Featured KRK User Chris Hesse of Hoobastank
In a little more than 10 years, and with just four albums on Island Records, the California-based rock band Hoobastank has sold a bit north of 10 million albums. The group’s self-titled debut album went platinum and its second album, The Reason, went double-platinum. Hoobastank consists of Doug Robb (lead vocal, rhythm guitar), Dan Estrin (lead guitar), Chris Hesse (drums) and Jesse Charland (bass). The group came up the hard way, scoring a record deal only after the members were together for five years.
The title track of the group’s 2003 album, The Reason, went to number one on the U.S, adult and alternative charts. The group also has the distinction of having one of its songs played during the final episode of the classic television sitcom Friends. Two of the group’s other hits were “Crawling in The Dark” and “Running Away.” In 2010, Hoobastank also contributed the song “We Are One” to the Music Is Relief album that raised funds for the Haitian earthquake crisis. The group has had multiple Grammy nominations and an American Music Awards nomination. Along with its four studio albums, it has also released the CD and DVD Live From the Wiltern.
Given the group’s insistence on not just making good music, but on making its records sound great, Hoobastank uses KRK monitors. Chris Hesse, the band’s drummer, who joined the group after answering a “drummer wanted” ad in the early 1990s, uses KRK monitors when he records with the band and for his own personal use. Hesse employs many different KRK monitors, and he loves the overall sound of all the models he uses. “They’re just amazing,” says Hesse. “What I like is that you can hear every single detail; nothing gets left behind. I use them for fixing things and for editing. They have an extremely wide soundstage. They are significantly better than anything else that I’ve ever owned.”
Hoobastank has used KRK monitors for tracking on all four of its albums, all of which were produced by Howard Benson (My Chemical Romance, Motorhead, Less Than Jake, Papa Roach, the All-American Rejects, Daughtry, Gavin DeGraw, Creed, Kelly Clarkson, Three Doors Down and Chris Cornell, among other artists). The group first came across the KRK V6 monitors at Bay 7 Recording Studios in California and Hesse was hooked. “Bay 7 was the first experience I had with the KRK monitors,” says Hesse. “We liked them, so we ended up getting a pair of VXT4s for our touring kit.” Hesse then picked up a pair of VXT8s for his own personal use and more recently also started using KRK VXT6 and KRK Expose E8Bs.
Hesse has also added KRK subwoofers to his arsenal of KRK monitors. “I have a set of 10s subwoofers,” says Hesse. “When I A/B them and switch them back and forth, people’s jaws just drop! It’s really incredible that there can be that much difference. You turn the KRK monitors on and the whole world opens up. It’s like someone lifted the duvet cover off of the monitors.”