A lot of work has come to fruition for Vancouver-based, Lethbridge-born vocalist Kyle Gruninger, whose melodic metal band Incura just inked a new U.S. record deal.
“We released our first record in 2012 on Coalition Warner but we produced a lot of records independently,” said Gruninger, who is back in Lethbridge to perform in New West Theatre’s production of “Starlight.”
He moved to Vancouver in 2006 with the band and started making music and playing gigs and assembling a talented team to get behind the band.
“My career has been a brick-and-mortar career. So I don’t mind waiting. Coalition has been great to work with,” Gruninger said, adding he enjoys singing and making music. He released the first Incura record independently in 2001.
“If you’re going to fail, you might as well fail at something you enjoy doing rather than failing at something you don’t. I spent $20,000-30,000 on my career so far because if you don’t believe in yourself, nobody else will believe in you,” Gruninger said, adding he is pleased people in high places are supporting him.
All his work attracted the attention of Rob Lanni, founder of Coalition Music, who approached Incura to manage the band in addition to other well-known acts like Finger Eleven, Simple Plan and Our Lady Peace.
That in turn led to the band working with Rob’s brother Arnold Lanni, who ’80s kids might remember from being part of ’80s pop bands Sheriff (who had a hit with “When I’m With You”) and Frozen Ghost. But since Frozen Ghost, who charted hits like anti-censorship anthem “Should I See” and “Pauper in Paradise,” disbanded in 1993, Arnold Lanni has been making a name for himself as a songwriter and producer.
“He basically wrote all of the Finger Eleven and Our Lady Peace albums,” Gruninger enthused, noting the band toured all over Canada, the U.S. and Europe in support of their debut album. then recorded a second album with the help of a FACTOR grant, but only released it online as the record deal came together. In the meantime, Gruninger took any singing gig he could including getting work on cruise ships.
“So I’m going to California in February and March and write with Arnold. And hopefully we’ll release three song EPs with a couple of songs from the second record and a new song,” he said, noting he also got connected with Atlantic Records A and R rep Andy Karp, who also offered important guidance.
“Andy said releasing shorter, three-song EPs is a smarter idea in the music business today,” he observed.
“So that’s exciting,” Gruninger said, noting he was excited to learn from both Lannis.
“I can sing, but I can’t write songs. Arnold isn’t the best singer, but watching him write a song is like watching magic happen,” he enthused.
“If you can write that one ‘Let It Be,’ you can build a career off that. It definitely makes it easier. Arnold has written 10 number-one hits,” he said.
“Music has given me a lot. I’ve seen the world, I’ve met some amazing people and I even met my fiancee through it. She’s an Incura fan. She was front row at Incura concerts,” he said.