The top 10 Tampa music stories of 2013, No. 2: Underoath calls it a career
When it was announced in October 2012 that Tampa’s Underoath were breaking up following a final hometown show at Jannus Live, fans started to call about tickets from all over the world.
That’s how much the Christian metalcore band meant. With a pair of Grammy nominations and well over 1 million albums sold, they were arguably Tampa’s biggest musical export — at least, the biggest export that still called Tampa Bay home — and for them to close that chapter of their lives was kind of a sea-change moment.
Of course, Underoath wasn’t the same band it was when it founded in the ’90s. Every original member had since departed. It was time to try something new.
The band went out with a bang in January at Jannus Live, in a concert fraught with emotion at every turn. Founding drummer-vocalist Aaron Gillespie even returned for a couple of songs. Here’s what we wrote at the time:
Fans went wild as Underoath closed with two powerful, pummeling tracks: The menacing, melodic A Boy Brushed Red Living in Black and White and closer Writing on the Walls, which exploded into all-out chaos as (singer Spencer) Chamberlain and (guitarist Tim) McTague leaped into the crowd, and other members threw pieces of equipment – drums, keyboards, stands – into the pit. Keyboardist Chris Dudley seemed overcome by emotion, hurling his synths into the audience and hurling his arms around Chamberlain at center stage as they left.
Later in the year, Chamberlain went on to form Sleepwave, an alt-metal outfit with electronic and industrial influences; they even played at 97X Next Big Thing this month. It’s too soon to say whether they’ll become as big as Underoath, but until the inevitable reunion concert, it’s all we’ve got left.