Independently minded and adhering to the old-school D.I.Y. punk mentality, West Coast punk-pop trio Jawbreaker's street-smart -- yet poetic -- lyrics, spirited musicality, and marathon live shows put them a cut above contemporaries like Green Day and blink-182. After a series of EPs and singles, guitarist/singer Blake Schwarzenbach, bassist Chris Bauermeister, and drummer Adam Pfahler released the band's debut album, Unfun, in 1990. Independent label San Francisco Tupelo/Communion signed the group the following year, releasing Bivouac in 1992 and their breakthrough record, 24 Hour Revenge Therapy, in 1994.
As 1995 saw the first in a three-record deal with DGC, fans were split over the band's newfound success and move to a major label. But Jawbreaker were undeterred, releasing the influential Dear You, a powerhouse collection of punk, grunge, and emo that paved the way for groups like Jimmy Eat World and Dashboard Confessional. Sadly, the group disbanded in the late-'90s, leaving 2002's Etc., a collection of all of the group's non-album material, as their last will and testament. Dear You was reissued by Blackball in 2004.
James Christopher Monger