Proof that one fantastic single is all it takes to make a band's name, the Rakes burst onto the London music scene in 2004 with "22 Grand Job," a pithy punk satire of crappy entry-level office jobs.
Various stories swirled about how the band -- which featured vocalist/guitarist Alan Donohoe, guitarist Matthew Swinnerton, bassist Jamie Hornsmith, and drummer Lasse Petersen -- got together, ranging from elaborate tales of meeting on a flight to Amsterdam to the more plausible explanation of being childhood friends. The Rakes played a few local dates before unleashing 22 Grand Job, which was released as a limited-edition 7" by Trash Aesthetics, also the early home to Bloc Party. The single also appeared on the Fierce Panda compilation EP On the Buzzes. The band spent that spring and summer recording and supporting like-minded acts such as Bloc Party, the Others, and Art Brut. In the fall, the Rakes released their second single, Strasbourg, on City Rockers and embarked on their first tour. After signing with V2, the band rang in 2005 by gigging and working on their debut album. The singles Retreat and Work, Work, Work (Pub, Club, Sleep) anticipated the released of Capture/Release in the U.K. in summer 2005. Dim Mak released Retreat as an EP in the U.S. that fall, coinciding with the Rakes' first stateside tour. Capture/Release arrived in the U.S. in spring 2006. An EP of remixes in 2007 preceded the band's second album Ten New Messages, which appeared that spring. The band returned with the noisier Klang, which was released in the U.K. in spring 2009; the week before the album's U.S. release that fall, the band announced in a statement that they were parting ways. ~ Heather Phares, Rovi