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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: King Falcon Takes Us On A Ride In A ‘Cadillac’

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: King Falcon Takes Us On A Ride In A ‘Cadillac’

Oh, hey! You’re here! Excellent, excellent! We were hoping you’d stop by because we have got an absolute banger to share with you today! This hit comes from New York-based indie-rock trio, King Falcon. The group consists of Mike Rubin (lead guitar/vocals), James Terranova (bass) and Tom Diognardi (drums).

Believe us when we say that falcons are not the only thing they are kings of (😏😉) as they have come to slay the music industry one intoxicating note at a time!

To prove our point, they’ve recently released a music video for their song ‘Cadillac,’ and with the mixing of animation and real-life imagery, it is a cinematic masterpiece! Seriously, get these guys an Oscar ASAP! It’s the perfect video to accompany such an exceptional song! With classic cars, old-school beats, and retro vocals, you are in for an absolute treat!! Check it out below or stream it here!

We were stoked to interview Mike Rubin about the video as we had so many questions to ask! We KNOW you’re gonna love what he has to say! So, without further ado…KING FALCON!

You guys are based in New York, all that hustle and bustle has to be exciting! Has living in that city given you inspiration for your music? If so, what kind of inspiration do you draw from your surroundings in the city?
Absolutely! We are all from New York, born and raised. This city has a speed and energy like no other. I feel like our music is sort of the same way – melodic, no-nonsense rock and roll at the speed of NYC.

Your new song ‘Cadillac’ is an infectious, vibrant, indie-rock banger! The flawless riffs, funky rhythms, and hypnotic beats, mix flawlessly with the lush vocals, and have given us some much-needed serotonin! What was your writing process like for the song, and what was it like having Marshall Altman produce it?
First of all, thank you so much! I am really glad that you dig the song. This song came about after I got the chance to drive my best friend’s 1957 Cadillac for the first time. Immediately I was taken by the experience and I fell in love with the car. I went home that night and actually started with the bassline which I played on a cheesy little synthesizer recorded into GarageBand. What followed was eight full days of listening to that bass part on loop and throwing different melodic ideas at it. I finally landed on the chorus melody that you hear today. Working with Marshall was great. He’s a big fan of the guitar and I knew he would be one of the only guys who wouldn’t cut the guitar solos. That’s why there’s a solo on just about every track.

King Falcon
Image Source: Justin Borucki

Mike, you stated that the song is based on a 1957 Cadillac Eldorado that your best friend had parked in his garage that you decided to take for a joyride! Is the car that we see in the video the same car from back then? If so, how does it feel getting to use your muse for the song as part of the video? If not, what happened to the original car that inspired such a catchy song?
It is the car in the video, in fact! The song is about that car specifically. We actually didn’t tell the label about the video until after we recorded it and I remember one of the guys saw it and said “Man – we wish you would’ve used a different Cadillac because that one looks like my grandma’s.” Personally, I love that car, and I think it looks like Elvis could have driven it but hey, it’s all a matter of taste, right?

You have toured with so many amazing artists like The Mowglis, Living Colour, and Coin! Were there any times on any of those tours that stick out to you as a “Wow, we made it!’ moment? Playing with Living Colour was awesome, those guys are absolutely top-notch musicians and truly great people. Will and Doug especially taught me a lot early on in my musical career, their work ethic is incredible. That being said, I am not sure that we have experienced a “We Made It” moment yet – we’re still working towards that.

The music video for ‘Cadillac’ combines animated art with live-action visuals, where did you get the inspiration to combine those two art forms, and how did you decide this was the direction you wanted the video to go in? Who was the mastermind behind creating those incredible animations?
I knew that we couldn’t actually film a real police chase and drive a car off of a bridge at the end (we don’t have that sort of budget just yet!) but I was dead set on having that be the visual that went with the song. Luckily, I have a good friend that is an animator who was really into the concept and wanted to help make it a reality. Her name is Alexa VanSickle and her company is Mind Melt Animations, she put over 800 hours of work into 3D rendering and animating our video. I sent her a picture I found that was a big angry crocodile doing a burnout in a Hot Rod. The kind that has the engine sticking out of the front and enormous rear tires… I think it was a tattoo design or something – but it was awesome. That was sort of the inspiration for the video and the use of animals instead of people.

King Falcon
Image Source: Justin Borucki

We LOVE how fun the video is and the fact that you all look like you are having a blast! What part of the music video was your favorite to film?
It was ALL fun, honestly – because the crew we worked with were all longtime friends of ours. If I had to choose though, I enjoyed watching our videographer John get the rolling shots of the Cadillac. He was holding the camera while riding a skateboard for one, and then for another, he was hanging out of the back of a pickup truck. Totally “safety third” type stuff but it was so much fun to watch him work and then to see the result.

There is a killer guitar solo in ‘Cadillac’ that we might actually be obsessed with! What made you decide to include a guitar solo in the song? How did you go about perfecting it so that it had the flawless sound it has in the final version of the track?
Thank you so much again! I am a guitar player first and everything else second. For me, it’s all about the guitar solo. The cool thing about this solo is that it has a lot of Dorian tonality to it so it’s a little bit more interesting than your standard pentatonic rock solo (for all of my music nerds out there). The original demo was recorded with a Stratocaster, but when we actually went in to cut the final track, the song had gotten much thicker overall with the added production. I ended up using a Les Paul with P90s to keep that single coil high-end clarity, and add some more low-end. We ran that through a Fender Deluxe with an overdrive pedal in front of it.

At what point in the songwriting process did you hear the song and think “THIS! THIS IS IT! THIS IS A KING FALCON HIT,” and what are some of the key components you feel are necessary for a song to FEEL like a King Falcon song?
If you leave the studio and still have the chorus melody stuck in your head, that’s how you know you are on to something. But that’s a tough question to answer… I think a lot of the band’s identity comes naturally. The band kind of always sound like what we sound. However, it’s important to us that our music is driven by melody. Every song has to be catchy while still having moments where we can show off our musicianship. Tom is usually back behind the drums holding down the beat – but every once in a while, he gets a chance to shine. Same with bass and guitar, it’s all about leaving room for the melody. Lyrically, we tend to dig a little deeper with things. We’re not really a “party” band, if you know what I mean. Having said that, we think you’re REALLY going to like our next single, Ready Set Go’ – which comes out at the end of May and is pure NYC energy!

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King Falcon
Image Source: Justin Borucki

Does it feel surreal when you hear one of your finished songs for the first time in its entirety? How do you celebrate? What goes through your mind during that time?
In case any of the readers are unaware, when you have finished recording the last note of your song/album and you walk out of the studio, you don’t take the song/album home with you. The next step in the process is that it gets mixed for a period of time which is usually very long. Mixing and production is way more than just getting the volume of things right. A lot of things can change from that point on. When you do finally get that email titled “Song.Mix1,” there is always a mixture of excitement and anxiety. You’re not sure if this song is going to be exactly what you imagined or if something got lost in translation and now it sounds horrible. I have experienced both, it’s a trip.

Who are some of your biggest musical inspirations that helped shape King Falcon as we know them today? Is there a particular genre that you might someday want to dip your toe into just for the fun of it?
I think my personal inspirations might surprise you. My #1 favorite band of all time is Steely Dan. They are followed closely by Pink Floyd. Then, we take a sharp left turn to Diana Ross, and then an even sharper right turn to MF Doom. Yeah, I said it would surprise you! I’ve always wanted to play guitar in a Funk/Reggae band. I don’t think it would ever work with King Falcon but it just looks like those guys are always up there having so much fun!

Well, there you have it, honey poppers! The lowdown on ‘Cadillac’ from the legends themselves! We hope you enjoyed it! Huge thanks to King Falcon for chatting with us! Now if you’ll excuse us, we’ve got a music video to stream…

We want to hear from you! What do you think of the video for ‘Cadillac’ and of King Falcon? What was your favorite part of the video? Let us know in the comments below or hit us up on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter!

Buzzin’ for more on your faves? We gotchu, HONEY!


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