Mike Mains & The Branches originally from Owosso, Texas, made the move to Michigan and officially joined the Michigan rock music scene. Mike Mains & The Branches wanted to find a way to stand out amongst the many rock bands that play in the Michigan area.
When asked how they accomplish standing out amongst the rest, the band said that the answer could be found within their musical sound. “We’re a bit of a hybrid between rock and groovy dance stuff. We think that what sets us apart the most is probably the dichotomy of poppy vocal melodies through the filter of Mike’s pretty aggressive vocal style.”
Mike Mains & The Branches has brought this unique hybrid rock/dance sound to Michigan and fans could not be happier. The band could do without some of the colder Michigan winters though.
I had the opportunity to interview Mike Mains & The Branches, we discussed everything from musical inspirations to future tour plans. The entire interview is below.
C: When did Mike Mains & The Branches come together?
M: Well, we formed a few years ago in Texas, and then made the move to the Mitten. Now we live in Ludington, on Lake Michigan, and couldn’t be happier with it.
C: What would you consider to be some of your most notable music influences at a younger age?
M: Well, Mike was really influenced by stuff like Third Eye Blind and The Cranberries, and other 90’s rock bands like that. In fact, we recently did a cover show playing nothing but Third Eye Blind songs, and I think that was fun for him in a nostalgic way. The rest of our influences have varied quite a bit, from blink-182 to Miles Davis.
C: Mike Mains & The Branches in a few words, how would you describe the band’s musical sound?
M: We’re a bit of a hybrid between rock and groovy dance stuff. But I think that what sets us apart the most is probably the dichotomy of poppy vocal melodies through the filter of Mike’s pretty aggressive vocal style.
C: What musical influences do you pull from when you are performing or writing music?
M: We like huge bands like U2, The Killers, Bruce Springsteen. We try to view ourselves the way that those bands view themselves. Not in an arrogant way, but recognizing that when people have paid money to see us play, we owe it to them to put on a show. So that’s what we try to do.
C: Mike Mains & The Branches has gained quite a large following in Michigan, what was the process of coming up in the industry like?
M: We’ve been playing for the last few years, and it has been an exciting and sometimes painful process. We’ve definitely spent our fair share of nights in a van, freezing and miserable. But those times make it all the more fulfilling when we get to play for hundreds and sometimes thousands of people. It really gives a backbone to what we’re doing now to have the history that our band does. We are very grateful for the people who have believed in us. It hasn’t always been easy, but we’ve learned to not worry about the industry people who judge us or view us as a potential paycheck. We’ve always been a pretty DIY band, and I think that has allowed us to be more personal with the people we write our music for.
C: How would you guys as a band describe the Michigan music scene?
M: On the rise. Thanks to folks like Fusion Shows who have really stepped out and believed in the impact that music can have on a region, we are seeing more excitement surrounding the Michigan music scene than what any of us have seen in years. For all of history, music has gotten people through tough times. Michigan itself may not be where it once was, but people are finding hope in music here, and we’re thrilled to be a part of it.
C: How do you all as a band feel social media has helped and will continue to help your career?
M: Directly before this interview, we were literally discussing the latest trends in our Facebook page statistics. We just posted a video that has reached over one thousand people in Colombia. That wouldn’t be possible if not for social media, and without Facebook and Twitter, we would have no way to react to that trend. We are currently mapping out a tour based on what cities we have the most Facebook activity in. So social media is not only a crucial part of what has gotten our band where it is, it’s the vehicle through which we will achieve everything we achieve in the next year.
C: What does the future of the band hold?
M: We are releasing an EP this winter (“Calm Down, Everything is Fine”), which will be the first new music we have released in two years. We are very excited about the songs, and we’re pumped for people to hear them. We’ve changed a lot since our last record. We’ve grown up. We’ve lived. We’ve learned how little we actually know. Our music is going to reflect that. Sometimes maturity means knowing when to speak and when to be silent. For the last two years, we’ve been pretty quiet. Well, now we’ve got something to say.