Formed in February 1996, Spineshank was assembled from the remains of a previous musical endeavor called "Basic Enigma". That band included future Spineshank members in vocalist Jonny Santos, guitarist Mike Sarkisyan and drummer Tom Decker. Upon hearing Fear Factory's 1995 release Demanufacture, a new bassist in Robert Garcia was recruited, and with a refined musical style, Spineshank was formed.
The band soon befriended Fear Factory guitarist Dino Cazares. After hearing their demo tape he offered to have them open a show for Fear Factory at a concert held at the Whiskey A-Go-Go in Los Angeles. This led to other coveted opening slots, with such popular acts as Coal Chamber, Snot, Soulfly, Sepultura and Danzig. As a result of these shows, Spineshank gathered interest from several record labels. Eventually, the band signed with Roadrunner Records, and released their debut album Strictly Diesel on September 22, 1998. Fear Factory vocalist Burton C. Bell provides vocals on the track "Stain". Spineshank joined Fear Factory and Kilgore on a European tour that year.
Spineshank's second album The Height of Callousness was released on October 10, 2000. Unlike their debut album, The Height of Callousness has a strong industrial metal influence. The band was featured at OzzfestDisturbed, Hed PE, Orgy and Mudvayne in support of the album's release. The songs "Synthetic" and "New Disease" were released as singles. 2001, and toured with such artists as
The band's third album Self-Destructive Pattern was released on September 9, 2003. The album's lead single "Smothered" was nominated for a Grammy in the category of Best Metal Performance (2004). Shortly after the album was released the band went on a European tour with Ill Nino and Chimaira. A show in Holland was filmed on October 6, and was to become a DVD entitled Roadrage. However, it was never released. Since the departure of Santos the band released a greatest hits CD, Released on January 29, 2008.
The band has also been confirmed to tour with Disturbed as part of the Music as a Weapon tour in 2009. Recently, the band has finished playing a select amount of headlining dates, and confirms on their MySpace page that they are returning to the studio to record new material for release at the end of 2010.