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Bad Religion is a well-known American music band led by Greg Graffin. It is credited to have introduced an entirely different punk sound by combining anger and aggression with intellectually stimulating lyrics. The band’s record Suffer revitalized the punk rock scene of the time and inspired bands such as Pennywise, Lagwagon and NOFX. Besides Graffin, the current Bad Religion lineup includes members Brett Gurewitz, Jamie Miller, Jay Bentley, Mike Dimkich and Brian Baker.
The Los Angeles based band has hit the road again and you can purchase Bad Religion tickets to catch this highly influential and top selling punk band live in action.
Greg Graffin was first exposed to punk music when he had the opportunity to listen to KROQ’S famous Rodney on the Roq show. The thrill of the sound and irreverent lyrics got Graffin interested and led him to create Bad Religion when he was only fifteen years old. The band was officially formed in 1980 by Graffin and his high school friends Jay Bentley, Jay Ziskrout and Brett Gurewitz.
In order to promote their performances, the self-reliant teenagers made posters and flyers. They took a loan from Gurewitz’s father to rent a studio in an office building located in Hollywood. This is where Bad Religion recorded their very first music album.
In 1980, the band featured on KROQ. Graffin’s lyrics and vocals caught the attention of the audience that announced the band’s arrival in the hardcore punk scene in Los Angeles.
Among the band’s first few public performances were playing the opening act for the renowned punk rock band, Social Distortion. Their first official show was held at the Joey Kills Bar in Burbank, California, on November 11, 1980.
Bad Religion released their debut self-titled EP via the label Epitaph Records. The same year, the musicians began recording for their first full-length music record, How Could Hell Be Any Worse? The album hit the shelves in January of 1982 and went on to sell more than 10,000 copies in less than a year. During the making of this record, drummer Jay Ziskrout quit the band and was replaced by his friend Pete Finestone.
The opening track We’re Only Gonna Die is the most popular one on the record. Written by Greg Graffin the song features on the movie Glory Daze as well as in the videogame, Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland. It remains a fan favorite.
The year 1983 saw the release of Bad Religion’s second studio record, Into The Unknown. With this the musicians marked a shift from hardcore punk to a progressive hard rock sound characterized by slow tempos and the use of instruments such as the piano. It is the band’s only record to feature bass guitarist Paul Dedona and drummer Davy Goldman because Pete Finestone and Jay Bentley rejoined the band in 1986. It is also Bad Religion’s only record to feature a song that has the duration of over five minutes.
Although Into The Unknown received favorable reviews from the critics, it was unable to fare well commercially. Shortly after its release the band members parted ways and got occupied in their personal lives.
However, Graffin reassembled Bad Religion with some lineup changes and returned with the EP Back to the Known. As the title suggests, in this collection the band returned to its original punk sound and abandoned the progressive rock influences evident in their previous effort. The biggest hit song on this album is Along The Way. Owing to the immense demand of the audience, the musicians played the track twice consecutively at a live show during the 1980s.
In 1986, Graffin asked Bentley to return to the band. Reluctant at first, Bentley agreed to join for one show when he was assured that the entire set-list comprised songs from their debut studio album How Could Hell Be Any Worse? After thoroughly enjoying the experience, he decided to stay with the band. Not long after, Gurewitz, Finestone and Greg Hetson returned as well and the original Bad Religion lineup was back in action. They started working on their third studio album Suffer which came out in 1988. Although it failed to chart the Billboard 200, it was highly praised by the critics; some even declared it as one of the most influential punk rock albums of all times. Suffer was voted the Best Album of the Year by renowned publications such as Flipside, Maximum Rocknroll and Trust. It served as a huge inspiration to third-wave punk bands. Fat Mike of NOFX described Suffer as “the record that changed everything.”
During the promotional tour for Suffer, Bad Religion began working on new music material. In early 1989, when the musicians took some time off from touring, they started recording in the Westbeach Recorders studio. In November of the same year, Bad Religion treated the fans with the album No Control. It sold over 80,000 copies and was their bestselling record of the time.
Over the course of their illustrious career, Bad Religion has released a total of sixteen studio albums. The 1994 album titled Stranger than Fiction is among the biggest hits by the band. It was the first Bad Religion record to be released by the Atlantic Records. Praised by fans and critics alike, the record spawned hits such as Infected and the title song.
Bad Religion Tour Tickets
Bad Religion lineup has gone through various changes over the years but this has not affected their fan following. The musicians are expected to release their seventeenth studio album in 2018. If you are a fan of punk, check out the itinerary and purchase Bad Religion tour tickets here to attend a thrilling music show in your city.