THE VANISHED formed when Kirkwood and guitarist Dallas Perry joined up with long-time childhood friends Justin Young (bass) and Phil Helms (drums). "We had always talked about all playing in a band together, explains Kirkwood. "Dallas and I had been in a band together for a while and wanted THE VANISHED to create an atmosphere and feeling in our live show that reflects the mood of when the songs were written. Justin brings a lot of indie influences to the band, which has benefited the textures to the band's sound. We are intrigued by dark, haunting images. Tim Burton has been a direct influence on the band. Burton has the ability to combine two very different types of emotions in his films. He has a unique way of melding a storybook ending and gothic twist. The whole 'tongue-in-cheek' approach really interests me."
The Vanished’s songs lyrically deal with the dark side of human nature through troubled relationships to tormented characters and hopeful resolution. There are many influential icons including The Cure and Motley Cr..e to Led Zeppelin and David Bowie that have had an affect on the members of THE VANISHED. "At the end of the day it is all about the song," states Kirkwood. "We try and write the best and most honest tunes we can. Saying that, our live shows are just as important. We make it a point to communicate the same type of emotion. We view the shows like a three-act-play. Just playing the songs live, isn't enough for us. Be it through certain types of lighting, staging and song arrangements, we want the shows to be an experience."
The band pushes the live experience on stage to the point where band members have been at risk of life and limb. "Justin broke his hand at a show, Dallas has lost several ounces of blood from splitting his thumb open, a wound that will not heal, on his guitar during shows and I've chipped my front tooth in a collision with my microphone and a fans head in the front row," admits the intense singer. "Our drummer is the only member who has been able to avoid bodily injury during a show," he grins, adding, "We are all waiting for him to spontaneously combust."
In 2005 the band released their debut full-length album Favorite Scar and received an immediate reaction across the southwest. Quickly climbing the charts at KDGE in Dallas/Ft. Worth, The Vanished’s lead title track “Favorite Scar” achieved 1300 spins on the station prompting the song to reach 1100 spins on KLAQ in El Paso. These overwhelming successes led the band to 18 months of tours and concert events where they shared the stage with Bowling For Soup, Blue October, Daughtry, Flyleaf, The Exies and Simple Plan. Along with these tours The Vanished performed at numerous radio festivals and events with My Chemical Romance, Alkaline Trio, Velvet Revolver, Chevelle, Papa Roach, Buckcherry and several dates on the Warped Tour (2005).
The Vanished realized another triumph in November of 2006 with the release of Act 1: Captives the first in a trio of EP’s to be revealed by the band. The three-part series reflects the theatrical behavior the band captures in each live performance – sharing not just live music with the audience but a three-act play of passion, despair and tragedy. Produced by Zac Maloy (formerly of the Nixons) and recorded at Rosewater Studios in Tulsa, OK, this first imprint of the impending trilogy features five power-house tracks showcasing The Vanished’s vivid story telling. The EP’s first single “The Longest Goodbye” has reached #1 in airplay at KDGE in Dallas and the top 10 at KLAQ in El Paso, KDJE in Little Rock and KMYZ in Tulsa. The single is collectively being played at over 13 stations across the southwest including KTCL in Denver. This progression of accomplishments welcomed The Vanished to perform at the grand opening of Dallas’ Palladium Ballroom music venue in 2007 and was a springboard to a series of concert events including the band’s third appearance at KDGE’s Edgefest in Dallas at Pizza Hut Park and second appearance at KTBZ’s Buzzfest in Houston at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion.
The Vanished continue to perform across the nation as they prepare for the 2007 Family Values Tour in August. The band will be releasing their follow-up single from Act 1: Captives titled “I Love Your Blood” in early summer. “Act 1: Captives” is available online via the band’s website and may be found on iTunes.
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