Sunday, May 20, 2007

The Airborne Toxic Event

As I've said before, 99% of the stuff that record promoters send to music bloggers is utter crap. However, once in a while some band catches my ear and I fall in love. One of those bands arrived a week or so ago by the name of The Airborne Toxic Event.

The fact that they've only released a single EP so far with a sum total of about ten minutes of recorded music may raise the question of the legitimacy of posting about them. However, if you listen to the tracks below, you'll understand that it's justified in this situation.

The easiest comparison is to The Smiths wrapped in a warm blanket of sun-drenched California pop. The band is catching a bit of flack because one of the band members used to be the Managing Editor at Filter magazine and folks think he's using those connections to advance their career. However, I'm calling bullshit on that argument. I heard the disc without knowing any of that crap and, very simply, I loved the songs. Plus, Ira Kaplan used to be a music writer before starting Yo La Tengo and nobody holds that against him. The music stands on its own merit.

The Airborne Toxic Event | The Girls in Their Summer Dresses | Buy
The Airborne Toxic Event | Wishing Well | Buy

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

have you seen them live? VERY contrived. this band is everything Kurt Cobain hated about music.

Flatlander said...

No. I haven't seen them live. I'll take your word for it that they are a crappy contrived live band but I enjoy the four tunes I have from them. It doesn't get any more basic than that. I listen. I like.

Anonymous said...

i respect that. i guess at the end of the day a tune is a tune.

to me there are a lot of bands like airborne, kinda trying too hard to be something they are not, at least not organically. maybe they could be the maroon 5 of indie pop.

Anonymous said...

That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard. They don't sound like Maroon 5 at all. Who cares if this guy used to write for Rolling Stone or whatever. So what? All that means is that don't have indie cred, that doesn't mean they can't be a successful band. All that matters is the songs.

Anonymous said...

this argument is stupid. mikel wasn't just the editor for filter magazine, he also wrote for la times and a lot of other magazines. that's how they get all the good press. he didn't even write all the songs. he had pros do it. if anything this guy should get an award for parlaying this whole thing into an ep with the manager of franz ferdinand.

Anonymous said...

dude, do your homework. mikel spent a year and a half writing that music, he never mentioned to anyone that he had ever worked as a music writer, the songs are about his mother dying and him getting diagnosed with a disease -oh - and the people in the band are all friends of his.

also, if you look at ANY show review that's been posted online it says that they are one of the most energetic and inspiring rock bands out there. the show ends with him literally screaming into a microphone that he's afraid to die.

Sarah said...

Now I'll have to listen to them, just to find out if there are other references to Don DeLillo's works in their lyrics (as in the band name).

Will said...

First off, Kurt Cobain can kiss my rear because he never did a single thing to make me like him or his music in the first place. That having been said, I love this band. Just found them a week or two ago and immediately bought their ep. The music is beatiful and mellow, without being at all boring. Plus, you can't argue that they're sellouts or anything just becuause the guy worked for Filter. I mean, if he actually was using connections, the band would be on a label. But they aren't so you can't say he's cheated the game or anything, so to speak. Either way, they're the only engish-speaking band that I would put in the same category as Baustelle, so I love them.

Anonymous said...

i love it. careerist indie rock. viva mikel. what happened to dave?

JCP said...

post punkers with lots of emo influence meeting the eels on a car driven by phantom planet.

Kamikaze Kurt said...

I'll tell you who I think they sound like, this group sounds like a poppier version of the Editors.

Kamikaze Kurt said...

I'll tell you who I think they sound like, this group sounds like a poppier version of the Editors.

Anonymous said...

Maybe it's just me but these guys sound like a bad U2 cover band. They have it nailed from the underlying guitar single note riff to the singer doing his best Bono octave shift. Lame.

BFD2008,CA said...

I saw Airborn Toxic Event live for the first time today and they are awsome. I had never heard of them before (Live or Recorded) and I like them based on what I heard live.

Travis said...

i'd like to point out to the blogger, for the record, that they've actually never taken flack in the press for the fact that Mikel Jollett once wrote about music.

It was only in the COMMENTS section of certain blogs. Do COMMENTS count as "the press" these days?

I know that there is a whole new approach to media, citizen journalists and whatnot but there's got to be some kind of standard. Bloggers and press people (and fans and dj's and anyone whose ever been to a show or heard their record) don't care. Because it makes zero difference.

Also, said flack HAS ALL COME FROM ONE PERSON. Airborne's internet stalker. Some creepy guy who tries to sabotage them online. He even set up a fake e-mail pretending to be Jollett. It's kind of weird and pathetic and Airborne fans know all about the guy.

As for the band itself, they have been getting a ton of attention from notables: the very well-respected Nic Harcout on KCRW's Morning Becomes Ecclectic plays them like every day, the morning show at KEXP (also very well known for discriminating taste) LOVES them, Indie 103.1, the LA Times, Rolling Stone, Spin, NME, plus all kinds of blogs have all named them the band to watch in the coming year.

It's because they are doing something rare and amazing.

Flatlander said...

Hey asswipe, I never said that the negative comments were from from "the press". I wrote: "The band is catching a bit of flack because one of the band members used to be the Managing Editor at Filter magazine and folks think he's using those connections to advance their career."

Then I linked to the blog post where the comments were made. So, please don't come here and accuse me of saying something I didn't say.

Plus, if you're such a fan/publicist for the band, you shouldn't be attacking someone that was supportive of the band a year before they even had a release date for their debut album. All you did was piss me off, asshole.