By the late '90s, a whole new generation had missed out on experiencing the likes of Soundgarden, Alice in Chains, and Nirvana first-hand (with some perhaps not even knowing of their existence at all), so a new crop of similarly styled bands picked up the slack, including Days of the New. Originally hailing from Charlestown, IN, before relocating to Louisville, KY, the group's leader from the get-go was singer/guitarist/songwriter Travis Meeks, who recruited friends Jesse Vest (bass), Matt Taul (drums), and Todd Whitener (guitar), who along with Meeks, were still teenagers at the time. The group's largely acoustic-based sound instantly brought to mind Alice in Chains' more tranquil releases (Sap, Jar of Flies, Unplugged), as Meeks' vocal delivery and lyrics were quite comparable to both Layne Staley and Jim Morrison. The quartet caught the ear of former R.E.M. producer Scott Litt, who signed the group to his newly formed label, Outpost, and oversaw the group's self-titled 1997 release. The album was an immediate hit with the MTV crowd on the strength of such singles as "Touch, Peel and Stand" and "The Down Town," and the group spent the summer of 1998 opening up for another one of their musical heroes, Metallica.