Tag Archive | "At The Drive-In"


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Posted on 30 March 2012 by admin



From Wikipedia.com

At the Drive-In is an American post-hardcore band from cialis Texas” href=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Paso, treat _Texas”>El Paso, health Texas, formed in 1993. Consisting of singer Cedric Bixler-Zavala, guitarists Jim Ward and Omar Rodríguez-López, bassist Paul Hinojos, and drummer Tony Hajjar, the band released three studio albums and five EPs before breaking up in 2001. Their final album, 2000’s Relationship of Command, received a number of accolades and is cited as a landmark of the post-hardcore genre. Following the breakup, Bixler-Zavala and Rodríguez-López formed The Mars Volta while Ward, Hinojos, and Hajjar formed Sparta. At the Drive-In reunited in January 2012 and are scheduled to play the 2012 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, but do not plan to record new material.


Formation and Acrobatic Tenement (1993–97)

At the Drive-In was founded in 1993 by guitarist Jim Ward and vocalist Cedric Bixler-Zavala (then credited simply as Cedric Bixler). The newly formed band played its first live show on October 15, 1994 at the Loretto High School Fair in El Paso, Texas. Not long after, At the Drive-In released its first studio recording entitled Hell Paso, a 7-inch EP issued in November 1994.[1] Following Hell Paso’s release, the band members embarked on their first tour – a 2,000-mile trek across the state of Texas. After a drummer change, At the Drive-In released its second EP ¡Alfaro Vive, Carajo! in June 1995. The band then set out on another tour, this one in a newly purchased 1981 Ford Econoline and spanning 42 days and 10,000 miles across the United States.[1] During these tours, At the Drive-In began developing a large underground following by mostly playing in basements and small venues across the western United States, with their popularity spread by word of mouth among fans. One such show that changed the course of history for the band was in a now defunct bar in Los Angeles, where the band put on an explosive performance for just nine people – some of them employees of the Flipside record label. The staffers were so enthralled by the show that they offered to put out At the Drive-In’s record then and there.[1] Accepting the offer, the band first headed out on another 21-day tour of the Southwest before ending in Los Angeles again where they recorded their debut full-length album titled Acrobatic Tenement for $600.[2]

The album was released August 18, 1996, and the band commenced another tour of the United States the following year spanning 100 days (February to June 1997) and 24,000 miles.[2] This tour included shows with hundreds of other bands such as Screw 32, J Church, AFI, Still Life, Mustard Plug, Face to Face, and Cosmic Psychos.[2] At the Drive-In’s fan base began to swell with every show it performed. Following this tour, the band members took a month vacation (Jim Ward remained on vacation until the recording of In/Casino/Out) before rehearsing for their next record and subsequent tour. Following the recording of Acrobatic Tenement in July 1996, the final line-up of At the Drive-In fell into place with the addition of Tony Hajjar and Paul Hinojos and with Omar Rodríguez-López transitioning from bass to guitar. At the Drive-In’s third EP titled El Gran Orgo was released on September 18, 1997, and “showed a more melodic side of the band, but the musical depth and heartfelt emotion was never more apparent.”[1] Two days after its release, the band was in Boulder, Colorado playing a show with Welt to kick off its next 35-day, 11,000-mile tour that also included six dates with Karp and the Young Pioneers, and one-offs with Guttermouth, The Criminals, Piss Drunks, and the Humpers.[1] At the Drive-In’s popularity at this point was undeniable, with headlining shows in the Midwest drawing between 100 and 350 fans.[1]

In/Casino/Out and Vaya (1998-2000)

When the time came for At the Drive-In’s next recording, Flipside quit producing records and Offtime was financially unable to, “so the band literally approached almost every indie label they could think of.”[2] When hope was almost lost and the possibility of another record seemed dim, Bob and Michelle Becker of Fearless Records saw At the Drive-In open for Supernova at a bar named Club Mesa. Despite Fearless’s history of producing mainly pop punk bands, the band members “felt very comfortable with Bob and Michelle on a personal level” and a deal was signed.[2] Consequently, At the Drive-In began recording its second full-length album titled In/Casino/Out on June 3, 1998. With producer and mixer Alex Newport, the band spent four days recording at Doug Messenger’s, in North Hollywood, and an additional two days mixing the album at Paramount, in Hollywood.[2] This album marked a notable maturation in At the Drive-In’s sound and is special in that it was recorded live with just a small amount of overdubs. In/Casino/Out was chosen to be recorded live because, according to some sources, At the Drive-In struggled to capture the intensity and emotion of its live shows in the recording studio.

In/Casino/Out was released on August 18, 1998, although the band toured almost non-stop from July until December, playing shows with bands like Knapsack and The Murder City Devils.[2] At the Drive-In took a couple month break until March, 1999, at which point they kicked off another tour with a two week stint with Jimmy Eat World in the United States until they headed to Europe for a six week European tour spanning eleven countries.[2] Upon returning to the United States, At the Drive-In played a handful of shows before returning to the studio to record their fourth EP entitled Vaya, which was released on July 13, 1999. Without missing a beat, the band kicked off another tour on July 28 in Austin, TX with Universal Recovered, another band from El Paso. This tour included shows with bands like The Get Up Kids and Rage Against the Machine.[2] Later, in April 2000, At the Drive-In released a split EP with Sunshine. The five song EP only contained two tracks by At the Drive-In.

Relationship of Command (2000-01)

Recording for At the Drive-In’s third and final full-length album Relationship of Command began on January 17, 2000. The recording took place at Indigo Ranch Studios in Malibu, California with producer Ross Robinson (and mixer Andy Wallace), who the band had met in an earlier tour and who had “convinced the boys that he was the guy who could get every ounce of them onto tape.”[2] Relationship of Command was recorded over a seven week period and featured Iggy Pop with minor parts in a couple of the album’s songs. It was released September 12, 2000 to critical acclaim, and catapulted At the Drive-In into the mainstream musical spotlight.

In addition to touring worldwide in Europe, Japan, and the United States following the release of Relationship of Command, At The Drive-In also performed on several television shows. The band’s first nationally televised performance was on Farmclub, a now defunct television show which aired late at night on the USA Network. After that performance, they also appeared on Later with Jools Holland, Late Night with Conan O’Brien and The Late Show with David Letterman. Additionally, their minor hit radio single “One Armed Scissor” had circulation on MTV and significantly contributed to the band’s popularity.

Breakup (2001)

On November 12, 2000, At the Drive-In was involved in a motor vehicle accident when their touring van skidded out of control on ice and flipped onto its roof. Though the accident left the band shaken and traumatized for the rest of its career, none of the members sustained serious injury — Tony and Cedric were taken to the hospital for minor injuries and released.[3] In January 2001, At the Drive-In traveled to Australia for the Big Day Out music festival. While performing in Sydney, they left partway through their set after telling the attendance to calm down and observe the safety rules against moshing. After the refusal of the crowd, frontman Cedric Bixler-Zavala told them “You’re a robot, you’re a sheep!” and bleated at them several times before the band left the stage after performing only three songs. “I think it’s a very, very sad day when the only way you can express yourself is through slam-dancing,” he proclaimed.[4] The following month, At the Drive-In canceled the last five dates of its European tour, citing “complete mental and physical exhaustion” of the members.[5]

In March 2001—less than a month away from a United States tour set to commence on April 14—at the peak of their popularity and following a world tour, At the Drive-In broke up, initially referring to the split as an “indefinite hiatus.” The band played their last show at Groningen‘s Vera venue on February 21, 2001.[6] A combination of excessive hype, relentless touring, artistic differences, and Rodriguez-Lopez and Bixler-Zavala’s drug habits contributed to the demise of the band.[7][dead link] Commenting on the hiatus, guitarist Rodriguez said: “After a non-stop six-year cycle of record/tour/record/tour, we are going on an indefinite hiatus. We need time to rest up and re-evaluate, just to be human beings again and to decide when we feel like playing music again.”[8]

Cedric Bixler-Zavala took responsibility for the breakup, saying repeatedly in interviews that he felt almost as if At the Drive-In was holding him back and that he didn’t want his music to be confined to punk or hardcore — that it should encompass many genres and be even more progressive, alternative, and “against-the-grain.” Bixler-Zavala and Rodriguez-Lopez had stated that they wanted their next album to sound like Pink Floyd‘s The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, while the other members were intent on progressing in a more alternative rock direction.

Post-breakup activity (2001–09)

Following the break-up of At the Drive-In, Bixler-Zavala and Rodriguez-Lopez started The Mars Volta. This project was a departure from their previous work, as it pursued the progressive rock sound that they had been interested in. Meanwhile, the other members — Jim Ward, Paul Hinojos, and Tony Hajjar — started the more traditional band Sparta. Hinojos would then leave Sparta to join Bixler-Zavala and Rodríguez-López in The Mars Volta from 2005 to 2009.

Reunion (2009–present)

During an interview with Drowned in Sound in June 2009, Bixler-Zavala stated that he has been in discussions with the band’s former members and suggested that they could get back together after they sort their financial business out. He added, “I wouldn’t mind it. It might happen, we just have to iron out a lot of personal things. A lot of it we’ve dealt with already and I’ve apologized for a lot of things I’ve said and the way it ended… we’ll see what happens.”[9]

In response to Bixler-Zavala’s comments, guitarist Jim Ward quickly quashed rumors of a reunion by stating “I don’t think that I’ll be answering any questions or doing any interviews anymore, thank you very much. I haven’t got much to say about anything except with songs which I will continue to make and release.”[10]

Regarding the relationship between the band members, Omar Rodríguez-López stated in July 2009:

The fact of the matter is that we’re in our thirties now and that breakup happened ten years ago. As a human being you just don’t want that kind of karma. We did a lot of shit talking, and they did a lot of shit talking, so I just called everybody up and invited them to my house and said ‘hey, listen, we’re in our thirties now, I’m sorry for whatever I said, I’m sure you guys didn’t mean what you said–you guys were upset because I split up the band and we were upset because of whatever. Let’s be friends again. But do I want to reunite and play fucking 15 year old songs? Well, it would be like asking you, ‘do you want to get back together with your first girlfriend?’ You learn some amazing things together, but I just shudder at the thought. We were a band that went out on top, which is good, but it’s just a coincidence. We were also a band that had been together for seven years, and for six of those years played to nobody and had a great time but were also on the verge of splitting up many times before that. It’s an old relationship. People would like to think of it as unfinished business because to them we went out when we were most popular, but that has nothing to do with the creative element. As far as the creative element went, it very much was finished business. That’s why I ended the band! Now, thank god, fucking ten years later, we’re not holding a grudge and we’re all cool with it. People pick up on the difference of attitude and think ‘oh, this could mean a possible reunion’, but that’s just them projecting their own desires upon us.[11]

At the Drive-In announced their reunion on January 9, 2012 and are scheduled to play the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival April 15 and 22.[12][13] Omar Rodríguez-López has ruled out the possibility of recording new material, describing the reunion shows as purely a “nostalgia thing”.[14]


Musical style, influences and legacy

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The band is considered as one of the most influential post-hardcore acts of the late 1990s and early 2000s (decade).[15][16] Some of the group’s influences include bands such as Indian Summer, Swing Kids, Fugazi, Sunny Day Real Estate (referred to by Ward as “Fugazi beyond Fugazi”), Bad Brains, and the Gravity Records-led post-hardcore sound of the 1990s that featured acts such as Antioch Arrow and Heroin.[17] The band also performed cover versions of songs such as “This Night Has Opened My Eyes” by The Smiths and “Take Up Thy Stethoscope and Walk” by Pink Floyd, both included in the 2004 compilation This Station Is Non-Operational.[18] Their name was taken from the fact that Bad Brains took their name from the Ramones‘ song “Bad Brain” (from Road to Ruin), and Bixler liked the Bad Brains’ song title “At the Movies” (track featured in Rock for Light); while Ward liked “at the drive-in” (lyric found in Poison‘s “Talk Dirty to Me“), and his suggestion would eventually win out.[17]

Though In/Casino/Out was recorded live, “Relationship of Command may very well be the first record to harness the chaotic balance of adrenaline and intellect of ATDI’s live performance.”[19] “Ross was instrumental in bringing out a lot of feeling from us,” Bixler recalls. “We channeled a lot of emotion into this record. He pushed us farther than we thought we could go. I learned to cut loose the way we do live and not to be afraid to break something or whatever.”[19] While capturing the essence of At the Drive-In’s live shows in a way never before seen, the record also featured some of the bands most experimental songs, including “Rolodex Propaganda“, “Non-Zero Possibility,” and “Invalid Litter Dept.” .

Relationship of Command is now seen as one of the most influential rock albums of the decade, receiving accolades such as being ranked 47th in the 50 Greatest Albums of the 21st Century in Kerrang!, number 83 on Spin Magazines 100 Greatest Albums 1985–2005,[20] as well as number 90 on MTV2‘s greatest albums ever list.[21] BBC‘s Mike Diver stated that the success and eventual “landmark status” of the album helped post-hardcore position itself as a “vital commercial force”, adding that Relationship of Command “is the high against which every post-hardcore record since 2000 has been measured.”[16] In October 2011, Rock Sound magazine inducted Relationship of Command into Rock Sound’s Hall Of Fame, crediting the album as an influence on albums by bands like: Alexisonfire, Biffy Clyro, Billy Talent, Gallows and Rolo Tomassi. Rocksound writer Ryan Bird spoke about the legacy of the album, stating that “though At The Drive-In may not have built the road, they were most certainly leading the convoy, allowing those who followed behind to reap the benifits [sic] of their navigation while they crashed and burned on the hard shoulder. What remains, however, is a legacy the likes of which may not been seen again.”[22]






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