Formed in 1999 by Rick Froberg (January 1968, California, USA; guitar, vocals) and John Reis (b. 1969, San Diego, California, USA; guitar, melodica, vocals), who had previously worked together in the late 80s and early 90s in the bands Pitchfork and Drive Like Jehu. The Hot Snakes was initially intended to be a side project for Reis during down time from his main band Rocket From The Crypt, but over the course of a seven-year career ultimately enjoyed close to equal status. The bands debut, Automatic Midnight, arose from rough demo recordings Reis made with drummer Jason Kourkounis, with Froberg adding vocals at a later date. The album was released on Reis Swami label and featured Frobergs artwork (he had established a career as a visual artist in the 90s). Musically, the trio reprised the breakneck punk rock fury of Drive Like Jehu with barely a nod to any contemporary musical developments.
The geographical distance...