Split Lip was probably the most important emotionally tinged hardcore band to emerge from the Midwest. Alongside Endpoint, Split Lip helped prove to an international audience that a band could effectively combine the chunky thrash of the coastal straight-edge hardcore scenes with the warm emotional depth of certain, more popular music, emotive drive, and political slant of D.C. bands like Embrace. Split Lip's songs were mosh-pit inducing, yet often elicited tears and scream-along empathy from audiences. The band formed in the Indianapolis suburb of Carmel, IN, in 1990, with vocalist Steve Dujinske, guitarist Clayton Snyder, bassist Curtis Mead, and drummer Charlie Walker. They recorded a poorly circulated demo, but didn't really get moving until vocalist David Moore and lead guitarist Adam Rubenstein came aboard. Still in their teens, this lineup crafted heartfelt, chunky hardcore songs addressing political and personal issues, making a demo tape and then signing to Toledo, OH-based label Doghouse Records. They released their Soul Kill 7" single in 1992 -- complete with an essay that was heavily critical of Christopher Columbus, in commemoration of the 500-year anniversary of the "discovery" of the "new world." In 1994, the band debuted their first full-length album, For the Love of the Wounded, which blended the guitar dexterity of Metallica with the passionate, affected vocal approach of David Moore and his increasingly more poetic lyrics, which set them apart from the pack. It is perhaps the definitive record of the emocore genre. The band grew in popularity, becoming a headlining act at Ohio's More Than Music Festival and touring with the likes of Samuel, Shift, and Colossus of the Fall. Split Lip released their second album, Fate's Got a Driver, in 1995, just before deciding to change their name to Chamberlain. The album signaled the gradual change of the band into a more roots rock-inflected, radio-oriented outfit. Split Lip's second album was remixed (with the vocals re-recorded) and re-released under the new moniker. The final Split Lip release was called Archived Music for Stubborn People: Songs You May or May Not Have Heard Before and was delivered to fans in 1996. It is a collection of rare and hard to find tracks, including a compilation appearance, the out-of-print 7" single, three live songs, and three covers. The cover versions are of songs originally recorded by Midnight Oil (featuring Ashes vocalist Elanie Ritchie as a guest), Operation Ivy (complete with longtime roadie Matt Reece handling a verse) and Three. Former guitarist Adam Rubenstein's post-Chamberlain work includes material released under the name Adam Dove alongside members of Old Pike. Drummer Charlie Walker went on to make music with Sergio Vega, the Americans, and New End Original. ~ Ryan J. DowneyPortions of Content Provided by Rovi Corporation.
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