Snake River Conspiracy Biography

After leaving his former band to explore more challenging musical horizons, reclusive ex-Third Eye Blind bass player Jason Slater found work on the Los Angeles, California music scene as a producer working with artists including Sugar Ray, Orgy, Prizefighter and Isaac Hayes. At the same time Slater was constantly writing material for a new project to be the antithesis of Third Eye Blind’s increasingly bland direction. Noting the predominance and success of female-fronted pop outfits, although singularly unimpressed by all of them, Slater saw the commercial potential of recruiting a strong, attractive female vocalist to front his next band. A chance meeting with ‘exotic dancer’ Tobey Torres at a Northern California strip club saw Snake River Conspiracy come to fruition. The statuesque Torres’ smouldering sexuality not only made her visually perfect for the new outfit, but her vocal ability was a perfect foil for Slater’s jump-cut amalgam of industrial, electro, pop and rock styles. Releasing their 1999 debut EP Vulcan (which included a cover version of the Beatles’ ‘She Said She Said’), the title track was an expletive-laden blast of vitriolic electro pop. Another EP Smells Like Teen Punk Meat followed before the band’s debut, Sonic Jihad, was released in 2000 to overwhelmingly enthusiastic reviews. Dark and edgy, Torres persuasive vocals ranged from sickly sweet to a feral roar and were fully stretched over the ambitious arrangements with ‘Strangled’ featuring a sample from ‘Diamonds Are Forever’ and searing cover versions of the Cure’s ‘Lovesong’ and the Smiths’ ‘How Soon Is Now?’.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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