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Atreyu is a metalcore band from Orange County, California. The band consists of vocalist Alex Varkatzas, guitarists Dan Jacobs and Travis Miguel, bassist Marc McKnight and drummer and vocalist Brandon Saller. The band was originally named "Retribution" but later changed their name to "Atreyu" after the character of the same name from the fantasy book (movie) The Neverending Story when they found out that another band from Hemet, California had been using their original name.
1998-2000: Independent yearsEdit
Atreyu currently consists of drummer Brandon Saller, vocalist Alex Varkatzas, bassist Marc Mcknight, and guitarists Dan Jacobs and Travis Miguel. During the independent years though, the members were only Brandon, Alex, Dan and Kyle Stanley. The band changed its name to Atreyu after the character in The Neverending Story, which was suggested by a friend, Mike Rotch, aka The Mess.
In 1998, Atreyu released an independent 7-track EP titled Visions. The album was sold at their live performances. Their second release, was a short 5-track EP released by underground label Tribunal Records and featured tracks that would be re-worked in later releases. Atreyu signed with Victory Records in 2001, and their most critically acclaimed works would be to come from these releases.
2001-2006: Signing to Victory RecordsEdit
In 2001, Atreyu signed with Victory Records, who were famous for signing young, upstart emocore and metalcore bands and making them successful, later releasing in 2002 their first full-length album Suicide Notes and Butterfly Kisses. The band also introduced another singer, Brandon Saller, the drummer, who would become more prolific in their later releases, but in this album, his parts were most confined to choruses, and only in certain songs. Atreyu's second album, The Curse, was released in 2004, selling 300,000 copies. The band was then featured on the soundtrack to the film Mr. and Mrs. Smith with a cover of Bon Jovi's "You Give Love a Bad Name". Atreyu was also featured on the Underworld Evolution Soundtrack with "Her Portrait in Black." and used "Right Side Of Bed" on the Burnout 3 Soundtrack , a racing game for the XBOX and PS2.
In 2006, Atreyu released its third studio album A Death-Grip on Yesterday on March 28, 2006. The album peaked at number 9 on the Billboard 200, with sales of 69,000. The album was said to have a balance of Brandon Saller's melodic singing vocals and Varkatzas's aggressive screaming. The album was met with positive reviews though, as IGN called the album "A brief but potent hissy fit."
2007-present: Signing to Hollywood Records Edit
In early 2007, Atreyu signed a record deal with Hollywood Records for America and an international deal with Roadrunner Records. With a new label, the band began to prepare its fourth studio album. A jigsaw puzzle was released on the band's website, as the goal was to put all the audio clips of the single, "Becoming the Bull" into correct order, forming the whole song. The album was received with mixed reviews, and was a notable change in sound for the band.
Lead Sails Paper Anchor was released on August 28, 2007, and debuted at number 8 on the Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 43,000 copies. The American release of the album had a bonus track, a cover of the song "Epic" by Faith No More while the European and Australian bonus track was a cover of "Clean Sheets" by The Descendents.
They toured in the United States, in the Taste of Chaos 2008 tour, along side bands such as Avenged Sevenfold, Bullet for My Valentine, Blessthefall. The band also toured with co-headliners Avenged Sevenfold and Bullet for My Valentine in Australia and New Zealand, to positive reactions from audiences and stated on a blog on their myspace that they're planning another tour down there later in the year.
On April 22, 2008, Lead Sails Paper Anchor was re-released with two previously unreleased bonus tracks, a DVD, and a digital booklet. It also featured new cover art. A trailer was released promoting the CD on their MySpace page.
On May 23, 2008, Varkatzas was forced to drop out of two shows - the shows being May Day in Indianapolis and Balloon Fest in El Paso - due to a throat infection, which resulted in Saller and McKnight taking over vocal duties for both dates.
Atreyu "Falling Down" Online Game Edit
Atreyu released a game, created by Jason Oda, based on their single, "Falling Down". The game allows you to play as all of the members of the band, with each of them having their own unique gameplay type and levels.
When you start the game, the song "Falling Down" begins to play, and you are shown a title screen, showing each member of the band doused in flames playing their respective instruments. Upon pressing the flashing "+ START +" button, you are taken to a sub menu showing each of the games.
The game types are as follows (shown clockwise on menu):
Alex Slaughters Cute Stuff - The object of the game is to play as lead vocalist Alex Varkatzas, and slaughter "cute stuff" with a large axe.
Dan Becomes Guitar Hero - You are guitarist Dan Jacobs, and as letters scroll down from the top of the screen, your object is to press the corresponding letter key on your keyboard. There are five rounds of game play.
Travis Makes McTreyu Burgers - You play as guitarist Travis Miguel in a remake of the 1982 arcade game Burgertime.
Marc Busts Ghosts - As bassist Marc McKnight, you try to reach the top of the level, while shooting ghosts with your bass guitar and jumping up from platform to platform.
Brandon Falls Down Into Hell - Drummer/vocalist Brandon Saller is given a sword, and sent on a mission to recover all the ice cream cones from hell.
In an interview with Brandon Saller and Marc McKnight of Atreyu, when asked about the game they said,
[McKnight] "Jason Oda's, the guy that designed it that does the games like that, I've been a huge fan of his artwork and his games for years now. And then I got an email when he had already completed the first proof of the game. I was like, 'Oh my God, he made one for us?'" [Saller] "We liked the video game for 'Becoming The Bull,' but it was kind of like a quiz thing. It wasn't really a game, but this is a full-fledged video game. It's hilarious. We all have our own levels, it's hilarious. I highly recommend kids to play it if you play video games. Even if you don't, I don't even play video games and I sat there for like an hour playing it. It's hard."Creator Jason Oda says,
"The Atreyu game is a mix between old school arcade game play and modern polished graphics. The inspiration for the game partially comes from the arcade game for the band Journey."
- Main article: Atreyu discography
- 2002: Suicide Notes and Butterfly Kisses
- 2004: The Curse
- 2006: A Death-Grip on Yesterday
- 2007: Lead Sails Paper Anchor
- 2009: Congregation of the Damned
- Alex Varkatzas – lead vocals (1998–present)
- Dan Jacobs – lead & rhythm guitars (1998–present)
- Travis Miguel – rhythm & lead guitars (2001–present)
- Marc McKnight – bass, vocals (2003–present)
- Brandon Saller – drums, percussion, vocals (1998–present)
- Chris Thomson - bass (2000-2002)
- Brian O'Donnell - bass (1999-2000)
- Kyle Stanley - bass (1997-2000)
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