Four Dubliners came together in 1997 to form Blew, and within a few years had jump-started their career by winning a band competition. Blew topped its opposition in a contest sponsored by Bacardi and Hot Press for unplugged band of the year. The group later received a nomination from the Hot Press Music Awards for best new band.
The group is composed of Marc Roche on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, Rob Quinn on vocals and lead guitar, drummer Tiarnan Johnston, and bassist Shane Cullen. By the summer of 1999 the group put out a self-titled EP. "Designer Label" became the first single, followed by "Time to Pass the Time."