Sorry, just wanted to get the attention of any TATE fans who may have nodded off waiting for news from their favorite band.
After the early 2017 excitement of the El Rey residency and the debut of nine new songs expected to form the bulk of The Airborne Toxic Event’s next record, fingers were crossed across TATE Nation that we’d have an album before the year closed out.
Clearly, that’s not happening. Instead, the year is winding down with a whimper, as the lone date on the band’s tour calendar, a December appearance at the Off Weekend Festival in Miami, was scratched when the event was cancelled. Florida fans have had some bad luck these past few years, as Airborne was also scheduled for St. Petersburg’s 2015 Coastline Festival, only to have that festival go belly up.
But fear not… there is hope on the horizon.
Better Days Ahead
On the first night at the El Rey, Mikel Jollett suggested that a proper tour was likely to happen in 2018. Naturally, such a tour would be tied to the new album’s release… and it looks like we’re still on track.
Recently, Jollett conducted a Twitter Q&A. Mostly, he took questions on politics. But, in the midst of that, he did toss out one nugget to thirsty TATE fans.
Next year. That’s all I’m gonna say about it.
— Mikel Jollett (@Mikel_Jollett) December 2, 2017
That confirmation came a few weeks after this similarly cryptic exchange:
super secret things are afoot.
— Mikel Jollett (@Mikel_Jollett) November 11, 2017
And then there’s this tweet from mid-November that may or may not have anything to do with music… but if I had to guess, I’d guess that it does.
Celebrating some big stuff today. I can’t say exactly what yet but suffice to say, it’s a very big day. pic.twitter.com/HXsW63Ktxm
— Mikel Jollett (@Mikel_Jollett) November 18, 2017
The veil of secrecy is a little puzzling, but clearly things are in the works. Add it all up, and all signs point to 2018 being a good year for fans of The Airborne Toxic Event.
Adrian Gets Defenseless
If your ears need tickling in the meantime, check out “Defenseless,” the debut single from Adrian Rodriguez (aka Blackpaw). The Airborne bass man puts his instrument away for this synth-soaked tune produced by Twin Shadow, with whom Adrian has performed in the past.
Vice’s Andrea Domanick writes:
Blackpaw is the solo project of LA musician Adrian Rodriguez, born in the wake of a motorcycle accident that left Rodriguez bedridden and unable to do much more than write, play guitar, and take existential inventory. The recovery process spurred Rodriguez to channel his creative energy into a new project that would take him from a supporting mainstay in the local scene to a sound all his own. The result of that rebirth is Blackpaw, a collaboration with longtime friend and producer George Lewis Jr. of Twin Shadow, blending stark post-punk minimalism with mercurial neo-electronic melodies. And baby, it’s gonna make you dance.
Though Jollett continues to tweet up a storm on his personal feed, the @Airborne_Toxic account has been mute since late August. The most recent post, though, is music to any fan’s ears:
I liked the long version of The Secret better. Its a full story
There was tons of label pressure.
I will never make that mistake again.
— Airborne Toxic Event (@Airborne_Toxic) August 30, 2017
For those who haven’t had the pleasure, here is that long version, courtesy of Rick Fedion.
Glen is the founder and editor of This Is Nowhere and author of Toxic History: The Story of The Airborne Toxic Event. He’s grateful for an understanding wife and kids who indulge his silly compulsion to chase a band all over the Pacific Northwest (and occasionally beyond) every time the opportunity arises.