Algebra One was born in the Petri dish of bands that was the Blacksburg, Virginia music scene of the ‘90s. Shawn and Tyler were childhood friends who had been playing together in Flexible Flyer, while Dave and Tyler had been playing together in Pop Sloppy. When both bands broke up, it made more sense for the three of them to play together in a new band than do just about anything else.
Informed largely by Dave’s record collection, they banged out some pop punk songs, played a few shows at local houses, and recorded a split 7” with a German band named Tuesday Weld.
When Algebra One and Dave parted ways, Shawn and Tyler recruited Stew – another friend from public school back home – to play bass. They recorded their first album, Earn Your Halo, in Richmond for Charles’s record label, Delmar, which would go on to be Algebra One’s home for the entirety of their existence.
The Keep Tryst EP marked the beginning of Algebra One finding their own sound, while Conscious Pilot marked the end of it. Charles joined the band between these two releases, adding a level of brightness to the songs that had been missing. When they’d finally found themselves making music that sounded more like themselves than their influences, they graduated college and broke up.