Genres: Heavy Metal Pop / Rock
Decades: 2000s


When heralded punk rockers At The Drive-In went on indefinite hiatus in 2001, its members split into two separate groups. Cedric Bixler and Omar Rodriguez formed De Facto and Mars Volta, while Jim Ward (19 September 1976, El Paso, Texas, USA; vocals/guitar), Paul Hinojos (b. 17 July 1975, Los Angeles, California, USA; guitar), and Tony Hajjar (b. 17 August 1974, Beirut, Lebanon; drums), formed post-hardcore outfit Sparta. As with their former band, the members of Sparta are based in El Paso, Texas, and soon after their formation, welcomed Matt Miller (bass) into the fold. The new outfit whet their fans’ appetites by issuing a four-track EP, Austere, early in 2002 and played several shows, including a successful performance at the year’s South By Southwest conference, and a co-headlining tour with New Jersey indie rockers Thursday. After signing with the DreamWorks label, the quartet entered Armory Studios in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, with...

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