Many auditions for boy/girl bands turned up ill-fated, only a few survived and The Wanted are one of them. In 2009, Jayne Collins held a mass audition because she wanted to form a boyband after successfully launching The Saturdays and Parade. Upon selection, Collins picked Max George, Siva Kaneswaran, Jay McGuiness, Tom Parker and Nathan Sykes out of the thousands.
Straight away they worked on their debut album before nailing the perfect name for the band. On how they eventually landed the moniker, Nathan said in an interview, "Basically what happened was we just finished a track which is going to be on the album and itís based on the Wild West theme, like The Good, The Bad, The Ugly. And now we have made some wanted posters, like mug shots for ourselves."
The band were backed up by established producers like Guy Chambers, Taio Cruz and Steve Mac. The debut single "All Time Low" was released in summer 2010 to a delighting result. The song went straight to number two on the U.K. Singles Chart, propelling the young band's name in the industry. "All Time Low" was followed by "Heart Vacancy" before the self-titled album was released on October 25, 2010. It landed at number four on the U.K. Albums Chart in the first week of release.
They began touring in support of the album in the first quarter of 2011 while rapidly preparing the sophomore album. Once again they worked with songwriters Steve Mac and Wayne Hector among others for the album. The first spawned single, "Gold Forever", was released in March 2011 as an aid of Comic Relief. Taking the third position in the U.K. Singles chart, the song was followed by "Glad You Came" which became their second U.K. #1 single. Their popularity spread to Ireland and some other European territories as well as Australia before finally hitting the U.S.
They broke through American market in late 2011 with "Glad You Came" and the release of the second album, "Battleground". A tour in North America began in early 2012 with the band supporting such artists as Justin Bieber and Britney Spears on some dates. They planned to re-release the second album for the U.S. market, adding a new track called "Starlight" and a duet with Rihanna on "Jealousy".
"You know when you just have a load of good songs and then they're just ready in time and you don't want to waste them? We don't really want to use them for another album, because they were written for this one. We were trying to figure a way around it - like doing another mini release - and then the record label put to us an idea, but there's still talk around that. We're conscious that we don't rip off people because they'll just get fed up and stop listening to us," Jay said in December 2011.