It’s broad daylight and Jason Thomas Gordon, singer/drummer of the LA based rock band, Kingsize, has climbed to the rooftop of the iconic - and now vacant - Tower Records on Sunset Blvd. Like so many independent stores along the way, not even this giant landmark record chain could stave off the crumbling music business. He quickly ties knots along the ledges, then unfurls two 17-foot banners from both sides of the building. A message from the band now faces the city streets: SAVE YOUR RECORD STORES!
This is the band at their core. Romantic and defiant. Their sound is a ramshackle mixture of classic rock ‘n roll combined with the darkness of the post-punk era. Listening to these guys it’s easy to understand why they’d be so indignant about watching another record store fall. They remember when music wasn’t so disposable, when every new release was an event, when fans thrived on the mystery about a band instead of the neediness of social media. Jason sings, “We’re awake tonight and we will never cave!” And their live show proves his point. The energy is frenetic but focused. The music is raw but glorious. This is Kingsize.
It wasn’t just record stores closing or the watered down fluff on the radio that would become a defining moment for the band. “The music scene here sucked,” states guitarist Cary Beare. With his trademark long hair, he looks part 70’s rock god, part Tolkien character. “I was ready to hang up my dreams and move back to the mountains in Idaho.”
But Cary made the mistake of getting together and making some music with Jason before he actually left. The sound they created convinced Cary that the dream was far from over. Cary explains, “Jason immediately wanted to form a band with him on drums, me on guitar but, I loved how his voice sounded with the stuff we were writing. I didn’t want anyone else ruining it so I said, ‘I’ll only do this if you sing your own lyrics.’”
Jason spent the next week sick to his stomach. “It really felt like a life or death decision for me,” recalls Jason, “ I was serious about forming a band but not as the singer!” So, how did it happen? “Cary acts like he’s this peaceful old hermit in the hills but, he’s a punk ass kid when he plays guitar. He can also write beautiful melodies that’ll crush your heart. I wanted to be in a band with him. So, I said, ‘Screw it. I’ll be the singer.’ Sold out on day one!”
At first, Jason and Cary played all the instruments themselves...
Then, they heard Matt DelVecchio playing bass in a friend’s band around town. He could groove, he could sing, he was creative and solid. He was also a card-carrying ambassador for Maker’s Mark whiskey. Kingsize swiftly put their friend’s band on notice, “We’re stealing your bass player.” They consider it one of the best moves they ever made.
Kingsize released The Good Fight EP on their own Good Fight Music label in 2008 and quickly followed it up with a sister EP called The Bad Night. Songs from both releases were included in the popular video game Rockband 3. The guys were also fortunate enough to land the theme song for the CBS sitcom Gary Unmarried, as well as song placements in shows like Shameless on Showtime, and the Robert DeNiro movie Freelancers co-starring Forest Whitaker and 50 Cent. And all this before the release of the their debut album All These Machines…
Thanks in no small part to their emotionally charged live shows, Kingsize has quickly become a force on the Southern California music scene, and have recently finished a new pair of Brother/Sister EP’s entitled Silver Statues and No Gold, taking their music somewhere completely new. Atmospheric, melancholy, and unexpected…
“We can’t stay in the same place too long. We’re a restless band in that sense. There’s always new music too explore,” says Jason, during the writing process for their 2nd full length LP. “This one is gonna come right at you. On every level. We still have a lot to prove; to ourselves more than anyone.” Still romantic, and still defiant.
This is Kingsize.