When Mike Bones sagely sings “Today the world is worthy of my loathing,” it’s kind of hard not to agree. The 29-year-old musician delivers the lines with convincing grit, sounding like a road-weary, lovelorn singer. Judging from his music—plus the fact that he lists “beautiful women and existential despair” as his main influences—it’s reasonable to assume that Bones is a miserable guy. Turns out he isn’t. “People have weird ideas about me,” he says. “I mean, everyone thinks I’m gonna be a dick or some depressive mope because of my music. I kind of enjoy playing that role though. When you write songs, you end up creating this character who is slightly askew from how you really are.” Bones originally moved to New York when he was in his late teens and struggled for years as an artist. It wasn’t until the release of his sophomore album, A Fool For Everyone (The Social Registry), earlier this year, that the tide seemed to have turned in his favor. “I just make records and then never think that anyone in the world hears them,” he says. “But being on tour this year, I met people who actually relate to my music. I met this kid in Leeds who told me that one of my songs inspired him to come out to his parents. That shit is heavy, you know?” Perhaps the world isn’t quite so terrible after all.
Listen to a track from the new album:
Photo above: Mike Bones in New York, June 2009. Suit: Prada. Sweater: Bottega Veneta. Shirt: Marc Jacobs. Watch: Patek Philippe. Grooming products: Bumble and Bumble, including grooming cream. Fragrance: Prada Infusion d’Homme. Styling: Miguel Enamorado. Hair: Laura de Leon/Joe. Makeup: Walter Obal/Jed Root.