Talking Heads formed in 1974 in New York City, and thanks to their videos that were prominent on MTV, they hit their stride in the mid ’80s, becoming one of the largest acts in the world.
They became part of the New Wave movement, which contained soulful grooves combined with electronic and experimental sounds. It came about alongside punk rock and resembled certain characteristics of punk but contained greater complexity in both form and lyrical content.
After Talking Heads officially broke up in 1991, members of the band went different directions and have only played three songs together since, at their Rock ’n’ Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony in 2002. Their leader, David Byrne, said, "We did have a lot of bad blood go down. That's one reason, and another is that musically we're just miles apart."
Talking Heads may have broken up, but their music influenced an entire generation of music goers who still want to hear the Heads’ songs live. Thankfully for us, there is a band that has dedicated itself to preserving the live energy that Talking Heads provided when they were together.
Seeing Talking Heads perform would have been unforgettable, and the closest thing we have left is Start Making Sense. They are, indisputably, the best Talking Heads tribute band, and they are going to be performing in Aspen next Thursday, May 2.
I don’t know about you, but when I get excited about Talking Heads, I search my DVD collection and find my copy of “Stop Making Sense.” With the first few strums of David Byrne’s acoustic guitar playing “Psycho Killer” solo, I’m hooked. The album, of the same name, was my favorite album through most of high school; each track as timeless and seemingly better than the last.
Start Making Sense’s name, obviously, comes from the infamous 1984 Talking Heads concert film, “Stop Making Sense.” They regularly open their shows with “Psycho Killer,” but they don’t stick to that one album because they are able to faithfully recreate the entire Talking Heads catalog.
Start Making Sense does no injustice to the band they emulate. With seven members, they have the energy to put on the ultimate Talking Heads dance party. Jon Braun leads the group, filling the large shoes (and sometimes suit) of the musical genius Byrne. Braun’s vocals are reminiscent of the originals, imitating Byrne perfectly in sound and attitude.
Not many bands can inspire people to get crazy and dance like fools. Talking Heads did, and now bands pay tribute to the frenzy they created. This is not a show you should miss; Start Making Sense will get you into a groove. They are as tight as the original, and I assure you everyone will be dancing by time the lights come on.
John Zelazny has a recurring dream he is a pancake who is terrified of maple syrup. He often wakes up damp and hungry. He appreciates your comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.