The Evolution of 9VoltRevolt

By Jason Ashcraft

The saying that "everything happens for a reason." could not be any truer for a group of guys known as 9Volt Revolt. The 'Revolt' began in 2002 as a studio project between longtime friends Stephen Beasey, (vocals and Brian Cain, bass. Beasey, grieving from a marriage gone bad, started writing music as an emotional release. After an initial stint in the studio, Cain and Beasey added Joey Arena on keyboards, Keith Bohne, guitar and Daniel Peterson, drums (subsequently replaced by Scott Stewart) to form 9VoltRevolt.

It's no surprise that the majority of their songs are about angst, loss of love and the disrespect received from relationships gone bad; Beasey's grief carried over lyrically as well as musically, with haunting keyboards, powerful industrial guitar rifts and at times, screeching vocals. As Cain describes it, "The band came together when it needed to."

I had a chance to sit down for a short interview with 9VR at their last rehearsal before their final live performance on March 31 at the Mojo Music Fest.

LMN: What is the main reason for the break up of 9VoltRevolt?

Beasey: "Because I promised myself that I was not going to be the 40-year-old-guy in the band and as of this Saturday, I'm 40." Bohne added, "Our singer came with an expiration date."

LMN: Does anyone not want 9VoltRevolt to split up?

Arena: "I don't think anyone wanted to see 9VR split up, but it is. But it's not really the end of 9VR, just the end of us playing out live. We'll still have our website and still sell our albums and t-shirts online."

LMN: What is your best memory together as a band?

Beasey: "It would have to be the time when were trying to get a video together for 'disconnected.' We played at Main Street Lounge during Goth night and a lot of louisvillemojo people showed up and the club was packed to the rafters and we could barely breathe."

LMN: Did you accomplish everything musically you wanted to do or do you feel like there is still something left to be done?

Cane: "That's hard to say. If we had started the band like 10 or 15 years ago the probably would have been a lot more opportunities or chances to go places. We have gotten offers to play everywhere on the freaking map. But we could never do it because of all the responsibilities we had at home. At the same time, the band started when it needed to start. So I think we accomplished everything we needed to."

LMN:Do you ever think there will be a time in the future that 9VR will reunite and play together again?

Arena: "I wouldn't say it's impossible, but definitely highly unlikely. As of right now, the official answer is no. But I keep saying that the day that 'Disconnected' starts paying us as well as 'Satisfaction' (referring to The Rolling Stones) we're getting back together."

The Mojo Music Fest came soon after the last rehearsal. Sponsored and hosted by Fender and Kali, long time DJs at There was also a heavy dose of DJ Stymie, who at times seemed to be the most intoxicated person at the event, ending the night with his shirt off. Of course the fest was crawling with Mojo-ers, mofo's, or whatver they call themselves. 9VoltRevolt has always been a popular attraction at past Louisville Mojo-hosted events; and they have even claimed the status of being "The official band of," citing the fans and supporters they have found via the website. The mojo-ers weren't really all that fired up during the performances of Radianation and King Sonic, although the music wasn't to blame for that. When 9VR took the stage, everyone seemed to liven up from obvious anticipation of the last show. 9VR came out strong with their best-known anthems, including "Disconnected," "Time To Let Go," "My Addiction," "Broken," "How To Fall Apart" plus a cover of Depeche Mode's "Personal Jesus."

Then the lights dimmed and on came Jazz Floyd, a small-framed, fair-skinned young-looking woman with short dark hair who took the microphone and began singing an unfamiliar song with the now Beasy-less 9VR. She brought a different kind of energy to the stage and lacked no enthusiasm for being front and center. Slightly more jovial and a lot more mobile than Steve Beasy, she never stood still during her entire performance. It became clear that she is to be lead vocalist in the new, as-yet-unnamed post-9Volt Revolt project. Beasey returned to the stage for9VR's encore performance of "The Way I Feel" with Jason from The Revenants singing alongside.

It was definitely a hip ending for a talented Louisville band once recognized by Blender Magazine as being one of the "Top Ten" unsigned bands nationally. 9Volt Revolt has enjoyed many years of success and assembled one of the largest fan bases in the Louisville music scene, while garnering favorable reviews in Gothic Beauty Magazine, LEO, Velocity and the Courier Journal. You can check them out on the web at and buy their albums, posters, tee-shirts and other merchandize. Watch for the new project with all remaining 9VR members.

I promised a high school friend, Sonia, who is also friends with some of the band members that I would promote her inside joke. Sonia says, "Free Joey Arena." Whatever that means.