Have you braced yourselves for The Airborne Toxic Event, Europe? By this time next week, the first shows of the Euro tour will be in the books, and Dope Machines will have finally graced U.K. record stores. In the meantime, the band has managed to keep themselves occupied…
In a recent interview, Mikel Jollett mentioned that The Airborne Toxic Event had about six video shoots scheduled for the near future. With a brief two week respite before the band heads overseas for a month, it was time this week to knock some of those off.
The first indication that the band was at work came when Adrian Rodriguez invited fans to peek behind the curtain using the new live streaming app, Periscope:
Going to start doing live video feeds on periscope app. Download it and tune in. Shooting some videos today and tomorrow
— Adrian Rodriguez (@adrianbear) March 30, 2015
Official confirmation soon followed in the form of an on-location tweet:
Shot down here today pic.twitter.com/cvNbBIbUTE
— Airborne Toxic Event (@Airborne_Toxic) March 31, 2015
Note that Adrian refers to videos (plural) being shot. If it’s more than one, in all likelihood we’re looking at some Bombastic videos on the way, which Mikel has also promised. Back when they shot the acoustic series for the first album, the band filmed up to three videos in a single day, so the precedent is there for cranking these out quickly.
Could The Airborne Toxic Event Open for U2?
Earlier this week, Inquisitr published an article on U2’s upcoming tour which included this tantalizing morsel:
At this time, no opening acts have been announced for the 2015 tour, which has caused fans to speculate whether anyone will open the shows, or if U2 will play a longer set. Fans have been discussing both possibilities on the U2 forum. The alt-rock group, Airborne Toxic Event, is one of the bands mentioned that fans think could be a possibility touring with U2.
With a significant portion of the TATE fanbase also calling themselves U2 fans, the possibility of the two bands playing together has set many hearts aflutter – my own included. In fact, a number of us have quietly wondered about this for some time now.
It must be emphasized that the article above is based on nothing more than fan speculation. As far as we can tell, there is not, at this time, any hard evidence that The Airborne Toxic Event has indeed been tapped for the juicy role of U2 opener.
That being said, it is certainly within the realm of possibility. Here’s why it makes sense:
1. U2 bassist Adam Clayton identified TATE as one of his favorite new bands back in 2009. Granted, that was six years ago, but Airborne has at the very least been on U2’s radar in the past.
2. TATE’s touring schedule currently has a gaping hole that coincides with U2’s tour dates. Though Mikel has mentioned that Airborne plans to play in the neighborhood of 150 shows this year, there has been nothing announced beyond the May 8 X96 Big Ass Show, which will be the band’s 31st performance of the year (including television tapings). U2’s Innocence and Experience Tour begins just six days later on May 14, in Vancouver, BC. The North American leg of the tour closes July 31 with the last of eight shows in New York City.
3. Since their inception, Airborne has been a staple of the summer festival scene, performing at a handful of festivals each summer. However, with virtually all of this summer’s festivals having announced their lineups, The Airborne Toxic Event is nowhere to be found – perhaps because they’ll be busy with something else?
Again, all of this evidence is circumstantial at best, and we caution our readers not to read too much into it. There are hundreds of bands that would covet an opening slot with U2, and it could very well be that The Airborne Toxic Event has other, unannounced plans for the summer (which might just entail enjoying some down time before embarking on a fall tour).
But the thing about dreams is it’s fun to have them… especially when you already have floor tickets for opening night!
What They’re Saying
Here’s this week’s roundup of coverage on the latest albums and shows from The Airborne Toxic Event:
F & F Presents (San Diego show review): “There is something to be said about these sort of intimate venues, watching and participating with the music of one of your favorite bands. I would describe the feeling as communal and maybe even a little spiritual and this particular show fit that criteria quite nicely.”
Ayaz Asif: One of our favorite photographers captured some more magical shots when the band returned to Boston – including the one of Adrian above.
London in Stereo: With Dope Machines finally releasing in the U.K. on Monday, the first British review of the album is a bit of a mixed bag, but ultimately comes down on the positive side of the ledger. “‘The Thing About Dreams’ sounds like a Julian Casablancas cover, and the rest is a synth-ship departure from their indie-rock roots, which is refreshing yet still identifiable with the rest of their discography.”
Perdeby: The South African website reviews Dope Machines ahead of the band’s first appearance in their country a few weeks from now. Unfortunately, they don’t like what they heard, though some of their criticism is confusing – most notably when they state that “Chains” has received a lot of criticism: “The album’s final song, ‘Chains’, has received much criticism, and when listening to the verses and the bridge the reasons for fans’ disapproval of the track become evident. The chorus and the spellbinding strings towards the song’s end almost save it from being utterly unpleasant to listen to, but even these enchanting elements are just not enough to drown out the grating vocals and underwhelming lyrics in the verses.” Having read every Dope Machines review out there and interacted with many fans, I have seen very little negative about “Chains.” Of all the tracks on the album it has arguably received the most widespread approval from fans, so it’s unclear where they got their information on this.
We’ll end by returning to San Francisco. Monica’s video of “The Thing About Dreams” is a bit variable in sound quality, but gives an excellent view of the on screen visuals.
Glen 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.