By Ben Westhoff and Sarah Purkrabek
By Steve Brennan
By Joseph Hess
By Allsion Babka
By Kelsey McClure
By RFT Music
By Christian Schaeffer
By Gabriel San Roman
The Future Is Now
The Bravery's debut single, "Unconditional," is going to be the next big thing. We're going on the record: The moaning vocals and needling guitars are going to capture your minds the way they've captured ours. We're confident enough about this to go ahead and plan out the band's future for it.
January The Bravery is featured in Rolling Stone and NME as a band to watch in 2005, and the annual BBC News poll of "music critics, DJs and schedulers" names the Bravery as music's Next Big Thing.
February Tower Records simply can't keep the domestic release of the EP Unconditional in stock. The single begins to receive massive radio airplay, thus alienating nine-tenths of its original audience. One-tenth of hipsters remain faithful to the band -- and even more faithful to their fantasies about lead singer Sam Endicott doing it with Strokes lead singer Julian Casablancas.
March Pissed off American fans wonder why, unlike the cover of the U.K. release, the U.S. edition of Unconditional doesn't have an artistic rendering of a hot woman pinching her own nipple. The FCC twiddles its thumbs.
April Endicott's remarks about the Smiths (he was quoted by the BBC as saying, "I know nothing about the Smiths. I only know one song, the one that has the cat noise") come to the attention of Morrissey, who tracks down Endicott at a fabulous West End nightclub and pistol-whips him.
May Endicott considers suing Morrissey but instead ushers in the "black-eye look" when the band shoots its first cover for Spin just days after the infamous West End Whipping, as it is now known. The cover coincides with the release of the Bravery's self-titled debut album, which peaks at No. 3 on the charts, just after the latest posthumous release from Tupac and the third installment of George Strait's Greatest Hits.
June Keyboardist John Conway is seen publicly in New York and LA with recent divorcée Jennifer Aniston. Conway and Aniston follow in the footsteps of other hot actresses dating not-as-hot musicians. See Fabio & Drew and Jack & Renée.
July The Bravery headlines a summer tour called El Gogada (the name is derived from Electro-Goth-Garage-Dance, a term coined by a concise and clever reviewer at Pitchfork) with the Killers, Franz Ferdinand and Scissor Sisters. Side-stage acts include Depeche Mode, Duran Duran and, in an attempt at reconciliation, the Smiths.
August Endicott signs a contract with Cover Girl to promote a line of long-lasting waterproof mascara. The company also releases a limited-edition Endicott Eyeliner, aptly called Black Eye.
September Endicott is caught outside trendy New York luncheon spot Ivy with runny eye makeup. He blames the fiasco on the early-fall heat wave, but when the photo ends up on the cover of Star, Endicott loses his Cover Girl deal. Robert Smith quickly signs on to replace him.
October The bandmates take off for a monthlong tour of Japan, where they seem tall and fat.
November Um...the Bravery? Who?
December The Bravery "returns to its roots" with a comeback album entitled Very Bra. -- Jess Minnen