OK Go didn't find an audience until 2005, when the band began creating homemade music videos to support its combination of off-kilter guitars, Pixies/Cars fetishism, and straightforward power pop sensibilities. Recognizing the growing popularity of websites like YouTube, the group shot a campy dance video for "A Million Ways," a song from its sophomore album, Oh No. It quickly became the most downloaded music video in history, and OK Go won a Grammy Award for their follow-up subsequent video -- this one featuring the bandmates dancing on treadmills -- while continuing to produce clever, melodic pop music.
Originally consisting of vocalist/guitarist Damian Kulash, guitarist Andrew Duncan, bassist Tim Nordwind, and drummer Dan Konopka, OK Go formed during the fall of 1998. Prior to Kulash's move from the East Coast to Chicago, the other three members of OK Go had played together in the Chicago-based band Stanley's Joyful Noise. Once formed, OK Go garnered considerable media attention in the Windy City without having recorded a single album, their success attributed partly to an exuberant live show and opening spots for heavyweights like Elliott Smith and the Promise Ring. They soon released a pair of three-song CD singles to tide fans over until a full-length could be completed, and also served as the de facto house band for a touring version of the NPR program This American Life. OK Go eventually signed with Capitol and issued an eponymous debut in September 2002, scoring a modest modern rock radio hit with "Get Over It."
When the combo returned in August 2005 to issue the sophomore effort Oh No, it was without guitarist Duncan, who'd left after sessions for the album had ended. His replacement was Andy Ross, who joined the band in creating a pair of ingenious, low-budget videos. The clip for "A Million Ways" featured the bandmates practicing complicated dance steps in someone's backyard; consisting of one long take, it spawned countless fan tributes online and helped make the actual song a hit in Europe. Several months later, the popular "Here It Goes Again" found OK Go dancing once again -- this time on a series of moving treadmills -- and the song became a Top 40 hit in America and the U.K. OK Go took home a Grammy Award for the latter video and eventually returned to the recording studio, where they created an EP, 2008's You're Not Alone. The album Of the Blue Colour of the Sky followed in 2010 and cracked the Top 40, thanks in part to singles like "This Too Shall Pass" and "End Love." The group toured heavily in support of the album, logging 180 shows in 2010 alone. Some of the shows were recorded, and the resulting footage was released the following year as 180/365, a live album featuring mixing from Dave Fridmann, who OK Go would work with again on their fourth studio album, Hungry Ghosts, in 2014. ~ Scott Sepich