Pylon's debut is finally being reissued on CD in October of 2007. Here is the silly press release to accompany the reissue:
In December of 1987, R.E.M. was chosen by Rolling Stone as "America's Best Rock And Roll Band." This title that was quickly dismissed by drummer Bill Berry. "We're not the best rock'n'roll band in America." Pylon, he declared, was much more deserving of the honor than his group. Yet, at the time, Pylon had been broken up for four years.
Such is the legacy of Pylon. Word of mouth and a relatively small but vital cache of music has kept the story of the fiercely independent and highly influential band alive for three decades.
DFA is proud (and quite lucky!) to be the ones to announce the release of Pylon's debut LP "Gyrate", originally unleashed in 1980 and appearing here for the first ever time on CD, beautifully remastered from the original reels. The CD release also includes the addition of their landmark debut 7" single "Cool" b/w "Dub" (1979) and the 10" EP "Pylon!!". The CD also includes one track from 1979, never before released, entitled "Functionality". 16 tracks total, with liner notes from Fred Schneider (B-52's), Hugo Burnham (Gang of Four) and Michael Stipe (R.E.M.), it is amazing something so praised in its day and still quite modern-sounding had yet to make its way onto CD.
Pylon's first single, "Cool" / "Dub" was released on Atlanta's DB Recs label in early 1980, earning a slew of excited press that immediately heralded Pylon as a major underground act. The band's jagged rhythms, scratchy guitar and insistent bass lines were the perfect foil for Vanessa's whisper-to-a-shriek vocals and the band's live shows were sweaty dance parties. Their debut LP Gyrate, was released in November of '80, also on DB, amid a heady time for the band. A string of sold-out club shows across the US was highlighted by east coast opening dates for the Gang of Four and an opening slot for The B-52's in New York's Central Park.
Glowing reviews came flooding in, including attention from Rolling Stone, Trouser Press and seemingly every other magazine on the planet. "Gyrate is a very good record that, in its humor, drive and purposeful innocence, sums up everything that's best about the new American rock bands," wrote Tom Carson in Rolling Stone. "[Pylon] bears scant relation to anything," cooed a writer in NME, defining them as a trailblazing band of the times. Pylon continued to tour and played more dates with like-minded acts Mission of Burma and Public Image Ltd.
The band followed up Gyrate with the like-minded album "Chomp" and continued the party on the road, both headlining as well as remaining the opening act of choice for many larger acts from overseas. But the minute the band became more a job than a party for it's members, they called it a day. No regrets. In 1990, the band quickly reared it's head one more time, released the college radio smash album "Chain" and toured stadiums opening for R.E.M. Then they disappeared again.
Since 2004, Pylon has been playing random surprise gigs around Georgia, slowly warming for something new, realizing the sound they so innocently yet confidently defined had hardly gone out of style. They had more admirers now than they ever imagined and DFA was certainly one of many. The song "Danger" had been a staple of James Murphy's DJ sets since 1999, much to the curiosity and bewilderment of a new generation of kids just discovering the many layers of the post punk movement. It is an honor for DFA to finally be able to bring this cherished music into the public domain in such a dignified manner.