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  The Academy Is
Rock
Hoffman Estates, IL

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Formerly in rival bands on the Chicago local scene, guitarist Mike Carden and vocalist William Beckett came together in 2002 to mark the beginning of indie-emo rockers the Academy Is... (originally just named the Academy). Naming influences from U2 to Weezer to Pink Floyd, the duo added bassist Adam Siska, along with a second guitarist and drummer, to record 2004's The Academy EP for hometown label LLR Recordings. As luck would have it, fellow Chicagoan Pete Wentz (Fall Out Boy) heard the release, brought the band to the attention of his current label, and the guys were soon welcomed to the roster at Gainesville's Fueled by Ramen. Six months after Carden and Beckett got to work writing their full-length, the band headed to Florida to record.

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