Artist Of The Week: Cobra Starship

cobra-starship.jpg

Yes, you remember them from their association with Snakes on a Plane, namely their single, "Snakes on a Plane (Bring It)." Of course, the Sam Jackson-starring movie was an example of fabricated 'net hype that doesn't even hold up well in the guilty pleasure funny-because-it's-so-bad category because it's merely mediocre. Cobra Starship, on the other hand, seems to be nothing of the sort.

Led by Gabe Saporta, Cobra Starship is signed to Fueled By Ramen's Decaydance imprint -- founded by Fall Out Boy's Pete Wentz and Patrick Stump and Gym Class Heroes' Travis McCoy. Once "Snakes" gave the band exposure, Saporta had to form a real band to replace Maja Ivarsson (The Sounds), William Beckett (The Academy Is...) and McCoy, with who he recorded the song. That band featured Saporta is backed by guitarist Ryland Blackinton, bassist Alex Suarez (The Ivy League), drummer Nate Navarro and keyboardist Elisa Schwartz.

The band -- the original lineup and the current one with Victoria Asher on keyboards replacing Schwartz -- has logged tours with Gym Class Heroes and Panic! At The Disco, as well as with Fall Out Boy +44, The Academy Is ... and Paul Wall on the Honda Civic Tour (such an incestuous little community, isn't it?). And who can forget their surprise appearance in Fall Out Boy's VMA suite in Las Vegas?

Like us, you've been swayed by that oh so snappy, dance-able pop rock they churn out. (Our personal favorite is their cover of The Commodores' "Three Times a Lady" (written by Lionel Richie, you know, Nicole's dad) which they recorded for the reality show The Girls Next Door, which is a guilty pleasure.)

While Cobra Starship's first album, 2006's While the City Sleeps, We Rule the Streets (which featured "Snakes ...") reached #1 on Billboard's Top Heatseekers chart for emerging artists, their 2007 follow-up, ¡Viva la Cobra!, made a bigger impact, reaching #80 on the trade magazine's bigger, far more important chart, The Billboard 200.

Now, they are MTV's first Artist of the Week for 2008, ringing in the New Year with an appearance on Tila Tequila's New Year's Eve Masquerade 2008, Monday night's MTV welcome to Baby New Year. They'll be premiering their newest video, "The City is at War" during the show, which you'll be able to see on MTV.com anytime beginning on Jan. 1. Sweet!

On Jan. 15, they'll kick off a headlining club tour ("The Really Really Ridiculously Good Looking Tour") with Metro Station, We The Kings and The Cab in tow and that'll keep 'em on the road into March. But this week, you'll Cobra Starship all over MTV, for after all, they are the Artist of the Week.

And while you're diggin' them, visit Cobra Starship's MTV.com artist page to check out Viva La Cobra!, the faux MTV reality show the band filmed for their Artist of the Week segments. You can also see some exclusive live performances, all of their music videos and more. Below, check out "We Made a New Song," the first "episode" of Viva La Cobra!, as well as that sick VMA suite party version of "Snakes on a Plane (Bring It)" we were talkin' about earlier.