You wouldn’t think this self-described emo band came from a former cellist, jazz musician and drummer.
Ask St. Louis band Inches From Glory how to describe their sound and you’ll get a variety of answers. Rock, emo, punk.
The band of three’s consensus, however, is how their lead singer and bassist Blake Mickens describes them.
“We’re emo from the Midwest, but not Midwest emo.”
Midwest emo musicians aren’t a bunch of people trading ripped t-shirts for flannel. Blake describes the sound as twinkly, arpeggiated major seven chords. It’s not like they have early 2000s My Chemical Romance haircuts or wear eyeliner either.
“I didn’t go through the emo thing, but there’s definitely way too many pictures of me with guyliner,” Blake says
Blake, guitarist Kelly Franklin and drummer Marty Aubuchon all come from different musical backgrounds.
Marty learned the drums after his father tried to teach him piano, an instrument his father played with his church. Kelly first got introduced to music playing the cello. She didn’t even pick up a guitar until high school. Blake played in his high school’s jazz band.
Despite their emo label, Kelly says the band doesn’t try to portray a certain image.
“Our vision is no vision,” she says.
“We’re just ourselves,” Marty adds. “If you have a vision, you end up looking like 30 Seconds to Mars.”
They all take influences from non-emo musicians. Their idols range from low-key indie musicians to old-school jazz.
But, Marty says, he loves listening to the band’s songs.
“I’ve never been in another band where I genuinely listen to the stuff we make,” Marty says.
Blake, who write the majority of Inches From Glory’s music, says there’s no point in writing music if you can’t “bop” to it. He wrote songs for Inches before Aaron and Kelly were even in the band.
Blake encourages anyone to pursue music, regardless of their musical background.
“You shouldn’t have to think ‘oh I don’t know theory and I don’t know chords and notes and I can’t do it I can’t be in a band, I can’t have awesome music.'” he says. “That’s incorrect. You can do anything as long as you put your mind to it.”