Pylon – Cool….80’s Underground Mondays

I didn’t hear this song until I heard it on car commercial. It took me a while to track it down. This band was on the alternative club circuit in the early 80s. Their name was not inspired by William Faulkner’s 1935 novel of the same name as some believe. They were inspired by traffic cones… as simple as that. Bassist Michael Lachowski has said  “we chose Pylon because it is severe, industrial, monolithic, functional.”

They were four art students at the University of Georgia in Athens in 1979. Guitarist Randall Bewley and bass guitarist Michael Lachowski began playing music and attempting to form a band in 1978. Neither one of them knew how to play but they started to learn. Drummer Curtis Crowe and vocalist Vanessa Briscoe soon joined. 

This song was released in 1979 as a single with “Dub” on the B side. 

 Mills has said the REM song A Month of Sundays was inspired by them… “I was thinking Pylon when I wrote it, so it’s my tribute to Randy Bewley.” Richard Bewley was Pylon’s guitar player. 

They would go on to open for bands like REM, U2, and the B-52s, 

When Rolling Stone named R.E.M. “America’s Best Band” in December 1987, R.E.M. drummer Bill Berry said, “We’re not the best rock ‘n’ roll band in America”, declaring that Pylon was instead the best.

The band broke up in 1983 deciding to end it while it was still fun. 

Vanessa Briscoe on the breakup in 1983: Let’s just quit while we’re having fun.’ That was kind of the idea in the first place. We were just going to perform as long as it was fun. So we broke up and it was a decision we all made together. We accomplished what we set out to do… It’s not that we are miserable, it’s just that we’ve seen all we’re going to see and don’t want to put any more time into it”

They reformed in 1990 when a complication album came out of their music from 1979-1983.

Cool

Pure form
Real gone
Like wild
Good vibes

Everything is cool

There are these forms I like to watch
There are these shapes which talk to me

I love forms, and forms love me
The more you look, the more you see

Everything is cool

Author: badfinger20 (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

15 thoughts on “Pylon – Cool….80’s Underground Mondays”

  1. Don’t know this one, but they sure do come up a lot when reading about REM in the 80s… they had those guys respect. Drummer Chris is the brother of Rhett, who was in Guadacanal Diary.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I know the name of this band and I actually its because of that RS interview with Mike Mills from 1987, believe it or not. Never checked them out though. I think the music, at least this song, fits their name – simple, angular, functional, not frills. I like it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do like them…their music is more out there than some of their counterparts but good. I think besides REM the one I like the best so far out that bunch is Guadalcanal Diary…but I’m not done looking….not counting Matthew Sweet.

      Liked by 1 person

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