WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – Ron Anthony balances the excitement and anxiety that accompany being on the verge of becoming a national music act against the nagging feeling that so much is still beyond his control.
Well known in South Florida, Anthony’s band, The Kinected, experienced its first taste of national success with debut album Evolution #9, the success of which earned The Kinected spots on bills with the likes of Candlebox, Dashboard Confessional, O.A.R. and Daughtry.
Still, Anthony is looking for more.
“There’s a part of me that feels like we’ve been successful already but I think, for me, on a larger scale I’ve always as a kid dreamed about being able to play at Madison Square Garden,” said Anthony, who grew up in New York.
Without a true rock-format radio station in the area and a shrinking number of bars open to new music, South Florida bands have struggled to make a national impact in recent years.
That hasn’t stopped The Kinected from becoming one of the area’s more popular bands – especially throughout Palm Beach County, where the band can usually be found playing at least twice a week.
On stage Alex Zapatier, Anthony’s cousin-in-law, alternates between driving and melodic guitar riffs. Anthony’s brother, Mike, drives the tempo on bass, while their “brother-from-another-mother” Marck Manget provides the rhythms. In recent months Christopher Cope, Alex’s brother-in-law, has joined the band on stage for additional keyboard support, freeing up Anthony to do more on stage with his vocals.
The Kinected’s keyboard-guitar sound combines Depeche Mode and the Cure with the Rolling Stones and Led Zepplin, giving The Kinected a modern 80s sound that is as captivating as it is rare in the current scene.
It’s not surprising that the Kinected’s sound is a combination of genres. The band likes to fuse things together, right down to the band name, which is a combination of the words “kinetic” and “connected.”
“We want to connect with people when we are playing live and a lot of times we want to make people move,” Anthony said.
Hypnotized, the first of Evolution #9’s 10 tracks, became the No. 1 single on iHeartRadio’s Hits and joined the playlist on Sirius XM Radio Channel 3. More music from The Kinected can be found on Pandora and Spotify.
Despite the acclaim from internet and satellite listeners outside of South Florida, The Kinected has struggled to gain a strong enough following to produce anything but small regional tours. They are, however, primed to take that next step, which could include a spot at Austin’s SXSW festival in March.
“For me, I think having our music exposed to larger audiences nationally and internationally, and taking the local success we’ve had and having it exponentially grow to a larger level, to me that would make me very happy,” Anthony said.
“I think the band as a group, in a perfect world, having a great song that people connect with is all you need, but I also know having the experience on the business side of things that there is a lot more to it than that,” Anthony said.
“I think the knowledge I gained from working in the music industry and working in A&R development within a company really allowed me to see how many bands there are. …You need to be doing something special not only with your music but with your work ethic for you to really be heard.”
Part of that work includes producing a second album, for which The Kinected is taking an unconventional approach. Many songs are already written, with the few that have been recorded already appearing on their website. Anthony says that when they are happy with about a half dozen of them an EP will be released.
The completion of the second set of songs will spawn a full album.
“At the end of the day we are doing everything ourselves and when you are doing it all yourself it can get hard,” Anthony said. “We were able to do as much as any band can do independently (to support Evolution #9) without finding that right team of booking agent and PR firm that really believe in you. We’ve got the fan base and we’ve got what we do. I’d like to be able to take it to the next level.”