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The Blamed

Punk Rock / Hardcore / Emo
California / Chicago, Illinois, USA

The Blamed is a Christian hardcore punk band currently based out of Chicago, Illinois. The Blamed are known for their diverse range of styles they have played throughout the years, giving them their own unique sound. During their tenure, they have played primarily hardcore punk, pop punk, punk rock, and emo music with some influences from metal as well. They originally are from California having relocated to Illinois after guitarist Bryan Gray moved to Chicago. The band originally formed in 1994 and disbanded in 2003. Members during this era of the band included Bryan Gray, Christopher Wiitala, Trevor Wiitala, Jeff Locke, Jim Chaffin, John Hansen, and Matt Switaj. They released three albums with Tooth & Nail Records (21 in 1996, Frail in 1996, and Give Us Barabbas in 2002) and four albums with Grrr Records (…Again in 1998, Forever in 1999, Germany in 2000, and Isolated Incident in 2001). The Band reformed in the summer of 2016 to play a one off set at Audio Feed music festival. This has since lead to the band reforming and recording a Split EP with the Chicago hardcore band The Satire, a band sharing multiple members with the Blamed. The Split EP was released in November 2018 through Indie Vision Music.

Bryan Gray and other members of The Blamed were involved with Left Out as well.

Discography

1991 Pay the Rent
1991 Live as They Were
1994 21 Tooth & Nail Records
1995 Frail Tooth & Nail Records
1998 …Again Grrr Records
1999 Forever Grrr Records
2000 Germany Grrr Records
2000 7“ Burnt Toast Vinyl
2001 At This Moment Computer Club Records
2001 Isolated Incident Grrr Records
2002 The Blamed / Noisetoys Split
2002 That One Time We Played Live
2002 Give Us Barabbas Tooth & Nail Records
2018 The Blamed x The Satire Indie Vision Music
2019 20 Years…Again Indie Vision Music
2019 The Church is Hurting People

Pay the Rent

1991 Independent

Mark – Bass
Bry – Guitars, vocals, drums
Justin – Lead guitars
Adam – Drums possibly

  1. Airhead
  2. Walkabout
  3. Sesame Street
  4. (Skeeters)
  5. YMIAG
  6. Yo!
  7. Soft Song
  8. Cow Punk (Apocalyps)
  9. Spacefiller
  10. Mulligan Stu
  11. Dance Micks
  12. iloveu

Live as They Were

1991 Independent

  1. Intro / Sesame Street
  2. YMIAG
  3. Walkabout
  4. Yo!
  5. Airhead
  6. Testimony
  7. Separation
  8. 3AM
  9. Stepping Stone (cover)

21

1994 Tooth & Nail Records (TND1008)

Bryan Gray - Guitar
Jake Landrau - Guitar
Eric Churchill - Bass Guitar
Jim Chaffin - Drums

  1. Abuse
  2. Help Yourself
  3. Testimony
  4. Drunk
  5. Separation
  6. A State of…
  7. From Me to You
  8. Rainbow
  9. 3 A.M.
  10. God is Alive
  11. Walkabout
  12. The Ballad of the Blamed

Frail

1995 Tooth & Nail Records (TND 1019)

Jeremy Moffett - Vocals
Bryan Gray - Guitar
Gary Ottosi - Bass
Jim Chaffin - Drums

  1. Feeding the Ignorant (1:51)
  2. Weakness (2:26)
  3. For You (4:38)
  4. No Difference (1:45)
  5. Just Because (2:25)
  6. Breeze (3:52)
  7. Prove Your Excuse (2:19)
  8. Second Minded Friend (2:35)
  9. Torn (4:16)
  10. Guy in a Suit and the Pope (3:01)
  11. Declaration Dead (4:00)

...Again

1998 Grrr Records

  1. Beginning in the End
  2. Casualty of War
  3. Rage
  4. God Have Mercy
  5. Don't Fall
  6. Covered
  7. Deny
  8. Outer Crust
  9. Crying Tree
  10. The Pride Experience
  11. Live by Truth
  12. D Sin Grate

Forever

1999 Grrr Records (GRD3530)

Bryan Gray
Jeff Locke
Jim Chaffin
Matt Switaj

  1. Dissonance (2:47)
  2. To Change (3:01)
  3. Pistol Whipped (3:03)
  4. Reason Escapes (4:12)
  5. Satori (2:44)
  6. Degeneration (2:14)
  7. Conversations in the Mirror (3:26)
  8. Forever (2:41)
  9. Knock Me Down (2:48)
  10. New Seeds of Contemplation (2:46)
  11. Seven Story Mountain (2:53)
  12. Beyond Your Passion in His Passion (1:47)
  13. 4/20/99 (3:31)

Germany

2000 Grrr Records (GRRR 91400)

Bryan Gray
Christopher Wiitala
Matt Switaj
Trevor Wiitala

  1. Wound / Overwhelmed (3:09)
  2. Discussed (2:07)
  3. Running Away Can be an Ugly Thing (2:10)
  4. Darkness is so Unforgiving (2:17)
  5. Last Time I Do This for the First Time (2:26)
  6. This is It (2:07)
  7. At Last We Will Have Revenge (2:49)

The Blamed 7"

2000 Burnt Toast Vinyl (BTV032)

Bryan Gray - Guitars, keys
Matt Switaj - Guitars, vocals
Chris Wiitala - Bass, vocals, keys
Trevor Wiitala - Drums

(Bryan can't remember who played keys on this, but Bryan and Chris typically played them on the records)

  1. This is for David
  2. On Westnedge
  3. …In Amsterdam

“We were pretty integrated with the band Scientific. Chris and Matt would occasionally play live backing them up - a phenomenal band. Burnt Toast Records and Matt worked out them putting out a 7”. We recorded this ourselves. The first song “This is for David” is still one of my all time favorite Blamed songs to play live. We typically only played it when something broke because I could play almost the whole song by myself. The second song “On Westnedge… In Amsterdam” we made up in the studio that day, it is the only time we ever played this song. The opening guitar parts were inspired by the epic music from the lightsaber dual with Darth Maul. We don't have the masters for this song because we are dumb. My friend Doug Peterson had ripped MP3s straight from the vinyl - I dig that you can hear the popping of the needle and the vinyl, it helps with the character of this recording.” - Bryan Gray


At This Moment

2001 Computer Club Records (CCRP-1001)

Bryan Gray - Guitars, piano
Matt Switaj - Guitars, clarinet
Chris Wiitala - Bass, piano
Trevor Wiitala - Drums

(I don't remember who played timpani on this, but it was cool)

Engineered by Ed Bialach at Tone Zone Studios

  1. For Brian Wilson (1:56)
  2. At This Moment (1:58)
  3. Our Bazaar World (2:17)
  4. That's the Ticket (3:04)

“We tried to record extra material with each release. During the Isolated Incident session we tracked an instrumental song “For Brian Wilson” and one of Chris' songs. Jake Brown from Computer Club Records was putting out some cool stuff and had worked it out with Matt to release a “maxi single” of the song “At This Moment” from the Isolated Incident album. Music was alive in 2001 - I kinda miss it.” - Bryan Gray


Isolated Incident

2001 Grrr Records (GRD 3536)

Brian Gray - Guitar, vocals, keyboards, piano
Matt Switaj - Vocals, guitar, clarinet, bouzouki, percussion
Christopher Wiitala - Bass, vocals, percussion, piano
Trevor Wiitala - Drums, cello, guitar

Marko Hautakoski - Guitar, drums
Timo Sillankorva - Guitar
Johnathon Ford - Bass
Michal Backrud - Drums

  1. At This Moment (2:57)
  2. Social Calls (2:11)
  3. To See You How You are Seen (2:50)
  4. Short of a Miracle (1:54)
  5. At Least We Have Each Other (1:58)
  6. NxNW (2:02)
  7. Our Bazaar World (2:12)
  8. For Fifteen Bucks (and a Spot on the Floor) (1:26)
  9. The Piano is Playing Our Song (3:04)
  10. The Bat Storm (2:02)
  11. The Finest of Society's Philanderers (3:35)
  12. Taking Philosophy on the Streets of Oslo (2:59)
  13. Ch-Ch-What's Missing You Are (4:00)

The Blamed / Noisetoys Split

2002 Independent

Bryan Gray - Guitar, vocals
Christopher Wiitala - Bass, vocals
Trevor Wiitala - Drums

  1. The Blamed - Crescendo
  2. The Blamed - Escape Of Reason
  3. The Blamed - The Rise And The Fall
  4. The Blamed - Bandwagon
  5. Noisetoys - The Lion's Roar
  6. Noisetoys - Always There For You
  7. Noisetoys - Pastor Poster
  8. Noisetoys - Fill

“So the story behind the import split: we were down to a 3 piece and we were booked for this long tour overseas. We were touring with an old friend Daniel Benjamin's bands, the first leg was with The Noisetoys and the second leg was with Jumbo Jet. So Daniel proposed we record a split CD to promote the tour. I got with the twins (bassist and drummer Chris and Trevor Wiitala) and wrote 2 new songs. Daniel responded back that he wanted 4 songs if possible and the twins said they had 2 songs and I said OK. I probably should've listened to their 2 songs first, but I am a huge fan of their writing so no regrets. I love how this CD turned out, and it was fun to sell overseas and eventually here in the US as a limited edition “import” CD. Tooth and Nail was completely supportive and eventually bought a case of CDs to sell through their mail order” - Bryan Gray


That One Time We Played Live

2002 Independent

Bryan Gray - Guitar, vocals
Matt Switaj - Guitar, vocals
Chris Wiitala - Bass, vocals
Trevor Wiitala - Drums

  1. To See You How You are Seen (7:08)
  2. At Last We Will Have Revenge (5:38)

“I vaguely remember someone recording all of the Grrr bands at Cornerstone (we released 4 thingy's on Grrr). I think when I got the live CD I didn't like it and was bummed that it was in circulation. I kept 2 songs on my hard drive that I didn't hate. I think that this recording captures an interesting time stamp for the band. Upon listening back the live version of “To See You,” it has the original version of “Cyclical” at the end. There was always a bit of tension within this version of the band regarding Chris' vocals. It was kind of a jerk move, but in tracking process of Give Us Barabbas, Chris sang “Cyclical” and Matt had a different vocal idea. The one day the twins went to see U2 during the mix down, Matt re-sang “Cyclical.” I knew Chris would be bummed, but Matt's vocal on the Give Us Barabbas version is possibly one of my favorite of his vocal performances. “At Last We Will Have Revenge” is just a live version of the song. I considered us an evangelical band in the old days. I actually kinda cringe hearing my voice but it is worthy timestamp, free jazz. Fun Fact the lyrics from this song are from The Phantom Menace.” - Bryan Gray


Give Us Barabbas

2002 Tooth & Nail Records (TND1221)

  1. The Lonely Zagreb (2:11)
  2. The Jealous Answer (2:30)
  3. 1200 Stares (4:59)
  4. You Not Me (3:08)
  5. So Depraved (3:00)
  6. Open Mouth (2:38)
  7. In Szentendre (2:11)
  8. Fictionary (3:01)
  9. Cyclical (2:59)
  10. Prayer for the Dead (5:02)
  11. Positive (2:58)
  12. Instrumental Until We Die (1:46)
  13. Best in Show (2:48)

The Blamed x The Satire

2018 Indie Vision Music

  1. The Blamed - I Guess This is Goodbye
  2. The Blamed - Better Left Unsaid
  3. The Satire - In the Vein
  4. The Satire - The Eunuch and the Salesman
  5. The Blamed - The Ballad of the Blamed [new version]
  6. The Blamed - Separation [unplugged]

20 Years...Again

2019 Indie Vision Music

  1. Beginning in the End (4:19)
  2. Casualty of War (Reprise) (1:01)
  3. Don't Fall (2:17)
  4. Covered (2:45)
  5. Live by Truth (2:14)
  6. D Sin Grate (Feat. Luke Easter) (3:33)

The Church is Hurting People

2019 Independent


Compilation Appearances

Sweet Family Music: A Tribute to Stryper (1996 Flying Tart Records)
13) Soldiers Under Command (5:26)

Jeremy Moffett - Vocals
Bryan Gray - Guitar
Gary Ottosi - Bass
Jim Chaffin - Drums

“That one time we played a Stryper song for a comp CD and it was rad. Jim played to the CD and Gary and I played to Jim and Jeremy did what he does. This was the last thing recorded with Jeremy Moffett and Gary Otossi before we went on hiatus and I joined Six Feet Deep for a season.” - Bryan Gray

Lost Lonely Vicious Comp (1999 Boot to Head Records)
25) Strawberry Fields Forever (3:23)

Bryan Gray - Guitars, vocals
Matt Switaj - Guitars, vocals
Jeff Locke - Bass, vocals
Jim Chaffin - Drums

“This was recorded by The Blamed during our demo sessions for the Forever album (I think). It was originally released exclusively on a Boot to Head Records sampler Lost Lonely Vicious. The days of amazing comps in the late 90s and early 2000s was insane and this comp was amazing. This was the last song we recorded with Jim Chaffin and Jeff Locke before combining the 2 bands Left Out and The Blamed.” - Bryan Gray

Songs From The Penalty Box Volume 5 (2002 Tooth & Nail Records)
13) She Shows Me How (4:27)