Empty Houses are: David Mackinder, Ali Shea & Adam Mercer

Photo by: Mitchell Wojcik

Record Label / Sargent House
Contact: Marc Jetton

US Press: Stunt Company
Publicist: Sue Marcus & Lindsay Bailey

Licensing: Bank Robber Music
Contact: BRM

Radio Promo: Right Arm Resource
Contact: Jesse Barnett


Empty Houses is Myspace Artist Of The Day 


Debut album ’Daydream’ merges soul, doo-wop, funk and indie rock.

Looking for the perfect song for your summer hijinks montage? It may be Empty Houses’ “Better of Me,” a bouncy, catchy song that’s packed with horns, handclaps and piano hooks. With singer Ali Shea’s full-bodied, sassy voice soaring over everything, all you need is a margarita, a pool and endless sunshine to complete the perfect summer day. The rest of the Detroit trio’s debut, Daydream, doesn’t disappoint, either. Alongside Adam Mercer and David Mackinder, Empty Houses captivates on all of its 10 tracks. Just call them the power pop trio.

Mercer talks to Myspace about their sound, how they got together and that time his grandma came to one of their shows.

Hometown and homebase: 


How did you all meet? What made you want to form a band together?

We’ve been friends for a while and eventually realized we all love this kind of music and we decided we shouldn’t be not making it together.

Who are your biggest musical influences?

Our influences are constantly changing as we hear new music and discover new artists and sounds, but if I had to narrow it down I’d say Stevie Wonder and The Muppets.

How do you describe your music to someone who’s never heard you before?

If Aretha Franklin had a cousin who was kinda sad but also listened to the Beach Boys and decided to make an album in 2015 it might sound something like ours.

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The Examiner features Empty Houses before Portland show 


words by Pat Herrera
photos by Rina Movsisyan

Detroit’s rich music history is legendary. The Motor Town, home to Berry Gordy’ pop and soul powerhouse permeated the airwaves for years from its modest beginning in 1959, through its 60s and 70s heyday and into the 80s, Motown’s ripple effect can be heard throughout pop music today.

In 2016, much has changed in America’s musical landscape. But rock and roll, across all genres, continues to inspire today’s artist. Count Empty Houses part of the family. Possibly the best-kept secret in Detroit, the word is out! The band released their debut,Daydream, June 10 and connects to the historic past with a fresh infusion of soulful pop.

The trio consists of vocalist Ali Shea, Adam Mercer on keyboards and David Mackinder holding down the guitar work. The group is on their way to Portland for its West Coast debut June 20 at the Mission Theater.

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Substream premieres Real Feels video session for “Better Of Me” 


WARNING: This post is one of, if not the very last opportunity to climb aboard the Empty Houses bandwagon before the band crosses over into the mainstream. If you want those oh so sweet bragging rights that come from being ahead of the pop music curve, this is the time to stake your claim and support this incredibly awesome band.

Empty Houses just released their debut album, Daydream, earlier this month through Sargent House Records, but anyone familiar with the band has no doubt been hyping their intoxicating blend of throwback pop and modern indie sensibilities since the group’s first EP surfaced online in mid-2015. The band’s approach to songwriting has ushered in a renewed interest in a style of music that was first made popular when Motown was topping the charts and people still understood the fun that could be had at a Sadie Hawkins dance. We’ve been obsessed with the group for months now, but it wasn’t until the last week that we were able to partner with them to share something truly amazing.

Today we are thrilled to present the world premiere of a video that finds Empty Houses performing their Daydream cut “Better Of Me” for Real Feels TV. The clip, which was filmed in Michigan in recent weeks, perfectly captures the group’s fun and unique take on a very familiar style of music, as well as the awesome vocal talents of frontwoman Ali Shea. You can view the video HERE.

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Empty Houses ‘Daydream’ is out now 


Empty Houses Daydream is out today on all platforms - order their debut album on iTunes, follow them on Spotify, and order physical copies from their US $ store (ships worldwide) or their UK £ store (ships to EU).

Empty Houses are on tour with Good Old War right now - see their remaining dates and get tickets HERE.

Check out what people are already saying about the album below -

Too many bands just get lazy when it comes to crafting transitions and making the different parts of the song speak to each other in a seamless way. On a few occasions, the band flaunts their extremely tangible songwriting ability and deviates a little bit to pull through with some solid pop songs. The exceptional musicianship on the big standout “Mercy” just drives home a beautiful melody. The band harnesses a lot of passion and streamlines it into really driven and focused songs like the other big standout “Hold Your Hand”. - Paste Magazine


The effervescent “Better of Me” opens the album and establishes Shea as more than a mere tribute-band leader. Featuring a piano- and occasionally brass-reinforced rhythm section, its bright tempo, handclaps, and judicially applied electric guitar keep the groove grooving right through to the title track. Similarly melodic and infectious, “Daydream” has more regretful lyrics buoyed by an energetic wistfulness that marks many of the girl-group classics of the ‘60s. While the album is defined by its retro flavor, it takes excursions into more contemporary if still somewhat timeless R&B, such as the ballads “Mercy” and “Every Word.” - AllMusic


The songs found on Daydream play like the accompaniment to life-defining moments many of us have not yet lived. Whether it be the profound romance of “Lost At Sea,” which channels a bit of Bobby Darren with a dash of modern charm, or the sultry confidence of “Rope,” each song on Daydream feels like a simple pop epic unto itself. There is an intoxicating charm to every song that makes it very easy to get lost in each verse and reborn with each chorus. You might not live a life that reflects the experiences shared on the album, but you yearn to hear more and more with each note that plays, and that desire keeps you coming back again and again. - Substream Magazine, 5/5


From Detroit, two men and one woman who don’t look old enough to have heard the finest Motown singles when those were brand new capture a lot of that era’s joyous pop craftsmanship. - Milwaukee Journal Sentinal

Crave streams Empty Houses debut album ‘Daydream’ 

Album Premiere: Empty Houses Ignite Motown Soul-Pop On ‘Daydream

Detroit retro-pop outfit Empty Houses are gearing up to release their debut album, Daydream, on June 10 via the relentlessly excellent Sargent House imprint (pre-order), and Crave is giving fans a head start with a full-album exclusive premiere ahead of release.

Produced by four-time Grammy-winner Graham Marsh (Bruno Mars, CeeLo Green, Common) and Empty Houses at Parhelion Studios in Atlanta, Daydream calls back to the soulful Motown essence of their roots. Brassy horns, pounding piano and straight-up hip-hijacking danceability deliver a bright atmosphere that takes the retro-pop ebullience of Fitz & The Tantrums and soaks it in the kind of Motor City heart usually only seen in fleeting glimpses on the abandoned blocks, faded facades and ghosts of what was, once upon a time, a city of such passion and vitality.

“We’re so excited to share these songs with everyone,” the band shared with Crave ahead of the premiere. “We’ve been sitting on them for several months now but they feel like they’ve been years in the making. I feel like we’ve had these songs in us since long before the band got together, and it feels great to finally let people hear them.”

Listen to Empty Houses’ debut album Daydream HERE

A Michigan native myself, just the sight of the Mackinac Bridge on the album cover is enough to inspire a thousand memories of Summer travels up north, stopping for fudge and pictures by the bridge, fishing with Dad, the rituals of loading the family into the car just before sunset to count deer at the treeline and beyond. And when the music hits, the stories our parents and grandparents told us of How Things Used To Be before Michigan went through economic hell come into full color, a vicarious nostalgia with enough potency to pass as direct reference. Daydream brings you back, even if you’ve never been there.

Pre-order Daydream on iTunes, or on CD and vinyl HERE (US $ - ships worldwide) or HERE (UK £ - ships to EU)

Empty Houses performs “Thunderstorms” for Real Feels TV 


Get to know Empty Houses. They’re preparing to kick off their first national tour, supporting our friends Good Old War, and they’ll be releasing their first full-length album ‘Daydream’ June 10th on Sargent House records.

Two of these guys might look familiar. That’s because we interviewed them a couple years ago at Bled Fest. Adam Mercer and Dave Mackinder were previously in the band Fireworks. We were in talks back in 2014 about working with their secret new project. It has finally come to fruition.

We were invited to utilize a space at Concordia University in Ann Arbor lovingly referred to as “The Black Box”. To test out the amazing space, we asked Empty Houses to come play some songs for us. They opted for a full band performance, including horns, as opposed to simplifying their sound and stripping back to acoustic. The results were amazing!

Here is “Thunderstorms”. Pick up the band’s album on June 10th!

(via Real Feels)

WXPN “Free At Noon” Performance Live Stream 


Empty Houses will be live streaming their “Free At Noon” performance alongside Good Old War today, June 3rd, at 9am PDT/12pm EDT.

Watch the live stream HERE and don’t miss both bands on tour starting tonight. A list of dates can be found below. Tickets and info available HERE.


Jun 03 - Philadephia, PA @ World Café
Jun 06 - Brooklyn, NY @ Thrones *
Jun 09 - Indianapolis, IN @ The Hi Fi
Jun 10 - Ferndale, MI @ The Magic Bag
Jun 11 - Chicago, IL @ GMan Tavern *
Jun 13 - St. Louis, MO @ The Demo
Jun 14 - Kansas City, MO @ The Riot Room
Jun 16 - Denver, CO @ The Soiled Dove
Jun 18 - Salt Late City, UT @ The State Room
Jun 20 - Portland, OR @ Mission Theater
Jun 21 - Seattle, WA @ The Triple Door
Jun 23 - San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel
Jun 24 - Hollywood, CA @ The Hotel Café
Jun 25 - San Diego, CA @ The Casbah
Jun 26 - Tucson, AZ @ Club Congress

* without Good Old War

Exclaim premieres new Empty Houses track “Rope” 




Detroit pop-rock trio Empty Houses are set to drop their debut album Daydream on June 10 via Sargent House, but before it officially arrives, the genre- and era-jumping outfit has shared their sweltering new single “Rope.”

The track is a reverb-washed blues romp, featuring rollicking guitars and pounding drums. Singer Ali Shea is particularly striking, proclaiming her devotion to a troubled relationship with her fiery lead vocals. These elements combine to recall five decades of Detroit music, drawing influence from the sweetly soulful sounds of Motown to the explosive blues of Jack White’s projects.

Speaking of the track, Empty Houses’ Adam Mercer had this to say:

This song came together faster than any song on the record. The verse riff, chorus and bridge were all there, and it only took us a few minutes to identify each as their respective part and structure them. Once the music was done, the general theme of the song came to us based on how it sounded, and the lyrics were written in one night. Once we put percussion on it in the studio it became one of our favourites.  

Hear the current-day culmination of the city’s musical history by checking out “Rope” in the player below. You can pre-order the album here or here.

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Billboard premieres new track “Daydream” 

Sometimes, treasured new songs come from unexpected places. The Detroit pop-punk band Fireworks went on hiatus last May, but two of its members have resurfaced in a new group with a new vocalist and a completely different sound. But then again, it’s a sound that’s near and dear to their city’s long musical tradition.

Meet Empty Houses – ex-Fireworkers Adam Mercer and David Mackinder, plus frontwoman Ali Shea and her majestic singing voice. Their debut album Daydream is out next month, and we’re excited to premiere its irresistible title track – a savvy statement in the language of Motown and Phil Spector’s “wall of sound” production – and all the swooning, piano-laced hooks and castanet clicks that come with it.

“‘Daydream’ is the first song we wrote together,” the band tells Billboard. “With it, we feel like we solidified what this band should be. This song feels like our benchmark.”

Click HERE to stream “Daydream”

It’s definitely a good place to start on the forthcoming full length, which drops June 10 on Sargent House, along with a tour with indie rockers Good Old War. Daydream was produced by four-time Grammy-winner Graham Marsh, who’s engineered big timers like Cee Lo Green’s “F-ck You” and Bruno Mars’ Doo-Wops & Hooligans.

“A daydream can be an escape from reality to a world more pleasant, or it can simply be a distraction from your real life that ends up hurting you… There’s probably a good argument to be had for both sides, and the songs on this album could potentially argue either one. Ultimately, life is what you make of your experiences, and hopefully people can reflect on their own experiences through these songs and have fun with this album.”

(via Billboard)