Born Dennis Eugene McCrohan, he and his brother Jerry changed their surnames to Edmonton in the early 1960s. The brothers were part of a band called The Sparrows which later evolved into Steppenwolf. Another member of The Sparrows was Bruce Palmer, who later became a member of Buffalo Springfield.
Bonfire embarked on a solo career while his brother Jerry became the drummer for Steppenwolf. After leaving the band, he often collaborated with Kim Fowley, co-writing and recording on the recordings of Fowley and artists associated with Fowley.
Mars Bonfire's late-'60s material occasionally bears some resemblance to Steppenwolf, particularly in the use of heavy organs. But in fact this is certainly on the lighter and more pop-flecked side than Steppenwolf, which might both disappointment Steppenwolf fans who seek this out on the basis of the "Born to Be Wild" connection, and make this LP a rather pleasant surprise to those fearing bombastic late-'60s hard rock on the order of Steppenwolf's less impressive aspects. There is a version of "Born to Be Wild" here that is far tamer and less effective than Steppenwolf's hit cover. Yet on about half the album Bonfire favors a pretty airy pop-psychedelic approach (reminiscent of his "Tomorrow's Ship" composition on the single for pre-Steppenwolf outfit the Sparrow, written under his real name of Dennis Edmonton) to both his songwriting and arrangements. Bonfire has a thin, crackly voice that lacks force and precluded any significant success as a solo singer and band frontman, but does have a sincere and likable quality in spite of its limitations. "Lady Moon Walker" in particular is an overlooked psych-pop gem, with Bonfire's best deployment of attractive melodies, spacy lyrics, and pleasing keyboard textures. "In Christina's Arms" and "Sad Eyes" are also neat-o tender love songs with just enough unexpected melodic changes and oh-so-slightly trippy lyrics to make them more intriguing than the usual decent late-'60s pop/rock tune. When Bonfire tries to rock harder and get a little bluesy, the music becomes undistinguished, and sometimes downright boring. ~ Richie Unterberger
01. "Faster Than The Speed Of Life" 3:04
02. "Born To Be Wild" 3:03
03. "Sad Eyes" 2:22
04. "Lady Moon Walker" 2:42
05. "Tenderness" 4:29
06. "She" 2:58
07. "Ride With Me Baby" 6:05
08. "How Much Older Will We Grow?" 5:52
09. "So Alive With Love" 2:42
10. "In Christina's Arms" 3:16
11. "Night Time's For You" 2:21
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