Since its inception in the late 90′s, American Mars has been a kind of musical anomaly in their hometown of Detroit. In a town often passed over by touring roots acts and dominated by garage and punk, the band has persevered for over a decade with its unique brand of atmospheric roots-influenced rock.
Chasing Vapor is the band’s fourth full-length release and the second for Gangplank Records, the label owned by the band’s pedal steel player and producer, David Feeny. The album features nine original songs along with a cover of Paul McCartney and Denny Laine’s 70’s hit “Mull of Kintyre.” Like American Mars’ previous two releases, No City Fun (2001), and Western Sides (2008), Chasing Vapor features a combination of roots, rock, and post-punk influences.
American Mars’ emotional and cathartic live shows have earned them supporting slots with The National, The Avett Brothers, Elbow, Clem Snide, Magnolia Electric Company, Richard Buckner, and 16 Horsepower. The band’s 2008 release, Western Sides (Gangplank Records), received enthusiastic reviews from Harp magazine and American Songwriter, while the music on the group’s 2003 release, No City Fun, received glowing comparisons to such diverse artists as Tom Petty, Joe Henry, James, the Dream Syndicate, and Blue Nile.