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Trey Spruance

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Trey Spruance
Spruance performing in 2008
Spruance performing in 2008
Background information
Birth namePreston Lea Spruance III
Born (1969-08-14) August 14, 1969 (age 54)
GenresAvant-garde metal, experimental music, alternative metal, experimental rock, ska[1]
Instrument(s)Guitar, keyboards, synthesizer, bağlama, rabab, dumbek, zither, bass guitar, pipa, trumpet, vocals
Years active1985–present
LabelsWeb of Mimicry

Preston Lea "Trey" Spruance III (born August 14, 1969) is an American composer, producer, and musician who co-founded the experimental rock band Mr. Bungle. He is also leader of the multi-genre outfit Secret Chiefs 3. Originally a guitarist and trumpeter, in the early 90s Spruance began playing vintage electronic organs, analog synthesizers, saz, santur, electric sitar, tar, and various other string and percussion instruments. In the mid 90s he founded Forking Paths Studio where his production techniques were applied to Mr. Bungle and Secret Chiefs 3 records among many others.[2] Since 2007 Spruance's Secret Chiefs 3 has been a very active live entity, performing well over 500 shows in more than 50 countries.

Spruance's playing and composition style is influenced by many diverse genres of music, such as surf rock, Anatolian folk, death metal, film music, Afghan rebab music, ska, funk, space rock, jazz and Japanoise. Musique concrète and foley work also play a large role in his recordings.[not verified in body]


Spruance was a founding member of Mr. Bungle, along with Mike Patton and Trevor Dunn. He has focused on his band Secret Chiefs 3 for the last 15 years (though it began in 1996), and its seven "satellite" groups first introduced on the 2004 album Book of Horizons. Though once secular, Spruance began exploring religious and philosophical themes in Mr. Bungle and Secret Chiefs 3 in the mid-1990s, after joining the Eastern Orthodox Church.[3][4]

In 2013 he arranged his music for the 61-piece Traditional Russian Orchestra of Krasnoyarsk and performed with them in Kansk, Siberia, alongside other members of Secret Chiefs 3. He has performed regularly with John Zorn and has arranged two releases of works from Zorn's Masada Songbooks for Secret Chiefs 3: "Xaphan" in 2007, and "Beriah". He contributed guitar and tubular bells to two albums by the drone metal band Asva, with whom he toured the US and Europe. He also recorded with Patton and Faith No More on their 1995 album King for a Day... Fool for a Lifetime.

In 2016 Spruance composed a three movement string quartet titled "Séraphîta" for San Francisco's Kronos Quartet. The piece was premiered by Kronos at the Haydnsaal at Schloss Esterházy in Vienna, and at SFJAZZ Center in the USA. Kronos has also performed the piece at Carnegie Hall and for an engagement with the Alonzo King LINES Ballet. In Australia "Séraphîta" has been performed by the Black Square String Quartet.

As a producer[edit]

Besides his own bands, Spruance has also worked as a producer for others. In 2020 he produced "Alphaville" for NYC avant garde black metal group Imperial Triumphant, and is currently producing their next record. He produced the album Death After Life for Oakland, CA death metal group Impaled. Production duties for other bands include Neil Hamburger, Dengue Fever, The Tuna Helpers, Faxed Head, Tub Ring and many others.

Record label[edit]

Spruance is the founder of Web of Mimicry, which has released albums from a variety of different bands, including Cleric, Fat32, Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, Brazzaville, Matt Chamberlain, Dengue Fever, and ASVA, amongst others.


Mr. Bungle

Secret Chiefs 3

Faxed Head

  • Uncomfortable But Free (1995)
  • Exhumed at Birth (1997)
  • Chiropractic (2001)

Faith No More

Weird Little Boy

Band membership[edit]


  1. ^ "Interview with Trey Spruance of Mr. Bungle, Faith No More, Secret Chiefs 3 - Culture Creature". August 30, 2016. Retrieved January 3, 2017.
  2. ^ "Trey Spruance: Mr. Bungle and Secret Chiefs 3". Retrieved January 24, 2022.
  3. ^ Sohrabeyal. "Interview: The Secret Chiefs 3′ Trey Spruance dreams of performing in Iran?". DooBeeDooBeeDoo NY. Retrieved June 10, 2017.
  4. ^ "Containing multitudes". Retrieved June 10, 2017.

External links[edit]