Jesse Malin formed his first band Heart Attack in early1980 when he was just 12. Over the next four years Heart Attack became synonymous with the term NYC Hardcore, and the band are cited as having released the first ever New York Hardcore 7” single, the ‘God Is Dead’ EP. Heart Attack released 2 more EPs, ‘Keep Your Distance’ and ‘Subliminal Seduction’, and went on to share the stage with such bands as The Dead Kennedys, The Misfits and Bad Brains before playing their final gig at CBGBs on July 4th 1984.
There seems to be very little information regarding Jesse’s next band, Hope. They existed in the mid to late 80s and Danny Sage, who had been a member of Heart Attack and who would later go on to join Jesse in D Generation, was also a guitarist in Hope. Hope made some demos that included Jesse’s song ‘She Stands There’ which was rerecorded by D Generation in 1996.
D Generation burst onto the New York City live circuit in 1991. Jesse & Howie Pyro became the band's only two constant members and would work together for the next nine years, going on to form PCP Highway after D Generation split in 1999.
D Generation released two independent 7” singles, ‘No Way Out’ & ‘Wasted Years’, before being signed to Chrysalis Records in 1993. They released their debut album (titled D Generation) for Chrysalis almost a year later. Then, just as the momentum was really beginning to build, EMI Records (the parent company of Chrysalis) came under new management and refused to promote the band or their new CD. By the end of 1995 D Generation had been forced to cancel their contract with Chrysalis. Several major labels immediately courted the band, who finally settled on Columbia Records with whom they recorded and released their second album No Lunch in 1996.
During January and February of 1998 D Generation played their only European shows in support of Green Day. The rest of 1998 was spent recording their third album and in October three new songs appeared on the ‘Prohibition EP’ 7” single, before D Generation’s third & final album Through The Darkness was finally released in February 1999.
Though it was not previously announced or billed as their final show, D Generation called it a day after a home town sell out performance at Coney Island High on Saturday April 24th 1999.
In the summer of 1999 Jesse Malin, Howie Pyro and Joe Rizzo recruited Esko Poldvere and David Matos, and formed PCP Highway. PCP Highway played their debut gig at the Elbow Room in NYC on September 11th 1999. The band recorded a number of demos, some of which have been re-recorded and released by Jesse since. The band played shows, mainly around the NYC area, up until the middle of March 2000 when Jesse decided to stop PCP Highway and make his first tentative endeavours as a solo artist. Initially Howie was going to continue working with Jesse, but when he got the offer to play bass in Danzig, Jesse wished him well and Howie moved out to LA. PCP Highway did record a full length studio album titled Dreamless but after the band split up the deal with the record company was dissolved and it was never released. Although some songs from the album eventually found a home on Jesse’s future releases, others such as ‘Funeral In June’ (the song from where the title of the album was taken) now look as though they may never find the wider audience they so much deserve.
Following the break up of PCP Highway, Jesse announced that he would now be pursuing a solo career, and released the Jesse Malin 169 EP in April 2000, sold through his website via mail order. He had also started playing some acoustic shows around NYC which were advertised as the So-Low Shows. Then in June 2000 Jesse formed another band, which he named Tsing Tsing, with Joe Rizzo, Esko Poldvere and a new bass player called Johnny Pisano. The band performed a similar set to PCP Highway, consisting of many of the same songs, until November 2000 when Jesse changed the name of the band to Bellvue.
Bellvue were essentially the same band as Tsing Tsing who had evolved out of PCP Highway. In fact the name Bellvue had been suggested as an alternative to PCP Highway as far back as January 2000 when it was felt that some people may have had a problem with the drug reference implied by the name PCP Highway. Half of Bellvue’s set stretched back to the PCP Highway days, but the other half was made up of new recordings. This mix of old and new was reflected in the Bellvue album To Be Somebody originally released in April 2001. This was Jesse’s first official release since leaving D Generation. The album was re-released in September 2001 with a revised track listing. Then in December 2001 Jesse returned to the studio, this time with his friend Ryan Adams in the production seat (who had sung some backing vocals on the Bellvue CD), to record a solo album.
After recording his solo debut, The Fine Art Of Self Destruction, Jesse spent much of the first half of 2002 playing shows around the NYC area promoting his forthcoming album. Strangely enough, after many years of Jesse’s records not even receiving a European release, The Fine Art Of Self Destruction was released in the UK by One Little Indian (a small UK-based independent label) in October 2002, a full 3 months before its US release. Jesse secured a support slot on Ryan Adams' November / December 2002 European tour which, on days off, incorporated some solo headlining dates that included Jesse’s debut London headline show at the Spitz on December 10th. All of Jesse’s European shows had gone down very well, so in 2003 Jesse returned to the UK for three separate tours and an appearance on the New Stage at the Glastonbury festival. During October 2003 Jesse also toured Australia for the first time. June 2004 saw Jesse’s second solo album, The Heat, released in the UK. Once again the album was available in the UK a full month before its American release. Jesse also did a very successful three-week headlining tour of the UK during May, prior to the release of the new album. On sale at these shows was an official bootleg album of live recordings and some rare studio tracks called Messed Up Here Tonight. This impromptu release gave fans an early preview of the new album with some live versions of new songs, including ‘Silver Manhattan’, ‘Since You’re In Love’ and ‘Going Out West’. These live songs had been recorded earlier that year in Liverpool when Jesse had toured the UK for the second time in support of Ryan Adams, a tour that had been cut abruptly short when, in Liverpool, Ryan Adams had fallen of the stage and injured himself.