Marina City is a Chicago based pop rock band that is embarking on a new tour with Craig Owens and his new band badXchannels. Marina City is touring in support of their recently release EPs "Lost ≠ Alone" and "Wanderlust." They're a band that has blown up recently proving they're a force to be reckoned with. Alternative Press Magazine called Marina City the #2 band to watch at Warped Tour 2016 saying, “This theatrical six-piece has the artistry and determination to give Brendon Urie (Panic! At The Disco) a run for his money”. In addition, they have been named one of the "Top 10 Independent Bands You Need to Know" by MTV & Altmusic, the "Band You Need to See" by Alternative Press for both Warped Tour and Riot Fest 2016, and were declared The 2016 Band Of The Year by Chicago Nightlife Awards . On The Request Magazine writes: “(Marina City) have brought a very real, intense rock flavor to vocals that could easily appear in today's top 40… they are showing the world what real music in popular culture could and should sound like.”
We caught up with the band and they told us all about themselves.
What’s the reasoning behind naming your fan base “The Lost Boys”?
People believe when you grow up you have to give up on your dreams. We aren't giving up on our dreams just because society is done waiting for us to have mansions. The lost boys don't grow up. So if we have to give up we guess we won't grow up. (Ryan Argast | Lead Vocals)
As a band with three lead vocalists, what’s been the biggest challenge that comes along with that? What’s the biggest benefit? How do you determine who sings what lyrics?
Sometimes it's difficult to figure out where someone should sing to keep the aesthetic but honestly there isn't much of a downside to having 3 vocalists. You can do so many great harmonies and vocal tricks along with just doing different kind of songs. Usually we determine who sings by if it's in their vocal range and if their voice fits the part better than everyone else. Matt has a soul and sultry voice and brings the sexiness while Brian brings the harsh punk aggressive tone. Being able to use those vocalists in times my vocals just don't fit makes it really cool. I write all the lyrics and melodies. (Ryan Argast | Lead Vocals)
You’ve toured with a lot of amazing artists from several different genres, I guess that’s a perk of having such a diverse sound, what’s been your favorite tour to play?
It's so much fun playing with so many talented bands! Some of the perks of playing in Marina City is seeing so many amazing shows. One of my personal favorites that we've toured with was the Millenium. I just felt the energy from their show every night and they give it 110% 24/7. Other personal notables would be Sleep On It, Assuming We Survive, Too Close To Touch and 7 Minutes In Heaven. (Brian Johnson | Guitar/Vocals)
Marina City has developed a very unique sound, where do your stylistic choices come from?
We all just have a lot of different backgrounds. Instead of that becoming a problem we believe it's an advantage. We write music that we all would listen to see we all have equal voices in the writing process. (Ryan Argast | Lead Vocals)
You guys have gotten a lot of great publicity: winning the Ernie Ball Battle of the Bands, Atl. Press named you the #2 band to watch saying you could give Brendon Urie a run for his money, “Top 10 Bands You Need To Know” by MTV and AltMusic, and this year’s Band of the Year by Chicago Nightlife Awards - what’s this experience been like for you guys, watching Marina City flourish like this?
It's definitely been an insane and humbling feeling. We couldn't be more happy to hear those things but it just makes us really hungry. We don't have a manager, booking agent, or label! We are just doing this all ourselves so it just validates to us we can make this happen. (Ryan Argast | Lead Vocals)
You’ve recently released two EPs: “Lost ≠ Alone” and “Wanderlust,” what was your creative process in writing them? What do you hope fans feel when listening to the music?
Our creative process was very different for both of EPs. For "Wanderlust" we tried to write as much music as we could. We ended up with about 15 songs to send to our producer, Casey Bates, and he narrowed them down to the 5 strongest. Our goal in that writing session was to be heartbroken to say goodbye to whatever 10 songs didn't make the cut and I feel like we achieved that. For “Lost ≠ Alone” we wanted to challenge ourselves musically and revamp our songs acoustically into something completely outside of our comfort zone. When writing we talked a lot about how we could change the style and feel of each song yet still stay true to the songs mood and atmosphere lyrically. And lastly we actually brought in one new song ("Your Song") to that EP that just barely didn't make it onto "Wanderlust". (Eric Somers-Urrea | Drums)
You’re embarking on a tour with badXchannels soon, what are your thoughts going into this tour?
Just excitement! We are playing to a different crowd and we are preparing our set that way. We don’t like playing the same set every tour because it gets boring to our fans and us. This will be a way different set and we couldn’t be more anxious to do it. (Ryan Argast | Lead Vocals)
How has it been working with Craig Owens? What was one interesting thing you learned from working with him?
Working with Craig has been incredible and he helps us in any way he can. One of the best guys we have ever worked with. He helps us musically and on the business aspect as well. One thing we learned is don't lose creativity and just write the best songs we possibly can no matter the genre. Just stay active writing and keep putting out new music as much as we can. (Aaron Heiy | Bass)
With such a bright career already, what's been a highlight you at this point?
Winning the Ernie Ball Battle Of The Bands has been the highlight because it made us feel like we are on the right path to doing great things. So many amazing opportunities have come from this along with hard work everyday to get to where we want to go as a band. (Aaron Heiy | Bass)