OKLAHOMA CITY (Free Press) — Though COVID-19 continues to wreak havoc and horror around the globe, many are already calling the current state of entertainment and pop culture a “post-pandemic” world. Movie theaters are getting back on their feet, sports arenas are (unwisely) dropping their vaccine requirements, and music venues are roaring back to life with in-person shows and eager audiences.
The shock to the system that was 2020 came with loads of lasting consequences, but also some lasting contributions to the entertainment world. Unrelentingly productive creators of all types took to the internet last year to stream their endeavors from home, and some artists and performers found an affinity for live-streaming that they intend to carry into the “new normal.”
“The decision to move online was driven by what we thought would be fun for us,” said Mac Seigel, guitarist for OKC rockers Kill Carmine. “We love a lot of online creators on YouTube and Twitch, and we watch as much of that as we listen to music.”
The guys in Kill Carmine (Mac, Jeff Kirbas, and brothers Jack and Gabe Martin) have all fully embraced the online streaming world as a platform and presentation for their brand, with regular concert streams on Twitch from their home rehearsal space.
But they also maintain a more traditional presence on the platform, streaming games and interacting with other creators, all from the band’s profile, and that kind of direct, plugged-in access has only increased interest and activity among fans.
“We have all made efforts in the past at creating non-musical content online separate from our musical projects,” Mac said. “Bringing that experience and drive into the band just made sense when we started thinking in terms of getting the most out of the creative energy we had to give.”
“Kill Carmine is more than a band. It’s a place to share our lives as musicians, creators, gamers, and friends,” Gabe added. “By pulling back the curtain, we bring our fans into the band to participate instead of watching a carefully crafted show or listening to recorded music.”
The group actually formed out of a couple of past bands and projects stretching back well into the old pre-COVID world when being a band was all about the sweaty stage and the live audience. Kill Carmine had a handful of traditional shows and generated some solid buzz, but once the entertainment world was pushed mostly into the digital realm, they found a comfortable outlet that they say has been hugely receptive to them.
“The response from real-life fans and from new fans online is universal surprise,” Mac explained. “Local fans are surprised by the production value of our streams, and fans online have been just as surprised by seeing a full rock band streaming on Twitch. We hit ‘Twitch Affiliate’ on the day of our first show. We reach more viewers, have more fan interaction, and raise more money with every stream than we have with any live show we’ve played.”
They don’t only have their sights set on the virtual world, though. They just played their first in-person spot since the pandemic began at 51st St Speakeasy, and they’re readying the release of the new single “But Then the Sun,” on New Year’s Eve. The track, an arena-ready rock anthem with some seriously impressive vocal acrobatics, is the latest in a string of singles the band has dropped while they plan a full-length release.
“Our fans were practically begging for any way to listen to our music,” Jack said. “So we had to give the people what they wanted. We were originally going to release an EP, but it didn’t seem right to sit on finished music while we worked on a bigger release.”
In addition to dropping the single online on December 31st, the band is planning a New Year’s blowout performance, streamed on Twitch, of course.
“We are making this show our biggest production yet,” Jack told me. “In addition to celebrating the release, we’re premiering a new digital short and collaborating with other streamers.”
And they have no plans to slow down from there. Kill Carmine will be entering 2022 ready to expand their streams, drop new singles, and continue building an increasing network of fans and collaborators online.
“Once we overcame the technical challenges of reaching the entire world from the comfort of our own garage,” Gabe adds, “it has been very successful.”
Find Kill Carmine online on Facebook and Instagram, and follow all of their live streaming and virtual concerts on Twitch at twitch.tv/killcarmine.
Their next single “But Then the Sun” will drop on streaming services December 31st.
Last Updated December 14, 2021, 12:09 PM by Brett Dickerson – Editor