The The, the only band that gives journalists an opportunity to begin their articles with the word ‘the’ three times, just announced new tour dates. The British group, fronted by Matt Johnson, hasn’t played a show in sixteen years. Johnson got a few of the band’s many lineups back together to record “We Can’t Stop What’s Coming,” released in April just in time for Record Store Day. The The has had multiple casts throughout the years and Johnson has been the only constant. Johnny Marr, Zeke Manyika and James Eller returned for their latest release.
“We Can’t Stop What’s Coming” appears on a new documentary about the band, The Inertia Variations, that will premier in London this October. There will be a box set release as well; Radio Cineola: Trilogy features songs—including the new one—poetry, political commentary, regular commentary, and presumably more as fans explore all its nooks and crannies.
The announcement by a post-punk band from the late seventies of a new tour in 2017 harbors some inevitable questions. Inquiries about the timing and reasoning might well enough be answered in Johnson’s documentary, but fans must be wondering if this announcement is a precursor to new material. A box set release generally indicates the release of the unreleased, reorganization, and additional material, be it commentary, pictures or whatever else. However, sometimes a box set is the farthest thing from a new album that a band can release. Sometimes it is a white flag.
Seven of the The’s fifteen singles have reached Top 40. Infected, their most successful album, hung out on the charts for thirty weeks. After Infected, the The’s released two more critically and commercially successful Top Ten albums, Mind Bomb and Dusk, in 1989 and 1993 respectively. Their first show will be on June first in Denmark, followed by a performance on the fifth of that same month at the Royal Albert Hall, in London. Tickets for the first go on sale today, and on Friday the fifteenth of September for the second.
1st JUNE 2018
Heartland Festival, Egeskov Castle, Denmark
Tickets on sale Monday 11th September 2017
5th JUNE 2018
Royal Albert Hall, London
Tickets on sale Friday 15th September 2017