Currently comprised of Long Island-born, Brooklyn-based founding member Sarik Kumar (vocals, guitar) with Wes Wynne (guitar), Craig Stauber (drums) and Justin Lieberthal (bass), the Brooklyn-based dream pop act Mars Motel can trace its origins to a series of psych rock and Brit Pop-inspired demos Kumar wrote and recorded during his senior year of high school. Several years had passed and those early demos were seemingly forgotten with Kumar relocating to Greenpoint, Brooklyn, where he joined Twin Wave for a three-year stint between 2013-2016.
Kumar rediscovered those high school demos while he was visiting his childhood home and he was inspired to embark on a new creative venture as the lead singer and primary songwriter. Kumar then recruited Wynne, Stauber and Lieberthal to complete the band’s linep, and since their formation, the band has received attention across the blogosphere and elsewhere for a string of releases that draw from from Brit Pop and early 2000s NYC post-punk.
Mars Motel’s highly-anticipated full-length debut Passenger X is slated for release later this year; but in the meantime, the album’s first official single “Coming Up For Air” is a sweeping and anthemic track, centered by shimmering guitars, a motorik-like groove and Kumar’s vocals expressing a plaintive and urgent yearning. And while bearing a resemblance to Radio 4, White Lies and others, the song as Kumar told Substream Magazine “is about an android -like being longing to be human and attempting an alteration. It captures the universal need for connection and the loneliness one can feel in being viewed as an outsider.”