90’s alt-rock icon and former Jane’s Addiction and Pornos For Pyros frontman Perry Farrell will be releasing an epic new album called Kind Heaven on June 7th, his first solo LP in 18 years. He’ll be kicking off his new live project with a number of shows at NYC’s City Winery on June 7, 8, 14, and 15 as well as stopping at other City Winery locations in Boston, Washington D.C., Nashville, and Atlanta, and playing a handful other scattered shows before playing Lollapalooza in August.
Farrell started his career of phoenix-like revivals over three decades ago after escaping his oppressive Jewish orthodox upbringing in NYC and going to school in LA with dreams of becoming a star. Like many before him, those sweet dreams quickly turned sour, as he fell hard into drugs. He did front a band for a time in the early 80’s called Psi Com, and in 1986 he formed a stripped-down duo with bassist Eric Avery. Then they ended up adding drummer Stephen Perkins and his friend guitarist Dave Navarro, calling themselves Jane’s Addiction, which was rumored for some time to be about Perry himself, but actually came from an actual prostitute, addict, and friend of theirs. They released a minor label self-titled live album in 1987 (also known as XXX), which gained such a cult following for its angry, funky, surreal, debaucherous, and darkly diverse appeal, that they were quickly snapped up by WB records and they released their studio debut Nothing’s Shocking in 1988. They led the charge for the whole alternative rock revolution well before grunge broke through, but also caused a fair amount of controversy with calls for censorship by the conservative establishment for nudity in Perry’s artwork on its album cover as well its darkly violent content. Jane’s rose above the storm and pumped out one of the most powerful albums of the decade with their follow up 1990’s Ritual de lo Habitual, which led to major headlining tours and the formation of Perry’s own music and arts festival called Lollapalooza. Even though they were at the top of the music world in the early 90’s, their addictions were beginning to tear them apart, and heroin in particular became the downfall of the band.
In 1993, Jane’s spit in two, with Navarro and Avery forming Deconstruction while Farrell and Perkins formed Porno for Pyros. Perry’s new band was much happier and alt-pop than his previous efforts, which certainly did get them some airplay, but they did evolve and got more electronic and spacey over the course of several years. In the late 90’s, Jane’s Addiction reunited briefly, with Flea taking the bass spot. However, this did not last, and Ferrell went solo for a time, using his DJ skills to dive full-on into his electronica and trance side with 2001’s Song Yet to Be Sung, before diving into another Jane’s formation in 2003, and releasing an impressively Floydian-sounding Strays in 2003. Shortly after he formed a super group called Satellite Party before bringing back the original Jane’s lineup for a tour with Nine Inch Nails in 2008. Although, Eric Avery was clearly not interested in continuing for the long-term, so they created yet another lineup for 2012’s more mainstream sound on The Great Escape Artist and more successive tours.
This album and tour is clearly an attempt to get back to the darker, angrier, and edgier style of his beginnings as displayed by his scorching new protest song, “Pirate Punk Politician,” which has all the Rage Against the Machine meets Nine Inch Nails volcanic power your dreams could concoct. The new album is co-produced by David Bowie’s right-hand man Tony Visconti and also features contributions from the Foo Fighters’ Taylor Hawkins, The Cars’ Elliott Easton, and Dhani Harrison. His touring band is said to be Soundgarden drummer Matt Chamberlain, Jane’s Addiction’s additional members Chris Chaney on bass and Matt Rohde on keys, along with Nick Maybury – guitarist for Velvet Revolver, Scott Weiland and NIN, as well as Farrell’s wife, vocalist Etty Lau Farrell. The setlist is sure to be a mix of new material together with Jane’s and Pornos classics, all of which will definitely please devoted fans.
Get your City Winery Tickets for Perry Farrell HERE
Article: Dean Keim
Cover Image/Times Square images: Shayne Hanley