Playing a positive-natured brand of hardcore-tinged Celtic punk, Flatfoot 56 has been unleashing itself upon America and the rest of the world for over 16 years now. Forming in 2000, the Chicago natives achieved nationwide attention with their first two label-backed records, 2006’s Knuckles Up and 2007’s Jungle of the Midwest Sea. These releases built on a heavy dose of previously established regional notoriety, helping the band gain steam early on.
While each record received its fair share of acclaim, the quintet exploded onto a new level with 2010’s Black Thorn. Landing the band on a total of 9 Billboard Charts, Flatfoot 56 proved it could consistently reach an expanding audience while treading in a genre not often associated with widespread success. This success was advanced even further with song placements in the hit TV series Sons of Anarchy, and the video game Watchdogs.
After the success of Black Thorn, Flatfoot hit the studio yet again in 2012 to record their Paper and Plastic Records-backed Toil album. This album would further solidify the band as a consistent force to be reckoned with.
Flatfoot 56’s latest full-length album, entitled Odd Boat, was produced by Matt Allison at Atlas studios in Chicago. “We decided that since the last experience at Atlas Studios was so beneficial, we wanted to repeat it,” Bawinkel said. “We have been friends with Matt for a few years now and we love the work that he and his studio engineers do.”
Odd Boat was a self-released album. “We have been working with labels so long that we decided that we wanted to have more of a say in how our music gets distributed and promoted. We are excited about this next season,” Bawinkel said. “As a band we have all grown a lot over the years and we wanted to stretch ourselves even further. Self-release is a good way to do this."
In 2018, Flatfoot 56 released The Vancouver Sessions EP, on which they restyled and recorded original songs from multiple albums acoustically. Some fans prefer these acoustic versions over their original versions as they highlight and emphasize the great storytelling element of these ballads.
In 2022, Flatfoot 56 released their first Split EP. They joined forces with the amazing band, The Rumjacks, and each released three new and original songs. They are available on vinyl, for digital download, and playing on Spotify and other streaming services.
Frontman Tobin Bawinkel (vocals/guitar) is now set to lead Flatfoot 56 back into the studio. Armed with his brother Kyle (bass), along with their original piper Josh Robieson (bagpipes/mandolin), and Dan Alfonsi (Drums), Flatfoot 56 is in the process of writing their eighth full-length studio album.