The Chemical Brothers comprise Tom Rowlands and Edward Simons, two former students
of Manchester University who met there in the late 1980s. Their interest was peaked by
the music scene in Manchester of the time, and they immersed themselves in the life
of the regular clubber. It wasn't long before the pair were acting as DJ at house
parties, mixing a fusion of Acid House Techno and Hip-hop in a style that has become
one of the most distinctive of the dance scene today.
Initially naming themselves The Dust Brothers after the west coast hip-hop producers
of the same name, the duo began getting regular work at a Manchester club called
Naked Under Leather, where they started composing their own tracks. First to come out
of this creative streak was Song to the Siren in early 1993.
One copy of this track was sent to Andrew Weatherall who signed the two to his
Junior Boys Own label. The band were subsequently invited to a number of remixes
for other artists including Leftfield/John Lydon and Republica.
In 1994 the Brothers began to take their place among dance groups of the time, with
the release of Chemical Beats and My Mercury Mouth EPs. They also started reworking
anyone they felt worth the treatment, from The Manic Street Preachers to Saint Etienne.
Finally for thirteen weeks over summer and autumn they were residents at London's
Heavenly Social every sunday, introducing such guests as Paul Weller and Primal Scream
to their undeniable talents, remixing Barry White, Oasis, Eric B & Rakim.
The Band signed to Virgin Records in 1995, renaming to the Chemical Brothers after
complaints from the original Dust Brothers. Their debut album, Exit Planet Dust
featured trademark styles such as heavy guitar, heavier breakouts and analog noise, not
to mention the start of a series of very successful collaborations with vocalists,
namely on this album Tim Burgess from the Charlatans ("Life is Sweet") and
Beth Orton ("Alive: Alone"). The album was hugely popular and sold over a million
A number of huge successes followed: The band released the single Setting Sun
featuring Noel Gallagher on vocals, which went to number 1 in the UK charts.
Their second album, Dig Your Own Hole was nominated for both the Mercury and
BRIT awards while the single Block Rockin' Beats won a Grammy for Best Rock Instrumental.
The Brothers hadn't been aware that they made rock isntrumentals, but they graciously
accepted the award anyway.
The Brothers' third album, Surrender, brought the band back to the top-ten charts,
hitting the high spots with the number 3 single Hey Boy Hey Girl. The album also featured
vocals from New Order's Bernard Sumner, Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie and Mazzy
Star's Hope Sandoval.
The latest album, Come With Us, was released in early 2002, and features the
singles It Began in Afrika and Star Guitar. This album continues the psychedelia train
of thought explored in previous albums and features collaborations with Richard Ashcroft
and a reprise from Beth Orton. The album serves to demonstrate the bands growing
mastery of the technology in Techno, and an appreciation of beats which has survived
from their earlier club gigs.
For possibly the most comprehensive discography I have ever seen anywhere, ever, see Zerotime's write-up below*.
* The initial plan was to incorporate a discography into my writeup, but his is so beautiful and puts my paltry effort in the shade. It's better to let it stand on it's own. It is a masterpiece of research.
Info from : http://www.thechemicalbrothers.com