Being the odd fellow at the party won’t bother these guys. In fact, don’t even bother thinking the glowing drummer is all that strange, eh?

Chris Everson, Mark Michalik, Vince Moreno, and Brandon Trammell all share in the joy that is Kid Brother Collective. While we were somewhat flummoxed that none of them were brothers, we digress. After being founded in 1997 from the Flint, MI area, the guys took a well-needed hiatus recently and have since decided they could still get along and no one’s dad had to yell from the front seat of the Winnebago for them to stop fighting, so, they decided to fire up the band again. In the short amount of time before Dirt Fest 2015 kicks off, Brandon had a few minutes to answer some overly dull questions in need of skull coffee.

NRR: You guys are from the Flint, MI area and have been aiming to eventually play all 50 states. What’s been going on with the band in the last year?
Brandon Trammell: We spent a good chunk of time on hiatus, actually. We’re not the band we were when we started in ’97, that’s for sure. Between that time and 2003 we toured like crazy, playing around 40 states with the goal to eventually make it through the entire continental US. When we split up in ’03, we had no plans of reuniting, but things change. Our friends at Count Your Lucky Stars and Lower Peninsula Records reissued our full length on vinyl awhile back, so we started playing shows again to promote the release. It turned out we still really enjoyed playing with each other, so we decided to start doing it again on a regular basis. We have a lot less time now, so no more full US tours. A few out of town weekends here and there are enough for us at the moment. Who knows what’s in the future, though?
NRR: Hopefully you guys have a great time on stage this year. Are you looking forward to anything in particular at Dirt Fest 2015 to keep the journey going?
Brandon Trammell: The rock radio thing isn’t really our scene, but we’ve always gone out of our way to try and play to audiences that might not typically come to one of our shows. In that respect, this is perfect for us. It’s a lot easier to stick out if you sound different from the other bands on the bill, even if a portion of the audience doesn’t get what you’re doing. One of my favorite shows we’ve done was an opening spot for Dillinger Escape Plan and Mastodon. The audience didn’t really get it, but that challenge always pushes me. Insulating your band might feel good in the short term when you play a packed basement, but we were always thinking bigger.
NRR: You guys have played a huge amount of shows so far in your career. What has to be the craziest show you can remember be it because of the other band(s), the crowd, or just the bizarre crap that happened?

Kid Brother Collective – Ringfinger

Brandon Trammell: We did a small week-long trip through Ontario and Quebec in 2001 that was pretty bizarre. We woke up in a Dunkin’ Donuts parking lot to find 9/11 happening. The entire city was freaked out. Planes were still in the air, and a lot of people were worried Toronto was a target. We were in Canada for another six days or so after, and the line to cross the border was something like twenty miles long. Strangely enough, because of the gridlock, our drummer slept right through the crossing. They let us in trailer and all, without any sort of search.
NRR: Other then glowing a little from the X-rays, but hey he’s a drummer, right? Being from Michigan, would you rather play a huge show or go hunt Morels if you had a superb secret spot to harvest them, (laughing)?
Brandon Trammell: I can’t speak for the others in the band, but I’ve actually never went morel picking. I’m an avid foodie, so it’s something I’ve thought about. Maybe next year?
NRR: We might, you know, know a guy that might be able to help with that. Just saying. What can we expect from the Kid Brother Collective camp in the coming days after Dirt Fest is a dream of a hellbent, metal head dwarf again until 2016?
Brandon Trammell: We’re hoping to finish writing soon enough to head into the studio this Fall. We’re also planning a compilation of old material to be released on vinyl by the end of the year, fingers crossed. Most of our old stuff is out of print, so this is something we’ve wanted for awhile.
Header-KidBrotherCollective-Logo
NRR: Is there a band or bands on this year’s Dirt Fest line-up that you are looking forward to seeing as fans?
Brandon Trammell: I’m way excited to see Child Bite. Most people attending this year probably haven’t heard them, but they’re going to leave an impression. Sick band, sweet dudes.
NRR: How important is selling merch for you guys at a festival like this? Anything special, maybe even vinyl, planned for the Dirt Fest 2015 faithful?
Brandon Trammell: We’re all about vinyl. We’ll have plenty of merch at the show, and we’re hoping to meet some new people. These outdoor festivals are always good for that.
NRR: For anyone that might not have heard your music before, what can they expect to get from your sound on stage being self described as a Post Hardcore band?
Brandon Trammell: At one point that term might have meant more than it does now. What it really describes is a mix of heavy and melodic. These days it’s a lot more common, but some of our influences are bands like Quicksand, Helmet, and Texas is the Reason.

NRR: Tell me about the Jawbreaker tribute record, What’s the Score?, out on Save Your Generation Records, how did you guys get on board with it and what kind of experience was it for Kid Brother Collective?
Brandon Trammell: Our friend Tony at Save Your Generation has always been a big supporter of the band. When we heard abut his plans for this project we immediately wanted to be a part of it. Jawbreaker is a big favorite of ours, and working with Tony is always great. It was a no brainer. This song was actually the first new material we had recorded in over a decade due to our hiatus, so it felt really good to get back in there and put something down.

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About The Author

After getting the photo bug in the far, past days of black and white film, Erich continued to develop his eye for photography which lead to stops in the sporting, art, wedding, and eventually concert music worlds. Now, doing more writing for National Rock Review, he has entered into the journey of getting to know the artists and the industry, not just the faces on the other side of the lens.

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