Nostalgia is sweeping the nation like herpes. Everybody's got it, it sucks, and nobody can get rid of it. The only special cream to get rid of this malady is to go see old bands reunited in concert and listen to whatever new music they come up with. It's happening with EVERYBODY. Bands you NEVER thought would come back like Faith No More and Pavement are back. Bands you never WANTED to come back like Limp Bizkit and Creed are, sadly, back (like a bad herpes flare-up! I will not stop using this metaphor...). Of course, being an American, I always want more, more, more (Billy Idol back on tour now too!). So with that said, here's ten bands I think need to come back before it's too late.
10. Bright Eyes
Conor Oberst has all but retired his old Bright Eyes monicker for the reason of people having certain expectations of that name. Maybe he means good music. His last two projects (the Mystic Valley Band and Monsters of Folk) were utter disappointments. The best thing to come from him in the last few years were the few unreleased Bright Eyes songs on this year's re-release of the old One Jug of Wine, Two Vessels split EP with Neva Dinova. It's an omen, Conor, and it means "don't give up on Bright Eyes yet."
9. John Reis and Rick Froberg
Look, I don't really care what these guys call themselves. Pitchfork, Drive Like Jehu, Hot Snakes, even a completely new name. They literally can do no wrong together. Their track record apart is firmly mediocre, though at least somewhat enjoyable. But they need each other to really hit upon the magic. The sooner they get back together, the better.
8. The Mathletes
Like Conor Oberst and Bright Eyes, this is less a band than just one man, Joe Mathlete, but unlike Conor, Joe hasn't been sucking it up in his other projects. His other bands, Ghormeh Sabzi and Wife, are perfectly fine, but he's playing bass, not being the frontman. It's time for him to step back in the spotlight. I think he knows that, since he's finally playing another solo show this Saturday night (May 8th) at Mango's Cafe, but apparently it's only the Mathletes for this one show, then it continues under a new, different name. Who knows what it will be like, but I'm still holding out to hear "Pinnochiobot" live again one day.
7. The Smiths
Morrissey is an amazing lyricist and singer. He is not an amazing person. Actually, he's something like a world renowned prick and a total primadonna. Most likely this is why it has been twenty years without one reunion with the rest of the band, despite constant rumors. Well Moz, you're getting pretty damn old. It's now or never. Bury the hatchet with Johnny Marr and give the people what they want. I loved seeing Morrissey solo in concert as I also love his solo albums, but everyone wants a Smiths reunion. That's just too big a thing to NEVER happen (even if it only sustains itself for one-off shows like the Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd reunions).
In 2002, Fugazi went on hiatus and then... nothing. For eight years, not one peep out of them. They're not even particularly active in any side-projects. It's about time they do SOMETHING again. At this point, I would settle for side-projects to be completely honest. Fugazi being Fugazi, I suggest they just hold free shows at random clubs in cities around America with little warning or notice. Then just watch the places fill to capacity.
5. OutKast/Andre 3000
Has anybody seen Andre 3000 lately? I've begun to worry about his well-being. Since that dumb cartoon got cancelled, the man seems to have dropped off the face of the Earth. Big Boi assures everyone he's making a solo album and they're going to return as OutKast soon, but I'm beginning to suspect this may be a PR move. For all we know, Andre could be dead. Andre, if you read this, please, come back to us. OutKast, solo album, I don't care, just come back! Let us know you're ok!
They've been teasing this reunion for a while and it is much anticipated. Sleater-Kinney achieved perfection with their last album, The Woods, then they went on tour and quietly went on the dreaded "hiatus." None of them have done anything since, which is a serious shame. We've gotten tons of solo album rumors that never come to fruition and now rumors of a reunion in the next few years. In the next few years? Why not now, girls?
3. David Bowie
David Bowie used to be a workaholic. So much of a workaholic, he had a heart attack. Instead of just slowing down though, he stopped, right in the middle of a serious career revival. Since then, he's made a few guest appearances live and nothing more. One can't really blame him. All those years of heavy cocaine abuse have probably left him with a pretty damaged heart. That being said, I still dream of a day when he might be well enough to make a return, for a one-off show, for an album, even one song! For a former workaholic, you have to believe that he's made some kind of music in the past seven years that just hasn't seen the light of day. Well, let's hear it! I don't want to wait until he's dead for some depressing posthumous compilation bullshit.
2. The Blood Brothers
A group of psychotic teenagers recording a conglomeration of about a hundred influences to create a truly disturbing post-hardcore band. The Blood Brothers were magic. At some point, the magic died and they went their separate ways. Now they waste their time in Past Lives (mediocre art rock) and Jaguar Love (fucking awful dance pop). The fact that their talents are going to this stuff now is truly depressing. Even if they aren't into making music like the Blood Brothers anymore, they could still play it! Somebody get these guys back together before they can't hit the highs anymore.
1. At the Drive-In
Did anyone expect any different from me? This is my favorite band ever we're talking about. I love what they've all done apart as well, but there's something about At the Drive-In that they can't ever approach. Sparta tried and failed. The Mars Volta, to their credit, did something completely different and incredible in its own right. But just once, I want to see these guys up on stage together and with TMV in a state of disarray, Sparta dead, and Sleepercar a failure, it just feels right to do it now. Even just a one-off in El Paso would be amazing and of course I'd be front row, no question.
In conclusion, bands, musicians, get over whatever petty hang-ups you have and jump on the gravy train. Get your asses back in gear and start raking on the dough from nostalgia-happy Americans like me. Just be sure not to overstay your welcome like some reunited bands and end up playing to thirty people at a race track. Then people will be begging for the zovirax (I WON'T LET THIS METAPHOR DIE!).