I’ve always loved the online music magazine Perfect Sound Forever, because they’re so uncommercial in such a happy music-geek way. No load-slowing Flash crap, no zippy little daily bites, more often than not no obvious ties to any currently marketed product—just in-depth and rambly essays and features on any musical subject that strikes the writer’s fancy, full of the sheer joy of both listening and typing. The August/September issue has, among other lovely things, a sympathetic and illuminating interview with Genesis P-Orridge, a spirited defense of Emerson, Lake, and Palmer that periodically forgets that it’s contrarian, and a nifty overview of the career of jump-blues bridge-builder Louis Jordan.
There’s also a snappy and true essay on band reunions by Tim Shannon that nicely lays out all the pros and cons of this now fully-fledged natural stage in a band’s lifespan. I had no idea that Bowser of Sha Na Na was such an intense activist for the purity of reunions and against bands riddled with what my record-geek friend Keith back home always called “scabs.” Shannon’s also right about the reason why Pere Ubu and the Fall are exceptions to everything.
But what to make of this announcement from the folks at Estrojam about ESG playing their last show ever at this year’s fest? Shannon has little to say about bands piling on the Reunion and Farewell tour credentials. (I’m purposefully not saying a word about Valerie Scroggins’ workman’s comp woes, except to say that repetitive strain injury’s a mysterious thing.)