Chicago's, The Outfit, paying reverence to Rock music through their own songwriting and vibe.
The Outfit, from Chicago, have been creating a buzz since coming on to the rock scene. Their first single “Soldier Boy” released in 2018, secured the #34 spot on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock Chart. The band isn’t re-inventing the wheel, and it never tries to; that's its charm. The three words to describe the band are Original, Bold, Rock. The Outfit shows they have the chops of veteran musicians, yet the forward thinking attitude to make an impact with a fresh, unique sound for today's music scene.
I recently caught up with the band's Bass Player, Mike Gorman, to discuss what the band is doing now that they have some unexpected free time due to the Corona Virus Pandemic.
BY: Kreig Marks, May 1, 2020
TRR: Hi, Mike. Congratulations on the new album, Viking. I wish it were a more exciting time for you guys to be announcing the release of the album. How are you guys dealing with this craziness with this “plague?”
MG: This is a tough time for everyone. We are just sitting tight and writing music.
TRR: Hopefully, once the quarantine is over, you guys will be able to get back out on the circuit to promote the album. I assume there’s been a lot of shows that had to be rescheduled.
MG: Yes, like everyone out there, we've had to postpone our schedule. But we will be back out there soon.
TRR: Tell me a bit about the band.
MG: Well, I'm Mike, the bass player. Andy Mitchell is on vocals and guitar. Mark Nawara is on the drums, and his brother, Matt, is on lead guitar.
TRR: You all got together in 2016, right? What is the band history of you guys?
MG: I had known the brothers for some time. I met Andy when we formed the band.
TRR: Your first single, “Soldier Boy” did pretty-well on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Chart back in 2018. How did that feel, seeing the success you had?
MG: It's tremendous. It helps us build [momentum]. It's always great hearing your record on radio.
TRR: Your song "Viking", from the new album, has already done well on Billboard, too. A sister site we’re involved with at Tru Rock Revival Magazine is Bandivious; a platform to promote unsigned and newly signed bands, and we will enjoy promoting these killer songs.
MG: That's great, please do.
TRR: Tell me about the first-time you guys performed live. How did that go?
MG: It was great. We played a big club in our area, and had an enthusiastic response. We always have a great time playing live.
TRR: Who are some of your musical influences?
MG: l like a lot of the older stuff. Jeff Beck, Zeppelin comes to mind, and some of the current stuff is really good. 21 Pilots and Black Keys make great albums.
TRR: Who would you guys like to share a tour with?
MG: Any Modern Rock acts that we could get with. We have done shows with Soil, and we have dates coming up with Puddle of Mudd.
TRR: The new album was mixed by Ulrich Wild. I can definitely hear his influence in there, especially on "Carnival," "Little Bit," and "Midnight Moses." What was it like working with Ulrich?
MG: He's a great guy. He has incredible ears and he works fast, so we had to be alert and on our toes.
TRR: No 80’s style rock ballads on this record. It’s all in-your-face Hard Rock. I like that. What’s been the general consensus from your fans?
MG: It's being received really well. The band has developed nicely, as far as material. We have a bunch, and pick what we feel is working best and go with it.
TRR: Aside from the current quarantine, how’s the music scene in Chicago these days?
MG: There are some great bands in the city, although it can be tough to get people out to support the live scene sometimes.
TRR: Unfortunately, it's like that in a lot of cities these days. Was performing at Rock USA your biggest thrill as a band so far?
MG: It really was. It's a massive fest with some great bands on the bill. One thing that we can't forget was the heat. It was a particularly hot day.
TRR: Hopefully, this year’s festival will go on as scheduled. Did you get to hang out with any of the other bands there? We’ve had the opportunity to interview a lot of those bands, and they were all very cool.
MG: A little bit. And yeah. All cool guys.
TRR: How do you guys write your songs? Is this a team effort?
MG: Yeah. There are little sparks of ideas and everybody builds on that and we see where it goes.
TRR: Tell me about your relationship with Pavement Records.
MG: Pavement has been great. They are very smart in how they work with time and other resources available. Great people to work with.
TRR: Any advice for other up- and- coming bands that are trying to get their name out there?
MG: Just keep working hard and enjoy the work.
TRR: Best place in Chicago for pizza?
MG: Villa Nova on Perishing Road.
TRR: Without a doubt?
MG: Without a doubt!
TRR: Mike Ditka or Brian Urlacher?
MG: Ditka. Da coach
TRR: Thanks, Mike!
MG: Thank you so much.
For more information about The Outfit, visit their website at www.theoutfit.rocks
Kreig Marks, Publisher at TRR
Kreig Marks is the founder of Tru Rock Revival. His passion is Rock music and people. He met Brad Delp many years ago, and the rest is History. Tom Scholz loved the interview. Kreig is also the guru of specialized training; known internationally for his success in neurologic and fitness training. (Tru-Fit.net and Neuro-Stretch.com). He was an Olympic bound wrestler in college.