Musically, Switchfoot draws as much from The Police and James Taylor as from The Beatles and Stevie Wonder to create swirling guitar pop, full of effortlessly arching melodies and textures that shift in continual, sensual motion. “We’ve never fit in any of the genre boxes,” says Foreman. “I think that diversity is our strength.”
Produced by John Fields (Andrew W.K.) and mixed by Chris Lord-Alge (Goo Goo Dolls, Michelle Branch), Tom Lord-Alge (blink-182, Rolling Stones) and Jack Joseph Puig (John Mayer, No Doubt), the band's latest album and first for Columbia/RED Ink, The Beautiful Letdown, entered the Billboard Top 200 at #85. In spacious settings, Foreman's singing connects with subtle emotional power, surveying a landscape of mediocrity in “More Than Fine,” digging for painful truths in title track “Beautiful Letdown” and stepping on a distortion pedal to scream about the dissonance of the modern age in “Ammunition.” On lead single “Meant To Live,” inspired by T.S. Elliot’s “The Hollow Men,” he strives to survive in a world where love and hate breathe the same air. “It’s not a dark album, but it talks about dark things that have happened to me,” says Foreman.
The Beautiful Letdown comes three years after Switchfoot’s third independently-released and critically acclaimed album Learning To Breathe. In between the two discs, the band won the 2001 ASCAP San Diego Music Award for “Best Pop Album” and “Best Pop Artist,” won the 2002 ASCAP San Diego Music Award for “Best Adult Alternative” and contributed five songs to the gold-certified soundtrack for the Mandy Moore film A Walk To Remember (including a duet with Foreman and Moore). “We were at the movie premiere,” recalls Foreman, “And David Hasselhoff was sitting behind us bawling his eyes out with his daughter. It was a bit surreal.”
Switchfoot’s roots can be traced back to the beaches of San Diego in the mid-‘90s, when the Foreman, his brother/bassist Tim, and drummer Chad Butler connected as surfers (keyboardist Jerome Fontamillas joined in September of 2000). Though they competed in national surf championships on weekends and earned product endorsements from equipment companies, the real bond came from a common love of music. They decided to form a band, chose the name Switchfoot (a surfing term), put themselves through months of sweaty garage band workouts, and then hit the road. After just 20 gigs, they signed with re:Think records and released Legend of Chin in 1997. They’ve averaged 150 shows a year ever since, while selling more than 400,000 copies of their first three albums (Legend of Chin, New Way to Be Human and Learning to Breathe) combined. Shortly after recording The Beautiful Letdown, Switchfoot signed with Columbia. The album has since become the band’s fastest-selling record to date.
Switchfoot Bio from Discogs
Years Active: 1996–present