Four-piece metal band Suits and Daggers is looking to keep the DIY Saginaw spirit alive.
Although the self-described progressive metal band has experienced various lineup changes since its inception, vocalist and guitarist Andy Martin as well as bassist and back vocalist Jerry Loyselle have been two mainstays for the band.
Martin, a former SVSU student, reflected on their humble mid-Michigan origin story.
“Jerry and I met via a mutual friend while jamming a few years back,” Martin said. “I needed a bassist for this project called Earning Tomorrow, and it’s been going strong ever since. We changed the name to Suits and Daggers pretty quickly because a lot of people thought we were Christian rock, and, considering our sound, that was very problematic.”
Drummer Adam Brossia and guitarist Noah Barber are relatively new additions, as they joined the lineup after the band’s 2017 EP “Sleep Well.” Nonetheless, their fit appears seamless when taking into consideration the band’s recent attendance at local venues. White’s Bar on State Street in Saginaw has become a frequented hotspot for Suits and Daggers, inadvertently fostering a friendship between ownership and the up-and-coming band.
“(White’s) goes above and beyond for us,” Loyselle said. “They are always looking to help out, which really makes us feel like one of them at this point.”
While they are more than willing to acknowledge the help they have received along the way, it is difficult to overlook the band’s personal development.
Through the implementation of intricate stage aesthetics, developing a network of similar band and general improvement of musicianship, the once geographically bounded metal act has exceeded even the most generous of expectations.
“Defender,” the first teaser track off their upcoming album “Frozen Planet,” just recently surpassed 25,000 views on YouTube.
Photographer and cinematographer Alex Reinhard worked with the graphic design talents of Loyselle and the marketing background of Martin to create a lyric video, which reached a notably large audience.
“We did a lot in terms of marketing and networking to reach a bigger audience, but we were still caught a little off-guard once we checked back up on it,” Martin said. “The first time we played in Grand Rapids, it was surreal to hear that fans found us through YouTube. Having our friends and family behind us really helped.”
The band’s evident business-savvy streak helps them stand in stark contrast to other bands.
All members seem to have some practical hidden talent that helps contribute to their success. A basement merchandise store, home recording studio and complex live light-show are only some of the projects each member took a turn in creating.
“We’re just young entrepreneurs trying to do good for the scene,” Martin said. “A lot of our proceeds go straight into our band fund, allowing us to better ourselves and do what we love with other Michigan DIY artists we enjoy, like Refueled, Oceans Beneath Us and a ton of other great guys.”
Despite the band’s rise in popularity, they haven’t lost sight of the joy that so often accompanies making music with friends, as Martin described the “caking” ritual every member is inevitably put through.
“Basically, whenever anyone new joins our team, we sit them down, bake them a cake and slam their face straight down into the middle of it,” Loyselle said. “It’s important to aim up, that way you get it down the nose.”
While “Frozen Planet” is set to be released in the coming months on the website “Bandcamp,” a music video featuring friend of the band Heather Simpson is currently in the works for the song “My Shelter” along with an April 27 Troutzilla appearance.