The Bouncing Souls
The Bouncing Souls.jpg
Background Information
Origin New Brunswick, New Jersey
Genre Punk Rock
Years active 1987-present
Label(s) Epitaph
Greg Attonio
Pete "The Pete "Steinkopf
Bryan "Papillon" Kienlen
Michael McDermott
Former Members
Shal Khichi

The Bouncing Souls are a punk rock band from New Brunswick, New Jersey formed in 1987. By the time of their acknowledgment by the national punk scene, they had reignited a "pogo" element to New Jersey punk rock by playing fast light-hearted songs, a model followed by various other local bands (e.g. Blanks 77 ). They are known for their energetic live shows, albeit with an amateurish element on their recordings at that stage.

History[edit | edit source]

The four original members grew up in Basking Ridge, NJ and played in smaller bands during high school. Although they decided to forgo college, they also made the decision to move to a college town. New Brunswick, NJ, which is the home of Rutgers University, had a reputation for supporting underground music, and over the years had seen not only musical acts but actors enjoy professional success. The Bouncing Souls not only became a staple in the New Brunswick music scene, but also helped other bands gain an audience by opening up for them in the clubs around town, as well as parties and shows they put on themselves.The band's name is a reference to Doc Martens shoes, which were a staple of punk dress. To this day, Doc Martens uses the advertising slogan "with Bouncing Soles" for their air-cushioned soles.

Their first full-length album, The Good, The Bad & The Argyle was released in 1994 on Chunksaah Records, their own label. The album was a compilation of several EPs the band had released previously. Two tracks of this record, "Candy" (popularized by Bow Wow Wow) and "What Boys Like" (originally by the Waitresses) served as homage to 1980s new wave while simultaneously striking a humorous jab at homophobia. Their next album, Maniacal Laughter was released in 1996. Half the album was written in a week. It led to a high profile tour with Youth Brigade that got the attention of Epitaph records.

The Bouncing Souls signed with Epitaph in 1997 and released Bouncing Souls later that year. While it contains some Bouncing Souls classics like "Cracked," "Kate is Great," and "East Coast! Fuck You!," certain tracks on the record are anticlimactic in comparison to their low-fi earlier recordings. Greg himself stated on Do You Remember? 15 Years of the Bouncing Souls that "It's a CD of unfinished songs." Hopeless Romantic followed in 1999. Hopeless Romantic has been heralded for admixing poignant lyrics with their melodic rapidly-paced punk style.[1] [2] Soon after the album's release, personal problems arose between the band and long-time drummer Shal Khichi which resulted in his departure from the band. He was replaced by former Skinnerbox, Mephiskapheles, and Murphy's Law drummer, Michael McDermott.

How I Spent My Summer Vacation was the first album released with the new line-up. By now, the band had become viewed as seminal to the modern punk sound, with a new generation of fans discovering their earlier releases [3] as they toured with newer bands as well as larger punk acts such as Hot Water Music. 2002 brought a b-sides album, The Bad the Worse and the Out of Print and an acclaimed split with Anti-Flag as part of the BYO Split Series. In 2003, the band released their 6th album Anchors Aweigh, as well as their first DVD, "Do You Remember? 15 Years of the Bouncing Souls". In 2004, their cover of "Better Things" by The Kinks was used in the film The Manchurian Candidate. In 2005, they had two live releases, a double CD album, simply titled Live, as well as a DVD, titled "Live at the Glasshouse, which was the 19th entry in Kung Fu Films' The Show Must Go Off! series. The band released their 7th album, titled The Gold Record on June 6th, 2006, or 6/6/06 which the band has called 'The number of the release,' in reference to 666, which is known as 'The number of the beast.' Also, due to their first full-length record being a collection of previous releases, many fans also consider this to in fact be their 6th studio album, and thus 666 is also partly in reference to this. They then headed out on the 2006 Warped Tour in support of the record, and again two years later, in 2008.

In 2009, the band is releasing 20th Anniversary Series in the form of 12 digital tracks (released at the beginning of each month) and 4 7" vinyl singles (released once every three months). The band will appear on select dates of the 2009 Warped Tour.

Discography[edit | edit source]

Studio albums

Live and Compilation albums




  • Do You Remember? 15 Years of the Bouncing Souls (2003)
  • Live at the Glasshouse (2005)

7" Records

  • Ugly Bill (1991) (pressed on black and also transparent green wax)
  • "The Argyle e.p." (1993) (pressed on black, yellow, green, and red wax, some had green and yellow covers)
  • "Tales Of Doomed Romance" (1994) (split EP with the band Buglite pressed on red and black wax)
  • "Neurotic" (1994) (pressed on black and yellow wax)
  • "Bouncing Souls/Weston split" (1994) (pressed on black and red wax)
  • "Split EP" (1995) (pressed on black with the bands basic skills, youth gone mad, and the reviled, some have red stamped cover some black)
  • "Johnny X" (1995) (pressed on black wax)
  • "Fight to Live" (1999) (pressed on orange wax, distributed by epitaph Europe)
  • "Tales Of Doomed Romance" (2001) (reissued split EP with the band ZeroZero pressed on yellow and black wax)
  • "Bouncing Souls/Lucky Stiffs Split" (2005) (pressed on splatter wax and 1500 picture disks)

Current lineup[edit | edit source]

Past members[edit | edit source]

  • Shal Khichi - drums

Reviews[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

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