King Apparatus

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King Apparatus
OriginLondon/Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Years active1987 (1987)–1994, 2000
LabelsRaw Energy, Cargo Records, Stomp
Past membersChris Murray
Sam Tallo
Paul Ruston
J.C. Orr
Paul McCulloch
Mitch Girio
Mark LeBourdais
Aleks Dmitrovic
Greg Clancy
Bruno Hedman
Brian Christopher
Dave Kennedy
Mike Southern
Craig Lapsley

King Apparatus was a Canadian third wave ska band, active in the early 1990s.[1] Formed in 1987 in London, Ontario and later based in Toronto,[2] the band's lineup varied over its lifetime, including vocalist Chris Murray, guitarists Sam Tallo, Paul Ruston, J. C. Orr and Paul McCulloch, bassist Mitch Girio, organists Mark LeBourdais and Aleks Dmitrovic, conga player Greg Clancy, saxophonist Bruno Hedman, and drummers Brian Christopher, Dave Kennedy and Mike Southern. Their style was strongly influenced by late 1970s 2-Tone ska.[3]


The band released two full-length albums and two EPs on Raw Energy Records;[1] their debut EP, 1989's Loud Party, was the first-ever release on the label.[4]

With distribution in just a handful of downtown Toronto record stores, the band's self-titled debut album sold over 5,000 copies in 1990, helping Raw Energy to secure a national distribution deal with A&M Records.[4] The band's best-known single, "Made for TV", was a hit on modern rock radio stations in Canada in 1991, reaching No. 1 on CFNY-FM and on the national campus radio charts, and its video was in heavy rotation on MuchMusic.[2]

Following disappointing sales of their second album Marbles, the band left Raw Energy for Cargo Records,[4] but ultimately broke up before recording another album. Murray has continued to pursue a solo career in music.[5] LeBourdais, the grandson of historian D. M. LeBourdais and journalist Isabel LeBourdais, later worked as a high school teacher in Delta, British Columbia. Mitch Girio is still a large part of the Toronto ska scene, including solo acts and being lead singer and guitarist for the Toronto ska band The King Kong 4.

The band reissued its albums on Stomp Records in 2000,[2] and performed a number of reunion shows that year.[1] Their show at Toronto's Lee's Palace on March 24, 2000 was webcast by[2]


  • Loud Party (1989)
  • King Apparatus (1990)
  • Hospital Waiting Room (1992)
  • Marbles (1993)


  1. ^ a b c "King Apparatus: They're back". The Gauntlet, March 9, 2000.
  2. ^ a b c d "King Apparatus Show 'Net Broadcasted Tonight"., March 24, 2000.
  3. ^ "Ska-Boom and Ska-Bust". Exclaim!, February 2000.
  4. ^ a b c "Toronto Label Taps Raw Energy". Billboard, May 7, 1994.
  5. ^ The Ruckus - Audio Interview with Chris Murray., March 2009.

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