The Chain Gang of 1974
The Chain Gang of 1974
Mohager performing in 2014
|Birth name||Kamtin Karimi Mohager|
|Also known as||The Chain Gang of 1974|
|Born||July 31, 1985 (age 33)|
San Jose, California, US
|Genres||Indietronica, electronic, synthpop, indie pop, alternative|
|Occupation(s)||Musician, songwriter, composer|
|Labels||Warner Music Group (2012–2014), Modern Art Records|
|Associated acts||Teenage Wrist|
The Chain Gang of 1974 is the indietronica project of American musician and DJ, Kamtin Mohager. "The Chain Gang of 1974" can also be in reference to Kamtin Mohager himself. Mohager was raised in Hawaii and Colorado, and currently lives in Los Angeles, California.
Born in San Jose, California and raised in Hawaii (before moving to Denver), Kamtin Mohager (Nato) joined 3OH!3 as a touring bassist from 2008 through 2010. He self-released Fantastic Nostalgic: The Early Recordings in 2010. That year also saw the release of his full-length debut, White Guts. Mohager moved to Los Angeles to record the follow-up album, Wayward Fire, which was released on Modern Art Records in 2011.
In early 2010, Mohager combined both early EP's into a digital-only release titled 'Fantastic Nostalgic: The Early Recordings. Mohager describes his early sound as "all over the place, from a piano ballad to songs that sound like Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Primal Scream, or Justice." Zachary Houle of PopMatters called the album "an homage to the '80s, in particular, the soundtracks to John Hughes films, and it is, in a word, fun." Pitchfork Media's Ian Cohen remarked that it "ends up less like a living celebration of the past and more like a display case of your favorite synth-pop action figures in their original packaging." David Marchese of Spin wrote that the album "swoons and grooves deliciously, but the lyrics have a distinctly processed flavor". Max Blau of Paste called it "one of the better and most cohesive electronic albums" of 2011. Allmusic's William Ruhlmann said: "Mohager convincingly makes the case that there is more to say in the music of the '80s, even if fashion has banished it to its own radio formats and nostalgia tours." Justin Gerber of Consequence of Sound found flaws in the lyrics and suggested that "just about every song could be cut by about a minute", but added that "nearly every song has a beat that pummels you into submission, and that is most definitely a compliment."
In 2012, Mohager signed to Warner Music Group for the release of his third full-length album, Daydream Forever. The album is described as a continuation of the synth-heavy, reverb-laden dreams that made Mohager’s debut album, Wayward Fire, an immediate favorite of the retro set. Production is thicker here, with more elastic bounces. If that means it feels like you’ve stepped into a 1980s night at the local bar (as one reviewer humorously put it), then Mohager has clearly succeeded. This is the guy who wasn’t moved to make music until hearing Tears for Fears in the movie Real Genius, says the legend; when tracks such as “Ordinary Fools,” “You,” “Moksha," and “Death Metal Punk” hit you firmly across the ears with their indelible 1980s-styled hooks, everything is working according to his lo-hi-tech plans. Elements of Tears for Fears, Duran Duran, OMD, and M83 coalesce into a party of their own. “Plum” ends things on a slightly darker Prefab Sprout–style tone.
In 2013 Mohager received worldwide recognition when his song “Sleepwalking” was featured on the soundtrack of Grand Theft Auto V, as well as on the game's official trailer.
In early 2015, Mohager launched a collaborative side project with Marshall Gallagher of Swing Hero titled "Teenage Wrist". The band's debut single "Afterglow" received praise from My Chemical Romance frontman Gerard Way.
On September 9, 2016, The Chain Gang of 1974 released his single "I Still Wonder". On March 26, 2017, The Chain Gang of 1974 announced the release of his new album, Felt, which was released on June 23 through Caroline Records.
The Chain Gang of 1974 has toured alongside bands, including AFI, Foster the People, The Naked and Famous, Washed Out, Cibo Matto, ABC, Big Audio Dynamite, Tapes 'n Tapes, Empires, Sir Sly, Miniature Tigers, and Geographer.
- Monolith Festival (2008)
- Lollapalooza (2011)
- Governors Ball Music Festival (2014)
- Austin City Limits Music Festival (2014)
- Capitol Hill Block Party (2014)
- Free Press Summer Fest (2014)
- The Dirt EP (February 24, 2007)
- When The Apple Drops - EP (January 16, 2008)
- Fantastic Nostalgic: The Early Recordings (January 31, 2010)
- White Guts (April 27, 2010)
- Wayward Fire (June 21, 2011)
- Daydream Forever (February 4, 2014)
- Felt (June 23, 2017)
Songs in media
- Song "Make My Body" featured in Scream 4 (2011).
- Song "Hold On" featured in FIFA 12 (2011).
- Song "Devil Is a Lady" featured in FIFA Street (2012) and MLB 12: The Show (2012).
- Song "Undercover" featured in FIFA Street (2012).
- Song "Sleepwalking" featured in Grand Theft Auto V: The Official Trailer, can be heard in the game itself as radio music, and on the official soundtrack. In addition to this, "Sleepwalking" is symbolically played as the end game credits theme for one of the game's three endings, mainly ending "B" (2013).
- Song "Miko" featured in FIFA 14 (2013).
- Song "You" featured in Real World: Ex-Plosion (2014).
- "SXSW Music Picks: Chain Gang of 1974 buzzes into Texas". The Mercury News. 2014-03-06. Retrieved 2017-08-01.
- Cherrie, Chrysta. "The Chain Gang of 1974 – Biography". Allmusic. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
- "The Chain Gang of 1974 on World Cafe". NPR. December 22, 2011. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
- Houle, Zachary (July 27, 2011). "Review: The Chain Gang of 1974 – 'Wayward Fire'". PopMatters. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
- Cohen, Ian (July 14, 2011). "Reviews: The Chain Gang of 1974 – 'Wayward Fire'". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
- Marchese, David (July 2011). "Reviews: Albums: The Chain Gang of 1974 – 'Wayward Fire'". Spin. SPIN Media LLC. 27 (6): 70–1. ISSN 0886-3032. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
- Blau, Max (June 20, 2011). "Best of What's Next: The Chain Gang of 1974". Paste. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
- Ruhlmann, William. "Album Review: The Chain Gang of 1974 – 'Wayward Fire'". Allmusic. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
- Gerber, Justin (June 21, 2011). "Album Review: The Chain Gang of 1974 – 'Wayward Fire'". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved October 2, 2013.
- on YouTube
- "The Chain Gang of 1974 - I Still Wonder - YouTube". YouTube.com. September 9, 2016. Retrieved 2016-12-01.
- "Twitter / CHAINGANGOF1974: New album//DAYDREAM". Twitter.com. November 24, 2013. Retrieved 2014-02-04.
- "Twitter / CHAINGANGOF1974: the new album FELT". Twitter.com. March 24, 2017. Retrieved 2017-03-25.
- "The Shortcut (2009)". IMDb. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- Kale, Wendy (June 17, 2009). "Club Notes: Back on the Chain Gang". Colorado Daily. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- Kale, Wendy (June 18, 2009). "The Chain Gang of 1974: Playing Bass with 3OH!3 and Making Waves with Solo Project". Colorado Daily Blogs. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- Owens, Kim (September 12, 2008). "The Chain Gang of 1974 – playing Sunday, Sept 14, 1:30PM, GigBot Stage". Kaffeine Buzz. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- Nubi, Lil (January 22, 2009). "3OH!3, Inner Party System and The Chain Gang of 1974". Royal Flush. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- "The White Tie Affair". A. V. Club Denver/Boulder. November 20, 2009. Retrieved December 27, 2009.