Run The Jewels, Adele & Johnny Cash Guitarist Matt Sweeney Reunites with Clay Tarver, Scott Marshall & The James Lo for First Chavez Release In 20 Years, "The Bully Boys" (Matador Records)
"It’s been 20 years since Chavez released their second and final studio album Ride The Fader (1996), but in late 2015, Matt Sweeney, Clay Tarver, Scott Marshall & The James Lo resumed operations; once again ensconcing themselves with John Agnello at NJ’s Water Music, ignoring the label’s demands for a full-length album and instead delivering three knockout punches that prove these Godfathers of Art Metal (for f*ck’s sake, please don’t actually call them that—or tell them we said it) are as idiosyncratic, inventive, and anthemic as THE LAST TIME THEY TOLD US THEY WEREN’T GOING TO TOUR..." Matador Records wrote within a rather tongue-in-cheek Chavez Cockfighters EP press release. Chavez have been neither active nor inactive over the course of the past 20 years, reuniting sporadically—first, on a Stereogum-sponsored concert at Brooklyn venue Warsaw back in 2006 and a TV appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon back in 2011. Matt Sweeney has gone on to form Superwolf with Bonnie "Prince" Billy, Zwan with Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan, toured as part of Iggy Pop's Post Pop Depression backing band, formed "anti-band" super-group Soldiers of Fortune, and has worked as a session musician for everyone from American V: A Hundred Highways-era Johnny Cash to Run The Jewels. Pitchfork further details that "Clay Tarver has spent his time a screenwriter for the HBO series Silicon Valley; bassist Scott Marshall has worked as a film-maker; and drummer The James Lo has worked in sound design for contemporary dance." Now, I can't say I've heard it in about 11 years, but I can remember first hearing Sweeney and Bonnie "Prince" Billy's 2005 Superwolf album, which I can honestly say, helped shape my very first dabblings with "Indie Rock." Chavez's first release in 20 years (excluding their 2006 Better Days Will Haunt You compilation) "The Bully Boys" is one of just three tracks contained within their forthcoming January 13th Cockfighters EP, which is currently available for pre-order in both 12-inch vinyl and digital formats from Matador.