The year was 2005, and I was in my college days at a college in Iowa where they had one big concert for each semester. They happened to announce that Yellowcard was the headliner with Acceptance and one other band that I can’t currently recall opening up. The show packed the Maucker Union Ballroom instantaneously, and I remember frantically getting tickets and immediately requesting the night off of work. Acceptance took over the night and we got to see the drummer from Anberlin temporarily fill in for Bryan Chalk, who is the drummer for Acceptance. I remember their infectious hooks and melodies and they legit blew Yellowcard out of the water that night! I immediately picked up their album entitled “Phantoms”, and I bought it twice because it would be worn out in my CD player. My readers, this band is Acceptance, and they are back after a 12 year hiatus!
Out of Seattle, Washington, Acceptance is composed of Jason Vena on vocals, Christian McAlhaney on guitars, Kaylan Cloud on guitars, Ryan Zwiefelhofer on bass, and Bryan Chalk on drums. Acceptance formed in 1998 and in 2000, they released their EP entitled “Loss For Words”. After that, Acceptance tapped Aaron Sprinkle to produce a second EP, which garnered them enough attention to cause Columbia Records, Rick Rubin, and Matt Pinfield to look their way and they produced a third EP independently entitled “Black Lines To Battlefield”. In 2005, Acceptance caught their break with their full-length record entitled “Phantoms”.
Upon release, they released their single for the record entitled “Different”. This really showcased the infectious melodies, arrangements in songwriting, and willing to incorporate different styles of music into their pop punk/emo sound. The video currently boasts over 100,000 hits on YouTube. Check it out below!
This resulted in Acceptance going on tour with the likes of Lovedrug, Copeland, As Tall As Lions, and Eager Seas. The early success of the album included a brief run on the 2005 Vans Warped Tour and a direct support slot for Anberlin and Saosin in 2005. In September 2005, Acceptance released a second single entitled “Take Cover” and earned a direct support slot for Yellowcard in 2005. “Take Cover” boasts over 50,000 hits on YouTube.
Acceptance would also receive placement on the video games MLB 2006 and NFL Street 2 where they gained further recognition and “Phantoms” is considered to be one of the groundbreaking albums in the emo genre of the 2000’s, and the album would sell almost 100,000 copies through 2006. Then Acceptance broke up.
In 2017, Acceptance came back to fanfare and due to PledgeMusic crowdfunding support! They released a more mature sounding record entitled “Colliding By Design” in February 2017 and this includes the music video release of “Fire And Rain”, which boasts over 100,000 hits on YouTube.
Madness To Creation’s take: This band is extremely legit! In case you couldn’t tell by the introductory paragraph, I am stoked that Acceptance is back! Man, they know how to mix that alternative rock sound with sensible pop hooks and it really grasps the attention of the listener. Rise Records is lucky to have Acceptance on their roster as I really think that if they catch the right break, they will be headlining before we know it! I really wonder what could have truly been with this band as “Phantoms” is widely considered to be that groundbreaking album in the emo trend of the 2000’s. I rate them a 9 out of 10 stars!
Find Acceptance at the following locations: