So after 197 tracks over 11 hours and 41 minutes of Rheostatistory where do we find ourselves? Well in 2067 of course. The final stop on a journey which began with Dave and Tim deciding on the name Rheostatics in Chemistry class at Kipling Collegiate. I have read that the band decided prior to making this record that they really wanted to go all out and make a record they felt had as much impact and importance as anything they had done previously. It is a funny thing. Many albums which bands make late in their careers that are as definitive as those from the earlier parts of their career always seem to take longer to reach the same heights in the eyes of longtime fans. 2067 is such a record. In hindsight it is a perfect bookend to the band's recorded output.
It is an album that is as strong in songwriting, playing and production as any album the band produced; one which saw each band member bringing their very best to the table. Dave with Little Bird, Little Bird and Try To Praise This Mutilated World, Martin with Shack In The Cornfields and The Latest Attempt On Your Life. Tim in particular brought some of the strongest songs of his career to the album with Marginalized, Here Comes The Image and Making Progress. It has humour and seriousness in equal measures - for every Latest Attempt On Your Life is a Shack In The Cornfields, for every Ozzy Ozbourne is a Mutilated World, for every Making Progress a Tarlek. Fittingly the album ends with the real career bookend. Where their first really serious album - Melville - began with Record Body Count (not to minimalize Greatest Hits but it is not in the same league as their subsequent albums) - their final album ends with a techno version of the same song. A futuristic, 2067 version of itself. Here is the original tracklisting for the album prior to it's release:
Try to Praise this Mutilated World
The Precious Art
Polar Bears and Trees
Little Bird, Little Bird
Monkeys, Will Come
I Dig Music
Power Ballad for Ozzie Osbourne
Who Is this Man, and Why Is He Laughing?
Hands Off Our Schools
Here Come the Images
The band toured the country a few times after its release and then as chronicled in Dave's book Around The World In 571/2 Gigs (much like the first breakup was chronicled in On A Cold Road), Tim decided to leave the band. They toyed with the idea of continuing and then a few weeks later Michael Phillip Wojewoda followed suit.
The final show (and events surrounding it which are all archived on my goodgonedead.rheostaticslive.com site) was planned for Friday March 30 2007 at Massey Hall in Toronto. Word started to get out that this might be the last Rheostatics show - The Last Whale as it came to be known to some. By the day of the show, it was a sold out affair filled with many Rheostatic lifer fans, some casual fans and many more lamenting the fact that they were missing it from their corner of the world. From Florida to Victoria and from San Diego to St.John's the Greensprouts traveled to Shuter Street for one last final bittersweet night. I won't try to explain what it was exactly because I'm sure it was different for every person who was there. For the devout, however it was the end of something wonderful that most will never likely experience again in their life. The most poignant part of the show, however was the final song. Moving down into the audience as they had done at a hundred other club shows at 3 in the morning, with only a vocal mic and an acoustic guitar the band played Record Body Count for the last time. The audience sang along, many crying as they sang. And a group of unnamed fans created a human pyramid behind the band while they were playing. It really, truly encapsulated in those few minutes what the band were all about. The live connection with the audience. The humour. And everyone feeling like they were witness to something really special that can't quite be articulated but the feeling would be engrained in them forever. I'm glad I had the privilege of being one of their fans and that I didn't have my moment of Rheostatics clarity on March 31 2007 or any day thereafter.
They weren't Good - They were the best.
They aren't Gone - They are eternal.
They aren't Dead - They've just gone to seed.
In the words of Haddon Strong - "Well, if you don't break up, then you can't have a reunion, right?"
Static Journey Volume 9: 2067, Covers and The Last Whale
- Canada Day Chat - The Horseshoe Tavern Toronto ON - March 25 2000
- Monkeys Will Come - Toronto Harbourfront Stage - July 1 2000
- Hands Off Our Schools - 2067 Outtake 200. Stage Banter - The Horseshoe Tavern Toronto ON - November 29 2007
- Shack In The Cornfields - Upstairs Cabaret Victoria BC - October 26 2004
- Little Bird, Little Bird - 2067 GSMW Toronto ON - November 8 2001
- Marginalized - Sugar Victoria BC - November 17 2005
- Banter Modern Life - The Casbah Hamilton ON - November 12 2005
- The Tarleks - The Casbah Hamilton ON - November 12 2005
- I Dig Music - Halifax NS - August 27 2004
- Power Ballad For Ozzy Ozbourne - The Casbah Hamilton ON - November 12 2005
- Crazy Talk - The Media Club Vancouver BC - October 22 2004
- Here Comes The Image - Sugar Victoria BC - November 17 2005
- Who Is This Man And Why Is He Laughing? - The Horseshoe Tavern Toronto ON GSMW - December 10 2005
- The Latest Attempt On Your Life - 2067
- Polar Bears And Trees - The Media Club Vancouver BC - October 21 2004
- Making Progress - Massey Hall Toronto ON - March 30 2007
- Try To Praise This Mutilated World - 2067
- Banter Dancers - The Horseshoe Tavern Toronto ON - November 29 2007
- Pornography - Boo Radley's Guelph ON - December 3 1999
- The List - Boo Radley's Guelph ON - December 3 1999
- Last Good Cigarette - Sugar Victoria BC - November 17 2005
- Radiosonic Interview - Radiosonic In Session
- Bud The Spud - Club Vertigo Victoria BC - January 21 2000
- Paul Myers talk - The Media Club Vancouver BC - October 22 2004
- Radios In Motion - The Media Club Vancouver BC - October 22 2004
- Sting Sucks talk - The Media Club Vancouver BC - October 22 2004
- London Calling Reward - The Media Club Vancouver BC - October 22 2004
- Time Fades Away - Club Vertigo Victoria BC - January 21 2000
- Life During Wartime - The Media Club Vancouver BC - October 21 2004
- Takin' Care Of Business / My Generation - The Media Club Vancouver BC - October 21 2004
- Stage Banter - Massey Hall Toronto ON - March 30 2007
- Record Body Count - Massey Hall Toronto ON - March 30 2007
- Applause - Massey Hall Toronto ON - March 30 2007
- Don't Say Goodnight - Hamilton ON - February 21 2001
Download Volume 9
Thanks again to Noah Campbell for his assistance in refining this volume.
Here is the Video for The Tarleks:
Here is a live video of Power Ballad For Ozzy Ozbourne:
Here is is a live version of Making Progress from Massey Hall:
Here is a live version of Record Body Count from Massey Hall:
Here is another live version of Record Body Count from Massey Hall - Great angle - last word is missing:
Also I put together a giant video montage from the final show. The original post for it is at my GoodGoneDead site. It is 1 hour and 16 minutes long and is about 570MB in size. It can be downloaded directly from this link as well - http://www.goodgonedead.rheostaticslive.com/Video/Rheos-vid.mov
Hope you all enjoyed this project as much as I enjoyed making it.
Next - Static Journey Volume 1: The Beginning