The Matches are four nonsmokers with radically different dietary habits, unified by the love of stepping into brand new socks, and amateur voodoo. The band's new record, A Band In Hope (March 18, 2008), will be their third on indie label Epitaph, preceded by Decomposer (September 2006) and E. Von Dahl Killed the Locals (2004). Both A Band In Hope and Decomposer are the result of the band's collaboration with myriad producers: Tim Armstrong, Nick Hexum, Mark Hoppus, John Feldmann, the Wizard Miles Hurwitz, Matt Radosevich, Mike Green, Paul Ruxton, John Paulsen, and it's rumored even Teddy Roosevelt's ghost, brought their talents to the record. The video for "Salty Eyes," Decomposer's opening track, was named the number-one video of the week by the editors of rollingstone.com, described on spin.com as "one of the best videos we've seen all year, and was named the runner-up AlternativePress reader's choice video of 2007."
Since 2002, the Matches have been playing over 200 shows per annum, and their live performances-raucous, sweat-drenched, and aerobic-should be seen, not read about (the Matches are of the opinion that unfiltered experience trumps flattering mini-bios any day of the week). Initially, the band honed their skills and gained notoriety through guerilla concert-making: the band played impromptu shows in public thoroughfares, venue queues, and school corridors, inciting a scene before fleeing. Spontaneity is a lingering theme: the Matches still play encores in parking lots, whether they're headlining tours or supporting acts like Motion City Soundtrack, Biffy Clyro, OKGO, the Format, the Plain White T's, Rancid, and Plus44. The Matches are: bassist Justin San Souci, drummer Matt Whalen, guitarist/singer Jon Devoto, and singer/guitarist Shawn Harris (who contributes to Alternative Press and the Aquarian Weekly, and whose graphic company Oxen also creates the band's art and co-directed the band's recently acclaimed "Salty Eyes" video).