Mission of Burma was one of those bands I never thought I’d have the chance to see live. They’d broken up well before I was even aware of them, so when news started spreading that the band was reuniting back in 2002, I was hesitant, skeptical, yet also kind of excited. Reunions are almost always a dead-lock to be pointless and sad cash cows that permanently smear legends and legacies. But, at the same time, I wasn’t going to miss the opportunity to see one of my all-time favorite bands play its first show in 22 years, which is a shitty position to be put in. But Mission of Burma sidestepped all the embarrassing cliches that typically accompany a reunion. First and foremost, they rocked. And not just in a sad, yeah they sound good for being old kind of way, but they truly tore it up.
Even more frightening than playing live again after two decades is the prospect of new material. Nothing cocks up a show worse than when a band that’s been on the sidelines for ages announces a new song in the set. But On Off On was more than just respectable, it re-established Mission of Burma as a relevant band. The clock might as well have stopped. I can think of no band to come back after such a long absence with music that could easily sit next to its classics without tarnishing any of them. And The Obliterati proved none of it was a fluke, turning out to be Mission of Burma’s most blistering testament to date.
A smattering of live dates are planned for late September:
09-20 New Haven, CT – Toad’s Place
09-21 Northampton, MA – Pearl Street Downstairs
09-22 Providence, RI – Decibel
09-23 Boston, MA – Institute of Contemporary Art (early show)
09-23 Boston, MA – Institute of Contemporary Art (late show)