Listen: Charlotte Sands teams up with Underøath’s Aaron Gillespie for Out Of My Head
Hear Charlotte Sands and Underøath’s Aaron Gillespie join forces on new single Out Of My Head.
In the mid-noughties, if you were a band looking to get heard, you needed to be on MySpace. A platform for artists the world over to share music, connect with fans and promote their art, there was a time when being popular on MySpace carried as much weight as record sales. The social media platform’s subsequent decline has seen bands turn to Instagram, Twitter and Facebook in recent years, but there remains a wave of bands who, if it wasn’t for MySpace, might never have made it off the ground.
Pioneers of crabcore (check out the video for Stick Stickly if you’ve no idea what we’re talking about), Attack Attack! gained a solid following on MySpace, which led to the band being signed by Rise Records. One-time vocalists Austin Carlile (ex-Of Mice & Men) and Caleb Shomo (Beartooth) both went on to have great careers in music, but a year after the latter departed the band in 2012, the remaining members called it a day, bowing out with three albums to their name and lasting memories of their crustaceous creations.
The brainchild of a teenage Andy Biersack – known as ‘Andy Six’ back then – Black Veil Brides amassed a cult following on MySpace which led to debut album We Stitch These Wounds selling an impressive 10,000 copies in its first week. It all snowballed from there, with the band having released a further four albums since, establishing themselves as a major player in contemporary metal. Things have gone even better for Biersack personally, BVB’s vocalist finding yet more success via his dark alt.pop moniker Andy Black, having worked alongside the likes of Gerard Way and John Feldmann on his solo output.
Nine years ago, when MySpace was still a pretty big deal for bands looking to catch a break, Bring Me The Horizon were playing the social media game better than most, to the extent that they were the most popular band on the whole website in 2010. Fast-forward to 2019, and the Sheffield rockers are one of the MySpace scene’s biggest success stories, having transformed from screamo upstarts into one of the biggest and best rock bands on the planet, something evidenced by the immense quality and eclecticism of their most recent album, amo.
READ THIS: Album review: Bring Me The Horizon, amo
One of the names most synonymous with the much-maligned genre of crunkcore, there was a time when Brokencyde somehow threatened to become a huge deal in alternative music. Propelled by an absurd fusion of screamo and electro dance beats, not to mention some seriously questionable lyrics – ‘They pull their panties down, they take their pants off / And then they started getting freaky on the dance floor / Shake it, mommy, give it to me like you need some love’, goes the first verse of Freaxx – the New Mexico natives gained plenty of notoriety in the Warped Tour scene. They’re a lot quieter nowadays – only vocalist David ‘Se7en’ Gallegos and Michael ‘Mikl’ Shea remain in the band – but they did release a new album, 0 To Brokencyde, last year.
A band who met via MySpace, colonopenbracket – otherwise known as :( – are a self-described ‘nintendocore’ act who deal in a largely electronic-fuelled sound. They proved they’ve got roots in the rock world by naming the opening track on 2011 World Wide Web album Games Hetfield, but they’re definitely one of the stranger propositions that MySpace spawned. Details of their recent activity are scant, but online bread crumbs would suggest they’re still doing their thing.
Few bands epitomise the MySpace era of emo and pop-punk better than Cute Is What We Aim For. Exploding onto the scene with debut album The Same Old Blood Rush With A New Touch, the New York boys signed to Fueled By Ramen and briefly looked set to become a big deal in the alternative scene. Unfortunately for them, it all fell apart pretty quickly, and by 2010, only frontman Shaant Hacikyan remained in the band. The ever-reliable source of information that is Wikipedia claims Cute Is What We Aim For have gone through close to 20 band members since forming in 2005, and accurate or not, what is clear is that, despite some early promise, things definitely didn’t go to plan for this lot.
They may have had a daft band name and some even dodgier song titles (Dressed For Friend Requests and Girl, Are You On Your… being two particularly dire examples), but Colorado metalcore outfit Drop Dead, Gorgeous enjoyed some modest success during MySpace’s golden age. The band landed a spot on Warped Tour and played alongside the likes of Finch and Dance Gavin Dance, but 2009’s The Hot N’ Heavy was the last time they released an album, and the radio silence since suggests the band are probably done now.
Continually proving themselves to be one of the most innovative bands in British rock, St. Albans quartet Enter Shikari were a hit on MySpace back in the day, thanks in part to the power of early single Sorry You’re Not A Winner. Almost two decades on from the recording of their first demos, the band have grown into a shining light of modern rock music, continually shapeshifting and redefining what their sound is, all the while using their platform to spread a positive message, with most recent single Stop The Clocks proving yet again what a brilliant band they are.
Emo favourites From First To Last found not only a following on MySpace, but their singer, Sonny Moore, too. After Moore connected with guitarist Matt Good online, the band released two albums before their singer called it quits to focus on Skrillex, his dubstep solo project. Moore has since worked with the band again on recent singles Make War and Surrender, but it remains to be seen if we’ll get that full-length reunion album fans have been crying out for.
The passion project of Forrest Kline, Hellogoodbye is a power-pop act formed in 2001 that’s still going strong to this day. They’ve toured alongside Paramore, played Warped Tour, Reading and Leeds and a host of other festivals, starred on MTV shows and did very well for themselves. A remix of their 2018 S’only Natural album came out earlier this year, and more recently they dropped a new B-side called Needy Lover. If the more pop-leaning style of the recent records from Paramore and The Maine appeal to you, Hellogoodbye are worth checking out.
It was rumoured that Hollywood Undead’s popularity on MySpace led to them briefly being signed to MySpace Records, and whilst that’s something the band have since debunked, there’s no denying the masked rap-rockers owe much to the former giant of social media. Their early MySpace posts led to a wave of attention that saw the band’s debut album, Swan Songs, hit number 22 on the Billboard chart. They’ve since parted ways with original bassist/vocalist Aron ‘Deuce’ Erlichman, but Hollywood Undead remain active, with a new, sixth album expected in 2020.
Death metal stalwarts Job For A Cowboy used MySpace to great effect in their early days as a band, leading to a wave of hype around their first EP, 2005’s Doom. They’ve been a bit quiet of late, with members being involved in other projects, such as Serpent Of Gnosis, but rumours of a new record have been circulating throughout 2019. Any new LP would be the band’s first since 2014’s Sun Eater.
There’s definitely some kind of connection between being a MySpace band and having duff song titles. Orange County sisters Millionaires introduced themselves with the single I Like Money, which featured on early EPs Bling Bling Bling! and Just Got Paid, Let’s Get Laid. Another band that was part of the crunkcore scene, they’ve not released any new music since 2013, but their social media remains active, promoting club appearances and merch drops.
Anyone wondering just how popular Never Shout Never were in their prime should check out the excellent Warped Tour documentary No Room For Rockstars. One of the primary subjects of the film is Christofer Drew, the floppy-haired, ukulele-donning man behind NSN, who can regularly be seen getting swamped by adoring fans who worshipped his sweeter-than-sugar tunes. It all started on MySpace, and just two years after uploading his first demos Drew found himself signed to Warner Bros. Records. Never Shout Never now appear to be on hiatus, having released eight albums to date.
Comfortably the biggest act on this list, Panic! At The Disco have grown from their early days of uploading demos onto MySpace to become one of the biggest names in contemporary alternative music. Reading and Leeds headliners, Taylor Swift collaborators and general trend-setters, Panic! At The Disco’s post-MySpace success is unrivalled by any of their contemporaries.
READ THIS: Why Brendon Urie is the best!
Another short-lived MySpace success story, Leeds post-hardcore lads PenKnifeLoveLife were a staple choice for many a profile song. Things never really developed for the band, however, and following frontman Ross Kenyon’s departure for American metalcore act Confide, PenKnifeLoveLife split up.
Metallers Suicide Silence maintained a strong presence on MySpace throughout the platform’s heyday, utilising it to tease album announcements and drop demos. The band were rocked in 2012 following the tragic death of frontman Mitch Lucker, who passed away following a motorcycle crash, but they’ve since regrouped and pressed ahead with new vocalist Eddie Hermida. Still a heavyweight in the metal world, the band released their most recent, self-titled album in 2017.
Off the back of some MySpace demos, Atlanta metalcore boys Woe, Is Me were signed by Rise Records before playing a single show. Like many bands of the MySpace era, they were a staple of Fearless Records’ Punk Goes Pop series, recording covers of Katy Perry hits Hot ‘N Cold and Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.), before eventually splitting in 2013. One-time vocalist Tyler Carter joined a number of other previous Woe, Is Me members in setting up Issues in 2012, with that band set to release their new album Beautiful Oblivion on October 4.
The Surrey rockers made use of MySpace for booking their early tours, as well as sharing music and communicating with fans. Back then, Josh Franceschi and co. were dealing in a youthful pop-punk sound, but nowadays the Surrey boys are a radio-friendly rock titan, having ditched the scene kid fringes and tales of angst for an altogether more mature aesthetic and sound. You Me At Six’s latest tune, the experimental What’s It Like, dropped in August.
READ THIS: You Me At Six look back at their debut album
Fair play to crunkcore duo 3OH!3 – for all the shit that gets thrown their way, they’ve had some monster hits, most notably the ludicrously stupid and irritatingly catchy DONTTRUSTME. They’ve also worked alongside Ke$ha and Katy Perry, their last album being 2016’s Night Sports, which arrived via Fueled By Ramen. It’s been a quiet 2019 for 3OH!3, but given their top song on Spotify has over 85,000,000 streams, they can be forgiven for putting their feet up and counting the royalties.
Hear Charlotte Sands and Underøath’s Aaron Gillespie join forces on new single Out Of My Head.
Sum 41 are set to celebrate 20-plus years of All Killer No Filler and Does This Look Infected?, and they’re bringing Simple Plan with ’em…
Bring Me The Horizon are taking on the U.S. later this year, with Knocked Loose, grandson and Siiickbrain in tow…
Bullet For My Valentine will hit The K! Pit next week with our friends at Dead Man’s Fingers Rum – see you at the front!
From Hatebreed and Killswitch Engage to the Fugees and T2, Malevolence’s Alex Taylor likes to spin all sorts…
Måneskin gave new single SUPERMODEL its live debut at Eurovision, as well as performing a snippet of upcoming song If I Can Dream from the Elvis biopic.
Right from the start, the UK fell in love with My Chemical Romance. And they with us. Fittingly, our fair isle became the site of many of their greatest victories, from Brixton to headlining Reading & Leeds. As their enormous comeback shows arrive, we look back at how New Jersey’s finest built their empire on British soil…