Strung Out is more than a term for how someone feels; it is also the name of a Simi Valley, California band. This punk rock group began in1992 and is now well known for the way they fuse punk and heavy metal to create their distinctive musical sound. They have stayed with their original label Fat Wreck Chords and have been seen at many live performances including the famous Warped Tours.
The original band lineup for Strung Out was singer Jason Cruz; guitar players Jake Kiley and Rob Ramos; bass player Jim Cherry; and Adam Austin on drums. The Fat Wreck Chords label became immediately interested when they heard the band play. Fans may know that NOFX member, Fat Mike owns this record label.
Brad Morrison replaced Austin in the Strung Out band in 1992 but this was a short stay and then Jordan Burns was brought in to replace Morrison. “Another Day in Paradise” was their first album and it was released in 1994. This was quickly followed by other albums like “Suburban Teenage Wasteland Blues” and “The Skinny Years…Before We Got Fat”. During this time, there was a huge increase in the sales of all types of Strung Out merch including autographed pictures, posters, hats, and hoodies.
Fans were quick to notice that by 1998 their musical style had become more technical and edgier. The group released their latest album “Twisted by Design” which was a bit dark, but still managed to mix in a good amount of faster pop that was similar to songs on the Wasteland Blues album. Strung Out was definitely becoming more abstract and willing to experiment to try out new structure on their tunes.
Chris Aiken joined the group after Cherry left to play with other bands. Aiken is credited with lending a lot of the influence to the group’s 2000 release of “The Element of Sonic Defiance”. By 2002, Strung Out had released a 4th album, An American Paradox. This was the first one to make it into the Billboard charts. One of the songs on this album was titled, “Cemetery” and the video created for this tune has become a favorite of punk lovers the world over.
The band members were touring with the group Evergreen Terrace during 2007. While performing in Philadelphia PA, their van was stolen, which contained their equipment, tons of Strung Out merch, and many personal items. They continued to perform on tour by borrowing what they needed from Evergreen Terrace and I Am Ghost members who were touring with them.
The group members enjoy life away from the touring circuit. Jason Cruz is an artist, Jordan is part owner of Moto XXX with Erik Sandin, the NOFX drummer. Rob Ramos works with films in California while Jake enjoys normal life and teaching music to others. Their latest release is Prototypes and Painkillers and is due out in spring of 2009, but they are already working on a new album for their fans.
The present Strung Out band members are
Â Jason Alexander Cruz – vocals
Â Jake Ira Kiley – guitar
Â Rob Ramos – guitar
Â Chris Aiken – bassist
Â Jordan Burns – drums
The albums released by Strung Out include the following titles and release dates:
Â Another Day in Paradise (1994)
Â Suburban Teenage Wasteland Blues (1996)
Â Twisted by Design (1998)
Â An American Paradox (2002)
Â Live In A Dive: Strung Out (2003)
Â Exile In Oblivion (2004)
Â Blackhawks Over Los Angeles (2007)
Â Prototypes and Painkillers (2009)
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