Archers of Loaf vs. The Greatest

A brief history of indie rock's best worst-named band

But after 13 years in absentia on good terms, and Merge reissuing the Alias albums (starting with the remastered Icky Mettle, annotated with liner notes by Robert Christgau), the band has returned to touring—as a luxury, not a necessity.

Gentling says, "Making music for a living is one of the greatest things that ever happened to me in my life, and it's not what I want to be doing anymore. It's not that I don't want to revisit it; I've got other stuff. I'm gainfully employed, I don't need the business end of this."

Back for the fun of it: Archers of Loaf
Sandlin Gaither
Back for the fun of it: Archers of Loaf

"I thought now's as good a time as any," says Bachmann, "because it's kind of a physical, visceral thing. I'm 41, so if we're gonna do a reunion, we'd better do a reunion. I can't be 70 or 80 years old onstage and singing 'Audio-whore.' I'll have a fucking aneurysm."

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3 comments
guest
guest

Dear Archers of Loaf,

I came of age as a scenester in Chapel Hill in the 90’s. I saw some spectacular shows full of raw talent, energy, and genius. You were a great band; truly amazing. I still consider your work groundbreaking and occasionally pop on one of your albums, crank it up, and enjoy an ice cold PBR to remember the good times of “back in the day”.I have purchased tickets to three of your shows (DC and both Chapel Hill shows). I was also at the “surprise” show in Chapel Hill in January.

I chalked up the “surprise” show’s gaffes as first night jitters. It was great fun to see so many old friends and that was enough for me. After the DC show, however, I’m firmly of the mind that you are no longer relevant as musicians. Sure, you’re playing to good crowds, but you’re playing badly. No real artist would stand up before their loyal fans and “go through the motions”. You might as well be singing “Margaritaville”.

What a sad, sad evening. Bachmans’s vocals were strained, Gentling’s leaps lame, and Price was clearly off his game (the beat of an indie band should be its foundation. Price should be leading the charge, not struggling to keep up). The forty-something crowd sang along to the lyrics as they sipped their bottled water. Sad.

I’m sure plenty of middle-aged guys think it’d be fun to “get the band back together”, but wisely think better of it. I wish you had been so sensible and dignified. The spark is gone. You are more than aware of it. Your fans deserve better than to watch you embarrass yourselves on stage so you can make a few bucks.

I have given my Chapel Hill tickets away, with a warning to the recipient that you are now a parody of your former selves. You can keep performing poorly for your remaining fans; but I’m sure not going to watch.

Chris
Chris

For the record, Albini didn't record "Vee Vee", Bob Weston recorded it at Albini's home studio.

john
john

The line is actually "You're not the one who let me down."

 
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