The Aquabats: Mormon Band
The Aquabats is an American rock band formed by Christian Jacobs, Chad Larson and Boyd Terry in 1994s. Each had been a musician in punk and alternative rock bands. They formed the group as a satire band, antithesis to the aggressive punk bands rampant in the Orange County (California) area. Their goal was to have fun. They played their first show one week after forming.
The three hoped the name Aquabats would make them sound like a classic surf band. They played a variety of music, primarily ska and punk, and their love for Devo influenced their matching costumes. Their costumes eventually morphed into a superhero persona with costumes created by Terry. They created a backstory that they were superheroes from the island Aquabania, and each time members of the band were interviewed they embellished the backstory. Their concerts typically included choreographed fight scenes with costumed villains and allies.
In 1993, Jacobs’ brothers Parker and Tyler formed GOGO13, a comic ska band that is known to have influenced the formation of The Aquabats!
Through the years, members came and went—at one time the band had as many as fourteen musicians on stage. Only two of the original three members have stayed with the band: Jacobs and Larson, who are both members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Often their day jobs helped fund the band.
The band released five studio albums: The Return of The Aquabats (1996), The Fury of The Aquabats! (1997), The Aquabats vs. the Floating Eye of Death! (1999), Charge!! (2005), and Hi-Five Soup! (2011). They have toured extensively except for their career lull in 1999–2004, and when they worked on episodes for their television show.
Jacobs, a television producer and former actor, helped move the band into a television show called The Aquabats! Super Show! He and his creative partner had previously sold a preschooler show pilot, Yo Gabba Gabba!, that went on to win awards internationally. The Aquabats! Super Show! ran for two seasons (2012–2014), with several specials, on The Hub family cable network. It mixed live-action storylines and cartoon shorts with musical interludes.
Current members, and their superhero persona, include: Jacobs (The M.C. Bat Commander), Larson (Crash McLarson), James Briggs (Jimmy the Robot), Richard Falomir (Ricky Fitness), and Ian Fowles (Eagle “Bones” Falconhawk).