Disturbed (1994-present): a Nu-Metal band from Chicago, Illinois, USA.
he act that, today is called Disturbed formed in 1994 under the name Crawl, a name they quickly rejected when they discovered it was already taken, so assumed the Brawl name instead whereby they released a single demo in 1994 with the membership of Dan Donegan (guitars), Erich Awalt (vocals), Mike Wengren (drums) and Steve "Fuzz" Kmak (bass). Awalt left the band shortly after the recording leaving the remaining members to post an ad in the local music publication, the "Illinois Entertainer"; David Draiman answered the call.
After renaming the band to Disturbed they went on to record two 3-track demo tapes to eventually sign with 'Giant Records'. The band received their stardom right off the starting gate with their debut 2000 release, The Sickness, receiving a 20 on the Billboard 200 and selling some 4 million copies in the US alone!
Before joining Marilyn Manson's 2001 European tour, Kmak was unable to play with the band due to a shattered ankle, caused by falling out of a fire escape outside Disturbed's rehearsal hall in Chicago; he took the fire escape to leave the building while the elevator was being used to move the band equipment downstairs. Marty O'Brien replaced Kmak until he was able to tour again.
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Disturbed recorded a cover of Faith No More's Midlife Crisis for a Faith No More tribute album that was eventually released in 2002. But, in a twist of fate, Disturbed's cover was not used, and a re-recorded version would later make an appearance on their compilation album, The Lost Children (2011).
Believe (2002), Disturbed's second album, debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. The accompanying music video for the first single from the album, Prayer, was pulled from most television stations, due to perceived similarities in images with the September 11, 2001 terror attacks. Draiman also recorded vocals for a Forsaken, a song written and produced by Jonathan Davis (of Korn fame), released on the soundtrack Queen of the Damned from the movie of the same name.
Debuting at number one on the Billboard 200 to become certified platinum soon after by selling more than 1 million units, Ten Thousand Fists (2005) handsomely represented their third effort.
In July 2007, a new track This Moment was released by Disturbed on the soundtrack to the film Transformers.
Indestructible (2008) became the band's third consecutive number one debut on the Billboard 200. A special "Internet Only" limited edition of the album that included the B-side track Run, a 'making-of' DVD with instructional videos, wrap-around poster, VIP laminate, access to special Disturbed events, and a special website with exclusive video and rare audio also released. Disturbed then played their first live online concert on May 29, 2008.
In May 2008, Harmonix, the developers of the video game Rock Band announced they had reached a deal with Disturbed and the retailer Best Buy to offer two tracks from Indestructible for play in the video game to those who pre-ordered the album from the retailer's website.
On September 30, 2008, Disturbed released an iTunes-exclusive live album entitled Live & Indestructible, made up of songs from Deep rock Drive, as well as the music video for Indestructible.
The band released a cover of Judas Priest's song Living After Midnight for the Metal Hammer Presents... Tribute to British Steel album.
Asylum (2010) would be Disturbed's fourth consecutive studio album to debut on top of the charts, an achievement only earned by two other bands: Metallica and Dave Matthews Band. Despite being at the top of their form, the act decided to take a hiatus in 2011. This hiatus would last until 2015 whereby John Moyer joined super-group Adrenaline Mob as bass player, while Draiman started his own project, an industrial metal band called Device. As Device he would release a self-titled album in 2013 featuring guest musicians. Dan Donegan and drummer Mike Wengren began a project with Evans Blue singer Dan Chandler named Fight or Flight; their debut album, Life by Design? was released also in 2013.
When Disturbed finally returned, they did so with style by being nominated for a Grammy with their excellent dark and powerful rendition of Simon and Garfunkel's Sound of Silence on the Immortalized album (2015). Moyer did not perform on the album due to working on other projects, with all bass tracks now being performed by Dan Donegan; he would return to the role in 2016 for the release of Evolution (2018) and Divisive (2022).
Footnote: Not to be confused with the 1980s band from Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.
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Disturbed performing live in 2016.
Photo by: Stefan Brending
(CC BY-SA 3.0)
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