an important update regarding our warehouse and mail order operations→

Ten Years of Ratboys // A Timeline

You may know that Ratboys released Happy Birthday, Ratboy, their latest full-length record at the top of this month to coincide with the exact decade anniversary of the release of their first EP, Ratboy. You may /not/ know that each copy of the "Funfetti" vinyl variant of this record comes with a lovingly compiled zine of Ratboys history and lore compiled by lead singer Julia Steiner. I thought it would be fun to pull an excerpt from that zine to host on our website, and give everyone a little taste. What follows is an overview of Ratboys history for fans old and new alike, with some adorable photos from the archives. Thanks to Julia for putting this timeline together, I hope you enjoy it! And if you want more Ratboys anniversary content pick up a ticket to their 10 year birthday livestream, April 29 on Bandcamp.

2011

  • released RATBOY EP April 1
  • first show June 24 at Kyle's house in Oak Forest (met Sean!)
  • played Big Show 2 in July
  • opened for Maps & Atlases (!!) in SB (thank you to our IL friends who came)
  • played Midwest Fest in Mt. Pleasant, MI (first 'out of state' show)


2012

  • opened for Matt Costa at Notre Dame in Feb.
  • threw DIY shows all over campus
  • signed to the ill-fated Swerp Records
  • added the 's'.... became Ratboys
  • played The Big Show 3D
  • studied abroad in Dublin (Julia) & Rome (Dave) for the 2012-2013 school year
  • wrote lots of songs for AOID (Tixis, MCMXIV, Our Mortician's Daughter, Pivotal Dates, And)

2013

  • played Brewfest in Louisville (first show back after year-long hiatus)

2014

  • Julia graduated from ND & moved to Chicago
  • first tour! w/ Single Player in July
  • Julia bought first electric guitar + amp (thanks for the encouragement Eli)
  • Dave moved into The Pool in SB (RIP show space in a converted swimming pool)
  • recorded AOID at The Owlery practice space w/ Seth Engel on nights and weekends

2015

  • went on tour at the end of 2014-going into 2015... met a ton of awesome folks (Prince Daddy, The Most, Sinai Vessel, Messes)
  • Dave graduated in May... left for tour the next day
  • toured out west & down south for the first time
  • met Wild Pink in Denton, TX
  • release AOID June 9 on Topshelf
  • met Kevin & Ian in November

2016

  • toured w/ The Island of Misfit Toys in January
  • I think this is when we met Marcus? We toured down to SXSW w/ his band Coaster... we had both been at The Big Show 3D, but I don't think we met there... regardless, this tour ruled
  • first time at SXSW! met Slingshot Dakota & got to play w/ Enemies
  • toured Europe + went to FEST w/ Dowsing (10 week tour... so long)
  • Cubs won the World Series

2017

  • recorded GN in January at Atlas Studios in Chicago (RIP)
  • Sean joined the band! (first show: Feb 25 at Subterranean Downstairs)
  • toured to SXSW w/ Slingshot Dakota
  • filmed "Elvis is in the Freezer" music video in Louisville
  • played w/ Marcus for the first time! (first show: May 18 at The Draw in Appleton, WI... college show)
  • started working with High Road Touring
  • released GN on June 30
  • toured to FEST w/ DAGS! (Milan, IT)

2018

  • the year we toured so damn much
  • released GL EP Feb 23
  • toured Europe w/ Wild Pink in May
  • toured Japan in October
  • recorded Printer's Devil at Palisade Music Studios

2019

  • opened for PUP on an 8-week run
  • Marcus got back surgery (praise God)
  • shot music videos for "Alien" & "I Go Out at Night" in July & November
  • took a substantial break from touring for the first time in 4.5 years

2020
  • released Printer's Devil Feb 28
  • played 3 shows (U of W Madison, Lincoln Hall, the Hideout) in Feb. before the COVID-19 pandemic shuttered concert venues
  • started streaming Virtual Tour shows via Twitch
  • played a livestream set at an empty Lincoln Hall via Audiotree July 18
  • recorded Happy Birthday, Ratboy at Type One Studio from August-October
  • streamed the 25 hour Halloween Telethon 10/31

2021

  • celebrated New Years w/ friends over zoom
  • made this zine... made the "Go Outside" lyric vid
  • released Happy Birthday, Ratboy 4/1/21
  • to be continued...

Here's what the timeline looks like featured in the Ratboys Zine, which is included digitally as a bonus item with your digital download of all formats of Happy Birthday, Ratboy - available on digital, CD, cassette, and vinyl here.

Stay in the know: Subscribe to get periodic email updates specifically about new Ratboys music, tours & exclusives.

more Ratboys:

also available:


a hand-picked mix of ratboys merch and related titles. view all →