Horse the Band is a band from Lake Forest, California who are best known for their 8-bit Nintendo influenced sound combined with metalcore. Frontman Nathan Winneke had once proclaimed their sound as “Nintendo-core“.
Horse the Band was started in Lake Forest, CA in 1999 while founding members Erik Engstrom and David Isen were attending high school. The band booked its own self financed tours starting the summer of 2002, including a 3-month tour spanning seven countries. With a carefully maintained web presence including their MP3.com and MySpace accounts, they had gained themselves a niche audience.
In the summer of 2004, the Horse the World Tour 2004 included 85 shows in 90 days, spanning 7 countries throughout North America and Europe.
Early 2008 saw the band planning Horse the Band Earth Tour that would travel to 40 countries starting in early March. The band stated “we’ve become disillusioned, bad-attitude nerds and pariahs of the established music industry.” They asked for their fans’ help booking shows in most locations, with no plans of bringing other bands along on the tour. The band booked the tour themselves, and played mostly unpromoted shows in 45 countries, starting with Australia. Many performances were done without compensation, about 10% of the shows “fell through.” Some of the tour’s venues hadn’t been visited by western acts since Cannibal Corpse as in their visit to Belarus.
The band’s line-up continuously fluctuated in its 10 year history. In February it was announced that Chris Prophet had been fired and Jon Karel from The Number 12 Looks Like You would be filling in on drums during Earth Tour. In July, 2008 the band stated that long-time band friend Daniel Pouliot of Bleeding Kansas had joined as the band’s full time drummer. On Wednesday, December 3 2008, the band announced that Dash Arkenstone would be leaving the band, though he remains on good terms with the other members and has attended local shows. Brian Grover from the band Thriller filled in on bass during live shows and recently recorded alongside the rest of the group, Jeremiah Bignell later became the band’s permanent bassist.
On February 2 2009, Horse the Band signed to Vagrant Records. In an interview they stated that this is a label they have been trying to get on for nine years.
Horse the Band’s latest album Desperate Living was released on October 6, 2009].