Pylon Reenactment Society Reenacts Pylon Recordings
You know, I’ve seen Peter Hook do his own reenactments (so to speak), and I’ve enjoyed it quite a bit, so I understand the appeal of these things as a sort of living celebration of someone’s past glories. But would I have any interest in purchasing a record of Peter Hook & the Light re-doing old New Order and Joy Division songs, or even just a live album of such? None whatsoever. Why would anyone waste good money on a pale imitation when so much of the superior source material is readily obtainable?
But clearly someone thinks such souvenirs are a wonderful idea, because not only are Hook’s merry men making a cottage industry nowadays out of live recordings (one of which was released on a label called Pylon Records, funnily enough) of The Light performing the chestnuts, but now the Pylon Reenactment Society – the Pylon tribute band fronted by original vocalist Vanessa Briscoe-Hay – is releasing an EP of a half-dozen Pylon songs recorded last December in Los Angeles.
Chunklet Industries – who did an exemplary job last year on the live Pylon album recorded at the Mad Hatter in 1983 – is also behind this Part Time Punks EP, named for the KXLU radio show for which the revamped tracks were recorded. The 12” vinyl and digital versions are out October 6th, with a limited edition (100 copies) colored vinyl version out Oct. 20th. For the ultra-retro-trendy, a limited number of cassettes will be available at shows.
And shows, to me, are where bands such as Pylon Reenactment Society serve their purpose, where those too young or clueless to have seen the Real McCoy can at least get a hint, and pathetic old people who never go see new bands can get satisfy their nostalgia fix. (On that note, you can see PRS Oct. 6th at the Maxwell Performing Arts Center in Augusta, Oct. 20th at the World Famous in Athens and Oct. 21st at the EARL in Atlanta.) But where does it end? Tribute bands are already cluttering clubs far and wide, while fewer and fewer people seem interested in creating or supporting new original music. Authenticity matters less every day. So is a time approaching on the horizon when I’ll be expected to get excited about the release party for Rumours Performs Fleetwood Mac’s Mirage Live at the Hard Rock Café? The Jerry Garcia Band Cover Band Covers The Jerry Garcia Band’s Garcia Live Volume Five? Who cares if there’s no connection to the original band? Hell, some of the Motown and oldies acts touring the Geritol circuit don’t even have any original members anymore, at least none that anyone recognizes. But, yeah, after a certain point it just loses all meaning or significance.