Tuesday, January 03, 2006

ROCKOBIT: Bryan Harvey

House of Freaks guitarist Bryan Harvey and his wife and two daughters were found murdered at their Richmond, Virginia home on Sunday.

Harvey formed House of Freaks with percussionist Johnny Holt in the 1980s, a band who built a small fanbase who followed them through three albums on Rhino Records. The greatest of these, Tantilla, explored what Harvey described as his obsession with the South and the concept of racial guilt; it was produced by Stone Roses producer John Leckie. After splitting with from Rhino, the duo found it difficult to find a permanent home, releasing work for a number of labels and creating a side project, Gutterball. Holt and Harvey also turned up in other bands - including the Mike Mills-produced Waxing Poetics.

House of Freaks ran out of steam in 1995, ad although Gutterball were still theoretically a going concern, nothing by them, nor Harvey's 1997 solo album made it as far as the shops. In recent years, Harvey had been playing with NRG Krysys and working for Henrico County's technology department; his wife, Kathryn Harvey ran a gift shop.

Police officers working on the case describe the site of the family's murder as "the worst they have ever seen." Family and friends have left floral tributes outside the house.