CODE RED RIOT burst onto the hard rock scene in 2017 as a moniker for the music of Corky Gainsford, ex-drummer/songwriter/producer for the band Otherwise (Century Media Records). He had split from that band just a year prior – after 2 full-length albums, five Top 20 singles, and an Acoustic EP he self-produced – aiming to step out from behind the kit and prove himself as a songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and frontman, following in the footsteps of Dave Grohl (Foo Fighters), Sully Erna (Godsmack) and Blake Allison (Devour The Day).
After posting an early demo of “Living Low” on Facebook, the song was quickly picked up by Sirius/XM Octane and several terrestrial radio stations across the USA, without any record label, promo team, or industry machine pushing the product. The music was unique, and people were responding. “It went over like gangbusters,” proclaimed Frank Pain, Program Director for KEYJ Rock 108. “One listener said, ‘This is the next generation of rock’.”
This response was noticed quickly by Sony RED Music, who signed the band shortly afterwards.
CODE RED RIOT’s debut album ‘MASK’ was co-produced by Gainsford and Shawn McGhee (Five Finger Death Punch, Disturbed, Papa Roach, Hellyeah), and critically-acclaimed as “an adrenaline rush with vigorous riffs, thrashing beats, and distinct vocals… leaving listeners begging for more” (Overdrive Music Magazine). Corky played all the main instruments himself (vocals, drums, bass and rhythm guitar), and recruited a fantastic guitar slinger from Minnesota, Tyler “Taz” Azure, to round out the album’s lead guitar work.
The band honed their live chops while sharing the stage with Breaking Benjamin, Eagles of Death Metal, Steel Panther, Fozzy, Gemini Syndrome, and were featured as Las Vegas’ Next Big Thing at the inaugural Las Rageous Festival. Their single “Bulletproof” caught fire by landing in heavy rotation on Sirius/XM Octane and Music Choice, peaking at #28 on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock Indicator Chart and #14 on the Foundations (SMR) Chart.
In August 2020, CODE RED RIOT began releasing its second batch of material via their new and independent imprint, Pop Cycle Records, starting with the single, “Weapon.” Co-written by Gainsford and Chris Iorio (Adelitas Way, Foundry), they describe the song as, “A hard hitting anthem of resistance and don’t-fuck-with-me bravado, purposely encapsulating the vibe of 2020.” Gainsford expands on the topic, “The struggle of life has never been more real, as economically, racially, and psychologically 2020 has brought the human condition to a crossroads we’ve never seen – or conceived possible – in this lifetime. I want CODE RED RIOT’s music to feel like an emotional catalyst for all of that.” In September 2020, they quickly followed up with “Impossible,” a single best described as “a walk through a maze of conflict, discord and discontent, that emerges on the other side stronger and unscathed.”
With more singles loaded and ready to go, the band is ready to hit 2020 with its hardest and heaviest music yet, continuing with the Mission Statement they’ve held from the beginning: Be unconcerned with the latest media-defined trends and fashions, create music that’s honest and earnest material, filled with heart, soul, blood, guts, angst and relentless passion.
REVIEWS & PREMIERES:
January 24, 2019 – Las Vegas Weekly – WITH CODE RED RIOT, LAS VEGAN CORKY GAINSFORD TAKES THE NEXT STEP IN A LONG MUSICAL CAREER – “Gainsford’s career is like a tour through the history of the Vegas music scene.”
January 18, 2019 – Scary Monsters Music – KOMP 92.3 Vegas Homegrown Series with Code ReD Riot, The Dirty Hooks and More! – “Corky is an impressive drummer, and equally impressive frontman, moving nonstop across the stage and jumping off the drums, giving a high energy in your face set that the crowd loved.”
November 15, 2018 – Bravewords – Music Video Premiere : “Bulletproof” – “The theme of proving skeptics wrong continued while creating the music video for ‘Bulletproof’.”
November 15, 2018 – Hear2Zen Magazine – Music Video Premiere : “Bulletproof” – Gainsford says, “It served specifically as a reminder to focus on what I truly love in life, without regard for the negativity, naysayers, and skeptics that had surrounded me before.”
September 13, 2018 – New Noise Magazine – Music Video Premiere : “Slide” – “A perfectly honed blend of energetic vocals and motivational riffs that are part Pixies, part Offspring.”
August 10, 2018 – Metal Temple – Mask album review – “I hear ‘MASK’ as a very good album that deserves our attention. Production = 9/10 / Songwriting 10/10.”
August 9, 2018 – LA Music Critic – Mask album review – “Mask is the band’s debut album, and it’s an incredible start to their career. The band has set the bar very high, and delivers a masterful set of dynamic and hard-hitting songs that not just metal fans will enjoy. This one is a treat from start to finish, and a worthy addition to your musical collection. Recommendation: Rush out and Get this one!”
July 31, 2018 – I’m Music Magazine – Mask album review – “Congratulations to Code Red Riot on releasing one hell of a debut album. I felt as though I was behind the wheel of a high octane fueled funny car with the gas pedal slammed to the ground. ‘Mask’ will be a welcome addition to my music collection, and I suggest everyone else do the same.”
July 22, 2018 – Overdrive Music Magazine – Mask album review – “The lead-off track “Panic And Pain” is an adrenaline rush with vigorous riffs, thrashing beats, distinct vocals and a piercing solo opens the record perfectly, jaw-dropping and more than impressive… leaving listeners begging for more.”
July 15, 2018 – Scary Monsters Music – Code Red Riot Kick Off Their Midwest Tour with Record Release Party – “The show was a fun night and a great kickoff for their tour, with lots of local fans and fellow musicians turning out for the send off, including several Blue Man Group alumni and Chris Kael of 5FDP.”
July 8, 2018 – Audio Fuzz – Badass Rock n’ Roll: Code Red Riot – “Wow, Code Red Riot just kicked my ass across the room. This is rock with teeth, with feeling, with wonder. I love this band.”
July 2, 2018 – Surviving The Golden Age – Mask album review – “It’s impossible not to notice the sheer vivacity throughout each track; the heart pounds quicker, blood begins to boil, and our senses are heightened. Each song is also packed full of lyrical talent, coming in brisk and heavy, a stream of consciousness so honest and rude it erases any doubt of Gainsford’s metal prowess. Mask is the real deal. Code Red Riot is a band with a chip on its shoulder that reminds us that the heart and soul of metal is still alive and well.”
June 29, 2018 – Vents Magazine – Code Red Riot releases debut album Mask – “The band’s sound is heavy. Really heavy. But, maintains extremely impressive musicality allowing ample separation between drums, guitars, and vocals.”
June 29, 2018 – Pure Grain Audio – Las Vegas Rockers CODE RED RIOT Get Heavy on Their Debut Album Mask – “Gainsford’s enviable vocal faculty is now the icing on the simple-but-heavy metal-tinged rock cake that you’re about to consume… Featuring twelve ‘don’t give a shit what you think’ rock anthems.”
June 27, 2018 – Dangerdog Music Reviews – Mask album review – “Essentially, Corky Gainsford’s Code Red Riot is a fine outlet for his otherwise frustrated musical expression. No pun intended there. If you don’t like where your story is going, then write a new chapter.”
June 20, 2018 – Edge Rock Radio – Mask album review – “Imagine if you will, a lightning bug to the windshield at 125 MPH – that is the impact of this band.”
June 13, 2018 – Front Row Report – Mask album review – “The lead-off track is an adrenaline rush and opens this record perfectly, with the band proclaiming proudly – ‘WE’RE FUCKING HERE.’”
September 13, 2018 – Middle Tennessee Music – Interview with Code Red Riot
September 9, 2018 – That Drummer Guy – Audio Interview with Corky Gainsford
August 8, 2018 – Highwire Daze – Code Red Riot: Unmasked!
July 17, 2018 – Mayhem Rockstar Magazine – Interview with Corky Gainsford
April 17, 2017 – Highwire Daze – Meet the Local Bands of Las Rageous