Melding the best of ‘80s rock with modern technique and delivery, Exothermic Reaction brings the power when it comes to rock ‘n’ roll magic. Blending the best of the past with a myriad of key nuances and powerful melodic mojo of the present, Exothermic Reaction takes no prisoners when it comes to real rock delivery. Think Fuel mixed with Queen, AC/DC, the White Stripes, and Bad Company, and that might sum up the direction of Exothermic Reaction. This is a band that doesn’t shy away from experimenting and delivering talented compositional skills and instrumentation.
Their brand new self-titled album delivers 10 songs dominated by monster riffs and melodic vocal representations. Chief songwriter Joe “Ciid” Birardi knows his craft and never fails to provide music for the veritable masses. Utilizing hook-filled choruses and bridges that lead to outstanding verses and lead breaks, Birardi always does his homework. Speaking of Birardi, here’s a bit of band history and insight into this great band.
Exothermic Reaction comes from the creative mind of Toms River native Joe “Ciid” Birardi. Joe is a songwriter/producer/guitarist who has been responsible for several bands such as Blondsense, EOS, 9th Infantry Division, Carsin, River Monsters, and many others. Joe’s original signature sound is all over those bands, and his style is pure rock ‘n’ roll aggression. Birardi is also a staunch supporter of utilizing contributing band members, and he encourages all to add nuances to songs brought to the band for public consumption. He has been a pivotal producer, working with D.B. Calla and Joey Sinopoli, two groups that have had successful releases under the tutelage of Birardi and his custom studio magic.
Relying on some old friends as well as new blood, Birardi enlisted the vocal chops of Anthony Stanisci of the Jersey Shore area. Stanisci has been singing in bands since he was 16. His first band was called Vandetta. He cut his teeth playing various local shows together for about five years. He then transferred his energy to creating a band called Clearview. That group went on to play many NYC venues such as CBGB’s, the Lion’s Den, the Downtown, Rock & Roll Café, and many other well-known rooms. After a brief hiatus, Stanisci met Birardi while singing at a local establishment. “He spoke to me about being a part of a recent music project he was putting together. I was interested in collaborating with Joe, and he showed me a few of the songs he had in mind for his new project. I was absolutely floored with his music. So, I wrote lyrics and melodies for what he had given me, thus forming an “exothermic reaction” of songs,” says Stanisci. As a vocalist, Stanisci is a soulful and ballsy singer in the vein of Joe Lynn Turner or Brett Scallions.
Other key members of Exothermic Reaction include Bill Tuohy on rhythm guitar. Bill played in garage bands until he met Joe Birardi, and began playing with his band Heat in 2009. Shortly after joining Heat, Joe asked Bill to join his old band Blondsense, which was making a return to live shows. Bill helped run Blondsense with Joe doing several shows at the Stone Pony, including a benefit to raise money for the U.S. Troops with Adopt-a-Soldier Platoon. The show as at the Stone Pony raised $20,000. Bill also plays in EOS, 9th Infantry, and River Monsters as a guitarist.
July 2014 was the date that Bill started the record label 2BTB Music with Joe Birardi and Kris Bazylewicz. The label consists of several bands and has an online radio station—2BTB Music Rock Radio. Bill maintains the positions of Management/Marketing Director and Program Director for the station. Other band members include Kevin Losardo on rhythm and acoustic guitar, Matt Smith on bass, Rich Riley on synth guitar, Gerry Fortus on drums, and Mark Commiso on backing vocals and percussion. All members bring years of experience and style to Exothermic Reaction.
The band released their latest album with a live performance on January 26 at the world-famous Stone Pony in Asbury Park, NJ. Joining Exothermic Reaction was NJRockhouse, Billy J. Brown, and Plug Fiction for the exciting night. The event was emceed by WRAT’s very own Steve Hook, a top-notch DJ well-known for his masterful handling of some of rock ‘n’ roll’s best playlists. Hook is also well-known for his online political commentary and musical discoveries on the Jersey shore and the world beyond.