Born in Tel Aviv, Israel and raised in New York City. In 2012, Ariel Levine packed a rusty compact car to the brim and like so many before him, made the great journey west in search of bluer oceans and undiscovered endeavors.
As the former frontman for fabled NYC hi-fi punk band KiNDERGARTEN, Levine produced two albums, (River of Slime – 2007 & Small – 2010). Together they toured the east coast and were regulars at famed NYC venues such as CBGB’s, Southpaw, Le Poisson Rouge, Knitting Factory, Arlene’s Grocery & Joe’s Pub. It was the disbanding of KiNDERGARTEN that spawned Levine’s yen to leave New York City.
Upon first arrival to the West Coast, Levine stepped away from the pressures of center stage. Instead, embedding himself into the local scene, making a name as a composer, producer, tribute performer, session and live guitarist/bassist. Touring and recording with a wealth of great artists and events, including but not limited to: Maren Parusel, Dinosaur Ghost, Stevie Harris, Headphone, The Distractions, The Office’s Monthly Under Cover series, Spreckels Organ Society and more. Levine seldom performed any of his own original music onstage until 2016, which saw the assembly of his new band Mechanical Royalty.
The band includes Alive & Well drummer Eric Brozgold. The two embarked on a 6 week tour in 2011, backing indie-pop artist Maren Parusel. “Eric is the best drummer I’ve ever played with and I’ll do anything to keep him.” On guitar and vocals is musical legend in his own right, Jesse Rone Johnson. The two met while backing soul rebel Stevie Harris on a number of local gigs. “Jesse is one of those musicians who can do everything better than everybody else and I hate him for it, I love him so freaking much.” Joining Mechanical Royalty on bass is Tim McNalley, whom at a very young age is already one of the most in-demand musicians in town. “Tim just gets it. Wherever he chooses to go with his career he has my full support.” Rounding out this ragtag bunch is Sakura Toyama on keys. Former KiNDERGARTEN bandmate who also ended up on the west coast. “Sakura and I have been playing together for over a decade, we’ve grown together as musicians and communicate telepathically. I’m honored to have her continuously by my side.“
Let The Machine Get It is a construct of musical ideas collected over and inspired by the varying terrains and unpredictable gear shifts of the last five plus years. A lyrical knack for exploring darker truths beyond the light and humor in mankind’s darkest moments, Levine turns his external satirical candor inward. It’s a conceptual story arc that encompasses the desire for something greater, the fear of losing ones connection to the world by an increasing dependence on technology, and the looming truth that is “wherever you go, there you are”. LTMGIis set to be the most personally revealing collection of songs in his career to date.
This is only the beginning. More music is just around the corner.
Levine now resides in San Diego, splitting his time between California and frequent visits back home to New York.
“San Diego is home to incredible talent, musicians who challenge me and artists who inspire me. I’m humbled and honored to call this city my new home base. But I could never stay away from New York for good”
Let The Machine Get It is now available through Bleeding Gold Records.
Let’s burn some gasoline.