Known for their high-octane performances and rousing on-stage chemistry, Zeroed Hero has been igniting the local music scene since winning the Madison Area Music Association's 2020 "Breakthrough Artist of the Year" award. The band's core sound is undeniable neo-classic rock: sing-along anthems riding the lush layers of '70s rock powered by the passion of '90's grunge. They bring an eclectic palate of influences and miles of experience. From alt-metal to church choir, americana to musical theater, blues to reggae, these musical mixologists pour a potent and entertaining potion.
- Chris Franczek - bass & vocals
- Dean Kesler - vocals
- Katrina Harms - keys & vocals
- Stefan Truesdell - guitar
- Tony Kille - drums
Hometown: Madison, WI
Genre: Neo-Classic Rock
Sounds Like: Foo Fighters, Rival Sons, Royal Blood
Known for their high-octane performances and rousing on-stage chemistry, Zeroed Hero has been igniting the local music scene since winning the Madison Area Music Association's 2020 "Breakthrough Artist of the Year" award. The band brings an eclectic palate of influences and miles of experience. From alt-metal to church choir, americana to musical theater, blues to reggae, these musical mixologists pour a potent and entertaining potion.
Zeroed Hero's core sound is undeniable neo-classic rock: sing-along anthems riding the lush layers of '70s rock powered by the passion of '90's grunge. What really propels this troupe is their blue collar songwriting, infectious hooks, and vibrant personalities, making this concoction of rock & roll both accessible and memorable. Whether it's the grooves, the harmonies, or the message, there is sonic sustenance for everyone. Their lyrics are honest, relatable, occasionally inspiring, and somehow reassuring, making their enduring songs resonate with those struggling to make sense of their identity, their relationships, their surroundings, and their country.
Feeding this powerhouse is the diverse musical and life experience they each contribute to the mix, manifested in the meaningful contributions each of them make to the collaborative songwriting. Lead vocalist and lyricist Dean Kesler isn’t just a loudmouth with a loud mouth; his powerful vocals, ferocious energy, and sharp wit make him an unforgettable force on and off the stage. Dean can often be seen sharing a knowing glance or an inside joke with lifelong pal Chris Franczek - likely one that no one else understands. Chris typically responds by channeling that energy into an infectious bass groove locking in with drummer and four-on-the-floor king Tony Kille, the pair transforming in to a single, colossal rhythm section hitting like Mike Tyson and moving like Muhammad Ali. As the band shifts into the hook, Katrina Harms provides the perfect counterpoint lift with emotive keys and captivating vocals. Just when you think they’ve reached cruising altitude, the irrepressible Stefan Truesdell fires the afterburner with his vivacious guitar work and effervescent presence.
"This. Band. Rocks. Watching Zeroed Hero win fans with great audience interaction, handing out glow sticks, having them sing in the mic, and with ZH's overall stage antics and great talent made me proud to be there. It really was a terrific demonstration of how music brings people together . . . "
- Teri Barr, 94.9 WOLX and Maximum Ink
"If this is the future of rock, we are all in. Smart songwriting with incredibly crisp and dynamic recordings, Zeroed Hero is exactly what the genre needs right now."
- Bob Minter, Code Zero Radio
"In a world obsessed with genre-splicing and overly-hip categorizing, ‘Mannequin’ focuses squarely on populist, blue-collar guitars and hooks. This isn't indie rock, alterna-bluegrass, alt-folk, or post-black-metal ska-core . . . this is straight-up, '70s/'90s-styled, no-bullshit rock. It's technically a debut album, but these songs betray some long years honing some serious chops."
- DJ Hostettler, Martian Dance Invasion
"Many of the songs have a tight riff-y sound from a careful interlocking of the rock n’ roll standard guitar, bass, and drums, but that’s important because it exposes the lyrics before they open into powerful and dramatic choruses. Kesler’s voice is sweetened by Margaret’s female harmonies."
- Mike Huberty, Maximum Ink
"Kick-ass songs, great arrangements, great mixing, great performances . . . everything! Love it!"
- Beth K.
"Lyrics are great. Harmonies are frigging sweet. And that B3 plugged in here and there really ties the room together. Good stuff."
- Brian W.
"You guys did a super job putting these songs together. They’ve all got a little kick to them, they have good lyrics, they’re melodic, & they all make me want to jam!"
- Matt R.
"Sounds fantastic! The energy, the approach, the musicality, and the emotion are all top-notch.”
- Mike M.
"It’s been far too long since Archimedes has been referenced in a song. Strong work guys.”
- Mike V.
"Love the new disc. It rocks with a capital "R". And it plays well loud."
- Tony C.