Venice, California, 1982. Mike "Cyco Miko" Muir forms the first version of Suicidal Tendencies with schoolmates Louiche Mayorga (bass), Amery Smith (drums) and Grant Estes (guitar), soon to be replaced by John Nelson. To start with, they organize massive private parties during which they perform and manage to pay the house rent with the admission fees. These parties are so successful that they soon need more room to host the show and have to rent hangars.
Quickly spotted by the local punk scene, they open for various bands but sound far too metal for them. Local bands are probably not aware yet that a new musical style has come, a style at the crossroads between punk and heavy metal, a style through which ST already shows its uniqueness. But uniqueness sometimes has a bad reputation... Due to their politically incorrect name, the Mexican minority they represent and the way they dress (L.A. gangster style), ST is soon banned from lot of Californian venues.
Their first eponymous album comes out in 1983 and a low budget USA tour follows. Radios broadcast the hit single Institutionalized, which also appears on Alex Cox's Repo Man soundtrack and in the Miami Vice TV series (where the band also shows up). Not knowing yet that this song was to become an ST anthem, Flipside Magazine subsequently rewards them with the Worst Band and Biggest Assholes Of The Year awards.
In 1984, ST creates it own label Suicidal Records. A very rare album entitled Welcome To Venice comes out with only 2000 copies, featuring bands like Beowulf, Excel and No Mercy Fool alongside with ST. That's also the time when Amery Smith and John Nelson quit ST and form a new band called The Brood, while R.J. Herrera and Rocky George respectively become ST's new drummer and guitar player.
Not less than 50,000 copies of the first album have been sold and the band signs up with Caroline Records in 1986. Mike Muir is asked to change the name and line-up of the band in exchange for big money and obviously... refuses.
Second Album Join the Army comes out in 1987, and the audience gets to know more about the band's hobbies and origin through their hit single Possessed To Skate. The album hits the billboard hot 100 list, which is pretty impressive for an alternative band at that time. ST tours in Europe for the first time and Mike Clark (from No Mercy Fool, a Suicidal Records band) joins in as second guitar player. This arrival is of great influence on next album How Will I Laugh Tomorrow... When I Can't Even Smile Today that comes out in 1988.
Song after song, the audience gets to know the band better. Independent and politically engaged, ST explain they are not gangstas and they don't tell fans to get drunk or high. In fact, ST members don't drink and don't do drugs but Mike Muir wouldn't let others categorize his band as a straightedge band. ST is ST, the Suicidal Army is born and fans pledge their allegiance, shouting out loud "ST! ST! ST!"
In 1989, the band makes the album Controlled By Hatred / Feel Like Shit... Deja-Vu out of two EPs. This is their first gold record and announces a great period for ST. Indeed, they open for Metallica and Guns N' Roses shows across Europe and get nominated for the Best metal performance Grammy Award thanks to their 1990 album Lights - Camera - Revolution. But the line-up has also grown stronger as talented groovalistic bass player Robert Trujillo joins the band and participates in great ST tracks from this album : You Can't Bring Me Down, Alone, Lovely or Send Me Your Money.
1992, Suicidal Tendencies is definitely a mature band and prove it with a very different album : The Art Of Rebellion. Signing up with Q Prime Management, ST opens for Queensrÿche, Metallica, Guns N' roses, Ozzy Osbourne and Megadeth to name a few. They also tour the biggest European festivals such as Dynamo Open Air or Eindhoven. During the same year, Muir and Trujillo create ass kicking funk metal side project Infectious Grooves with members of Jane's Addiction.
Packed with metal influences and intensity, 1994 album Suicidal For Life is much of a critic toward Sony's Epic. Surprisingly, Infectious Grooves is making more money than ST so the major company feels like betting on the side project. Fed up with money matters, Mike Muir claims his music has become a job for some group members and that's the last thing he wants. After a French and Australian goodbye tour, he announces the official end of the band.
In 1996, the contract between ST and Sony is still running and the company issues a best of, Prime Cuts, forcing the band to play together again. Meanwhile though, Mike Muir starts another side project: Cycomiko, with Infectious Grooves members. Probably feeling he is not that old after all, Muir enjoys playing old ST tunes again and makes the good decision. He parts from Sony and relaunches Suicidal Records, releasing a "Welcome To Venice like" album called Friends & Family. Six The Hard Way EP and Freedumb LP will follow. ST is back for good, still cyco after all these years. The trendy metalhead Vans Warped tour through the USA, Japan and Australia is a success for Suicidal Tendencies.
Last album to date, Free Your Soul... And Save My Mind gives a good idea of what ST has always been: the grooviest punk metal band with an attitude.
1983 (Frontier): Suicidal Tendencies
1987 (Caroline): Join The Army
1988 (Epic): How Will I Laugh Tomorrow... When I Can't Even Smile Today
1989 (Epic): Controlled By Hatred / Feel Like Shit... Deja-Vu
1990 (Epic): Lights - Camera - Revolution
1992 (Epic): The Art Of Rebellion
1994 (Epic): Suicidal For Life
1998 (Suicidal): Six The Hard Way (EP)
1999 (Suicidal): Freedumb
2000 (Suicidal): Free Your Soul... And Save My Mind
1992 (EMI): F.N.G. (features songs from previous albums Suicidal Tendencies, Join The Army and How Will I Laugh Tomorrow... When I Can't Even Smile Today)
1993 (Epic): Still Cyco After All These Years (features new recordings of all debut album Suicidal Tendencies songs, two Join The Army songs and a previously unreleased track)
1997 (Epic): Prime Cuts (best of)
1998 (Suicidal): Friends & Family (features songs from Suicidal Tendencies, Infectious Grooves and various artists)
2001(Suicidal): Friends & Family 2 (features songs from Suicidal Tendencies, Infectious Grooves and various artists)