(also written as OTEP
) is an American nu metal band formed in the fall of 2000 in Los Angeles, California fronted by singer Otep Shamaya. They have released two EP, six studio albums and one live album. As of December 2013, They are no longer under their previous label Victory Records and currently do not belong to a record label.Early Years, Jihad
and Sevas Tra
(2000–2003)Otep began as a band in Los Angeles, California in late 2000. The name Otep is from Otep Shamaya's first name and is an anagram for "Poet". They were invited to play Ozzfest before they had even signed to a label after Sharon Osbourne witnessed their live performance. They have since played Ozzfest several times. Otep signed with Capitol Records after only a few shows and without a demo, purely on the power of their live performance. They started gigging around Los Angeles a lot and released Jihad EP in 2001.The band released their album Sevas Tra with Terry Date on June 18, 2002 and then played several gigs at the Ozzfest and was consider one of the prime bands there in 2002. Their first time at Ozzfest was in 2001 with their 8th gig. The first album peaked at 145 on the Billboard 200 and 86 on the UK Albums Chart.
House of Secrets (2004–2006)
On July 27, 2004, Otep released their 2nd album House of Secrets and it was produced by Greg Wells. The album peaked at 93 on the Billboard 200 and 102 on the French Chart.
The Ascension (2007–2008)
After 3 years of touring, on March 20 during 2007 they signed to Koch Records and they released their third album titled The Ascension
and supported it with constant touring with Static-X starting in the spring of 2007. Despite the original release date, the album was delayed indefinitely due to the recent Capitol/Virgin Records merger. It peaked at 81 on the Billboard 200 and 6 on the US Independent Charts. The album also had about 10,200 album copies sold in its first week of release.
Smash the Control Machine and departure of Jay McGuire (2009–2010)
In 2009, Otep signed with Victory Records. Their 2009 album, Smash the Control Machine
released August 18 during 2009, included a reunion with former members Mark "Moke" Bistany on drums and Rob Patterson on guitar. The album also featured Koichi Fukuda on piano, and Emilie Autumn on violin, and a cowrite with songwriter Holly Knight, which resulted in "You're a Woman Now". Holly Knight previously cowrote "Perfectly Flawed" with Otep on The Ascension
. It peaked at 47 on the Billboard 200 and 6 on the US Independent Charts.The band appeared with 2Cents, Five Finger Death Punch & Shadows Fall on the 'Shock & Raw Tour' of North America in the fall of 2009.On September 30, 2010, bassist Jay McGuire left the band.
Atavist and Sounds Like Armageddon (2011–2012)
During April 26, 2011, Otep released their 5th studio album, Atavist
. The album peaked at 61 on the Billboard 200, 10 on the Independent Charts and 19 on the US Rock Charts.On November 6, 2012, Otep released their first live album, Sounds Like Armageddon
Hydra and Recent Activity (2013–present)
In an interview, Otep Shamaya has stated that Hydra
will be her band's final album. The album was released on January 22, 2013 and peaked at 133 on Billboard 200. However, the band is still touring and have tours in places such as the USA's east coast and Australia for their Sounds of Armageddon tour. In early 2014, Otep confirmed on her personal Facebook account and her Band account that another album would be made. A release date has not yet been confirmed.
Style and influences
The band's style is primarily nu metal. The band is also considered alternative metal as well. Other than that, the band has also been labelled as goth metal, industrial metal and death metal. Allmusic has described the band as "art house nu-metal". The band's influences include Sepultura, Black Sabbath, Tool, Deftones, Pantera, Korn, The Doors, Slipknot, Celtic Frost, Skinny Puppy, Slayer, Alice in Chains, Siouxsie and the Banshees, L7, Babes in Toyland, Melvins, Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson, Hole and Nirvana.
In 2004, the music video for their single "Warhead" was on the top ten of MTV Headbanger's Ball.In 2010, Otep was nominated for a GLAAD Media Award for "Outstanding Music Artist" for their album Smash the Control Machine
during the 21st GLAAD Media Awards.