Steven Chen of The Airborne Toxic Event. Photo by TATE fan Anneke Peeters.

Steven Chen of The Airborne Toxic Event. Photo by TATE fan Anneke Peeters.

By Glen

For one glorious night this week, The Airborne Toxic Event stormed back onto center stage. That could be the last we see of them for awhile, but summer festival season is just around the corner…


TATE is in the midst of an excruciating 1-show-in-3-months stretch, reminding us what it’s like to follow a “normal” band that doesn’t tour constantly. That one show came last Friday in New Orleans, punctuating the drought and temporarily satisfying the setlist-hunting, photo-seeking, YouTube-crawling, struggling-through-withdrawal fans among us. The free gig, presented by Jack Daniel’s as part of their Live at the Landmark series, took place outdoors at the Old U.S. Mint. “The Storm” was not in the set, but it was in the air, as distant lightning added to the theatrics. The NOLA Defender provides a photographic taste of what went down.

Confirmed Summer Dates

Last week we provided a listing of TATE’s summer festival schedule. Eager fans are curious as to the specific day the band will take the stage at Firefly (Dover), Summerfest (Milwaukee) and Boonstocks (Penticton, BC). Firefly is now confirmed for Friday, June 20. There’s no word out of Summerfest as of yet. And as for Boonstocks, which I’m planning/hoping to attend, the news thus far has me nervous. Festival organizers apparently have no intention of announcing the exact schedule until “much closer to the event date.” More concerning is their statement that they will only be selling single-day tickets if they fail to sell out of weekend passes. Fingers crossed that this will come to pass, as I’m not able to attend the full weekend, nor am I in a financial position to pay $250 for a weekend pass just so I can catch a TATE set that isn’t likely to be much more than an hour long. Here’s hoping sales are sluggish.

TATE is Shameless

Airborne fans took to Twitter on Sunday, excitedly proclaiming that they’d heard the band on the TV show Shameless. I confess to not having heard of this show previously, but after doing some digging, it sounds pretty cool, at least musically. The track that was featured was “The Fifth Day,” and it evidently provided the backdrop to a pretty key scene in the season finale. It’s so heartening to see this song in particular get some exposure. It’s the kind of tune that can win the band some new fans, if only people can hear it. That was the case for at least one Shameless watcher:

Island Def Jam: Changing

Music industry watchers will be interested to hear of a reshuffling announced this week by Universal Music Group, with Island, Def Jam and Motown to be re-established as separate labels. A company spokesperson stated:

At the heart of these great companies is the vision and creative instincts of a team of passionate professionals. At UMG, our labels are empowered to be entrepreneurial and take creative risks. By re-establishing Def Jam, Island and Motown as stand-alone labels within the UMG family, we’re positioning them to recapture the uniqueness of their brands and serve artists with the singularity of vision, focus and creativity that was at the core of their original success.

Island, headed by David Massey, “will expand its own marketing, publicity and A&R departments with a dedicated focus on rock, alternative and pop.” After the promotion for Such Hot Blood under Island Def Jam was somewhat underwhelming, this seems like it can only be good news for The Airborne Toxic Event.

Accolades for the Calder Quartet

Under the category of TATE-related news, the band’s good friends/brother/frequent collaborators The Calder Quartet have been named a recipient of an Avery Fisher Career Grant for 2014. “Worth $25,000, the grants give professional assistance to instrumentalists judged to have exceptional career potential.” Congrats to the Calders on this tremendous achievement! The quartet can currently be heard providing the score for the TV show Da Vinci’s Demons.

Toxic Gold

Here’s a treat: an early performance of “It Doesn’t Mean a Thing” by some lounge band. More Toxic Gold from our friend Julie.

Glen, Fan of The Airborne Toxic EventGlen is the founder and editor of This Is Nowhere. 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.

  1. Dawn says:

    Not sure why the Atlanta show on May 9th keeps being left off of the ‘upcoming shows’ articles….do you have info that this show may not be confirmed???


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