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/// ON TOUR by Treasure Groh

band, Leisure, which ended in 2003. It was a jaded feeling they knew they had to circumvent in order to get MC Rut off the ground, which began taking shape in 2006. “We didn’t have enough life left in us to go down the road


of ‘Alright, let’s put an ad out and try to find a bass player and a guitar player,’” said Zach Lopez (guitar/vocals). “We just didn’t have it in us. We’d been doing it too long when we started this band to even care enough to involve anyone.” And so Lopez and Sean Stockham (drums/vocals) went it

alone and found the process went smoother and resulted in mu- sic they both could honestly get behind. While this is a problem a lot of bands have, for them, it was the many false starts that MC Rut had to overcome before they were even signed. Their first label went under, resulting in dutifully working on their album jobless. “You may think, ‘In six


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months I’ll be to this point and things are going to go this way.’ It just never ever works out that way,” Lopez said. “At some point you reach the point of no return; either this is what you’re doing or you go do something else. It’s

always a constant struggle trying to make it make sense.” That constant struggle seems to be mirrored by the bands

namesake. Regardless of the political connotation it could have, Lopez knows otherwise. “You should realize it’s the name you’re stuck with for the rest of the life of the band. Maybe it’s more serious a name than we really wanted,” he joked. MC Rut began its career by releasing EPs rather than com-

mitting to a full-length album. “There seems to be a lot of pressure around a record and

when you put it out it’s like, ‘How did it do? How’s it selling?’ It’s this massive thing that happens,” Lopez said. The fact that any money made off the EPs went straight

into their pockets was a sure incentive for the band. But the band decided it was time to get serious. The duo finally settled on their album title, No Name No

Color. A collection of tracks the guys had already written (they have a habit of recording things right away to get the sense of urgency out in the song), their debut studio effort was all but done – all they needed was a label. The band then signed to indie label Bright Antenna, which

released the album in October 2010. But a record label does not make a music career. In today’s

economic climate, albums are but a small fraction of the profit artists take in – the real money comes from touring. “I think we always thought if we’re ever gonna have any sort

of career it’s gonna be around touring,” Lopez said. “Touring is where it’s at and labels know that. Labels are essentially a massive credit card and your credit limit depends on how much they believe in you.

14 | REVUEMM.COM | NOVEMBER 2011 Old Habits Die Hard:


“So as soon as someone changes their mind it’s, ‘OK, your

limit gets bumped way down.’ You’re not a primary customer,” he added. So far, MC Rut has been lucky in getting great tour offers

opening for some heavy hitters in rock music. They’re labeled as somewhat of a touring band and are currently touring across the map. “We’ve been doing nothing but touring for three years,

but I feel like there’s still enough life in this thing and enough people who don’t know about it,” Lopez said.

Lopez’s experience shows in his tone. He and Stockham

have been around the block a time or two and know the moves they have to make in order to keep the ball rolling. And playing music together for so long means they can at least count on each other. “You know how there’ll be an old couple who will go three

months without even speaking but they have a routine and everything works fine; that’s kind of us,” he said with a laugh. “We’re in the golden years right now.” n

T A CERTAIN AGE, the phrase “you’re no spring chicken anymore” seems to be uttered more and more. For the guys of Middle Class Rut (MC Rut),

a Sacramento-based rock duo, it was a feeling they had after years of touring and promoting their old


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