The indie-pop trio AJR was formed in New York City by brothers Adam Met, Jack Met, and Ryan Met. Raised in Manhattan, the siblings launched the band in 2005, playing cover songs in local parks to raise money for higher-quality instruments and recording software. They began crafting their own music from the living room of their Chelsea apartment and released "I'm Ready" — an electro-pop song featuring a sample from the TV show SpongeBob SquarePants — as their debut single in 2013. The song became a multi-platinum hit in Australia, where it peaked at Number 5, and later earned platinum status in America, as well. It also appeared on the band's debut album, Living Room, which was recorded entirely in the siblings' apartment. Following the release of an EP, What Everyone's Thinking, in 2016, AJR's sophomore album The Click arrived in 2017 and peaked at Number 61 on the Billboard 200. The album brought AJR more platinum-certified success, with the singles "Weak," "Burn the House Down," and "Sober Up" all selling more than one million copies in America. "Sober Up" also featured an appearance by Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo. Neotheater appeared in 2019 and marked the beginning of AJR's dominance of Billboard's Hot Rock & Alternative Songs chart, where "100 Bad Days," "Birthday Party," and "Dear Winter" all became Top 40 hits that year. One year later, the song "Bang!" became the band's highest-charting song to date, peaking at Number 8 on the American Hot 100 while claiming to Number 2 on Hot Rock & Alternative Songs. The song also appeared on AJR's 2021 release, OK Orchestra, which included the Top 40 singles "Bummerland" and "Way Less Sad" and was released via the band's own label AJR Productions. The group were awarded the 2021 Billboard Music Award for Top Rock Song for "Bang!" and their fifth album, The Maybe Man, followed in November 2023 with the single "God Is Really Real," which was dedicated to their late father Gary. "Yes I'm a Mess" was issued as the LP's fifth and final single.

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