This Scottish pop punk band was formed at Edinburgh University in December 1995 by Roddy Woomble (b. 13 August 1976, Irvine, Scotland; vocals), Rod Jones (b. 3 December 1976; guitar), and Colin Newton (b. 18 April 1977, Macduff, Aberdeenshire, Scotland; drums). The trio teamed up with Phil Scanlon (b. Philip Scanlon, 21 May 1976, England; bass) and began to attract press interest owing to their chaotic live shows, which demonstrated their appreciation of the finer points of US hardcore. The band’s self-financed “Queen Of The Troubled Teens” debut was given a limited release on Edinburgh’s Human Condition label in March 1997. Bob Fairfoull (b. 25 July 1976) replaced Scanlon on “Chandelier”, the band’s one-off single for the cult Fierce Panda label. The Captain mini-album was released on Deceptive Records following which the band signed a major label recording contract with Food Records. Demo sessions at Chapel Studios in Lincolnshire were successful enough for the band to decide to record their debut album there. Released in October 1998, Hope Is Important included the minor hits “A Film For The Future”, “Everyone Says You’re So Fragile” and “I’m A Message’, as well as February 1999″s UK Top 20 single, “When I Argue I See Shapes”. The latter’s accessible power pop blueprint was duplicated to great effect on the 2000 follow-up, 100 Broken Windows.
After a protracted recording process, the band released their first album for Parlophone Records in July 2002. With their songwriting ability still intact they dusted off a minor classic in “American English”, which bolstered the well-received The Remote Part. Fairfoull left the band shortly after the release of the album and was replaced by Gavin Fox (b. 6 March 1978, Dublin, Eire), while live guitarist Allan Stewart (b. 21 January 1977) was added to the line-up as a permanent member.
In 2003, the quintet played to the largest audiences of their career when they opened for Pearl Jam and the Rolling Stones. They spent the best part of the next year working on their fourth album. Released in March 2005, Warnings/Promises maintained the melodic, reflective approach of its predecessor. At this stage in their career Idlewild are now a million miles away from their hardcore beginnings.