Lightning Bolt emerged from Providence, Rhode Island in 1995 as a three-piece art school project. Initially there was Brian Chippendale's explosive, non-stop drumming, Brian Gibson's James Chance & The Contortions-like bass lines, and Hisham Bharoocha's vocals propelling them in a fury of volatile noise and orgiastic tribalism.
The group helped found Fort Thunder, a music and art collective, and recorded "Lightning Bolt" which was issued through Load records in 1999.
By 2001's "Ride The Skies", Bharoocha had departed (he eventually formed Black Dice). This left the vocal duties to Chippendale, who put the microphone into a sock and stuffed it under a mask he wears while performing.
Lightning Bolt did a series of tours with bands like The Locust, Arab on Radar, Orchid, and Melt-Banana before returning in 2003 with the studio album "Wonderful Rainbow". The album did very well in underground music circles, and set up the release of 2005's "Hypermagic Mountain".
Lightning Bolt is well known for their live performances, in which they turn up the volume as loud as it can possibly go and forgo a traditional stage, preferring to perform amidst the audience.
WIRE magazine: "LIGHTNING BOLT's anti-hierarchical, avant hardcore bass and drums remains one of the most exhilarating live shows on earth, not least for the sociological phenoma it provokes."