We all know My Chemical Romance, but that’s only the tip of the musical iceberg when it comes to Frank Iero.
In case you missed it, Frank Iero is back with a new band! After teasing it for months on end, it took until New Year’s Eve for him to drop the name of his new band.
(It’s Frank Iero And The Future Violents, for the record).
In celebration of the new iteration of Frank Iero’s band, we thought we’d bring you up to speed with a brief history of all of his bands to date. There’s been a lot. Let’s go.
Frank’s first band, Pencey Prep was an integral part of the burgeoning punk and hardcore scene in their home state of New Jersey back in the very very early 2000s. Frank was the frontman and guitarist for Pencey Prep, who took their name from The Catcher In The Rye (it was the school that the main character was expelled from).
Pencey Prep were coming up through the scene at the same time as Thursday, who were signed to Eyeball Records as well, so they were in very good company. Before the band broke up in 2002, Pencey Prep released their only album ‘Heartbreak In Stereo’ in 2001.
Tragically ‘Heartbreak In Stereo’ hasn’t seen the light of day on Spotify, however someone has uploaded the album in full to YouTube so that it isn’t entirely lost to time:
Additional fun fact about Pencey Prep: Shaun Simon who played keyboards in the band later went on to write the comic series The True Lives Of The Fabulous Killjoys with My Chemical Romance frontman Gerard Way.
MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE
Only bands, not ideas.
Just kidding, but come on now, you know enough about My Chemical Romance. We all do. This is about his other bands.
Basically My Chemical Romance was and continues to be one of the biggest and most influential bands in the scene, even six years after their breakup.
Frank joined hardcore punk outfit LeATHERMOUTH back in 2008 while still a part of My Chemical Romance. Originally Frank had no desire to be a member of the band, and planned to sign them to his label Skeleton Crew – but after several months of waiting on the vocalist at the time to work on the lyrics and never delivering, Frank took control and stepped in as the frontman and lyricist of the band. And the rest is history!
Instead of being signed to Frank’s label Skeleton Crew, the band signed with Epitaph and released their debut album ‘XO’ in 2009. LeATHERMOUTH collected a lot of hype around them at the time, touring whenever Frank wasn’t out on the road with My Chemical Romance.
LeATHERMOUTH was a huge departure from the music of My Chemical Romance – a fact that Frank openly admitted, sharing with MTV back in 2008 “I think that people that get into Leathermouth because of my past bands and stuff like that, I think they’ll be kind of bummed out, if that’s why they’re into it. But it’s definitely a lot different, and it’s really fun for me, man. It’s really cathartic and just a great experience.”
Sadly the band reached its demise in 2010, which Frank credits the other members finding spiritual enlightenment for. But that wasn’t actually the end – back in 2012 Frank shared “There’s still part of me that would hate not doing that band again. There’s something brewing, but I don’t know what it is. I really wanted that band to go on longer, but Jesus had other plans”. The following year, LeATHERMOUTH reunited for a one-off performance at New Jersey’s Skate and Surf Fest, before resuming their breakup.
And that’s still not the end of LeATHERMOUTH! Frank announced last year that ‘XO’ was being re-released on vinyl. Which is a start. But we’re still itching for another reunion.
FRANK IERO: SOLO ARTIST
While many of his bands (that we’re yet to cover in this extensive list) feature Frank in their name, they aren’t solo projects by any means.
But he has put out a handful of solo songs! Back in 2012 Frank released his solo debut ‘This Song Is A Curse’, recorded and released as part of the official soundtrack of the Tim Burton film Frankenweenie.
Frank has never released a solo album, but he’s periodically released little one-off tracks and an EP. Most notable of this is his two-song EP ‘for jamia…’, released on vinyl in 2013 and limited to only 400 copies worldwide. The announcement of the tribute to his wife Jamia was basically one of the most touching displays of public affection ever witnessed. Frank posted the announcement on his website, sharing “i recently recorded 2 songs for my wife’s birthday. i have decided to release these songs and dedicate my first ep to her. she is the love of my life, and has been my best friend and the most incredible partner i could have ever asked for. she inspires me and deserves more than i could possibly give her.”
Frank played and recorded everything on the EP as well, except drums which were tracked by former My Chemical Romance drummer Jarrod Alexander. Lovely stuff.
Death Spells is the digital hardcore brainchild of Frank and former My Chemical Romance keyboardist James Dewees. They announced the project in 2013 and immediately jumped on the road supporting Mindless Self Indulgence and playing New Jersey’s Skate & Surf Festival.
In the days leading up to the start of the Mindless Self Indulgence tour, massive troll Frank Iero dropped teasers every night at midnight, which ultimately led to the release of their debut single ‘Where The Fuck Are My Pills?’.
After 2013, everything in the Death Spells camp went very, very quiet- and the promise of a debut album towards the end of 2013 went undelivered due to both Frank and James moving on to other musical projects. It wasn’t until 2016 that their debut album ‘Nothing Above, Nothing Below’ saw the light of day. They followed up the release of their album with a short run of headline tour dates in the UK, and an appearance at Riot Fest 2016.
FRNKIERO AND THE CELLABRATION
We now enter the business end of Frank’s bands- the first of the #FIAT trilogy.
In 2014 Frank announced he’d signed to Staples Records and was releasing a full album ‘.stomachaches.’. The announcement was followed by a number of tour support slots with Taking Back Sunday and The Used, and the release of their debut single ‘Weighted’.
Also, ‘She’s The Prettiest Girl At The Party, And She Can Prove It With A Solid Right Hook’ is one of the best love songs of the modern age. Quote us.
FrnkIero And The Cellabration spent the better part of 2014 and 2015 touring the US, Mexico, the UK and Europe, before hosting a series of intimate acoustic gigs where they showcased a couple of new songs, and announced that they were heading back into the studio to record a new album.
Which brings us to…
FRANK IERO AND THE PATIENCE
The first name change! But the same line-up!
2016 saw the debut of Frank Iero And The Patience, and a brand new album in the form of ‘Parachutes’. Two weeks before the release of ‘Parachutes’, Frank and all of the members of The Patience were involved in a serious bus crash, leaving all members in a serious condition in an Australian hospital.
Following the traffic incident, Frank Iero And The Patience cancelled all of their upcoming touring for a number of months as all of the members recovered.
Towards the end of 2017 Frank Iero And The Patience released an EP ‘Keep The Coffins Coming’- and one of the songs on the EP ‘BFF’ featured both of his twin daughters Cherry and Lily. Super sweet stuff.
FRANK IERO AND THE FUTURE VIOLENTS
Which brings us to now! The third iteration of Frank Iero And The trilogy.
Frank started teasing that he was working on new music as early as May last year. It was shortly after that that he began teasing the name of the new band- which led us to writing this feature, guessing what #FIATFV could be an acronym for.
It was only New Years Eve that Frank finally let the cat out of the bag and introduced us to Frank Iero And The Future Violents, with an album on the horizon, and their first international appearance scheduled for 2000 Trees Festival in the UK in July.
Basically, with a history of exciting music behind him, the future of Frank Iero And The Future Violents (and all other future iterations of the band) is looking pretty bright.