The smartest thing the Pixies ever did (besides forming their band way back in the 80s) was reuniting for a tour in the early 2000s. The band banked big and pleased super-fans all over the world. We’d been waiting for years for Kim and Frank to settle their differences and just sing “Debaser” again. This year, there have been lots of legendary bands reuniting for tours, like Refused, the Stone Roses, Smashing Pumpkins (next year, but they have a new album), the Beach Boys, Talking Heads, and even the Spice Girls hooked up again for the Olympic closing ceremonies in London.
Of course, the best kind of reunion tours involve all the band’s original members, but overdoses, accidents and unforgivable band fights do happen. But what about those bands that never got huge enough for reunion tours? What about the little guys that changed shit from below the surface of the glossy mainstream? I want those bands back. If we lived in a perfect world, the following bands would reunite and go on tour and make my life complete.
Pen Rollings is a genius. And not in the way that Tavi Gevinson is a “genius” or Paul McCartney is a “genius,” but a real fucking genius. Pen Rollings is known as “the Godfather of Math-Rock.” Guitar is math and creative intrigue. It’s left brain and right brain. Once upon a time, Rollings had a band called Butterglove. I don’t expect most of people to “get” this band. Butterglove was not around very long, released one full-length record you can actually find (The John Morand Sessions in 1997), played in small bars, and their greatness can never be replicated. My friend who introduced me to Butterglove told me that at one show, Rollings was changing his guitar string, smoking a cig, and playing a riff without a fucking guitar strap on. That’s legend behavior. Someone keeps putting up live footage on YouTube, so I just pretend I’m in the crowd.
Yugoslavia is a hard place. It was even harder in the 80s when the three-piece all-girl hardcore band Tozibabe was around. Tozibabe was so creepy and beautiful. Just watch the video. They were just so tough. You’ll get it. Apparently, the chorus is the same lyrics as a Discharge song, so that could be some interested hardcore gossip from 30 years ago.
I have no idea why Portland’s most important punk band doesn’t reunite for a quick West Coast jaunt and blow some faces off. Wipers influenced so many bands, from Nirvana to Calamity Jane to Mudhoney to my own fucking band (big whoop, but it matters to me). Pierced Arrows even praise the Wipers. I can’t think one a Wipers song that I do not like. Not a single one. Greg Sage, please? All you guys are still alive! It’s because you don’t want to ruin a perfect exit, right? It’s because you know that if you do the reunion thing and “Mystery” comes out sounding like you are covering your own fucking song, then you will die inside because you are brilliant and brilliant should never settle for second best? I can accept that.