Friday, August 28, 2009

Other: Yeeee-haw!

One of my favorite bands of all time, the Raincoats, has apparently reunited, at least long enough to play a few shows. Including one just a few miles away! They'll be playing at the Echoplex on Sunday, October 11, as part of the Part Time Punks Festival.

The Raincoats formed in London during the punk explosion of the mid-70s. Several young women, mostly local art students, figured if all these men could form a band, why couldn't they? And since most of those male punks couldn't play instruments, it didn't really matter if most of these women couldn't either. And while they embraced the punk DIY-and-screw-anyone-who-doesn't-get-your-music aesthetic, if they were trying to sound like the men around them, it doesn't show. In the end, they just don't sound like anyone else, and if they do, it's because those people were trying to sound like the Raincoats.

They put out several albums over the next few years, finally disbanding in the mid-80s. While they never had commercial success, they become highly influential. That might have been that, until one day in the early 90s when a young man walked into a London shop where founding member Ana da Silva was working to express his love of the band's music and to ask if she had any copies of their out-of-print LPs to replace the ones he had worn out. Kurt Cobain wrote up the meeting and the band's importance to him in the original liner notes for Nirvana's Incesticide album. (You can stop reading that about the time he starts talking about what an honest and wonderful wife he has.) He eventually got the Raincoats to tour with Nirvana and helped get them a record deal with his label. They put out an EP and an album of new material, in addition to re-issuing the older recordings on CD. The band dissolved again after that, although core members Gina Birch and da Silva still remain more musically active.

So, anyway, yes, I already have my ticket.

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