Members: Oderus Urungus, Beefcake the Mighty, Flattus Maximus, Balsac the Jaws of Death, Jizmak Da Gusha, Sleazy P. Martini
Genre: Thrash metal, Comedy rock
Hometown: Richmond, Virginia
Albums: Hell-O (1988); Scumdogs of the Universe (1990); The Road Behind EP (1992); America Must Be Destroyed (1992); This Toilet Earth (1994); Ragnarok (1995); Carnival of Chaos (1997); We Kill Everything (1999); Violence Has Arrived (2001); War Party (2004); Beyond Hell (2006); Lust in Space (2009); Bloody Pit of Horror (2010)
Awards: 2 Grammy Nominations
Hits: "Endless Apocalypse," "If I Could Be That," "War Is All We Know"
Other: Scored an episode of the kid's show Codename: Kids Next Door as RAWG.
With a stage show like no other band and a long list of proactive songs, Gwar has established itself was one of the most unique and shocking acts of the last 25 years. Thanks to their elaborate costumes and over-the-top personalities, Gwar has managed to be a visible part of pop culture, and despite an ever-changing line up of musicians, remains so to this day.
The band got its start as the brainchild of punk rocker Dave Brockie when his previous band began performing with a pair of other musicians, Hunter Jackson and Chuck Vargas in the mid-1980s. It was during this time that they began to lay the groundwork for their now well-known performances and started to record demos. However, it was not until 1988 that Gwar released their debut album, Hell-O. Like many of their releases, the record was somewhat of a tongue-in-cheek riff on the hard rock genre.
Though Hell-O received just moderate attention from the music world, their follow-up was much more successful. Scumdogs of the Universe was released in 1990 - it remains their best-selling album and earned them significant traction in mainstream circles. The record is a concept album in which the band has control over the earth, and despite its outlandish premise, received generally positive reviews from critics. Thanks to the fan-favorite "Sick of You," Scumdogs of the Universe is one of the band's most well-known releases.
Following their last album's success, Gwar released America Must Be Destroyed, which gained notoriety for its obscene content and was accompanied by police investigating their lewd stage show. Even still, the album was a favorite of both critics and fans, and their fame even earned them an appearance in the 1995 movie Empire Records. However, the controversy caused their next album, 1994's This Toilet Earth, to be much more tame, much to fans dismay. Throughout the rest of the decade, the band's sound was a divergence from their original style, but with 2001's Violence Has Arrived, Gwar returned to their roots with a larger and louder sound than in years past.