Heavily influenced by Green Day and NOFX (among others), 5 Cent Deposit is among the many emocore/punk-pop bands that came along in the late '90s. The thing that makes 5 Cent Deposit emo -- as opposed to classic old-school punk-pop like the Dickies, the Buzzcocks, Generation X, or the Ramones -- is their lyrics. 5 Cent Deposit and other emo bands tend to favor confessional, introspective lyrics; in fact, emo's name stems from the fact that its lyrics are all about emotion. And emotionally, 5 Cent Deposit doesn't hold back -- listening to their albums is like hearing three angst-ridden young males (teens or early twenties) opening their diaries and sharing many of their personal thoughts and feelings with you. It's a diary that's full of angst, frustration and kvetching, but it's a diary that's also full of humor -- 5 Cent Deposit often manages to see the humor in life's disappointments.
Formed on New York City's suburban Long Island in May 1998, 5 Cent Deposit favors a power trio format and consists of John L.-23 on lead vocals and guitar, Chris-K. 18 on bass and background vocals, and Lieber-24 on drums and background vocals. The group's name is a reflection of the financial challenges that the Long Islanders faced in 1998; when they started out, 5 Cent Deposit returned empty soda cans and worked low-paying jobs in order to save up enough money to record an album. In 1999, they had enough funds to record their debut album, Your Mother Likes Us When We're Drunk, which was originally released on VuDu Records and was re-released on Tank the following year. Original material dominated the album, although one of the tracks was an unlikely punk-pop cover of the Turtles' '60s smash "Happy Together." Despite limited distribution, Your Mother Likes Us When We're Drunk sold more than 8,000 copies in the United States. In 2002, 5 Cent Deposit landed a deal with Radical Records, a small independent label based in New York's Greenwich Village section. Radical released the trio's second album, We Have Your Daughter, in November 2002.