Only Crime

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Only Crime
GenresMelodic hardcore
Years active2003–present
LabelsRise Records, Fat Wreck Chords
Associated actsALL, Bane, Black Flag, Converge, Creep Division, Descendents, Good Riddance, Hagfish, State of Grace, The Frisk, Modern Life Is War, Rise Against, Gwar
MembersRuss Rankin
Bill Stevenson
Dan Kelly
Matt Hoffman
Aaron Dalbec
Past membersZach Blair
Doni Blair

Only Crime is an American melodic hardcore group formed by Good Riddance singer Russ Rankin and Bane guitarist Aaron Dalbec in 2003.[1] The band plays melodic but hard-hitting punk rock that borrows heavily from early-1980s hardcore bands such as Black Flag.


Founding and first album[edit]

In 2002, Russ Rankin found himself ill-at-ease with the situation of his other band Good Riddance. The band did not play frequently, and Rankin wanted to tour more. He set out to form another band that would be more active and that would pursue his drug/alcohol-free aesthetics and lifestyle.

While touring with Good Riddance, Russ became friends with Aaron Dalbec from the band Bane. When Russ asked him to play guitar in the new band, Aaron agreed. Zach Blair and his brother Doni Blair also joined because their bands, including Hagfish, were less active than they wanted.

When Russ was in the Blasting Room with Good Riddance to record Bound By Ties of Blood and Affection, he asked producer Bill Stevenson – legendary drummer of seminal punk bands Black Flag, Descendents, and All – to be the drummer in his new project. The band recorded a five-song demo in 2003, which they sent out to labels.[2] In the February 2004, the band worked on new material and recording more demos to send to prospective labels. They played their first show on February 15, 2004 at the Starlight in Ft. Collins, CO.[3] They were signed to Fat Wreck Chords by April 2004.[4] They played some shows with Dropkick Murphys in April and May, and played on some Warped Tour dates that summer. Their debut album, To the Nines, was released in July 2004.[5]

Second album and line-up changes[edit]

On January 23, 2007, Only Crime released their second album, Virulence, on Fat Wreck Chords, followed by a Split EP with Outbreak, released June 26, 2007 on Think Fast! Records.[6]

In February 2007, Zach Blair had joined Rise Against.[7] Shortly after, it was announced he was no longer in Only Crime and was replaced by Modern Life Is War guitarist Matt Hoffman.[8]

Bassist Doni Blair played his last show with the band on August 15, 2007 in Kansas City, before leaving to spend more time with his family and pursue his instrumental project, the Mag Seven (also with Bill Stevenson). He was temporarily replaced by Zack Busby (Burden Brothers), and then permanently replaced by Dan Kelly (The Frisk). Doni Blair has been the bassist for The Toadies since 2008.

Third album[edit]

The band started working on their third album in 2009,[9] but the band ended up getting put on hold for a while due to Stevenson being sick. In April 2013, Rankin claimed their third album had been finished and it would be released in 2013.[10] In March 2014, it was announced that the album was finally being released. Titled Pursuance, it will be released by Rise Records on May 13, 2014.[11]


Studio albums[edit]


Compilation album appearances[edit]

Music videos[edit]

  • "Life Was Fair" (2014)



  • Russ Rankin – vocals (2003–present)
  • Aaron Dalbec – guitar (2003–present)
  • Bill Stevenson – drums (2003–present)
  • Matt Hoffman – guitar (2007–present)
  • Dan Kelly – bass (2008–present)



  1. ^ Bands: Fat Wreck Chords
  2. ^ "Only Crime (Bane, etc.) records demo". Lambgoat. October 11, 2003. Retrieved April 11, 2014.
  3. ^ "Journal". Archived from the original on April 11, 2004. Retrieved April 11, 2014.
  4. ^ "Fat signs Only Crime". April 28, 2004. Retrieved April 11, 2014.
  5. ^ "News". Archived from the original on June 13, 2004. Retrieved April 11, 2014.
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Chris Chasse leaves Rise Against, Zach Blair (Only Crime) steps in". February 22, 2007. Retrieved March 4, 2014.
  8. ^ "Rise Against's Zach Blair talks new record, Only Crime departure". July 22, 2007. Retrieved March 4, 2014.
  9. ^ "Only Crime writing new material". June 3, 2009. Retrieved March 4, 2014.
  10. ^ Wells, Kevin (April 8, 2013). "Interview: Russ Rankin of punk band Good Riddance (Pt. 2)". The Washington Times. Retrieved April 11, 2013.
  11. ^ Kraus, Brian (March 3, 2014). "Only Crime (members of Black Flag, Descendents, Bane, Modern Life Is War) sign to Rise Records". Retrieved March 4, 2014.

External links[edit]