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Pierce the Veil

Pierce the Veil

Combining elements of post-hardcore, emo-punk, and progressive rock, Pierce the Veil burst onto the scene in the late 2000s. They slowly built a following with 2010's Selfish Machines before achieving mainstream success in 2012 with the release of their gold-selling third studio album, Collide with the Sky, which included the hit "King for a Day." The band topped the U.S. alternative rock charts again in 2016 with Misadventures before an extended hiatus. Seven years later, they returned, calmer and more reflective, with their mature fifth album, The Jaws of Life.

The heart of San Diego emo-inflected post-hardcore outfit Pierce the Veil lies in two brothers, vocalist/guitarist Vic Fuentes and drummer Mike Fuentes. They first started playing together as the band Before Today while students in high school. The two formed the group in December 1998, and it was soon turned into a quintet by guitarist Joe Tancil and bassist Mitchell Ballatore. Before Today played as a unit for several years, and after signing to Equal Vision Records, released the album A Celebration of an Ending in September 2004. In time, Tancil and Ballatore quit the band, leaving Victor and Mike to start over and rebuild. In the fall of 2006, they switched their name to Pierce the Veil, which was the title of a track on the previous Before Today album, and brought on board bassist Jaime Preciado and guitarist Tony Perry.

The brothers wrote Pierce the Veil's debut album, A Flair for the Dramatic, in their San Diego home studio, and later recorded it in Seattle with producer Casey Bates (Gatsbys American Dream, Fear Before the March of Flames). Their original affiliation with Equal Vision continued, and in early summer 2007, A Flair for the Dramatic appeared via the Albany-based label. The fall was then spent on opening dates for rockers From First to Last. A second album, Selfish Machines, arrived on the label in 2010 and reached number one on Billboard's Heatseekers chart. The band parted ways with Equal Vision, eventually signing with Fearless Records the following year. Their third album, Collide with the Sky, arrived on their new label in 2012, with production from Dan Korneff. The LP became their most commercially successful effort to date, topping multiple Billboard charts and spawning the hit single "King for a Day." A tour documentary titled This Is a Wasteland was released at the end of 2013, capturing the band hard at work across Southeast Asia, Europe, North America, and South America.

More touring followed during 2014 and 2015, along with recording for Pierce the Veil's fourth album, Misadventures, which appeared in the spring of 2016. Like its predecessor, the record soared to the upper echelons of the U.S. alternative rock charts. In 2017, multiple sexual misconduct allegations against Mike Fuentes forced the drummer to step down from his duties, and the band went on hiatus. The arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 further disrupted the group's plans, forcing them to abandon a scheduled tour.

The now-trio returned in 2022 with the fiery, grunge-kissed single "Pass the Nirvana." Their comeback album, The Jaws of Life, arrived in 2023. Featuring drumming from Third Eye Blind's Brad Hargreaves, the set debuted a more mature and midtempo sound for the usually raucous band, as heard on the single "Emergency Contact" and the duet with Chloe Moriondo, "12 Fractures." ~ Corey Apar

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