WHO: The King of Mars
MEMBERS: John Bruner – vocals/guitar; Matt Gordon – guitar/vocals; JJ Frale – bass; Randy Deadman – keys/vocals; Austin Deadman – drums; Jaime Ruiz – trumpet; Gabby Bandera – saxophone
WHERE: Chicago, IL, USA
ABOUT: If you ever wondered what a sonic baby between Radiohead and Red Hot Chili Peppers with a horn section would sound like, then look no further! The King of Mars (TKOM) formed in 2015 as a traditional four-piece rock band and has since evolved into a larger group with synths, auxiliary percussion, and a horn section. Their sound shakes the foundation of traditional rock music by encompassing Jazz, Funk, and Soul musicality alongside insightful lyricism.
What would you say that your band has to offer that is different from what is out there?
A lot of modern music focuses on either jamming hooks and one-liners down your throat or showing off obnoxious musicality so much so that you can’t remember any hooks or lyrics from the song. We aim to create the best of both words with our tunes. All of our members are (in my modest opinion) insanely gifted at their respective instruments so we have the musicality covered. We also put a lot of our efforts towards the songwriting aspect and making hooks that get stuck in your head until you have to listen again. We’re different and we’re working our asses off to get our music in your ears.
What would you say is the essence behind your band?
We take the music seriously, but not ourselves. I’ve never been a fan of those cheesy over dramatic, pretentious bands. Every time we do photoshoots or interviews or performances we can’t help but mess around. But we do have songs that deal with serious topics and obviously we take the musicianship very seriously. None of us have ever been drawn to being that famous, larger-than-life, celebrity type of musician.
How do you compete in today’s market?
Today’s music industry is definitely difficult to compete in. With everyone listening to music off streaming services, the market is a lot more saturated than every before. With that being said, we have our music on all major streaming platforms and have developed a dedicated fanbase. We’re continuing to expand our fanbase outside of our home city.
Describe your music. What do you want it to convey?
Our music has best been described as a sonic baby between Radiohead and Red Hot Chili Peppers. We usually end up in the alternative rock/indie rock/funk rock genres. We also blend in different jazz and hip-hop elements. Our songs deal with some heavy topics like addiction, depression and paranoia. The goal is to convey a sense of comfort and understanding for people going through similar difficulties.
Define some of the goals for the band.
We’re currently in the process of setting up more shows outside of Chicago. We’re aiming for venues in Michigan and Wisconsin and any other major midwest cities. We’re also working on stepping up our profile on YouTube with more live concert footage and just random videos of us promoting our shows.
Anything else you would like to add?
We released our second EP, Bleach and Aspirin, in October of 2018. It’s all major streaming platforms including Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube, etc. We worked our asses off on that record and we’d be honored if you’d take a listen and help spread our name around! Thanks for reading!