I Don't Know How But They Found Me (often shortened to IDKHow or iDKHOW) is a two-piece band featuring bassist and vocalist Dallon Weeks (formerly of Panic! at the Disco and The Brobecks) and drummer Ryan Seaman (formerly of Falling in Reverse, also played for The Brobecks). It was created in secret in 2016, and both Weekes and Seaman denied all knowledge of the band for several months after their first show. IDKHow is a concept band, centred around the idea of "a band out of time" originally from the The '80s. They never got their big break, and were entirely forgotten about until a box of old cassette tapes was re-discovered in the modern day.
Three singles were released prior to the band signing to a label: "Modern Day Cain", "Choke", and "Nobody Likes The Opening Band". On the 25th of August 2018, the band released a new single, "Do It All The Time", as well as re-releasing "Choke". They also made it public knowledge that the band had been signed to Fearless Records.
On the 9th of November, 2018, they released their debut EP, called 1981 Extended Play.
This band provides examples of:
- The '80s: Their sound is very much inspired by this time period, as are the aesthetics of their music videos, logo, and album covers.
- A Cappella: When they perform "Nobody Likes The Opening Band" live, the first verse is just Dallon singing and snapping his fingers. After that, Ryan joins in with a tambourine and drums, though the song's set-up is still very simple.
- Anonymous Band: Invoked during the early days of the band. The duo have stated that this is because they didn't want to exploit fans from their previous projects.
- Christmas Episode: The band released the Christmas Drag EP in 2019, which is partially an Updated Re-release of a single of the same name from Dallon's previous project, The Brobecks. Like in many of Dallon Weekes' Christmas songs, the holiday is approached with sincere reverence and depression.
- The Comically Serious: During videos, both members love playing up a stoic image and rarely deviate from it no matter how energetically they otherwise perform or what kind of madness plays on around them.
- Cover Version: The Christmas Drag EP features a cover of "Merry Christmas Everybody" by Slade.
- Cult: The video for "Social Climb" is framed as a recruitment video by "The Telex Foundation" called Thought Reform & the Corporate Guide To Social Reconditioning, and is highly evocative of an cult full of deadpan socialites performing rituals from seances to drinking unnaturally bright green drinks.
- Easter Egg: That phone number at the end of the "Social Climb" video they're inviting you to follow along with? Give it a call, and you'll end up hearing some odd and disjointed phrases alternating between male and female voices.For those curious...
- Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette: Both Dallon and Ryan have pulled this off at times, although Ryan less so since he dyed his hair blue. Dallon, on the other hand, really pulls this out in the Q&A videos about "Modern Day Cain".
- Follow the Bouncing Ball: Used in the lyric video for "Bleed Magic".
- Fun with Subtitles: A common staple in their lyric videos:
- The initial lyric video to "Choke", several purely instrumental segments continue broadcasting text, such as "Are you still reading this?", "You are!?", "Neat!"
- The lyric video to "Bleed Magic" garnishes a few subtitles based on sound effects, including (bloop bloop bloop bloop bloop), (snappy guitar solo), and (extra fun gershwin piano bit).
- Horrible Hollywood: The lyrics of "Choke" are implied to be directed towards another person, but Dallon claims they were written as he was sorting out his feelings of disenchantment from living in Los Angeles. Some of the lyrics come off as bitter swipes at the sycophantic and superficial nature of the place.You get everything you want
And money always talks
To the idiot savants
- Inaction Video: "Merry Christmas Everybody" and "Christmas Drag" are oners consisting of Dallon singing in place as people put up Christmas decorations around him or on him.
- Incredibly Long Note: The end of "Nobody Likes The Opening Band" has a decent one.
- Lead Bassist: Types B and C. Dallon founded the project, writes the songs, and sings in addition to playing bass. Ryan was brought on to the project during the initial recording process because Dallon needed someone to play drums.
- Lyrical Cold Open: "Bleed Magic".I wanna take you home...
- Lyrical Dissonance: "Choke" is an upbeat, cheerful-sounding song about watching someone die and enjoying it.
- In the likewise up-tempo "Bleed Magic," the singer boasts about taking advantage of a person he's invited on a date.I wanna take you homeA night out on the townSay that you're pretty so you stand up, stand upBefore I drag you downCrawling up your skinPotions pills and medicinesTo drain you and bleed your magic out
- In the likewise up-tempo "Bleed Magic," the singer boasts about taking advantage of a person he's invited on a date.
- Murder Ballad: "Choke", though it is technically about a hypothetical situation that the singer fantasizes.I wouldn't hesitate to smile while you suffocate and die
- Mysterious Watcher: A mysterious, skeleton-looking character in white is featured in several videos, most prominently in the background of "Nobody Likes The Opening Band", but also in freeze-frame shots in "Do It All The Time", "Choke", and "Social Climb". Dallon has acknowledged it as a "White Shadow" constantly following them, but what their motives are remain unknown.
- Obsession Song: The as-yet-unreleased (but still performed live) song "Mr. Sinister".
- Overly Long Name: Their band name can be quite unwieldy, hence the trend of shortening it to IDKHow for convenience. Dallon and Ryan are well aware of how unusually long their band name is, and often Lampshade it when introducing themselves.
- Precision F-Strike: By accident. During one live performance of "Choke", Dallon replaced the word 'pretty' with 'fucking' as he was having a bad day. It has since become a widely accepted alternate version of the lyrics.
- Retreaux: A huge part of IDKHow's imagery, from the artwork to the videos is evoking obscure 80's media. 1981 Extended Play is framed in its introduction as a children's read-along cassette tape, complete with a little chime indicating to "turn the page" (it shows up in the middle of "Bleed Magic", appropriately halfway in the EP).
- Self-Deprecation: "Nobody Likes The Opening Band" was written from the duo's personal experiences and anxieties from playing opening acts, with the song essentially being a tongue-and-cheek plea for fans to respond well to their unfamiliar project. The music video dials this to a hilariously confusing extreme, where once Ryan finishes his part of the performance near the end, he takes a seat in the crowd... and when the song finishes, the audience starts booing and throwing things at Dallon, Ryan included.Take pity on the opening bands
'Cause no one came to see them, except their mom and dad
But if you lend an ear
And give them just one little chance
You may just like the
You may just like the
You may just like the opening band
- Spiritual Antithesis: 1981 Extended Play could be viewed as this to Panic! at the Disco's Death of a Bachelor. Both albums, products of the late 2010's alternative rock scene, provide commentary on celebrity and fame, and use Los Angeles as a representation of the culture surrounding them. But while the Bachelor tracks "Victorious" and "Don't Threaten Me With a Good Time" celebrate a partying, free living lifestyle, and "Emperor's New Clothes" is a song about the narrator taking what he wants without thinking of others ("If it feels good, tastes good, it must be mine"), these attitudes are mocked relentlessly on Extended Play with "Do It All the Time." Bachelor also contains the track "LA Devotee," described as "a love letter to Los Angeles," while Extended Play has "Social Climb" and "Choke," both of which contain some rather biting remarks on the city ("Come break some hearts now, tear them out/File in for amusements with the crowd," "Oh, you clever little things/The sycophantic teens, And money always talks/To the idiot savants). On another note, the aforementioned Bachelor tracks reference alcohol in the context of celebrating with champagne, getting blackout drunk at a party, and "vintage wine" related to a luxurious lifestyle, while Extended Play's track "Absinthe" associates alcohol with drinking to horrifying excess ("I hear voices/I see visions/These spirits/Are your prison").
- The Stoic: In many music video appearances, Ryan is played as the more deadpan of the two (relatively speaking, anyway, as Dallon has his own form of expressive seriousness). If he's doing anything in the video at all, he'll do it with a completely expressionless face.
- Studio Chatter: The start of "Bleed Magic" features some of this. There's also a brief bit right before the first chorus where someone knocking a glass and going "Oops" (apparently Dallon) can be barely heard.
- Take That!:
- "Do It All The Time" is a sarcastic number about individuals who follow the mindset of doing whatever they want without paying mind to the consequences, and more specifically about songs that encourage such behaviour.We're taking over the world
One kiss at a time
And then I'm taking your girl
And I'm making her mine
- Some also thought the final shot of the video (the band next to three burning mannequins wearing Dallon's suits from his time with Panic! at the Disco) was one towards his former bandmates. Dallon later explained that his old suits were actually just used to save money.
- "Do It All The Time" is a sarcastic number about individuals who follow the mindset of doing whatever they want without paying mind to the consequences, and more specifically about songs that encourage such behaviour.
- The Unsmile: The ending of the video for "Christmas Drag" ends with Dallon giving the most insincere smile he can muster towards the camera.