Last updated: 17 November 2008
One of the world's biggest metalcore bands, Bullet For My Valentine have gone from Porthcawl to American stadiums.
Fate forced a musical rethink. "We were due to go in the studio on Saturday, and our bassist Nik Crandle quit on the Friday," says Matt Tuck. "Everything went completely tits up. It was a really big kick in the balls but it made us stronger.
- Matthew 'Matt' Tuck: vocals
- Michael 'Padge' Padget: guitar
- Jason 'Jay' James: bass
- Michael 'Moose' Thomas: drums
"It was so nearly the end of our dream as we were all fed up with constantly banging our heads against a wall, but thankfully we gave it one more shot under a new identity, and it worked."
Jeff Killed John rethought their strategy, recruited Jason James on bass, and worked on their sound. And, crucially, they got rid of the rubbish name. And so Bullet For My Valentine were born.
BFMV played a London showcase in February 2004, which piqued the interest of a few major labels. They were offered a deal by Roadrunner, but turned it down. Which was just as well, as in October 2004 the band put their mark on a five album deal with Sony, with a UK licensing deal with Visible Noise, home to Lostprophets.
We were all kind of bewildered by how huge those bands got. It wasn't jealousy, but we didn't see a reason why that couldn't be us.Matt Tuck
The highs and lows of the past clearly made them stronger, as Matt told Sound Nation magazine: "We would have loved it five years ago, of course, but what's happened now is for the best.
"If we'd been signed five years ago, we would probably have gone the same way as many of the bands from back then and been dropped by now. We've matured a lot, and we understand the business better now as well.
The debut Bullet For My Valentine release was their eponymous five-song mini-album, released on 15 November 2004.
"The songs will speak for themselves," said Matt. "So many other bands would rather look good and sound bad, but it's totally the opposite with us. It's all about the music and the riffs. Enough said."
Bullet's debut single, 4 Words (To Choke Upon), was released on 28 March 2005, and deleted on the same day. Bullet's full-length debut album, The Poison, was released in October 2005.
Their 11-track second album, Scream Aim Fire was released on 28 January 2008. According to Matt, "it's a lot more up-tempo than The Poison, a lot more aggressive". He feels the tracks on the album "are intense and accessible, whilst still keeping our metal roots". It was preceded by a single, also called Scream Aim Fire, on 21 January 2008.
It continued their upward momentum, with international tours and festival appearances driving sales of the record forward. It opened in the US charts at number four and has so far sold over a million copies.
Fever, their third album, was released in April 2010. They are supporting the album again with festival appearances and a UK tour at the end of the year.