Scarab Domain was formed in 1983 by three budding musicians; Mike Garrison (vocals/guitar), Marty Hobratschk (bass), and Derk Sullivan (drums). Cutting their teeth on every Rush song they could learn, the group played high school talent shows, local parties, and even a bar mitzvah, before quickly moving into developing their own original tunes. Although their roots were in Southern Rock, the band was also heavily influenced by Triumph, Marillion, Queensryche, and Yes. The band's style was described by a local club soundman as "a cross between Rush and April Wine." Admired by some, shunned as "geek rock" by others; the band didn't care. We just had fun doing our thing. Scarab Domain added long-time friend and guitarist/vocalist Bill Upton and continued to play local showcase gigs in Houston and College Station, but ended up parting ways in 1992 when Derk moved into a more jazz-influenced phase, and joined the local outfit, Demise of Folly.
This site was created to remember and hopefully preserve some of the music created by four guys with a little talent and alot of passion. We might've made a decent living at it (Marty is still trying), but more stable careers and level-headed women kept it to a mere hobby for the rest of us.
I hope you enjoy the music. Most of it was re-recorded using scratchy live tapes and bad demos as a point of reference. Since Derk tragically passed away in 2001, it was not possible to bring him into a real studio to capture his phenominal drum playing as it should've been heard. I am working hard to eventually get his note-for-note licks into an acceptable electronic format. It is more important to me now as a tribute to this fine, somewhat unknown drummer.
Musicians who performed and contributed to the final lineup of Scarab Domain include Mike Abels (drums), Dave Hardy (vocals and keyboards), Gary Snell (drums), and Martin Connaughten (bass). There is no doubt that Mike and Dave had a great impact on the final sound of the band, with their eclectic taste in progressive rock at a very early age (thanks, guys!).
Past gigs included tiny showcase venues such as Zelda's and Blythe Spirits in Houston.
Progressive guitar-heavy rock. High energy with some shallow but more often deep lyrics regarding love, relationships, politics, and the fear of isolation. Marty was the lyricist of the group, but has mostly abandoned his writing now that he's backing more established bands.
2010 Gibson Les Paul Classic, Fender '60s Road Worn Strat, '08 Tokai 52 RI Tele, Suhr M6 Pro, '17 B&G Little Sister Crossroads, and a Martin GPCPA1 acoustic. All guitars are tricked out with various boutique pickups. Signal feeds through a Mojo Hand FX Colossus, Ibanez Jet Driver, JHS Sweet Tea, Alexander Pedals Jubilee, Eventide H9, and finally a Wampler Ethereal. Final signal drives a Mesa Rectoverb 25 combo or a Ceriatone OTS Mini 20 Head with Two Rock 113 Cab. Drums dubbed from old tapes using a Boss DR5 Dr. Rhythm, Roland TR505, and ToonTracks EZ Drummer software for samples. Bass parts recorded with a Fender Classic '60s Jazz Bass through a Phil Jones briefcase bass combo. All signals wind up going into Cubase LE software. Some of the more straight-forward tunes were just popped out using a Boss 1180 digital recorder.
Not trying to get discovered. Just wanting to create a few memories for some old friends and for my kids to experience something their dad still holds very close.