White Reaper is a fuzz-rock explosion made up of two: guitarist and vocalist Anthony Esposito and drummer and “cassette tape technology” specialist Nick Wilkerson. Their debut album, White Aura, was released on Halloween. “We’re really influenced by fuzzy 1960s and 1970s kind of stuff, like Blue Cheer and Black Sabbath, but we’re also really influenced by more poppy stuff like the Beach Boys,” Esposito says.
When asked how they get some of the sounds that distinguish them, Wilkerson explains, “We use a delay pedal to make cool noises, and we recorded drums on a 4-track in our dear friend Hank Paradis’ barn.”
The North Oldham natives are finishing up their studies at MTSU and are returning to Louisville full time. Their next chapter starts with a show at the Rudyard Kipling tonight (Dec. 19), headlined by another of Wilkerson’s bands, The New Mexico, which has also included his twin brother Sam and Esposito.
“We grew up in Louisville, and we met each other when we went to school in Oldham County,” Wilkerson says. They bonded over hardcore shows and started playing together four years ago. They both decided to go to MTSU, 30 minutes from Nashville, to study audio production.
“We really liked Nashville, we went to some awesome shows, but we always had to bum rides from kids who had cars, so we also missed a lot of awesome shows,” Wilkerson laments. “We’re really excited about moving back because it was a lot harder for us to properly jam in a dorm room.”
Discouraged by the commuter nature of their school, the duo is excited to return home.
“Louisville is a place where we can practice whenever we want, record whenever we want, and we know a little bit more about how the Louisville scene works,” Wilkerson says. “Our plan is to write a ton and tour as much as possible. Basically, we want to do everything that we were too young to do in our previous bands. Now that we are older, we can work harder and we have bigger plans.”