New Jersey’s heritage as a place for emerging rock bands has been important to the development of Roots of Rebellion, a five member New Jersey-grown band. Formed in 2001, the music of Roots of Rebellion has been characterized as “melodic hard rock,” utilizing a variety of instruments and rhythms to create a distinctively different sound.
In 2004, the band released their debut CD, "The Looking Glass" which sold 1000 copies at live shows and through such outlets as CD Baby, Amazon.com, and Tower Records.com. In addition, the band’s music has been digitally sold through online distributers such as Magnatune.com and iTunes. "The Looking Glass" has received radio play on several college, commercial and internet radio stations. Five of the eight songs on the CD were honored by GarageBand.com as “Track of the Day” based upon popular support from online reviewers.
In September of 2004, the band was invited to play Locobazooka, a major outdoor New England rock festival attended by 25,000 fans, which featured such national bands as Shinedown, Nonpoint, Damage Plan, Crossfade, Tesla, and Saliva.
In 2005, Roots of Rebellion played such legendary venues as The Stone Pony, CBGB (twice) and Starland Ballroom (twice). In a statewide “Battle of the Bands” featuring 200 of the metro area’s best emerging bands, Roots of Rebellion finished second in the competition. For the second year in a row, the band was nominated for the Asbury Music Awards in the Best Young Band category. In addition to traditional gigs, the band has played and organized several benefit shows for Katrina and Tsunami victims, and a former high school classmate injured in an accident.
The year 2006 brings forth "Surfacing", the new album featuring Messenger and Declaration. Various live dates are being planned to get the new music out to existing fans and new audiences. In April, Roots of Rebellion opened for veteran prog rockers Kings X at Starland Ballroom. More dates are planned including a return to The Stone Pony. Roots of Rebellion has signed on with the Foley Entertainment Agency for expanded artist development.
Roots of Rebellion features John Penola on lead vocals, Tyler Bissell on guitars, Rob Struck on bass, Kurt Wubbenhorst on drums and backing vocals, and Matt Cimiluca on keyboards and guitar.