Story of the Year

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Story of the Year
Story of the year 2009.jpg
Story of the Year in 2009
Background information
Also known as SOTY, Story
Origin St. Louis, Missouri, United States
Genres Post-hardcore, alternative rock, emo
Years active 1995–2011; 2013–present
Labels Epitaph, Maverick
Associated acts Greek Fire, Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows, Saosin
Members Dan Marsala
Ryan Phillips
Philip Sneed
Josh Wills
Past members John Taylor
Perry West
Greg Haupt
Adam Russell

Story of the Year is an American rock band formed in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1995.[1] The band was originally formed under the name Big Blue Monkey. They changed their name to Story of the Year in 2002 after the release of their EP titled Story of the Year on the indie label Criterion Records, after they realized a blues group of the name Big Blue Monkey had already existed.

It would not be until eight years after forming that Story of the Year saw its first piece of commercial success in its major label debut, Page Avenue, containing the popular singles "Until the Day I Die" and "Anthem of Our Dying Day". A second album, In the Wake of Determination, followed in 2005, but did not achieve the commercial success of its predecessor. The band released their third album, The Black Swan, on April 22, 2008, which was their first release on Epitaph Records, followed by 2010's The Constant.

On March 8, 2013, it was announced that the band reunited and are planning on a world tour.

On September 30, 2014, it was announced in a Facebook post that bass player Adam Russell was leaving the band due to wanting to pursue his life plan that did not involve being in SOTY. The remaining members of the band will move forward.

Story of the Year is widely regarded as the first post-hardcore band to ever release an album that went Gold.


Page Avenue (2002–2004)[edit]

After spending seven years as a local band, recording demos and three EPs, Story of the Year signed a deal with Maverick Records in 2002, then recorded and released their first album, Page Avenue, in September 2003. The first single from that album was "Until The Day I Die". It first received radio airplay around July/August 2003 on stations like KROQ-FM and sold thousands of copies worldwide.[citation needed] The second single, "Anthem of Our Dying Day", featured a music video directed by Joe Hahn of Linkin Park.

Live in the Lou/Bassassins (a CD/DVD combo of live performances and touring video) was released on May 10, 2005. It was a hit amongst Story of the Year fans and was certified Gold by the RIAA in late 2005, indicating shipment of over 50,000 units as it is video longform format.[2]

In the Wake of Determination (2004–2006)[edit]

After the Page Avenue tour finally ended in late 2004, Story of the Year returned to the studio with producer Steve Evetts in 2005, to record their second studio album. In the Wake of Determination, released on October 11, 2005, is much heavier sounding than the previous album, due to switching producers to get their "true sound". As of March 2006, that album had only sold 150,698 units[3] and has failed to achieve the gold certification that the band's two previous releases had, per the RIAA website.[2] Although not as successful as its predecessor, the album debuted at No. 19 on the Billboard 200.

The Black Swan (2007–2009)[edit]

Story of the Year returned to the scene in 2008 with their anticipated new release, The Black Swan. For the album, they brought back the Page Avenue producer John Feldmann and also they used producer Elvis Baskette. The album received praise from music critics and achieved decent commercial success, more so than the previous album. The success was led by the first single off album was "Wake Up".

For the recording of The Black Swan, Story of the Year decided to end their five-year relationship with Maverick and signed with Epitaph Records.[4] The label noted that there would be exhaustive touring in support of their new record.

Story of the Year released their DVD Our Time Is Now on May 13, 2008,[citation needed] followed by a stint on the 2008 Taste of Chaos International with Atreyu.[5]

The Constant (2009–2010)[edit]

May 2009, Story of the Year guitarist Ryan Phillips announced that the band had begun "working overtime writing" their next album, which is "shaping up to be fucking great".[6] The band recorded in Studio Barbarossa July and August.[citation needed] Lead singer Dan Marsala stated in a post-show meet & greet that the album would be released on February 16, 2010.[citation needed]

On December 31, the band released "I'm Alive" to radio airplay. The band also stated on their Twitter that "I'm Alive" will be released as an official single on January 5, 2010.[citation needed]

The Constant, was released on February 16, 2010, through Epitaph Records.[7] The Deluxe Edition, available on iTunes, has two bonus tracks, "Your Unsung Friend" and "Tonight We Fall."

Side-projects and hiatus (2011–2013)[edit]

Bassist Adam Russell was announced to be the bassist of post-hardcore band Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows, along with Craig Owens (lead vocalist, Chiodos), Matt Good (guitarist, From First to Last), Nick Martin (guitarist, Underminded), and Aaron Stern (drummer, Matchbook Romance).[8] Russell left Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows in 2012.

Guitarists Ryan Phillips and Philip Sneed continued to pursue their side project, Greek Fire. They have released a debut EP and an independent album, "Deus Ex Machina". They are also set to release a new album, "Lost/Found", in 2013.

Bassist Adam Russell and guitarist Ryan Phillips set out to make a movie about rise and fall of the music industry and where it stands today called "Who Killed (Or Saved!) The Music Industry". Funded by Kickstarter, they have been filming the movie and it should be released sometime in 2013.

On February 4, 2011, at The Pageant in their hometown of St. Louis, the band performed their first album, Page Avenue, in its entirety, as well as other fan favorites. They posted that this was a "thank you" show to all their dedicated fans for 10 years together. City Spud, of the St. Louis rap group St. Lunatics, made a guest appearance during the show.

In January 2011, Story of the Year recorded the song "Breed" for an upcoming Nirvana tribute album. The track was recorded in St. Louis with producer Matt Amelung at Second Story Studio.

In December 2011, D.R.U.G.S. guitarist Matt Good released a remix to the Story of the Year song "Wake Up" from 2008's The Black Swan.

Reunion, 10th anniversary tour/album, fifth studio album, departure of Adam Russell (2013–present)[edit]

On March 8, 2013, the band has announced they have reunited and will be touring worldwide to celebrate the 10th anniversary of their debut album Page Avenue. It was also stated that the band has re-recorded Page Avenue, entitled Page Avenue: 10 Years and Counting with release date on October 8, 2013.[9] Originally they planned it to be a full acoustic version of the album, but after the collaboration with City Spud during their concert in 2011 they decided to re-record the album with a different feel to each song rather than just acoustic versions. A fifth studio album is also possible.[10]

On September 30, 2014, it was announced on the band's Facebook page that bass player Adam Russell was leaving the band to pursue his life plan that did not involve SOTY. The remaining members of the band are supportive of Adam's decision and plan to move forward as a band. The band also announced that they were in the process of writing a fifth album.[11]

Musical classification[edit]

Story of the Year has most popularly been referred to as representing the genres post-hardcore[12] alternative rock,[13][14] and punk metal.[15][16][17] Although these are recognized as the band's primary genres, they have also been known to perform in styles of alternative metal, hard rock,[18] pop punk,[19] and emo (or emocore).[19] The band, however, prefers not to be labeled at all, and tends to simply refer to themselves as a "rock band".


Band brawl[edit]

MTV News reported on their website that during a radio show in May 2004, the band members of Story of the Year got into a fight with the roadies of metal band Godsmack.[20] Pictures of the band members' bruised faces were posted on their homepage as well as a blistering rant of the event. The members of Godsmack were not involved in the fight, but they were targeted by the rant as well. It went on to talk about being detained by the local police. There were no arrests from the incident, and the Noblesville Police Department had no record of anything having taken place. Story of the Year's account of the fight was removed and replaced with a note reading: "I took the Godsmack post down because we are going to ask them to go get some chocolate ice cream with us".

Band members[edit]




  1. ^ Story of the Year at Accessed May 17, 2007.
  2. ^ a b Gold and Platinum Database Search Type in "Story of the Year"
  3. ^ "Soundscan Results: Week Ending March 5, 2006". March 5, 2006. Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  4. ^ "Epitaph Records: Epitaph Signs Alt/Rock Heavyweights Story Of The Year". Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  5. ^ "Kerrang! Atreyu to headline Taste Of Chaos 2008". Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  6. ^ Story of the Year begin writing next album,
  7. ^ "Story Of The Year Present The Constant - News Article". February 16, 2010. Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  8. ^ Ilvonen, Keagan (October 5, 2010). "D.R.U.G.S Announce Bass Player". AbsolutePunk. Retrieved October 5, 2010. 
  9. ^
  10. ^'s been a while, huh? After... - Story of the Year. Facebook. Retrieved on 2013-08-25.
  11. ^
  12. ^ "Epitaph Records: Story Of The Year". February 23, 2010. Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  13. ^ "Story Of The Year Biography, Music News, Discography @ 100 XR - No. 1 Rock Web Station!!!". Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  14. ^ "Story of the Year: The Constant - Strangeglue - Music News, Views and Reviews". Strangeglue. Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  15. ^ "Story of the Year - The Constant (album review)". Sputnikmusic. Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  16. ^ "Story Of The Year on". Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  17. ^ "Story of the Year - Rhapsody Music". February 12, 2010. Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  18. ^ "Story of the Year - The Constant (staff review)". Sputnikmusic. February 16, 2010. Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  19. ^ a b "Godsmack Vs. Story Of The Year: Indiana Concert Ends In Savage Beating". Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  20. ^ Story of the Year Say Godsmack's Crew Kicked Their Asses. MTV News, June 2, 2004 Accessed February 6, 2007

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