quiz Show added another Shudder To Think member when Jesse Krakow replaced Gibbons. While drummer Joe Billy also relieved March of drumming duties, March’s contribution features throughout this album.
With Ketchem on board, Quiz Show released a string of singles – songs of protest, friendship and frustration – to a growing number of listeners. Tapping the energy of punk rock with its loud guitars and driving rhythms, the vocals strive to capture the emotional fervour of punky garage rock. Pushing boundaries with rhythms, arrangements, chord structures and vocals that expand from straight-ahead power to music, they weave together different influences, including classic rock, prog and alternative, to create complex and beautiful in unexpected ways.
“This is our first album! Quiz Show has been making music since 2017 and put out most of the songs on this release as singles between 2017 and 2020. We are releasing them now after remixing and remastering all of the songs to freshen them up and so they can document the origin story of Quiz Show in a single package. This release also brings these songs under the amazing umbrella of the Magic Door record label,” says Chris Matthews.
“Quiz Show songs come together when ideas voiced through the guitars are set to rhythms constructed on the bass and drums. Lyrics come after the melodies, which themselves often emerge while Chris is driving around. These songs were created in the in-between spaces of complicated lives. We cherish this work and the feelings it describes.”
Written by Chris Matthews, Kevin March and Frank Gibbons
Chris Matthews – guitar, vocals
Kevin March – drums, vocals
Frank Gibbons – bass
Recorded, mixed & mastered by Ray Ketchem at Magic Door Recording (Montclair, NJ)
Cover art – ‘Moving Day’ by Renee LoBue
Cover design by Ray Ketchem
01. Sound of Kissing
02. Almost Famous
03. Dime a Dozen
04. Monumental Shade
05. Pom Pom Boy
07. Sell the Scene
08. Big Bank Theory
09. The Construct
10. What If?
11. Always Waiting
12. Mannequin Sun
‘Dime A Dozen’ and ‘What If?’ are now available via Bandcamp, where the full ‘Quiz Show’ LP (out on March 17), is already available for pre-order. As of February 14, the ‘Sound of Kissing’ single will also be released across digital providers, including Apple Music and Spotify.