By Daniel Larios
September 4, 2014 -- The indie-rock kings of viral videos, Ok Go, -- which saw one Youtube video viewed more than 40 million times -- will headline the ninth Twilight Concert Thursday evening at the Santa Monica Pier.
Often called the “world’s most creative band,” Ok Go is well known throughout the internet for their music videos, featuring elaborate and imaginative Rube-Golberg-like machines and tricks of the eyes that leave millions of fans wondering how they did it.
The band began when lead singer Damian Kulash met bassist Tim Nordwind at an arts camp when they were young. The band name came from their camp art teacher, who would say “Ok… Go” while in drawing class.
After exchanging mix tapes after camp, the two met guitarist and keyboardist Andy Duncan in high school. The band formed in 1998, when Kulash moved to Chicago to join Duncan and Nordwind’s college band with drummer Dan Konopka.
Within a year, the band had won limited success, sharing a stage with artists such as Elliott Smith, The Promise Ring and Sloan and serving as the house band for live performances on Public Radio’s “This American Life.”
After self-releasing two EPs, the band got the attention of booking agent Frank Riley, who offered them opening slots for alternative rock heavyweights They Might Be Giants.
In 2001, the band signed with Capitol records and released their debut album, “OK Go” in September of 2002, with their first single “Get Over It” gaining commercial success.
In 2005, Duncan left the band after recording the band’s second album, “Oh No,” due to creative differences, major label pressures and the band’s rigorous touring schedule.
He was replaced by guitarist Andy Ross, who invented a web application for the band that would allow people to hear and share their single “A Million Ways” in exchange for free downloads from the iTunes music store.
In 2006, the band released a music video for their song “Here It Goes Again,” in which the band performed complex choreography using motorized treadmills. The video received over 50 million views, giving the band their internet notoriety.
In 2010, the band formed an independent label called Paracadute after releasing their third album, “Of the Blue Colour of the Sky.” The move came after years of advocating against record companies using Digital Rights Management software to sell more records.
In the same year, the band partnered with State Farm Insurance, which resulted in a music video for their single “This Too Shall Pass,” which featured a large Rube Golberg Machine built in a warehouse. The video gained 1.4 million views on Youtube in the first 48 hours and over 44 million total to date.
This year, the band announced their fourth album, “Hungry Ghosts,” which is set to release in October 17.
Over the years, the band has performed in a number of high profile venues, including Good Morning America, the Today Show, Sesame Street and President Barack Obama’s 50th birthday party.
Opening for the band Thursday is LA-based rock band Allah-Las.
The Twilight concert series takes place every Thursday night at 7 p.m. and will run for ten weeks through September 11.