(Tickets: $10 per night, or a three-day pass for $21. You can purchase advance tickets at the Cave, or via email at . Just make sure you order before April 15th to allow the snail mail to get to you in time.)

Press Release. April 2012

Greetings, folks!

Once again, the Instro Summit returns to Chapel Hill, and once again, we continue to grow. What started in 2009 as a one-day, four band bill has now grown into a 22-band, three-day, two venue mega-fest of lyric-free fun and finery. We are now officially the largest all-instrumental music festival in the USA! As my Uncle Gary would have said, “Who’d a thunk it?”

The Summit once again returns to the Cave in Chapel Hill, this time from Friday May 4th to Sunday, May 6th. Although we are the biggest fest we’ve ever been, it’s also a bit of a bittersweet moment for us, as this will be our last year at the Cave, our haunt of choice since the beginning. This decision has nothing to do with Cave owner Mouse Mock’s decision to sell the venerable old venue, but instead has everything to do with size. Simply put, we’ve run out of room, and are seeking a bigger club next year to contain our ever-expanding lineup and fan base.

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves–let’s talk about what’s up with this year! In addition to having 22 bands (eight of which have never played the Summit before) from all over the country, including Georgia, Florida, Connecticut, Alabama, Washington DC, Maryland, Vermont, Maine, Ohio, Indiana, Massachusetts, and of course, North Carolina, we also have our special events, which include:

The Instro Summit Raffle!

The ticket sales from last years’ raffle allowed the Summit to double the pay of nearly every band that played it, and even let us pay several hard-working members of the Instro Summit staff who have been doing this thing for free since the beginning. Needless to say, we’ve brought it back again.

Prizes this year include:

A DiPinto Galaxie 4 Guitar (courtesy of DiPinto Guitars)
A Year’s Supply of Utz Potato Chips (courtesy of Utz Quality Foods)
Two Valco “The Stooge” Fuzz Pedals (courtesy of Eastwood Guitars)
A 75-dollar gift certificate for the Carrboro Music Loft (courtesy of the Music Loft of Carrboro, if that wasn’t already obvious..)
A mini suitcase of swag! Featuring CD’s and a “Continental” magazine from our sponsor, Double Crown Records, plus other cool CD’s T-shirts and the like from our bands and sponsors

We have once again purchased the fancy raffle tickets where you provide your contact information, so you don’t have to be present at the drawing, or the Summit–or even the same state–to enter (we shipped one of our prizes to Connecticut last year, so we know what we’re talking about!) Raffle tickets are five bucks each, and can be purchased at the Cave, during the Summit, from various Instro Summit musicians and volunteers, and online by contacting us at

Even if you don’t enter the raffle, there’s still a chance you might end up with something cool; several of our sponsors, including Pabst Brewing, DiPinto Guitars, and Double Crown Records are providing free swag that we’ll be giving away between sets!

The Instro Summit Lunch Jam!

One of the Summit’s unofficial events, headed up by 9th Wave and North East Surf Music Alliance (NESMA) members Sandy and Mike Rosado, was to have a little impromptu jam and cocktail session Saturday afternoon with the other Summit bands before the big event that evening. This year, we’ve decided to make it an official get-together, held this year at Southern Rail on Saturday, May 5th. Come meet and hang with the bands playing that evening, enjoy some lunch and a drink, and watch–and maybe join in--as the musicians jam with each other on SR’s Station stage. This runs from noonish until around 2:30, cause we have to make way for another off-Cave extravaganza:

The “Can You Play as Wack’d as Link Wray?” Guitar competition and the Rumble Jam!

Two of the Instro Summits’ most memorable events have now moved over to the Station in nearby Carrboro, since the Cave has returned to a strict “no cover music” policy. First is the “Can You Play as Wack’d as Link?” contest, in which guitarists join the band on stage and try to out-wild each other, performing their versions of the buh-zarre solo from Link Wray’s classic “I’m Branded”, in order to win a suitcase full of Instro Summit merchandise. The other is grand opening of the evening, the “Rumble Jam”, where they try to cram as many guitarists on stage at the same time and have them all play Link Wray’s signature song together in one massive, fuse-blowing wall o’ sound. We’ve previously had no less than twelve guitarists join Phatlynx in the fun. Could they put even more on stage this year? We think so!

Incidentally, these events and Phatlynx’s show are the only free and all-ages part of the Summit weekend, so bring the whole family (along with your guitar and amp) and join in the fun!

Video of the I’m Branded Contest 2011
Video of the Rumble Jam 2011

But let’s get to the meat of the matter–the music and the bands playing it!

Bands playing Friday, May 4th:

7p Killer Filler (North Carolina)

Starting things off is the official Instro Summit “Host Band”, Hillsborough, NC’s Killer Filler plays a royal mix of 60’s inspired surf, soul, & lounge, fronted by goofball organist/guitarist Crispy Bess and Stoic guitar master Bryon Settle. Picture a three-way cross between the Ventures, Booker T & the MG’s and Henry Mancini playing a rowdy party, and you’ll know what they’re up to. Come early to witness the fun!

8p The Mystery Men? (Georgia)

Formed from different corners of the Atlanta music scene, these shadowy figures play their own brand of reverby instro surf music. Always with a mind toward the creative, The Mystery Men? are continuously looking to hypnotize new and old fans alike! A solid benchmark for what modern surf music should sound like today, these folks did fine a job last year, and get better and more interesting every time they perform.

9p Aqualads (North Carolina)

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: The Aqualads are the best surf band in North Carolina, PERIOD, and are arguably one of the best surf bands ever. Formed in Charlotte back in the 1990's, as one of the groups that started surf music’s “3rd Wave” the ‘Lads still continue to play and record music that blows the doors off any venue they play. Put ‘em on your “Gotta See” list–you won’t be disappointed.

10p Weisstronauts (Massachusetts)

As they constantly remind us, Boston MA’s Weisstronauts are NOT a surf band, but their clever, fast, fun, & flat-out rockin’ guitar instrumentals would give ANY surf band a good lesson in how instrumental music is supposed to be done. And they usually do it with tiny little amps! Watch them, and be impressed by well, everything!

11p Destination: Earth (Indiana)

Highly touted by their fellow touring bands and also featuring a member of The Madeira, Indianapolis’s Destination: Earth combines elements of the spy, surf, garage and indie genres with styles of music that have yet to be invented As their bio states: “The members of Destination: Earth have become the universe's quintessential power trio of rock-it science. This is their first visit to the Summit, so make them feel welcome on our planet.

12a The Madeira (Indiana)

Formed by Ivan Pongracic, leader of the legendary surf group the Space Cossacks, The Madeira play Surf music “born of screaming wind over the sand dunes of the Sahara Desert, deafening echoes of waves pounding the Gibraltar Rock, joyous late-night gypsy dances in the small towns of Andalucia, and exotic cacophony of the Marrakesh town square,” Sounds good to us! They just released their highly-anticipated third full-length CD, Tribal Fires , with which they go Sub-Saharan, exploring the sounds of deep, dark jungles of central Africa! This will be the Madeira’s first trip to the Summit, and it’s one of the most highly anticipated shows of the weekend.

1a Kill, Baby...Kill! (Alabama)

Bringing our first night to an ass-kicking close, Anniston, Alabama’s Kill, Baby...Kill! Are Frenetic, Fast, Frenzied, Fun, Frantic, Fabulous, and whole lot of other positive words that start with F. If you like the hepped-up on Count Chocula-flavored instrumentals of other Alabama bands Like Daikaiju, or Man...Or Astro-Man?, this band will be right up your alley.

Bands on Saturday, May 5th:

12p-2p (at the Station) The Instro Summit Lunch Jam (see above for details)

3p (at the Station) Phatlynx/I’m Branded Contest/Rumble Jam (see above for more details)

We’re firing things up waaay early on Saturday! Rougemont, NC’s favorite Pork obsessed surfabilly band returns to the Summit, playing their rockin’ covers of folks like Link Wray, the Champs, and a mess of original material. Four fat guys knocking out a fun-filled set o’ badass noise, Phatlynx is Crispy Bess (Killer Filler, ex-SCOTS) Groves Willer (Evil Weiner, ex-Family Dollar Pharaohs), Robbie Poore (the Strawberry Zots, The Drags) and Colonel Dave Perry (Twilighter, Dirty Little Heaters).

Phatlynx also serves as musical emcees to two of the Instro Summits’ most memorable events, now moved over to the Station at Southern Rail in nearby Carrboro, since the Cave has returned to a strict “no cover music” policy. First is the “Can You Play as Wack’d as Link?” contest, in which guitarists join the band on stage and try to out-wild each other, performing their versions of the buh-zarre solo from Link Wray’s classic “I’m Branded”, in order to win a suitcase full of Instro Summit merchandise. The other is grand opening of the evening, the “Rumble Jam”, where they try to cram as many guitarists on stage at the same time and have them all play Link Wray’s signature song together in one massive, fuse-blowing wall o’ sound. We’ve previously had no less than twelve guitarists join Phatlynx in the fun. Could they put even more on stage this year? We think so!

7p Atom Bumz (Maryland)

Annapolis Marylands’ Atom Bumz are making their 2nd Instro Summit appearance. Born from the influences of old-school instrumental music, California surf, and Chicago Blues the Bumz pound out Chesapeake Bay inspired originals, fiery old school instros, and an S-Load of the unexpected. An Old Bay spiced rockin combo just itching to kick off an instro party Saturday Night, this is a party band!

8p 9th Wave (Connecticut)

9th Wave has been performing since 1995, from the northeast (NYC, Boston) as far south as Savannah GA. Regulars at nearly every Sleazefest, and participants at nearly every Instro Summit, 9th Wave (from Storrs CT) plays an diverse combination of surf, exotica & hot rod music at regional music and tiki festivals, hot rod/motorcycle/custom car shows, cultural institutions, clubs, and more. With their unique and signature style, 9th Wave has recorded six full-length CDs of original music. The 9th Wave sound is made up of lead surf guitar, bass, drums, Farfisa organ, rhythm guitar, flute, and saxophone, featuring vintage Fender guitars, amps & reverb tanks. These folks are also champions of East Coast Surf Music, and are the founders and directors of The North East Surf Music Alliance (, the largest network of surf bands in the world. (They may also be the only Surf Band with a single on the legendary Waffle House jukebox!)

9p The Surge! (Georgia)

Surf guitarists Eddie Katcher and Woody Johnson of Atlanta based The Surge! are two of those rare fellows who actually played surf music when it came out the first time in the mid 1960’s and their enthusiasm for the sound hasn’t diminished one bit over the years. Additionally, Eddie K is also one of the co-founders of Atlanta’s long running and highly successful “Clarkston Surf Fest” where we discovered a lot of the bands we’re having up for Instro Summit (The Mystery Men? and Daikaiju, for instance). When Cave owner Mouse Mock heard The Surge! play at the first Instro Summit, he IMMEDIATELY said “We’re doing this again next year!” If you are interested in hearing how surf music should be played, look no further. These guys deliver it with authenticity AND conviction. One more thing: word has it that The Surge may finally have a new CD out in time for Instro Summit and we are awaiting that almost as eagerly as the band themselves are.

10p Atomic Mosquitos (Virginia)

Veterans of every Instro Summit since the first one, Alexandria, VA’s Atomic Mosquitos have been belting out kickass third wave surf in the greater DC area for a while now. Their last record, "Meltdown" got an enthusiastic rave from the UK instrumental ’zine "Pipeline" , and the US’s "Continental" . They blew everyone away at our last Summit, playing songs inspired by everything from Aram Khachaturian to the Simpsons to Mountain Dew. Witness their two guitar, bass, drums and thermin lineup, and be muy impressed!

11p The Intoxicators (Florida)

Making their Summit debut as the most eagerly awaited band on the Saturday night schedule, The Intoxicators were founded in 2001, and have gone on to become one of the best surf bands in the Southeastern United States. Hailing from Tallahassee, Florida and Atlanta, Georgia, their music is a raw combination of classic surf, rockabilly, and space surf, with a little bit of intellectual stimuli thrown in at the right moments just to make things really interesting! These fellers have torn it up all over Georgia and Florida, and we’re delighted to have them come “up north” to join our little wingding.

12a The Krektones (North Carolina)

The Krektones blend the surf swagger of the Ventures with the scorching guitar of Link Wray and just a wee bit of Tav Falco psychobilly to make a beat that’s pretty much impossible to stand still to. The Krektones feature Krekel at lead, Dave Gay on bass, and Lance Wille on drums. These instrumentalists bring a broad range of musical experience, swinging wide from stints with Mad Tea Party, Freakwater, and The Reigning Sound. Don’t let the sequined tuxedo jackets fool you—these boys will rip it up. [Crispy adds: This is also the first time at the Summit the Krektones will be with their horn section, a sight only previously enjoyed buy their local Asheville audiences. I can’t wait to see these fellers at full strength!]

1a Blood Red River (North Carolina)

Closing things out Saturday night with a whole lot of steak, sizzle and cheesecake are Durham’s finest, Blood Red River. If you can avert your eyes from the spectacular show put on by Blood Red River’s official go-go girl, Miss Bliss (and judging from the crowd at last year’s Summit, not many did), you’ll find a fast-paced, twangy & rockin’ group along the lines of Huevos Rancheros or Mustang Lightning’s instrumental work. One of our busiest local instrumental acts, Blood Red River takes surf punk, ditches the surf, and gives the punk a Capital “P”. If they were in a Frankie and Annette movie, they’d be the house band at the Von Zipper gangs’ hideout.

Bands Playing Sunday, May 6th

7p The Third Expression (North Carolina)

Referencing sounds from such diverse and eclectic wellsprings as Brian Wilson, Jamaica's Studio One, Jimmy Webb, Les Paul, The Shadows, Ernesto Lecuona and Booker T. & The MG’s, The Third Expression blend a wide array of influences that gather elements from classic pop, jazz and old school roots music along with more exotic flavors. The Third Expression have performed and/or recorded as sidemen with a wide spectrum of established artists from North Carolina and beyond including: Caitlin Cary,Tift Merritt, Ryan Adams, Big Al Anderson (NRBQ), Andy Kuncl, International Orange, Taj Mahal, Velvet, the North Carolina Symphony, John Howie Jr. and the Rosewood Bluff, JKutchma & The Five Fifths and Katherine Whalen among others. [Crispy adds: Fans of Danny Gatton’s musical hijinks should not miss this one–surf fans witnessing Mike Krause’s guitar playing may find their jaws permanently hanging open after the experience.]

8p The Meteor Men (North Carolina)

What happens when Big City meets Low Country on the North Carolina Coast?...THE METEOR MEN! That's right, you combine two rural North Carolina Natives and two New York City natives, stick em all on the beach with instruments in hand and the outcome is bound to be something special! Inspired by varied influences and the nearby pounding surf, The Meteor Men are making waves and doing their best to spread the gospel of reverb. From Old School Surf to ruckus Rockabilly and always interesting original Instros, The Meteor Men will not disappoint!

9p The Monterreys (North Carolina)

With a wink and a nudge, through the past and into the distant beyond, The Monterreys will sweep you into their sonic spectrum of sound and transform you back to another time, or perhaps forward, to another galaxy. The reverb drenched, 6-string mayhem, is courtesy of Johnny Rocket Stewart, and the driving, raucous rhythm of Jason Dickey, is matched only in fury, by crazed bassist Leon Daniel, to form a wall of virgin and vintage voodoo. Sinister and sweet sounds merge together and Monterreys will have you champing at the bit to get up and boog-a-loo!

10p Rebel Surfers (Tennessee)

Nashville’s Rebel Surfers offer a unique hybrid of Surf, Rockabilly, Spy, Blues, Hot Rod, Garage and Spaghetti, is the instrumental and rockabilly collaboration between Journey Man Detroit Guitarist Pete Jamestone and New York Rockabilly Sax Kitten, Bassist and Vocalist Manda Lou. Pete's credits include Producer, Writer, and Guitarist for Nikki And The Corvettes (Bomp Records), The Motor City Rockers ( The Romantics Original Incarnation), The Original House Of Blues Allstars (Boston), Nick Kane (The Mavericks), as well as sessions with Rockin' Ronnie Weiser and Ray Campi (Rollin' Rock Records), Susan Tedeschi, Annie Rains, Ronnie Earl, and Was (Not Was). Manda Lou has led her own Rockabilly band in Nashville which has included Johnny G. d'Artenay and Harry Fontana. Manda Lou also toured Europe with American Music Abroad Empire Tour and played sax with Pete in Nashville's Soul Reputations. The Group has released The Limited Edition CD Live Bootleg is currently preparing for their first independent record/CD release (a sample of which can be found right here) and just Recorded the Original Track Bared My Soul for Bear Family Records 40th Anniversary Bear Themed Compilation as well as a Jingle and Promo for Bear Family Radio.

11p Thee Icepicks (Maine)

Blasting the public with a Burns Theremin and some cheap guitars, Portland Maine’s Thee Ice Picks play a high energy surf style mixed with the sweet voice of the theremin that has evolved into a truly original sound. Sort of the Anti-Los Straitjackets, this quintet of Ski mask wearing Zombies play loud, loose and silly, appropriate for a surf band of undead musicians based in the Frozen North. Warning: Viewers of their show might want to consider wearing a protective helmet to keep the ‘Picks away from their warm southern brains.

12a NoSeRiDeRs (North Carolina)

Formed after the demise of the semi-legendary Stunt Doubles, Wilmington’s Noseriders offer surf music with a few new and refreshing twists, such a reverb-less and overdriven lead guitar playing against a reverbed second guitarist (the exact opposite of tradition), and liberal use of Moog and Theremin to add a new-wave edge to the fun. The Noseriders also have the distinction of being one of the few surf bands at the Summit who actually surf--regularly --in their home turf, which pretty much gives them the street cred at this hoedown..

1a Concrete Rivals (Vermont)

Like Dick Dale and Slayer collaborating on a score for a B horror surf movie, Montpelier, Vermont’s Concrete Rivals approach to instro music would leave early thrash-metal pioneers such as Judas Priest and Metallica enthused. But their eclectic surf-metal compositions should interest punks, metalheads and rockabilly zealots alike. [Crispy Adds: This trio of surf, spy & sagebrush rock SERIOUSLY know how to tear it up, and if anyone can close this year’s Summit with a big ol’ bang, it’ll be these fine folks.]


And... Playing all weekend:

DJ Bumpadelic!

Back for the 3rd year Spawned from Baltimore Maryland USA, Dj Bumpadelic will be making sound waves in The Cave with a vinyl mix of instro wax from a variety of groovin genres before, between and after each band over the entire weekend Highlighting the MENTAL in INSTRO, Bump has been a spinning wax for 27 years and collecting vinyl since 1966. Since he bought his first single at age 4, The Beatles "Yellow Submarine" to today with over 5000 records (he stopped counting) his musical tastes span a wide range, from Psychedelic/Garage Psych, Electronic, Exotica, Soundtracks, Punk/New Wave, Classic Rock/Disco/Soul/Funk, Jazz to of course Instro/Surf! In 1990 he formed an Techno/Industrial band called Glitch with his partner Dan Nigrin and in 1994 they created the first all electronic indie record label in Baltimore, Defective Records. Since then buMp (a non-musician) has been a part of a music collective called Blash Sash and released a lp called Fungus of Terror in 2000 on his Defective label and in 2004 compiled from cassettes--also released on Defective--the highly sought after Cambodian Psych-Out LP of super groovy 70's Cambodian Pop Psych.

Today, aside from spinning VINYL ONLY, concentrating on 7 45's,(Bump says a Disc Jockey must play DISCS--and not the compact ones!) he plays electronic noise (keyboardless synths, theremin and effects) in a yet to be named Space Rock/Garage/Psych/Jam band. (band name suggestions are welcome) Check his youtube channel for his vinyl-cam recordings of past Instro Summits.


That’s our lineup! Interested? Tickets are ten bucks per night (a dollar less than last year!), or you can get a three-day pass for 21 bucks, which is STILL cheaper than any one day at the Grassroots Music Festival (which thankfully, we are not competing with this year!). You can purchase advance tickets at the Cave, or via email at Just make sure you order before April 15th to allow the snail mail to get to you in time.

We hope to see you there! You won’t be disappointed. Unless you really really like hearing some singer whine about their girlfriend...

–Crispy Bess
Head Instigator