Four years ago, [artist id=”783″]Blink-182[/artist] shocked the world by announcing they were going on “indefinite hiatus.” The news broke in a brief statement from the band’s management, one that hinted at internal strife and ended with words that would prove strangely prophetic, given everything that would follow: “While there is no set plan for the band to begin working together again, no one knows what tomorrow may bring.”
Needless to say, it’s been a rather eventful “break,” full of squabbles and side projects, grandiose statements and near-death experiences. There were times when things looked bleak, but ultimately (and, to be honest, thankfully), the story ended in reconciliation. So, in celebration of the reunited Blink-182, MTV News decided to take a look back at the past four years by compiling a timeline of our coverage of the band, stories that chronicle Blink’s split, spats and survival — not to mention a look ahead at what fans can expect from the band this summer.
February 22, 2005: “Blink-182 Announce ’Indefinite Hiatus’ As Breakup Rumors Swirl”
The story that started it all. After abruptly canceling an appearance at a Music for Relief benefit concert, Blink fans begin speculating that the band had called it quits (speculation only fueled by a Dave Navarro blog post that said the band “broke up”). A 316-word statement from the band’s management only confirms the fears, though it goes to great lengths to say Blink are not splitting up, only taking an “indefinite hiatus.” Turns out, they were telling the truth.
February 23, 2005: “Travis Barker Sets The Record Straight On Blink-182 Hiatus”
One day after the hiatus is announced, Barker takes to the airwaves, telling Los Angeles radio station KROQ that rumors of in-fighting between Blink were false.
April 8, 2005: “Blink-182’s Hoppus, Barker Form Electronic Side Project”
In an interview with MTV Radio, Mark Hoppus announces that he and Barker have started [artist id=”2390015″]+44[/artist], which he calls “a project … which kind of started in Travis’ basement.” He also advises Blink fans that a reunion may not be in the cards.
June 6, 2005: “Blink-182 Reunion Rumor Causes Premature Exhilaration”
Less than four months after they went on hiatus, we get the first Blink reunion rumor. Shockingly, it proves to be false.
September 16, 2005: “Blink’s Tom DeLonge Promises ’The Greatest Rock And Roll Revolution’ “
After nearly seven months of silence, Tom DeLonge announces the formation of his new group, Angels & Airwaves.
October 3, 2005: “Tom DeLonge Breaking Silence On Blink With Autobiographical LP, Movie”
In his first interview since the Blink hiatus, DeLonge gets hyperbolic about [artist id=”2336818″]Angels & Airwaves[/artist], saying that “within two years, we’ll be the biggest rock act in the world,” and talking about the long-in-the-works film that he was making in conjunction with A&A’s debut.
October 28, 2005: “Tom DeLonge: No More Compromises”
MTV News publishes more of our interview with DeLonge, in which he finally speaks openly about the Blink hiatus. He says he was forced to quit Blink because he wanted to spend more time with his family and admits that since the band split, he hadn’t spoken a word to Hoppus or Barker.
May 23, 2006: Angels & Airwaves’ Debut, We Don’t Need To Whisper, Is Released
The album debuts at #4 on the Billboard albums chart, with sales of more than 127,000 copies.
July 21, 2006: “Mark Hoppus, Travis Barker Break +44 Silence, Talk ’The Real Tom’ “
Hoppus, in his first interview as the frontman of +44, returns fire at DeLonge … sort of. “I have to say, you’re definitely seeing what the real Tom was like, and that’s the only comment I’ll make about him or his band,” he says.
August 23, 2006: “+44 Address Blink Breakup On LP, Want Fans To ’Hear The Truth’ “
A month later, in another interview, Barker is less reserved when it comes to DeLonge, telling MTV News, “Ever since the whole Blink thing went down, we were left on our own, we were the underdogs.”
November 14, 2006: +44’s Debut, When Your Heart Stops Beating, Is Released
The album debuts at #10, with sales of more than 66,000 copies.
May 17, 2007: +44 Work A Cover Of Blink’s “What’s My Age Again” Into Live Sets
“Travis and I love our history with Blink-182,” Hoppus explains. “And it seems a shame to let those songs sit dormant because of what happened two years ago.”
September 19, 2007: “Angels & Airwaves’ Revolution Has Begun — Just Wait 29 Years, Tom DeLonge Insists”
While promoting Angels & Airwaves’ second album, I-Empire, DeLonge explains that the musical revolution he intended to start with A&A is, in fact, happening. It just might take awhile before anyone notices.
November 6, 2007: I-Empire Is Released
It debuts at #9 on the Billboard albums chart, selling more than 66,500 copies.
September 22, 2008: “DJ AM And Travis Barker Critically Injured In Private Plane Crash in South Carolina”
Barker and AM suffer second- and third-degree burns in a plane crash that kills four others, including Barker’s assistant, Chris Baker, and security guard, Charles “Che” Still. Hoppus and DeLonge remain silent for weeks following the accident.
October 6, 2008: “Tom DeLonge Comments On Travis Barker Plane Crash”
DeLonge breaks his silence about the crash, saying it “blew [his] mind” and adding that no matter what happened between him and Barker in the past, “None of it matters when it comes to somebody getting hurt.”
November 13, 2008: “Travis Barker Is Healing ’Incredibly Well,’ +44 Bandmate Mark Hoppus Says”
Speaking for the first time since the crash, Hoppus tells MTV News that Barker is healing up and itching to get back in the studio. But when it comes to the future of +44, he remains obtuse, saying only that “no matter what I work on, Travis will be part of, for sure.”
November 19, 2008: “Is A Blink-182 Reunion In The Cards?”
The blog post that kick-started everything. Hoppus takes to his personal site, HiMyNameIsMark.com, to write that, in the wake of Barker’s near-death situation, he, Barker and DeLonge had begun spending time together. Millions of Blink fans rejoice.
December 1, 2008: “Travis Barker Quashes Blink-182 Reunion Rumors”
Sadly, that merriment is short-lived. Speaking to TMZ.com, Barker shoots down Blink reunion talk, saying only “we’re friends … everyone’s getting along pretty good.”
January 12, 2009: “Exclusive: Mark Hoppus Talks Blink-182 Reunion”
In the first of a two-part interview with MTV News, Hoppus doesn’t slam the door on the possibility of a Blink reunion, saying only “the future is wide open.” In part two of the interview, he announces that he is working on a solo record and that +44 are finished .
February 5, 2009: “Blink-182 To Reunite At Grammys”
Buried in the third paragraph of a press release from the Recording Academy is the news that Blink-182 will appear at the Grammy Awards as presenters. Speculation begins to run rampant that some sort of announcement is also looming.
February 6, 2009: “Are Blink-182 Working On A New Album?”
The following day, that speculation only increases when Angels & Airwaves member David Kennedy appears to confirm in an online chat that Blink are working on a new album.
February 8, 2009: “Blink-182 Confirm Reunion On Grammy Stage”
The rumors are true! The reunited Blink appear onstage together for the first time in more than four years, with Hoppus shouting, “Blink-182 is back!”
February 10, 2009: “Will The Blink-182 Reunion Change The World?”
Overly excited music journalist writes rambling, superfan-esque column in praise of a reunited Blink-182, foreseeing a world in which “the reunited Blink will serve as a beacon of light, cutting through the dark fog of negativity that envelops me and pretty much this entire industry. Or maybe they’ll just call their new album Boner Jams. Either way, it’s fine.”