Glassjaw is a band from Long Island
, New York. Their musical style is somewhere between Hardcore and Emo, or as Todd Weinstock
, guitarist, puts it: "Since we've been playing shows, we've always been too heavy
for the emo kids ... and too lame for the metal kids" As of this writing (early 2001
) Glassjaw have released one full length album on a major label; "Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Silence
", on Roadrunner Records
The Bandmembers are:
Daryl Palumbo (Vocals)
Justin Beck (Lead Guitar)
Manuel Carrero (Bass) Ack! Manuel has left the band! (more info as I find it.)
Todd Weinstock (Rhythm Guitar)
Larry Gorman (Drums)
Larry is the newest bandmember; the previous drummer, Sammy Siegler, left the band shortly after recording the album. The album sleeve credits Sammy and carries his picture. (I read somewhere that Sammy is currently playing with the band Rival Schools, another NYC Hardcore group. Best of luck to them.)
The band was started in 1993 by Daryl Palumbo shortly after he and guitarist Justin Beck met up at summer camp aged 13. They started playing together, and recruited other musicians to form a band, eventually putting out an EP entitled "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang" on the independant label 2 Cents A Pop. (thats "independant" as in "run by their friends at school". If anyone has info on this label please share it!)
They spent a few years churning out demo tapes until one day one of them landed on the doorstep of somewhat legendary rock producer Ross Robinson. Ross, a bit bored of hearing KoRn and Limp Bizkit clones, listened to it and decided he had to meet these guys. When he met them he asked them to play, and stopped them before they finished the first song, waving his arms and shouting "Okay okay, I want to do this, You've got a deal!".
When they got into the studio and started recording, Ross asked Daryl about the meaning of one of the songs. It was a very personal subject for Daryl and the rest of the band started giggling, but Ross said "Hey, don't laugh, this is serious." He sat down with Daryl and got him to explain all of what the song meant. It was very painful for him, as it was a sensitive issue. This became a common tactic in recording the vocals. Ross and Daryl would sit down and talk about the meanings of the songs, bringing up all of Daryls personal issues to the point where he was about to cry or scream or whatever expressed the purest emotion of that song, and then they would do the vocal take. The result, let me tell you, has to be heard to be believed.
The album was released in May 2000 to massive critical acclaim, (which is to say Kerrang! gave it 5/5 and a great review; I trust Kerrang!.) but perhaps fewer than expected sales. Glassjaw are admittedly not everyone's cup of tea, and near-zero airplay/MTV Rotation hasn't exactly helped.
The bands live performances, on the other hand, have been met with mixed reactions. Because they're not yet well-know enough to headline a major tour, they have mainly suppourted other bands. Deftones and Soulfly are notable examples. However, the crowds that turn up to see these bands aren't always very receptive of Glassjaw's style, and the band has been booed off stage on at least one occasion. (On Soulflys show in Germany unless I'm mistaken) Reviews of Glassjaw shows generally give the impression that the band aren't yet fully comfortable playing live, and that there isn't much crowd interaction. For a band whose average age is around 21 this isn't really a disaster; they will doubtless get better with time.
Glassjaw Releases to date:
(August 16, 2001) Update: I just read on glassjawband.com that Wesley Willis will be recording a song called "Glassjaw" for his new album. Should be interesting.