Formed in Dundee, Scotland, originally under the name "Shrug", Snow Patrol's unique blend of songwriting and alternative sound propelled them into the limelight in 1998 when they were signed to U.K.'s Jeepster label. Later that year, Gary Lightbody (vocals, guitar), Mark McClelland (bass, keyboards), John Quinn (drums) released their first album, Songs for Polar Bears
, in August and it quickly became a hit in the U.K. Their second album, When It's All Over We Still Have to Clear Up
, was released in April 2001 after their widely popular U.K. and European tour. After the addition of Producer Chris Lord-Alge, Snow Patrol released their junior album, Final Straw
, to rave reviews and made its way to the United States were it also became a surprise success.
After 11 years with the band, bassist and keyboardist Mark McClelland left the band. He was soon after replaced with former Terra Diablo member Paul Wilson and keyboardist Tom Simpson. With the new additions, Snow Patrol joined U2's Vertigo Tour in Europe during 2005 as U2's opening act as well as performers at the London Live 8 concert. With 2 years of touring for Final Straw
behind them, the members of Snow Patrol began writing and recording their fourth album, Eyes Open
, which was released in May of 2006. Though their first single from the album was "Hands Open", "Chasing Cars" became a top downloaded song after being featured on the hit television show Grey's Anatomy
. Due to its surprise popularity, it was released as an overlapping single in June of 2006.
Currently Snow Patrol is gearing up to start their Eyes Open
tour scheduled for September.