Last updated
Origin Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Years active1996–2004, 2008–2016
Associated acts
Past members
  • Jonny Santos
  • Mike Sarkisyan
  • Robert Garcia
  • Tommy Decker

Spineshank was an American nu metal band. The band has sold over 540,000 records. Spineshank has released four studio albums: Strictly Diesel (1998), The Height of Callousness (2000), Self-Destructive Pattern (2003), and Anger Denial Acceptance (2012).

United States Federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe, which is 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the most populous city is New York City. Most of the country is located contiguously in North America between Canada and Mexico.

Nu metal is a subgenre of alternative metal that combines elements of heavy metal music with elements of other music genres such as hip hop, alternative rock, funk, industrial, and grunge. Nu metal bands have drawn elements and influences from a variety of musical styles, including multiple genres of heavy metal. Nu metal rarely features guitar solos; the genre is heavily syncopated and based on guitar riffs. Many nu metal guitarists use seven-string guitars that are down-tuned to play a heavier sound. DJs are occasionally featured in nu metal to provide instrumentation such as sampling, turntable scratching and electronic backgrounds. Vocal styles in nu metal include singing, rapping, screaming and growling. Nu metal is one of the key genres of the new wave of American heavy metal.

<i>Strictly Diesel</i> 1998 studio album by Spineshank

Strictly Diesel is the debut album by the American industrial metal band Spineshank. It was released on September 22, 1998 by Roadrunner Records, it sold 75,000 units in the U.S.



Formation, Roadrunner Records years (1996–2003)

Formed in February 1996, Spineshank was assembled from the remains of a previous musical endeavor called "Basic Enigma". That band included future Spineshank members in vocalist Jonny Santos, guitarist Mike Sarkisyan and drummer Tom Decker. Upon hearing Fear Factory's 1995 release Demanufacture ,[ citation needed ] a new bassist in Robert Garcia was recruited, and with a refined musical style, Spineshank was formed. They have cited Fear Factory as a major influence.

Fear Factory American metal band

Fear Factory is an American heavy metal band that was formed in 1989. Throughout the band's career, they have released nine full-length albums and have evolved through a succession of styles, including nu metal, death metal, groove metal, and thrash metal. Fear Factory was enormously influential on the heavy metal scene in the mid-to-late 1990s.

<i>Demanufacture</i> (album) 1995 studio album by Fear Factory

Demanufacture is the second studio album by American industrial metal band Fear Factory, released on June 13, 1995 by Roadrunner Records. Burton C. Bell wrote the majority of the lyrics and Dino Cazares wrote all the music. This is the band's first album with their classic line-up; adding new bassist Christian Olde Wolbers. Although credited, his actual input is disputed between current and former band members. Many regard it as the band's best album and a heavy metal classic. The album was certified Gold in Australia by ARIA and Silver in the UK by the BPI.

The band soon befriended Fear Factory guitarist Dino Cazares, and after hearing their demo tape he offered to have them open a show for Fear Factory at a concert held at the Whiskey A-Go-Go in Los Angeles. This led to other coveted opening slots, with such popular acts as Coal Chamber, Snot, Soulfly, Sepultura and Danzig. As a result of these shows, Spineshank gathered interest from several record labels. Eventually, the band signed with Roadrunner Records, and released their debut album Strictly Diesel on September 22, 1998. Fear Factory vocalist Burton C. Bell provides vocals on the track "Stain". Spineshank joined Fear Factory and Kilgore on a European tour that year.

Dino Cazares Mexican-American musician

Dino Cazares, is an American musician, known for being a co-founder and guitarist for industrial metal group Fear Factory. He is also the co-founder of the metal bands Divine Heresy and Asesino. He also popularized the use of digital amp modelling processors for seven and eight string guitars in metal music. Cazares was a co-founding member of super-group Brujeria.

Los Angeles City in California

Los Angeles, officially the City of Los Angeles and often known by its initials L.A., is the most populous city in California, the second most populous city in the United States, after New York City, and the third most populous city in North America. With an estimated population of nearly four million, Los Angeles is the cultural, financial, and commercial center of Southern California. The city is known for its Mediterranean climate, ethnic diversity, Hollywood, the entertainment industry, and its sprawling metropolis. Los Angeles is the largest city on the West Coast of North America.

Coal Chamber was an American nu metal band formed in Los Angeles, California in 1994. Prior to Coal Chamber, Dez Fafara and Meegs Rascón formed the band She's In Pain in 1992. The two decided to create Coal Chamber. They disbanded in 2003 after ten years together, and then reunited from 2011 to 2016. Their first drummer, Jon Tor, was eventually replaced by Mike Cox. After bass guitarist Rayna Foss joined, the Coal Chamber lineup was complete.

Spineshank's second album The Height of Callousness was released on October 10, 2000. Unlike their debut album, The Height of Callousness has a strong industrial metal influence. The band was featured at Ozzfest 2001, and toured with such artists as Disturbed, Hed PE, Orgy and Mudvayne in support of the album's release. The songs "Synthetic" and "New Disease" were released as singles in 2000 and 2001, respectively.

<i>The Height of Callousness</i> 2000 studio album by Spineshank

The Height of Callousness is the second album by the American industrial metal band Spineshank. It was released on October 10, 2000 by Roadrunner Records. The title is taken from a phrase in A Clockwork Orange.

Industrial metal is the fusion of heavy metal music and industrial music, typically employing repeating metal guitar riffs, sampling, synthesizer or sequencer lines, and distorted vocals. Prominent industrial metal acts include Ministry, Godflesh, KMFDM and Nine Inch Nails.

Ozzfest is an annual festival tour of the United States and sometimes Europe featuring performances by many heavy metal and hard rock musical groups. It was founded by Ozzy Osbourne and his wife Sharon Osbourne, both of whom also organise each yearly tour with their son Jack Osbourne. The Ozzfest tour has featured bands of a variety of genres within heavy metal and hard rock, including alternative metal, thrash metal, industrial metal, metalcore, hardcore punk, deathcore, nu metal, death metal, post-hardcore, gothic metal and black metal. Ozzy Osbourne and Black Sabbath have played the tour several times over the years.

The band's third album Self-Destructive Pattern was released on September 9, 2003. The album's lead single "Smothered" was nominated for a Grammy in the category of Best Metal Performance (2004). Shortly after the album was released the band went on a European tour with Ill Nino and Chimaira. A show in the Netherlands was filmed on October 6, and was to become a DVD entitled Roadrage. However, it was never officially released.

<i>Self-Destructive Pattern</i> 2003 studio album by Spineshank

Self-Destructive Pattern is the third album by the American industrial metal band Spineshank. It was released on September 9, 2003 by Roadrunner Records. The single "Smothered" was nominated for a Grammy in the category of Best Metal Performance (2004).

Smothered (song) 2003 single by Spineshank

"Smothered" is a single by nu metal band Spineshank. It was only released in the United States in CD format. The music video features the band performing in a room while they are filmed by numerous hidden cameras, which they find and destroy. The song was nominated for Best Metal Performance at the 46th Grammy Awards, but lost to Metallica's "St. Anger."

Lineup change and hiatus (2004–2008)

In January 2004, it was reported that Santos had officially left Spineshank. Drummer Tommy Decker stated that the split was "amicable" and was mainly due to "musical differences". [5] A day after the news was reported, Decker vowed that the band would continue, and stated that the musical differences were due to the fact the rest of the band wanted to play heavier music than Santos. [6]

On January 17, 2004, Spineshank launched a search for a new vocalist, [7] and on November 7, 2005, Spineshank's official website announced that they would be working with Brandon Espinoza. They also stated that they had already been working together for five months at the time, and had produced five songs. At the time, the band did not intend to continue to use the name Spineshank. Meanwhile, Santos went on to release two albums with his new band Silent Civilian.

On July 7, 2006, Espinoza posted an update on the band's message board, and stated that they were still in the process of writing material. Then, February 7, 2008, after almost two years of silence about the band, Espinoza announced that the band had broken up due to the lack of chemistry between its members. [8] Later on, in February 2008, the band (excluding Espinoza) announced open tryouts for a new unnamed project. [9]

Reunion with original lineup and disbanding (2008–2016)

In 2008, Spineshank reunited with Santos, and in August of that year recorded a demo. Drummer Tom Decker said of the reunion, "First of all, you don't have to worry about us abandoning our sound; there will be plenty of electronics/loops/synths on this record. Jonny is also singing better than he ever has, so there will be a ton of singing and melody as well. This will definitely be heavier than our previous albums but it will not be all bashing. I can wholeheartedly promise you that we will not be trying to be anything we are not. This is simply going to be Spineshank five years later. There will be a few new elements but it will be undeniably us (for better or worse!!!). . . "

On October 3, 2011, Spineshank debuted a new song "Murder Suicide" via Noisecreep. [10] On June 19, 2012, the band released Anger Denial Acceptance through Century Media. After several years of silence, on February 16, 2016, Mike Sarkisyan in an online interview said that the band had completed what they had set out to do and that there were no plans to continue the band. [11]


Final Lineup



Spineshank discography
Studio albums4
Compilation albums1

Studio albums

YearAlbum detailsPeak chart positions

1998 Strictly Diesel 129
2000 The Height of Callousness
  • Released: October 10, 2000
  • Label: Roadrunner
  • Formats: CD, CS, DI
2003 Self-Destructive Pattern
  • Released: September 9, 2003
  • Label: Roadrunner
  • Formats: CD, DI
2012Anger Denial Acceptance
"—" denotes a release that did not chart.

Compilation albums

YearAlbum details
2008 The Best of Spineshank
  • Released: January 29, 2008
  • Label: Roadrunner
  • Formats: CD, DI


YearSongPeak chart positionsAlbum

1998"Shinebox"Strictly Diesel
2000"Synthetic"The Height of Callousness
2001"New Disease"3384
2003"Smothered"Self-Destructive Pattern
2012"Nothing Left for Me"Anger Denial Acceptance
"—" denotes a release that did not chart.

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  2. "28 Nu-Metal Era Bands You Probably Forgot All About". NME . Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  3. Sammi Chichester (2012-12-05). "Mike Sarkisyan of Spineshank Picks His Five Favorite Albums of the Year - Heavy Metal News | Music Videos |Golden Gods Awards". revolvermag.com. Retrieved 2013-03-08.
  4. Riddle, Tree (June 19, 2012). "Spineshank, 'Nothing Left for Me' – Exclusive Video Premiere". Loudwire . Retrieved November 7, 2015.
  5. It's Official: SPINESHANK Part Ways With Vocalist JONNY SANTOS Archived 2007-10-15 at the Wayback Machine . Posted January 9, 2004.
  6. SPINESHANK Drummer: 'We Wanted To Play Heavier Music Than JONNY Did' Archived 2007-10-15 at the Wayback Machine . Posted January 10, 2004.
  7. SPINESHANK Launch Singer Search Archived 2007-10-15 at the Wayback Machine . Posted January 17, 2004.
  8. Brandon Espinoza: Its sad to say but were parting ways.... Posted February 7, 2008
  9. Ex-Spineshank Members Looking For Vocalist For New Band. Posted April 2, 2008.
  10. Spineshank Return With a Fury on ‘Murder Suicide’ — Song Premiere, noisecreep.com
  11. https://www.buzzsprout.com/48505/352877-ep-28-mike-sarkisyan-spineshank?fbclid=IwAR2yMalgKR9cvmm8I6LkYiS0JOKyt53j_6-AQpoq-OfP4nz2n5Sinn-KGZ0.
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  13. 1 2 Zywietz, Tobias. "Chart Log UK: DJ S - The System of Life". Zobbel.
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