Kingsbury (band)

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Origin Orlando, Florida, United States
Genres psychedelic indie rock
Years active 2003–present
Members Bruce Reed
Mark Freeman
T.J. Burke
Samantha Christine
Past members Nick Anderson
Riley Anderson
Alexis Hamlin-Vogler

Kingsbury are a prominent, Orlando-based psychedelic indie rock band on Post Records known for their melodic, dischordinant and ambient elements in their music.


Kingsbury was formed in 2003 in Orlando, FL when songwriter Bruce Reed recruited Mark Freeman to play bass and T.J. Burke to play drums in a new musical endeavor. Reed had written a handful of songs and recorded them onto a four-track machine. In December, 2003 the trio then recruited Nick Sanders and Riley Anderson to play guitar and keyboards respectively.

In early 2004, the band recorded their first release, a 4-song EP called This Place is Coming Down. Immediately the band started playing shows in and around Central Florida, eventually spreading out to other parts of the state of Florida. This Place is Coming Down was marked for its streamlined, yet mature songwriting and garnered positive reviews from multiple media outlets. Lost At Sea Magazine stated "This Place is Coming Down not only introduces a band with real great potential, but one that is already writing mature interesting music."[1] Delusions of Adequacy noted that "This Place is Coming Down is a strong achievement from a talented group of musicians looking to break their way into the often tumultuous indie-rock scene."[2]

In August 2004, Kingsbury set out on their first of many subsequent tours. Concentrating on the Southeast U.S., the band gained even more popularity and attention for their stage presence that helped bring the songs to life.

In 2005, Kingsbury released their second EP The Open Sea, which saw a similar musical approach but also a bit more experimentation by the band. Gone were the more obvious rock elements, replaced with more spacious melodies. The Open Sea saw the band gain even more attention from music critics, with the Orlando Weekly stating "Kingsbury are buried in a resonant cavern full of downcast melodies and spacious arrangements, with a slightly trippy patina mixing up the metaphor. They sound nothing like that giddy pop band The Kingsbury Manx (which is why I avoided them for so long), and this EP (their second) is a fine addition to the canon of Orlando-bands-who-shouldn’t-be-from Orlando. The linchpin in the group’s sound is the interplay between the piano (which drives most of the melodies) and the guitars (which provide most of the atmosphere); while the rhythm section is stretching-stretching-stretching, these instruments are tussling, making for an earthy yet extraterrestrial sort of racket."[3]

Kingsbury completed two tours in the summer of 2005 in support of the great compromise, the first tour focusing on the Southeast U.S. and the second reaching up into the Northeast and as far west as the Chicago-area.

After the second tour in 2005, Nick Sanders left the band to pursue other musical endeavors. The band immediately began writing for what would become a full-length record. After Nick left, Riley was kicked out because of his musical differences. During this process this left Reed, Freeman and Burke to write and record the bulk of the record by themselves at their home studio, Sugarwood Studios in Winter Park, FL. To help assist with guitar tracks and other instrumentation, the band brought in good friend Wes Jones, then of Apollo Quartet to record on the album. After months of recorded, the album, titled The Great Compromise, was completed in the Fall of 2006 and released in January 2007. After initial recording was done, Samantha Christine (guitar) and Alexis Hamlin-Vogler (keyboards vovals) joined the band.

The Great Compromise was a significant step for the band, with a larger departure from their previous two recordings. The album feature much more musical experimentation with electronic equipment such as drum machines and sequencers. These changes did not deter fans and even gained the band a larger following, especially among music critics. Amplifier Magazine stated "Kingsbury has crafted a record that somehow encourages dark introspection while discouraging the puerile moping that’s too often present in contemporary rock and folk music. There’s nothing pedantic about these jarring tunes; instead, the listener is privileged to ingest and absorb song after song of intricate minor key progressions performed by rather talented artisans,"[4] and REAX Magazine called the album "mesmerizing."[5] The band toured throughout Florida and the Eastern U.S. heavily in support of The Great Compromise and it is reported that the band has sold out of the album and is debating whether or not to press more copies for distribution.

Following the success of The Great Compromise, Hamlin-Vogler left the band to pursue a career in cosmetology. Subsequently, the band has been a four-piece ever since.

In 2008, the band set out to write and record the follow-up to The Great Compromise, a six-song EP titled Lie to Me. This release saw the band continuing to push the envelope musically, becoming much more experimental. Two of the tracks on Lie to Me are purely ambient electronic instrumental tracks. In an even further departure from the past, the band decided to digitally release the EP for free via download on their brand new website. As the band notes on their website, Lie to Me will be "the first of a series of recordings released for free on the bands recently rebuilt website,"

The band is currently self-promoting the new EP, with help from Post Records and gearing up for a slew of shows in 2009 to support the recording. Also, there are plans for music videos and other endeavors, which will most likely all be available via the band's website.

Kingsbury has also recorded two cover songs to be featured on a New Order tribute compilation CD.[6]

Band members[edit]

Current members[edit]

Bruce Reed - Vocals, Guitar (2003–present)
Mark Freeman - Bass (2003–present)
T.J. Burke - Drums and programming (2003–present)
Samantha Christine - Guitars (2006–present)

Former members[edit]

Nick Anderson - Guitars (2003–2005)
Riley Anderson - Keyboards (2003–2005)
Alexis Hamlin-Vogler - Keyboards, Vocals (2006–2007)


Full-length albums[edit]

The Great Compromise (2007)


This Place is Coming Down (2004)
The Open Sea (2005)
Lie to Me (2008)


External links[edit]