Despite moving to different parts of the country, longtime friends Phil Davis, Butch Vig, and brothers Pete and Frank Anderson hatched an unconventional plan to create music. They used more than forty years of friendship — including playing in several well-known Madison groups during the seventies and eighties — to craft a new band and eventually produce an album via email. This is no amateur endeavor. Vig, who co-founded Madison’s Smart Studios, is a drummer for the band Garbage and produced records for them, Green Day, Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, and many others. He also had his own popular Madison band, Spooner. Davis and the Andersons, members of the local group Buzz Gunderson, are also experienced veterans of the Madison music scene, and Vig and Davis were in Fire Town, which recorded two albums for Atlantic Records in the late ’80s.
Whilst mixing the record at Milwaukee’s Wonder Wonder Sound, the Emperor’s found common ground with Wonder Wonder’s Alex Smolinski. (who handled the mixing) and Kim Henry. Prior to moving to Milwaukee from New York, Henry and Smolinksi did extensive session work and were members of The Churchills. Formally joining the Emperors in 2015, Smolinski plays drums and Henry provides vocals and electric rhythm guitar.
Together, the members of Emperors of Wyoming create atmospheric, evocative music that blends the moods of past and present into roots rock that’s admirably free of cliches. Their self-titled album, the Emperors of Wyoming, was originally released by Proper Records in Europe and Hillbilly Digital in 2012. in 2014, an expanded edition with three additional tracks was issued in America by Liaison Music in 2014. Their new single Burn In Hell was released in December 2017. Artisanal Records distributes the expanded Emperors of Wyoming in high quality, lossless downloads.