(photo: Bev Davis)
THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH (daily ) – Positive show review.
Concert Review | Peter Case: Performance revives ’80s punk-pop
By Curtis Schieber
He might have looked a little like Rip Van Winkle, but when Peter Case led his band in its first song last night in Ace of Cups, he was as energetic as John Lennon fronting the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1964.
At 57, Case is touring a program that draws on material from his ’70s and ’80s bands the Nerves, the Breakaways and the Plimsouls. The dates originally included fellow Nerve Paul Collins, who also resurrected his band Paul Collins’ Beat. With Collins leaving due to personal conflicts, it fell on Case to represent the brand of ’80s Southern California pop-punk the two defined.
Case delivered it last night nearly with the energy with which it was recorded.
The Nerves, especially, were barely heard during their tenure, releasing just one EP, though a series of compilations have recently been produced. Though the Plimsouls found greater exposure, their releases were limited, as well.
As Case stated last night, that band’s 15 minutes of fame came after its appearance in the film Valley Girl and – without a movie soundtrack – interest in its major label debut and the song Million Miles Away.
Case touched on it all last night, with a marvelously tight band that included ex-Beat guitarist Tim Schweiger, bassist Timm Buechler and drummer Amos Pitsch.
The groove was hard, the guitars crunched and swung at once, Case’s vocals were fevered and the harmonies were divine.
Plimsouls songs such as Zero Hour were not only fiery but full of lethal hooks; others showed the quartet a dizzyingly swinging garage band as driven by Pitsch’s uncommon timekeeping; Million Miles celebrated the strategy of the best pop music, as it built tension and then burst it with a huge, intoxicating chorus.
The group’s choice of cover songs – including the Easybeats’ Women, Chuck Berry’s Nadine, and Link Wray’s immortal instrumental Rumble – confirmed the crack band’s mastery of the garage rock idiom as well as Case’s classic songbook.
The singer introduced a song from the group’s “new” album, a smoking live album called Beach Town Confidential that was recorded live in 1983. Amazingly, the group’s rendition was hardly less energetic than the original.
Summer Twins opened the concert with a short set that defined Southern California ’80s pop.
THE HARTFORD COURANT (daily ) – Feature interview with Peter photo to preview Collinsville show.
Peter Case performs March 31 at Bridge Street Live in Collinsville
By KENNETH PARTRIDGE The Hartford Courant
March 29, 2012
For a brief time in the mid-to-late ’70s, when they played together in the L.A. power-pop bands the Nerves and the Breakaways, Peter Case and Paul Collins made music that has proved timeless.
Unfortunately, the same can be said of their difficulties working together.
“We had kind of a shakeup,” Case says from Milwaukee, midway through a tour that was to feature both him and Collins playing through such classics as “Hanging on the Telephone,” a 1976 Nerves tune later made famous by Blondie.
The shows were problematic from the get-go, Case says, and earlier this month, shortly after the SXSW festival in Austin, things came to a head. Long story short: Collins is no longer on board, and when Case rolls through Connecticut later this week, he’ll do so with just his own backing band.
Case says he had reservations going in, but he’d hoped that he and Collins could go the distance.
“We got through 25 shows,” he says. “I’d already heard the words ‘I quit’ after the first show, but we gutted it out and kept going. Finally, there was demoralization going on through the ranks, I’m sad to say. It was a big moment for us to go back and do [the Nerves and Breakaways songs], and it did release a certain amount of energy, but everyone has to do what they’ve got to do.”
Fortunately for power-pop fans, Chase will carry on performing the songs he wrote and recorded with the Plimsouls, the group he formed in the late ’70s, after his partnership with Collins had run its course.
Best known for their appearance in the 1983 film “Valley Girl,” the Plimsouls scored a minor hit with “A Million Miles Away,” released the same year. They remain revered by genre diehards, and last month, the Alive label released “Beach Town Confidential,” a vintage live album that captures the foursome in all its perky, punky glory.
Post-Plimsouls, the eclectic Case has focused mostly on bluesy, rootsy troubadour rock — music the Buffalo native feels more naturally connected to — but he says he still loves doing the revved-up rock thing.
“The thing about these kinds of songs is they sound like they could have been written last week — or before the Plimsouls,” he says. “There’s something about it. It’s hard to explain, but that’s the arc that I’m interested in: songs that stick. It’s the same for the songs I’ve written for my solo thing.”
PETER CASE performs Saturday, March 31, at 8 p.m. at Bridge Street Live, 41 Bridge St., Collinsville (Canton). Tickets are $20 and $30. Information: or 860-693-9762 or http://www.41bridgestreet.com.
WMSE RADIO / “ZERO HOUR” (Milwaukee, WI college radio) – Spins of Plimsouls, Nerves an, Beat on Andy Turner’s “Zero Hour” show with Shank Hall show plugs for the last month.
Zero Hour – The Plimsouls
Price of Love – The Plimsouls
You Can’t Judge a Book – The Plimsouls
Time Won’t Let Me – The Plimsouls
I Want What You Got – The Plimsouls
Shaky City – The Plimsouls
Working Too Hard – The Nerves
Kids Are the Same – Paul Collins
Gimme Some Time – The Nerves
Jumpin’ in the Night (live) – The Plimsouls
Magic Touch (live) – The Plimsouls
Who’s Gonna Break the Ice – The Plimsouls
REVERB (MSN’s music blog) – Story on the retooled tour.
Pure power pop tour implodes
Peter Case dismisses Paul Collins after he gets on his Nerves
Posted by Mark C. Brown
Once upon a time there was a ’70s power-pop band in California called The Nerves. They lasted for a few years, but then splintered. The main songwriters in that band went on to bigger and better things in the ’80s. Peter Case formed The Plimsouls and had hits like “A Million Miles Away” and Paul Collins went on to form The Paul Collins Beat with hits like “On the Highway.”
And apparently you can’t go home again. The Nerves tried a brief reunion tour, which has now shattered in acrimony and hard feelings.
Case wrote on his Facebook page that the situation was simply untenable:
Paul Collins has been dismissed from the tour we were doing together. He was continually abusive to the band and others supporting the tour, and when I stuck up for them, he repeatedly showered me with loud abuse. That road doesn’t go through anymore. This is a problem that went back to day 1 of the tour and never improved for long but got worse. It’s amazing that we were able to get through as many shows as we did. Believe me, it was difficult. He is misrepresenting on fb how he was left: the fact is he was paid off in full, and had more than enough resources to fly anywhere on the US, and in fact had more than me and the band put together. I’m still on tour to pay off some of the debts the tour accrued, and I think he was more than fairly dealt with given the facts if the situation. The Nerves didn’t work out in the seventies and they couldn’t now. I wish him well in all things, but we have to be on separate paths. Onward and upward.
Case is carrying on the tour himself, but a bunch of us who wanted to see this historic reunion aren’t going to get that chance.
BLURT (national music magazine) – Story on the retooled tour.
Splitsville for Peter Case, Paul Collins
Musical differences conspire to kill the joint tour.
By Blurt Staff
We here at BLURT were stunned and saddened to receive the following press release yesterday:
“Due to unforeseen circumstances Paul Collins will not be performing any of the remaining shows with his former bandmate from The Nerves and The Breakaways, Peter Case. Case cites ‘the usual musical differences’ as the reason for the departure of Collins.”
Less than a week ago we were in Austin for SXSW, and at one of our day parties held at the Ginger Man, the Case-Collins band had a packed venue full of jaws dropping – among them, Peter Buck, Chuck Prophet, Greg Humphreys and Amy Ray, all of whom had stuck around for the set and were singing along just as loudly as any of the regular fans to such Nerves/Beat/Plimsouls gems as “Hanging On the Telephone,” “Don’t Wait Up For Me” and “Million Miles Away” (the latter with Buck guesting on 12-string). Among pop aficionados, the pairing of the two erstwhile bandmates was one of the year’s most anticipated reunion tours.
Still, occasional flashes of tension between the two were evident in Austin, such as when they were conferring to determine whose song they’d perform next. So “the usual musical differences” probably isn’t merely a party line the press release is spouting.
It goes on thusly:
“The good news is that Peter Case, along with his touring band of bassist Timm Buechler and drummer Amos Pitsch, will continue to deliver their own visceral rock & roll performances for the remaining tour dates in support of The Plimsouls’ recently released live album Beach Town Confidential. The band will be delivering high-energy, hook-laden numbers from Peter’s previous bands, The Plimsouls and The Nerves, such as “A Million Miles Away,” “Zero Hour,” “Now,” “Hanging On The Telephone,” “One Way Ticket,” “When You Find Out” and many other favorites that have been firing up venues and fans alike since the beginning of the tour earlier this month.”
Good luck to both Case and Collins, and here’s hoping that they can mend fences and resume the project. Based on the Austin show, the duo definitely has a unique kind of chemistry – tension notwithstanding.
LOS ANGELES TIMES (L.A. daily) – Story on the retooled tour with live photo.
Nerves fray on reunion tour, Peter Case continues minus Paul Collins
File this under “It Was Fun While It Lasted” — maybe: The reunion tour featuring former Nerves members Peter Case and Paul Collins has fallen apart just three weeks in, according to a statement issued Thursday by Case.
“Due to unforeseen circumstances, Paul Collins will not be performing any of the remaining shows with his former bandmate from The Nerves and The Breakaways, Peter Case,” the statement said. “Case cites ‘the usual musical differences’ as the reason for the departure of Collins.”
They had been performing power-pop songs from the Nerves’ repertoire as well as material from the Plimsouls, which Case formed after the Nerves disbanded. Collins went on to form the Paul Collins Beat.
Neither Case nor Collins could be reached immediately for comment, but on Facebook, Case wrote Thursday that Collins “was continually abusive to the band and others supporting the tour, and when I stuck up for them, he repeatedly showered me with loud abuse. That road doesn’t go through anymore. This is a problem that went back to Day 1 of the tour and never improved for long but got worse. It’s amazing that we were able to get through as many shows as we did….The Nerves didn’t work out in the seventies and they couldn’t now. I wish him well in all things, but we have to be on separate paths.”
The press release said Case would continue the tour with band members Timm Buechler on bass and drummer Amos Pitsch, focusing on the Plimsouls’ songboook.
The Case-Collins tour opened March 1 in Vancouver, Canada, and included a March 7 show at the Echo in Los Angeles as well as several performances last week at the South by Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas. They were due to return to the Southland for a June 2 performance at McCabe’s in Santa Monica, which Case, who underwent double bypass heart surgery nearly three years ago, will now handle on his own.
The Plimsouls’ legacy among the vibrant Southern California music scene of the 1980s was recently spotlighted in the live album “Beach Town Confidential,” recorded at the Golden Bear in Huntington Beach, one of the area clubs the quartet played frequently.
REVILER (Twin Cities A&E site) – Positive show preview with artist photos
What? You’ve never heard of Paul Collins and Peter Case?
Well, we’re not experts either. For the rare occurrences when we don’t know everything there is to know about essential artists, we’re asking local bands to bestow their knowledge and create a primer on bands worth obsessing over. Through the magic of Spotify, we put together a quick, guided playlist through the band’s discography. Welcome to the Reviler Rough Guide. In this edition, Jon Tester of Voytek and Huge Rat Attacks expounds on the genius of the Nerves’ former frontmen Paul Collins and Peter Case.
Self-proclaimed “King of Power Pop” Paul Collins and unofficially-proclaimed “King of the Hook” Peter Case were two-thirds of The Nerves, (aka the best band of all time to never release a full length album). When other power-pop heroes of the ’70s stopped writing catchy, upbeat tunes and started writing sad ballads (*cough* Eric Carmen *cough*), these guys picked up the slack and released one of the most influential EPs of the decade. How influential, you ask? You know how there has been a huge punk and power-pop resurgence happening around the world for the past 10 years or so? Well, none of those bands would exist without the four songs from that EP. After the break up of the Nerves, Paul and Peter went their separate ways and continued writing songs that get stuck in people’s heads for the past 35 years.
1. The Nerves “Hangin on the Telephone” from The Nerves (1976) – Alright, so neither Paul Collins nor Peter Case wrote this song, but Jack Lee isn’t coming on this tour. They will play this song, though. “Oh, I know this! It’s my favorite Blondie song.”
2. The Nerves “When You Find Out” from The Nerves (1976) – The best song Peter Case has ever written. It’s mind-boggling that this wasn’t a hit.
3. The Nerves “Walking Out On Love”‘ from One Way Ticket (2009) – Paul Collins did this song better on his self-titled album, but this is a Nerves playlist. Dozens of bands have covered this song. Check out the Exploding Hearts version.
4. The Nerves “Many Roads to Follow” from One Way Ticket (2009) – Re-recorded for Paul Collins’ 2010 “King of Power Pop Album.” The Nerves version is more charming and lo-fi.
5. The Breakaways “Everyday Things” from Walking Out On Love: The Lost Sessions (2009) – I don’t even know if the Breakaways were a real band or if it was just The Nerves. Paul Collins recently found a demo tape he and Peter Case recorded after the Nerves split up and released it as The Breakaways. This is the only version of this song I’ve heard, so I assume it’s a forgotten gem.
6. The Plimsouls – “Million Miles Away” from Everywhere at Once (1983) – You know that scene in Valley Girl where Nick Cage goes to a party in the valley full of high-class teens and he takes super popular valley girl, Julie, to a dank Hollywood bar to see what “real life is all about, man?” Well this is, like, totally the band and song that is playing at the bar.
7. The Plimsouls “Everywhere at Once” from Everywhere at Once (1983) – I couldn’t just put one Plimsouls song on this list, so here’s my second favorite song of theirs.
8. The Beat “Rock and Roll Girl” from The Beat (1979) – This is the opening track to the Paul Collins Beat’s brilliant debut album. This song uses 3 chords in one of the most interesting ways imaginable. Seriously. It’s just G, C and D.
9. The Beat “I Don’t Fit In” from The Beat (1979) – Not my favorite song. But if you’re aware of this song, it will make the “I Don’t Fit In” shirts seem a little less Hot Topic-y when you’re at the merch booth.
10. The Beat “You Won’t Be Happy” from The Beat (1979) – Someone pissed Paul Collins off at some point. Here’s another song with a middle finger vibe.
11. The Beat “That’s What Life Is All About” from The Kids Are the Same (1981) – This is the opening track to a VERY overlooked album. I’m a gigantic fanboy and even I overlooked this album for a few years. So just stop it and listen to this album. It’s great.
12. The Beat “The Kids Are the Same” from The Kids Are the Same (1981) – The title track from The Beat’s second album. A nice head-bopping singalong. This song would be great for one of those montages in a movie where someone is trying on a bunch of clothes and their friend is all, “Boo, thumbs down. I don’t like it.” But then, the person puts a leather jacket on and their friend gives them a big smile and thumbs up and then they go to a party and it’s awesome.
13. The Beat “Doin’ It for the Ladies” from King Of Power Pop! (2010) – “Hey Paul. Why are you in a band?”
14. The Beat “Hurting’s On My Side” from King Of Power Pop! (2010) – A sad, yet upbeat, song that shows Paul Collins using his aging voice to perfection.
Reviler Rough Guide to Paul Collins and Peter Case on Spotify
Paul Collins and Peter Case play songs of the Nerves, Plimsouls, The Beat and more TONIGHT at Amsterdam Bar and Hall in St. Paul. Doors are at 8 pm.
SERCRETS OF THE CITY (Twin Cities A&E site) – Positive show preview
Peter Case & Paul Collins at Amsterdam
Peter Case and Paul Collins have been all up and down the West Coast helping to form the foundations of the LA punk/pop scene of the late ’70s and early ’80s. Now they’re heading to Amsterdam in a much anticipated reunion tribute to the many bands they once called their own. Even while performing with different groups, their roots remained connected when, for example, Plimsouls did a reincarnated version of the Nerves song, ”Hanging on the Telephone,” that went big when it was covered by Blondie in 1978. Even more stunning, Case’s solo work also has a big list of fans, including none other than Bruce Springsteen. Now Case and Collins are back together performing songs from their varied past, giving us a taste of the underground LA scene. (We’re anticipating a packed show, be sure to get tickets early.) 8 p.m. $20.
Amsterdam Bar & Hall, 6 W. 6th St., St. Paul, 651-222-3990, amsterdambarandhall.com
THE CURRENT 89.3 (Twin Cities Public Radio) – Positive show preview with The Beat’s RocknRoll Gorl video
Transmission Video of the Day – The Beat “Rock N Roll Girl”
Legendary power pop artists Peter Case & Paul Collins of The Nerves, The Beat and The Plimsouls will be doing a rare set at the Amsterdam Bar and Hall this Thursday night.
Transmission welcomes them to town and sets the vibe right with an hour of pure power pop starting at 10pm this Thurs.
Break out your striped t-shirts, skinny jeans, Beatle boots and turn the volume all the way up!
GREEN BAY GAZETTE (Green Bay, WI daily) – Show preview with Peter photo.
Rock n Roll land snags Case and Collins gig; State Fair salis away with nostalgia
Sometimes if you just wait a little, SXSW comes to Green Bay.
Peter Case and Paul Collins, who did a bunch of gigs together last weekend at the South by Southwest Music Festival and Conference in Austin, Texas, have been booked for a last-minute tour stop Friday at Rock n Roll Land, 504 S. Military Ave. The two had an open day between shows tonight in St. Paul, Minn., and Saturday at Shank Hall in Milwaukee.
Rock n Roll Land picked up word of it on Facebook and was happy to accommodate them for what will be the biggest acts to date to play the new vintage music store and performance venue.
“It came up unexpectedly, but a pleasant surprise,’’ said co-owner Todd Magnuson.
Longtime friends and collaborators Case and Collins have been getting raves for a tour that has the two power pop icons of the late ’70s and early ’80s playing music from their various groups, including The Nerves, The Beat, The Breakaways and The Plimsouls, and trading off on vocals.
The all-ages show starts at 8 p.m. Cover is $10.
CHICAGO TRIBUNE (Chicago daily) –Feature story with interviews to preview show
Pop stylists Collins and Case reunite for a look back By Christopher Borrelli, Chicago Tribune reporter
Peter Case and Paul Collins played in pop bands. Not an especially remarkable distinction for a pair of 57-year-old musicians. But look at it this way: Since 1974, folksier material aside, they have stayed slavishly, uncommonly committed to an archetypal pop band aesthetic — three-minute songs, negligible politics, guitars, drums, the sort of low-pretense, Top 40 ambitions once so ingrained in the culture you never thought of it as an aesthetic at all. (When they say, even now, they wanted to be in the Beatles, you know they mean the loose, zippy “Can’t Buy Me Love” Beatles, not the rococo “For the Benefit of Mr. Kite” Beatles.)
Case and Collins’ first band was the Nerves, a prototypical Los Angeles power pop group; its claim to fame was its cult following, and that Blondie had a hit with one of their best songs, “Hanging on the Telephone.” Then Case and Collins briefly formed the Breakaways. Then they split apart: Collins formed the Beat, which gathered its own cult following and toured with the Police and the Jam; and Case formed the Plimsouls, which had a pair of gems in the early 1980s (“The Oldest Story in the World,” “Million Miles Away”), landed a memorable cameo in the Nicolas Cage film “Valley Girl” and became synonymous with “unrealized potential.”
Indeed, it seems the only band they didn’t form was the one they should have — The Unappreciateds.
Because, taken together, their catalogs, spread across dozens of unappreciated albums, recorded by scores of unappreciated bands, plays like a secret history, the missing link between college rock and punk.
Which is kind of the idea behind their reunion tour, swinging through the Empty Bottle on Sunday — a nostalgia show for music that never had a chance to become nostalgia. Last week, in separate phone interviews, Case and Collins said they’ve been drawing from the Nerves, the Breakaways, the Beat, the Plimsouls — “There’s nothing in the show more recent than ’83,” Case said. “But weirdly, nothing feels old.”
On the Nerves
Collins: We met at the wharf in the Marina District in San Francisco, where all these street musicians played. The purpose was getting him to start the Nerves with me and Jack (Lee, the third member in the band). He was playing Everly Brothers and Chuck Berry. The Human Jukebox (a famed San Francisco street performer) was there and I remember him creeping a little too close and he got popped in the face.
Case: I was in a band called the Frozen Chosen, a street band, and we were playing “You’re Gonna Miss Me,” the Roky Erickson song, when Paul and Jack came up to me. Later Jack sang “Hanging on the Telephone” to me in his car. He was screaming it really, not singing it, and his face was turning bright red.
On “power pop”
Case: It wasn’t a genre then. Nobody used that phrase. They used “punk,” but I just thought of it as a rock and roll because I had grown up with 1950s rock and roll. I mean, I had written my first song in 1965. But it was called “Stay Away From Me, I’m Not Good For You.” I was trying to explain to girls the reason I was shy was that I was bad. Anyway, it took several years before anyone asked to hear one of my songs twice.
Collins: I hated that phrase then. Today I embrace it. It means something identifiable. Then we were also referred to as punk but we never were that, either. In all of my bands, even in the Beat, all I’ve ever really done was the same thing, melodic rock and roll. The funny thing is, in the Nerves, we felt ostracized for this, by punk, by the mainstream — it’s like we were against the establishment and our peers at the same time.
On suits and skinny ties
Collins: We wore three-piece suits and ties (in the Nerves), which in retrospect was effective. Bands like the Knack saw this and adopted it. But we went out and bought them and had them tailored and they cost us a ton. They were very hot to wear and we would die inside them, but we weren’t going to wear leather jackets.
On “Valley Girl” and the Plimsouls
Case: The Plimsouls played their first show on Jan. 1, 1979, and broke up on Jan. 1, 1985. So it was perfectly symmetrical. “Valley Girl” was probably our most famous moment, I guess. Someone told us a movie was being shot and this guy Nicolas Cage loved us and wanted us to be his favorite band in the movie. It was a day’s work and when we play “Oldest Story” or “Million Miles Away,” every time I see the camera phones going up and people recording it. They probably remember that movie too. The thing is, the band, we wanted to be big, we wanted a million dollars. So I started writing different kinds of songs and the band split. It felt like then that you had to make a choice: If you were in a band, you were in a band. You were in together. Today, there’s more freedom to do what you want in a band but probably less commitment too.”
On having a heart
Case: I almost died. I had heart surgery (in 2009). But I think it’s all good now. All sorts of people came out for me (to stage benefit concerts to defray medical costs), like T-Bone Burnett, Dave Alvin, Stan Ridgway. Which helped. But I’m in pretty deep, of course. I don’t have a lot of money. I’m in the health care sweepstakes, and records don’t make the money gigs do. Thank God I’m well enough to still go out there.
When: 7 p.m. Sunday
Where: Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western Ave.
Tickets: $15; 773-276-3600 or emptybottle.com
CHICAGO SUN TIMES (Chicago daily) – Positive show preview
PETER CASE & PAUL COLLINS
The most exciting reunions are sometimes the ones no one asked for. Before Peter Case led the Plimsouls (“A Million Miles Away”) and Paul Collins led the Beat (“Rock N Roll Girl”), they were in the Nerves together, a bright blip in power pop that produced “Hanging on the Telephone,” which Blondie made into a hit.
At 7 p.m. March 25 at the Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western. Tickets: $15. Call (773) 276-3600; emptybottle.com.
CHICAGO EXAMINER (Chicago A&E site) – Positive show preview
Sunday, March 25: Peter Case, Paul Collins at the Empty Bottle (7 PM, 21+, $15)
Two influential power pop musicians on one bill. Peter Case fronted the Plimsouls, Paul Collins fronted the Beat and together they played in The Nerves and The Breakaways. Chances are you’ve heard The Plimsouls’ “A Million Miles Away” or The Nerves’ “Hanging on the Telephone” (made famous by Blondie), even if you don’t know it. The two haven’t been on the road together since 1977, which is a pretty good reason to check this one out. Also with Summer Twins and Sleepovers.
TIME OUT CHICAGO (Chicago weekly) – Brief show preview
A bunch of gigs in 140 characters or less. | Concert preview
After SXSW, a flood of acts pours through Chicago. Tweeting was the only way to cover them all.
By Brent DiCrescenzo
Peter Case & Paul Collins
Empty Bottle; Sun 25
Don’t be the guy who says, “Hey, this is that Blondie song!” These power-pop kings wrote and first rocked “Hanging on the Telephone.”
FLAVORPILL CHICAGO (Chicago A&E site) – Positive Editor’s Pick show preview with poster art.
Peter Case & Paul Collins w/ Summer Twins and Sleepovers
Power-pop elders Peter Case and Paul Collins reteam on the road for the first time since 1977 and look to rekindle the magic of their glory years. As members of cult favorites the Nerves, Case and Collins foreshadowed the likes of the Knack, Cheap Trick, and Blondie (who notably covered “Hanging on the Telephone”) with punchy rock riffs and British Invasion hooks. After the group disbanded, Case made well with the Plimsouls’ sturdy combination of new wave and pop classicism (see the ageless “A Million Miles Away”), and Collins formed the (again) cultishly crushed-over Beat (see Rock ‘N’ Roll Girl). The duo performs material from all of the above-mentioned phases, plus the ultra-short-lived Breakaways collaboration, at this Empty Bottle stop in the legacy reunion.”
SONIC DIET / WMSE (Milwaukee college radio’s music site) – Show preview
“Hanging On the Telephone” — The Nerves
My mom recently gave me an old issue of a Bomp! Magazine she’d squirreled away because of its dedication to power pop after hearing the Nerves coming out of my room (yes, I’m still freeloading). The issue focused on bands that were redefining pop music, taking what had been done by acts since the early 60′s and fusing it with elements of punk rock that had recently come screaming onto the scene and reeking of airplane glue. Described in Bomp! as ‘looking more like Hoover salesmen than rock and roll stars”, but offering up “original material, crisp songs with strong melodies”, Peter Case, Paul Collins and Jack Lee deliver one of many high water marks from their catalog with “Hanging On the Telephone”, a song that immediately struck me as sounding like something I should have heard years ago on commercial radio, independent of my own musical geekdom. The raw intensity of the vocals coupled with the stripped down instrumentation allows for every facet of the song to be parsed out with a keen ear. Not to mention, it’s catchy as hell. If you don’t trust me, take Blondie’s word for it. And if you’re intrigued, catch Peter Case and Paul Collins performing at Shank Hall this Saturday, March 24th, for a firsthand glimpse of their musical mojo.
THE ONION / AV CLUB (Milwaukee weekly) – Positive show preview with Peter photo
Also Playing: Chuck Prophet and Summer Twins glimpse of their musical mojo.
A long, winding musical road brought singer-songwriter Peter Case to 2010’s Wig!, a route that travels through bar bands, new wave innovators, flirtations with folk-rock, a brief fling with a major, and a life-saving heart surgery. Not that the former leader of The Plimsouls hoped to capture all of that in Wig!’s 12 tracks. Instead, he turned out a dozen blood-simple blues-rock numbers recorded in quick-and-dirty fashion recorded with X drummer DJ Bonebrake and fuzzbox-stomper Ron Franklin.
1434 N Farwell Ave. Milwaukee WI 53202414-276-7288
• Sat Mar 24 8 pm
COLUMBUS DISPATCH (Columbus daily) – Brief show preview
Peter Case and Paul Collins: It’s never too late for a reunion: The musicians will together perform fare from their 1970s-era bands — the Nerves and the Breakaways — as well as cuts from their other groups, the Plimsouls and the Beat.
SHOWTIME 9 p.m. Tuesday
TICKETS $15, or $18 the day of the show
LOST IN REVIEWS (online music site) – Positive Record Bar show preview
Paul Collins and Peter Case at RecordBar
Paul Collins and Peter Case have crafted some of the best guitar rock anthems of all time. This, dear reader, is not up for debate. In 1976, when the two were fresh-faced and in their early twenties, their band The Nerves were responsible for “Hanging On the Telephone,” a song that only two years later charted at #5 in the UK as performed by Blondie. The two split off, with Collins forming the heralded powerpop band The Beat, and Case heading up the equally revered Plimsouls. A post-Nerves collaboration under the name The Breakaways was recently unearthed, after having spent 35 years collecting dust in a garage (the irony of “garage rock” need not be noted).
Summer Twins brought their breezy California pop to the stage at 9:30. The band’s namesake is wrought from sisters Chelsea and Justine Brown, who in addition to providing the ethereal vocals, also serve as the guitarist and drummer. The quartet was rounded out by MarcioRivera on second guitar and Danny Delgado on bass. In the course of the group’s thirty-minute set, the band rarely strayed far from the steady-tempo, sunny and sweet west coast pop they’ve focused on for the last few years, but they still found a way to fit in the occasional fast-paced time change, if only for a few brief moments. Obvious comparisons could be made to Jenny Lewis and her contemporaries the Watson Twins, but why waste time considering parallels when one can enjoy blissful summer pop built over a foundation of golden oldies and classic garage rock?
Paul Collins and Peter Case began a well-received set at 10:20, and in the 70+ minutes that they and their back-up band shared the stage, two dozen songs that were older than many audience members (myself included) were played with an energy that could make Springsteen seem lethargic. What Case lacked in audience interaction was more than supplemented by Collins, who between songs made short quips that were both self-deprecating (digging at the cover price) and steeped in sarcasm (excusing the high eBay prices of the first and only Nerves 7-inch as a product of inflation). One final good-natured jab was made at Collins’ own teenage son before playing “Work-a-Day World,” his kin referenced to as someone who knows not of the topic referred to therein.
Upon meeting the band’s request for the audience to move in closer to the stage, the small size of the crowd was made heartbreakingly clear, as the venue was only close to half capacity. Weeknight shows on a rainy night never do well in this town. This made no difference to those that were there to hear the two, bald, grey-haired, and road weathered in all their greatness, crank out hit after hit with hardly a breath taken between songs. Audience favorites were Plimsouls hit “A Million Miles Away,” The Beat’s “Rock N Roll Girl,” and of course “Hanging On the Telephone.” Sadly, the inclusion of “Many Roads to Follow” and “Different Kind of Girl” was an oversight by the band and never made an appearance in the setlist.
Nearly four decades on, people of all ages will trudge through inclement weather to bounce along to austere pop music about girls. If that doesn’t say something about the importance of quality in songwriting, nothing will.
setlist (source bands aren’t hugely important, as many of these were played under various lineups and band names):
How Long Will It Take (The Plimsouls)
Don’t Wait Up For Me (The Beat)
Great Big World (The Plimsouls)
Little Suzy (The Breakaways)
House On the Hill (The Breakaways)
Work-a-Day World (The Beat)
Women (The Plimsouls)
I Don’t Fit In (The Beat)
Oldest Story in the World (The Plimsouls)
Zero Hour (The Plimsouls)
Give Me Some Time (The Nerves)
Working Too Hard (The Nerves)
When You Find Out (The Nerves)
Let Me Into Your Life (The Beat)
Now (The Nerves)
Rock N Roll Girl (The Beat)
Million Miles Away (The Plimsouls)
USA (The Breakaways)
Hanging On the Telephone (The Nerves)
One Way Ticket (The Nerves)
Paper Dolls (The Nerves)
Do You Wanna Love Me? (The Breakaways)
Everyday Things (The Plimsouls)
Walking Out on Love (The Beat)
By Greg Stitt
AUSTIN CHRONICLE (Austin weekly) – SXSW show review.
Paul Collins Beat with Peter Case
Easy Tiger Patio, March 17
“This is a song Peter and I wrote in Los Angeles, back when we had no money,” declared Paul Collins before launching into “All Across the USA.” “We’re gonna do it now when we still have no money.” Since the Knack’s brief chart run, power-pop has been music played purely for the love of it, and Collins lives and breathes it without thought for material success. Augmenting his band the Beat with his old pal Peter Case, with whom he shared space in the Nerves and short-lived the Breakaways, Collins knocked out “hits” “Working Too Hard” and “Walking Out on Love” plus deep catalog gems such as “I Don’t Fit In” and “Don’t Wait Up for Me Tonight” with his eyes shut in determination and pushed through a multitude of sound issues, including a few songs in which the bassist’s harmony vocals were louder than the principles’. The bouncing Case contributed nimble lead guitar lines, as well as his Nerves gem “When You Find Out.” “Many Roads To Follow” found the singers sharing a microphone, rediscovering the chemistry that resulted in the cult recordings that feed their current legend.
L.A. RECORD (L.A. weekly) – Brief positive SXSW show review with photo
SXSW DAY 5: PETER CASE AND PAUL COLLINS, THE SHRINE, AUDACITY, SUMMER TWINS, KING TUFF, FEEDING PEOPLE, TIGER HIGH, APACHE, TOMORROW’S TULIPS, MEAN JEANS
After a short break to find some much needed Greek food, we made it back inside a rapidly filling-to-capacity Spider House to the courtyard stage, where we promptly ordered four Jamesons on the rocks, and waited for the highly anticipated appearance of Peter Case and Paul Collins of the Nerves. This show lived up to any and all expectations, and included a number of Nerves and Plimsouls hits that were close to hearts of both the performers and the audience. Among them were the Nerves classic, “Hanging on the Telephone,” as well as The Plimsouls’ “Everyday Things,” and “A Million Miles Away,” a song made famous in the 1983 film Valley Girl.
SOUND+VISION (national monthly music magazine) – SXSW wrap-up with great Peter & Paul show review and photos of Peter, Paul and The Nerves
My SXSW 2012 ended watching reunited Nerves bandmates Peter Case and Paul Collins tearing it up at the Easy Tiger Patio – a small hard-to-find venue that you reach by having to cross a little bridge over the downtown creek running near the I-35. The setting seemed appropriate: way back in the upset-the-applecart New Wave days of the mid-to-late ‘70s, Case, Collins and colleague Jack Lee’s ambitious trio churned out a series of wondrous indie singles that combined punk and pop in ways that pointed towards a kind of musical utopia for rock and roll true believers. Case’s “When You Find Out”; Collins’ “Walking Out on Love”; and Lee’s “Hanging on the Telephone,” which became a classic of sorts when covered by then emerging stars Blondie.
The Nerves never quite made it, but you’d never know it from the small but ecstatic crowd that was singing along with every last song evergreen Case and Collins rolled out. Playing their fourth show of the day (they’d been all over town for assorted unofficial SXSW parties), they were still smoking – especially Case, who came closest to stardom with the ‘80s band the Plimsouls (“A Million Miles Away”), and who has journeyed through his own unique musical arc over the last three decades as a mainly folk and blues-leaning solo performer. Not at this moment, though: just beginning a full-fledged tour with Collins sprinkled with material from both of their winding careers, Case is simply on fire, singing and playing like a man possessed. Possessed with a spirit, and a passion that, at its best moments, South by Southwest is still all about: the power of music not only to move us, but to move us to a better place. These days, we sure need it, don’t we?
THE PITCH (KC weekly) – Feature with Paul interview to preview KC show photo and tour poster art.
The Beat’s Paul Collins on his tour with former Nerves bandmate Peter Case
Posted by Nick Spacek
In addition to his work with groundbreaking power-pop act the Beat, Paul Collins’s paired with a pre-Plimsouls Peter Case in the Nerves. While that act’s best known for the fact that Blondie covered their remarkably catchy “Hanging On the Telephone,” it’s astounding to think that just two men could be part of three seminal acts. Such is the reason that Collins and Case are touring as a pair, playing songs from the Nerves, the Beat, and the Plimsouls. That show stops at the Record Bar tonight, and Collins recently took some time to e-mail with us regarding the tour.
The Pitch: How did this tour come about?
Our label Alive Records had been asking us for awhile now if we would like to do some shows, and then there were all the fans who had been asking forever ‘When are ya gonna tour together?!’ So one day we said ‘Aw… what the heck lets give it a shot!’
What’s it like reuniting with Peter Case and playing those old Nerves songs? Any memories shaken loose?
The songs are great, and that kinda was the thing, we knew if we went out there and did the best of our song book, we couldn’t miss. Yeah, the stories are flying all over the place.
Is there a pretty even distribution of material across the set list?
Pretty much … it represents all of us well.
Have you seen a new audience for the Beat’s music as your music’s been made more available — file-sharing, reissues, et cetera?
Oh, yeah … without a doubt. I am a big fan of all the Internet stuff, kinda saved my life in a way. I’m working now more than ever and a big reason is because of the net.
Even having re-branded the band as Paul Collins’ Beat, are there still folks who expect a ska show?
No, but there have been a few wondering if we would play a polka or two.
Is there a new Paul Collins Beat album on the way?
There is always a new Paul Collins record on the way. The big question is when will it arrive!
Or will there be any releases assorted with this tour?
Well, we’ve got a merch table to die for, but aside from that we will all have to see.
AUSTIN CHRONICLE (Austin weekly) – SXSW feature/interview with Paul (per Michael Toland)
Paul Collins Beat featuring Peter Case
12mid, Easy Tiger Patio
By Michael Toland
The headline “power-pop” usually means short, punchy tunes with hooks and melodies to spare. That doesn’t mean its practitioners initially welcomed the designation.
“We hated the term ‘power-pop’ when we first heard it,” says genre icon Paul Collins. “It didn’t help us – it kept us out. If it was power-pop, radio wouldn’t play it. Now it means something different and we love it.”
Collins isn’t only referring to himself and his band the Beat but also to his compadres in the legendary trio the Nerves, whose work in the Seventies helped spark the power-pop movement. Collins shared singing/songwriting duties in the Nerves with Peter Case, with whom he also formed the short-lived Breakaways prior to the rise of the Beat and Case’s equally beloved Plimsouls.
Now, in the wake of Alive Naturalsound’s reissues of the Nerves’ and the Breakaways’ recordings, Collins has teamed with Case to showcase both leaders’ greatest work of that era.
“The set list is to die for,” enthuses Collins. “It’s the best of the Nerves, the Beat, and the Plimsouls. I’m having a great time playing my music with people who love it.”
And they’re taking the show to an eager audience thanks to the Internet being the ultimate greatest tool to spread the love of the genre. With tons of bands identifying themselves as power-pop, Collins created the Beat Army, a Facebook page to help those bands connect, building relationships and setting up gigs across the country.
“The goal is get 100 paid tickets at every club show. We’re about 70 to 75 percent there. These kind of fans will put money in this music because they love it. It’s not just a band. It’s the soundtrack of their lives.”
ASSIGNMENT X (L.A.-based online music site) – Positive L.A. show review with live photos
Concert Review: Peter Case and Paul Collins of The Plimsouls, The Beat and the Nerves – March 7, 2012 at the Echo, Los Angeles, CA
A great concert featuring all the hits of these underrated artists
By CARL CORTEZ / Contributing Editor
Steeped in 1950s and 1960s rock music, but channeled through the power pop sheen of the late 1970s and early 1980s, the music of Peter Case and Paul Collins is still relevant today. Whether together as The Nerves and The Breakaways or separately fronting The Plimsouls and The Beat, respectively, they had a knack for writing great hooks that have stood the test of time.
Early into the eighty-minute concert by Peter Case and Paul Collins at the Echo in Los Angeles, CA on March 7, 2012 where they performed hits from their various groups, Case admitted that they wrote these songs “to last.” From the vantage point of three decades later, that statement sums things up succinctly.
Throughout the 25-song set, this concert is a reminder at how strong performers the two of them are, and how great their music sounds – even in a packed little club The Echo in Los Angeles. Aside from the bushy beard on Case and Collins’ shiny noggin, not much has changed between the two. This concert would have sounded just as refreshing and energetic in the 1980s as it does in 2012.
The songs from all four groups were interspersed seamlessly through the night – with Collins and Case trading off lead vocals throughout the night.
Paul Collins performs with Peter Case on March 7, 2012 at the Echo in Los Angeles, CA
Paul Collins performs with Peter Case on March 7, 2012 at the Echo in Los Angeles, CA
Being a big Plimsouls fan, it was great to hear Case bring “A Million Miles Away” to life – and it sounded phenomenal. I was also thrilled to hear “Oldest Story In The World” which is arguably one of the most underrated songs of the 1980s. Case and Collins also did some additional jamming at the end of “Oldest Story” which added a new wrinkle to the tune.
The Plimsouls also appeared as the bar band in the classic 1983 comedy VALLEY GIRL, and seeing Case perform on this small stage reminds you of what a potent force he was then and still is now.
For Collins, his The Beat songs also were a highlight including “Rock and Roll Girl” and “Work-A-Day World.”
There wasn’t a lull in their performance and it’s awesome to see the consistency between the tracks despite spanning different groups, incarnations and iterations.
The audience ate it up too – the house was packed and you could definitely tell there were people there for the whole experience, but also had their favorite tracks that got them rocking.
The banter between Collins and Case was also fun. Since they broke up after The Breakaways, there were hints at old tensions arising, but all that falls away when they get on stage to rock and roll.
There is also a thin line between being a retro-act and being a relevant artist and since Case and Collins continue to record and perform on their own, this tour feels more like a rare treat for die-hard fans, than a “re-hashing of the greatest hits” tour.
There were some technical difficulties though. Occasionally Case’s microphone wasn’t turned up as loud as he would have liked and he had to swap places with Collins’ mike for when he took lead vocals.
The stories of writing their hits and moving to Los Angeles also put things in to perspective as well. It was great to hear their first memory of the Ramones – and how they realized that seminal band was doing the same thing they were doing and ultimately kicking their asses at it as well.
For those not familiar with any of these four bands or Collins and Case’s solo work, hunt it down. A live CD of the Plimsouls called BEACH TOWN CONFIDENTIAL just hit stores last month and Collins has a great 2010 album of great power pop tracks called KING OF POWER POP!
Opening act the Summer Twins are also steeped in 1950s/1960s genres but filtered through a 1990s sensibility. The wispy vocals of sisters Chelsea and Justine Brown is fun, and unique. You can hear a little Julee Cruse here, a little surf guitar there and a little bit of the Sundays. It’s an interesting mix and a refreshing change of pace from many indie acts currently out there.
Chelsea displayed some nervousness at times when she had to do some on stage banter, but when she started cranking up her guitar and harmonizing with her sister, the results were divine.
PHOENIX NEW TIMES (Phoenix weekly)
Paul Collins and Peter Case on The First Time They Heard the Ramones and The State of Power Pop
By Jason P. Woodbury
Maybe the name “The Nerves” doesn’t immediately strike a bell, but chances are “Hanging on the Telephone” will. A single from Blondie’s stone-cold classic 1978 LP Parallel Lines, the song was actually written by Nerves drummer Jack Lee and performed by the San Francisco-based power-pop trio of Lee, Paul Collins, and Peter Case.
Following the dissolution of The Nerves, Collins and Case would go on to cement their melodic rock legacies, with Collins fronting chiming rock band The Beat (or Paul Collins’ Beat, as litigation with The English Beat would eventually force) and Case forming the R&B/new wave-inflected Plimsouls.
The past few years have seen a steady uptick in recognition of all Collins/Case associated bands: Alive Records has steadily reissued their respective catalogs (even unearthing unreleased stuff like the post-Nerves/pre-Plimsouls/Beat band The Breakaways) and young acts on labels like Burger Records and Volar Records (the latter released an excellent Nerves tribute record) paying homage to the minimal, pop-driven sound of the band.
The duo kept has kept in touch over the years, and with interest at a high, they’ve hit the road, playing with a full backing band and a catalog of power-pop classics in tow.
“Power pop is healthier today than when it started,” Collins laughs over the phone from NYC. He and Case spoke with me about the Nerves’ legacy, the youth of today, and what it was like hearing The Ramones for the first time.
Paul Collins and Peter Case are scheduled to perform Tuesday, March 13, at the Rhythm Room.
Up on the Sun: What inspired you two getting back together for this tour, and what can we expect from the sets?
Paul Collins: We’ve been talking about this for years, and it’s finally happening. We’ll be on stage together, with a backing band, a bassist and a drummer. This is going to be the cream of the crop — the “hits that weren’t hits” of The Nerves. Basically, we’re going to go out there and play all these amazing songs. It’s really an amazing opportunity. It’s kind of like, you know, what it would have been like if the Nerves had stayed together and all of us had been in the same band writing all these songs. I mean, Jack is not part of this, but the songs are, and the most powerful thing that the three of us did is in the songs.
Peter Case: Paul and I haven’t worked together for years and years and years. I don’t even know how many. 30, or something. I’m afraid to look [laughs]. We stayed in touch. I’d run into him in New York, or Spain or something. We’ve always been friends, but what happened was, about three years ago Alive Records put out a Nerves record, then a live Nerves record, and then Paul had these tapes I didn’t know existed, The Breakaways, and they released those, and then a live Plimsouls, and Paul put out King of Power Pop, then I put out The Case Files, and they just did a new live Plimsouls record. Alive has really supported us. The thing is, I listened to The Breakaways recordings, I had forgot even recording it. I put it on and said ‘Wow, the spirit, and the energy, it was so fun.’ I started thinking that we should go out and play these songs. I mean, we’re doing it because we can. We’ve got the energy. It’s not a big stretch, and it’s fun working with my old friend.
Has it been interesting or surprising seeing the way The Nerves have influenced the power pop sounds of younger bands?
Paul Collins: Well, I’m surprised and happy. I was living overseas for a while and I came back here four or five years ago and that’s when I started touring heavily, and I did all that with the Beat Army, which is k my Facebook page for what I do and power pop in general. I’ve pretty much concentrated on working with new bands and it’s been great. One of the people, the Burger Records guys, and younger acts. I’ve played with at least 100 new bands. What happened was, during the ’90s this whole scene fell of the map, and it was really difficult to work. It kind of felt like the music I was doing had just passed. There was no interest in it. But when MySpace got big, it was very encouraging. You’d see all these bands list The Nerves or power pop as an influence, and then it just blossomed into what it is today. The power pop of today has morphed into something new — bands that are garage-y and punk-y. It’s an elastic term. I term it “melodically driven guitar rock ‘n’ roll.” I think it’s awesome. I’m constantly finding new bands and the audiences I play for now, because I work with new bands, they bring their fans and they know the music. Power pop is healthier today than when it started.
Peter Case: When we first came out, the record execs treated us like we were the slow kids in class. It’s simple, but there’s an art to making stuff that simple, to creating rock ‘n’ roll that has a timeless feel. The Plimsouls have a new live record out, and aside from some phaser on the guitar, it sounds like it could have been recorded yesterday. “Power pop” is a term is a little limiting — there’s young people who are willing to find things that aren’t on mainstream radio. It’s a very good time for music right now. For the young people at least. The older people, they got lost.
Was there any sense of musical community when you guys were performing as The Nerves?
Paul Collins: When the Nerves started, no. We were in a complete vacuum. I remember when we first heard The Ramones. We were rehearsing in our little basement in San Francisco, and somebody had told us “Hey, there’s this band from New York called The Ramones playing at the Savoy.” We had kind of heard something about them, but we hadn’t heard their music. You’ve got to understand, back in those days there was no cell phones, no Internet. The way information got out was really quite limited, through music stores and record shops, you know?
So we called up the club, to see what time they were playing. The guy said, “Man they’re doing their last song now.” And this is a conventional old school phone with an ear piece and mouth piece and it maybe have been me, but I said, “Can you just hold up the phone so we can hear them?” So the three of us are crowded around the phone. I remember Jack and Peter saying, “They’re staying on the D chord! They’re not changing.” [laughs] We had never heard anybody play music like that, which was kind of like what we were doing in that sense, 8th notes and all that stuff. We were totally blown away listening to them play. That’s how disconnected things were back at that time. I mean, we really didn’t consider ourselves a punk band…Later, when the Beat got signed, you could feel the emerging [punk/New Wave] scene…You could really tell what people listened to by the way they dressed. The punks had a very identifiable dress code, and so did the new wave/power pop people…very bright and colorful and the girls were sexy as all hell in their fishnet stockings, leather mini skirts, and black boots.
Peter Case: There’s just a spirit of the whole Nerves catalog. It’s pure teenage rock ‘n’ roll, and at that time there weren’t many people doing it. The Nerves were kind of minimal you know? We didn’t sound like the Ramones, but there were some similarities. That first wave of punk rock, groups like The Saints, Sex Pistols, The Clash, also bands like Pere Ubu — we related to all those kinds of bands. At the time there was such a strange time, because young people were coming up with their natural music and the record business just slammed the door on it. The shit people said to us back then was just ridiculous. They had no idea what we were doing. Finally, Blondie cut “Hanging on the Telephone” and had a big hit with it. It sort of vindicated us, but we were all on our way to other stuff by then.
TUCSON WEEKLY –Brief show preview in their Soundbites bests.
Los Angeles power-pop gods Peter Case and Paul Collins, both formerly of The Nerves, and later, respectively, of The Plimsouls and The Beat, will team up to perform tunes by all of those bands at Club Congress, 311 E. Congress St., at 8 p.m., Sunday, March 11. Summer Twins open the show, and admission is $15. Call 622-8848 for more info.
THINGS TO DO IN TUCSON (online Tucson A&E site) – Show preview with Peter & Paul photo.
Peter Case & Paul Collins in Tucson Mar 11, 2012 8:00 PM
Mar 11, 2012 at 8:00 PM
311 East Congress Street
Two of rock n roll’s greatest come together at the legendary Hotel Congress for a once in a lifetime show.
Peter Case is a Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter and producer, a mighty fine guitarist and a well-reviewed published author and yet, he’s most at home on the stage. For 25 years, Peter, his guitar and his songs have mesmerized audiences from coast to coast, whether holding down a festival crowd, warming up the place for luminaries like Jackson Browne and John Prine or headlining his own nightclub shows— of which he can claimed to have logged thousands. In January 2009, Case underwent heart surgery, leading to fund raising efforts by other musicians to help defray his medical costs. Case’s latest project, Wig!, is a CD/LP released June 29, 2010 on Yep Roc Records.The Case Files, Peter Case’s demos, outtakes, one live shot and other rarities drops in May on Alive Records with a string of dates in appropriate rooms to follow.
Paul Collins (The Beat) spent his pre-teens living in Greece, Vietnam and Europe before returning to his native New York. He studied at the prestigious Julliard Music School and eventually moved to San Francisco where he joined songwriter Jack Lee and bassist Peter Case to form The Nerves in 1974. The Nerves proved to be one of the pioneers of the burgeoning US punk rock scene, independently releasing their own 4 song EP which included the classic “Hanging on the Telephone,” later to become a hit for Blondie.
TUCSON EVENT SEEKR (online A&E site) – Show preview with Peter photo.
Peter Case, Paul Collins
Sunday Mar 11th, 2012
Frontman and founder of the San Francisco new wave band the Nerves as well as the Los Angeles pop-rock band The Plimsouls, Peter Case eventually began his solo career in the mid ’80s. While his previous work with bands was more rock based, his solo work is more acoustic based Americana. With his varied ventures into music, Case has secured a diverse fanbase and a great deal of respect from musicians, with the likes of Bruce Springsteen and Ry Cooder counting themselves as huge fans. Though Case underwent serious heart surgery in 2009, the costs offset by many famous musicians who banded together to raise funds for him, Case is back on the touring bracket.
DOWNTOWN TUCSON (Tucson A&E site) – Show listing with tour poster.
SOUNDSPIKE (online music site) –SXSW show preview with photo.
Peter Case @ SXSW
Story by Tara Hall
Singer, songwriter and guitarist Peter Case will spend the spring on the tour trail with multi-instrumentalist Paul Collins, the first time the two have taken the stage together since 1978.
On the impending run, the Case and Collins will perform with a full band, playing songs from their back catalogs at bars and clubs across the nation, according to Case’s website. The pair will also take on Austin, TX’s SXSW with an official showcase March 16 at Continental Club, as well as an unofficial day party, co-sponsored by SoundSpike, March 15 at Lucy’s Fried Chicken.
Case and Collins first worked together in early San Francisco new-wave band The Nerves, before Case went on to form the Plimsouls in Los Angeles and Collins played with The Beat and The Breakaways. Case has had a successful solo career as well, including the 1992 release, “Six-Pack of Love,” which features the radio hit, “Dream About You,” the video for which is below.
Earlier this month, Case released “Beach Town Confidential,” a six-song live album of Plimsouls material recorded onstage at the Golden Bear in Huntington Beach, CA, in 1983, when the four-piece was at the height of their fame.
BUZZBAND L.A. (L.A. online music site) – Brief show preview
Two influential rockers whose careers date back to the ’70s — Peter Case and Paul Collins — head up a quartet headlining the Echo, where they will perform songs from their legendary bands, the Plimsouls, the Nerves, the Breakaways and the Beat. Summer Twins open.
MUSICAL SHAPES (L.A. music blog) –Positive L.A. show preview with photo.
Go See Hear In L.A. March 5-11
This week is marked by a number of interesting pairings and bills. One show that jumps out to me is the Peter Case/Paul Collins gig at the Echo on the 7th (yes, the same night at the New Multitudes show). Case and Collins played together in the punk band the Nerves years ago (Blondie’s hit “Hanging On The Telephone” was a Nerves’ tune) before going off in separate directions (Collins fronted power poppers the Beat and Case the Plimsouls and then has had a long career as a troubadour). Opening for them is an excellent sisters act The Summer Twins who should be headlining shows soon.
KXLU RADIO (L..A. college station) – “Recommeded show” listing on their website with on-air show mentions
CLICKY CLICKY MUSIC (online music blog) –Positive Portland show review with photo.
That Was The Show That Was: Peter Case & Paul Collins | Star Theater | Portland, OR
What began as a potentially precarious and non-commital show blossomed into a legendary, manic rock event. Saturday evening’s performance at the Star Theater in Portland built slowly to a boiling point at which Peter Case and Paul Collins began to tear through the power-pop gems that spangle their respective, nearly 40-year careers. The energy, skill and conviction of their show transcended both time and male pattern baldness, proving that an intelligent, youthful spirit can persist to incite future generations to dance like it’s 1964, or ’74, or ’84. Hell…
The show was part of a tour intended as a celebration of Mssrs. Case and Collins’ work, more than a plug for any specific release. The duo are best known, of course, for founding the seminal and short-lived 70’s punk-pop trio The Nerves, as well as their individual ’80s projects including Case’s The Plimsouls (creators of the sublime, oft-covered 1983 Top 100 hit “A Million Miles Away”) and Collins’ The Beat. The Nerves produced only one official release, a four-song EP that cemented itself as pop gold on the strength of “Hanging On The Telephone,” which was written by bandmate Jack Lee and famously covered by Blondie. Upon completion of the fabled recording, the group executed an exhaustive cross-country tour opening for The Ramones, playing nearly 100 shows in a very short period. Such an ambitious early experience likely placed unnecessary strain on The Nerves. That, coupled with the fact that the group had the Beatles-esque dilemma of three talented songwriters, led to sufficient tension in the band to plunge it to a premature death. Lee, of course, went on to fame and perhaps even wealth via Blondie and “Hanging On The Telephone,” while Case and Collins forged ahead, never receiving their real due.
Just before the main event the room seemed to suddenly fill up with a diverse punk and pop assemblage. It was as if Case and Collins sounded some fantastical horn and called forth their army of young hardcore kids, overdressed record store clerks, 70’s Los Angeles hipsters, and white collars in polos who had spun the Nerves EP on their college radio show so many years ago. It was truly a scene to behold, and some really fabulous people-watching as the men took the stage with able bassist Timm Buechler and drummer Amos Pitsch, ready for a blitzkrieg. Because of earlier audience indifference, one could not expect what was about to unfold.
The set was played fast, with little word from Collins, as the group pounded through a balanced, electrifying list of songs from The Nerves, The Plimsouls, The Beat and the seldom-heard, mid-period project The Breakaways. In true power-pop tradition, E major chords and Rickenbacker chiming abounded. Case, Collins et al. wisely stuck most of their more famous numbers toward the end of the set, riding a wave of anticipation from the crowd. Within the first few songs, dancing broke out in the middle of the floor, with several very unassuming-looking women going around and grabbing any guy they could find while swinging and grinding. It was a moment of elation for which rock music inherently strives. Half-way through the set, the band kicked things into overdrive with “A Million Miles Away,” spurring a chant from the crowd loud enough to be heard over the roaring guitars.
Case and Collins, both approaching 60, may have looked worn and old, but they performed with an animalistic energy that did not betray their histories. Collins smartly wore a purple bandana around his neck in a nod to his vintage cool. Case strode out wearing a blazer and long hair, looking not unlike The Dude from “The Big Lewboski.” This band didn’t need distortion pedals, just vintage guitars played into overdriven tube amps. Loudly. Between songs, Case proved to be the more endearing member, as he offered background and stories about the songwriting, recording and genesis of the various projects. He broke a string mid-song and never flinched in his grizzly guitar solo, using the detuning to his advantage. “When You Find Out” proved to be the highlight of the show, with his voice sounding exactly as it did in 1976; a feral young man’s plea, surely an inspiration to Paul Westerberg.
The fascinating crowd provided some really enjoyable moments itself. One woman, who seemed roughly the same age as Case and Collins, heckled the band for about 15 minutes. It became apparent that she was a former paramour of Collins’ from decades ago, and she repeatedly asked if he remembered her. Finally, acknowledging the nuisance, Collins looked her in the eye and simply mouthed “no.” Rock and roll, indeed. Another happy sight was the father who was accompanied with his three young children. This gentleman had come for one thing. “Walking Out On Love,” he repeated yelled. He soon got it.
The final portion of the set had the band rolling through some key Nerves tracks, The Breakaways classics, “Walking Out On Love” and the blistering Case-penned tune of escape, “One Way Ticket.” With that, the band quickly said goodnight and walked off the stage. No needless posturing, or long closing speech, just the reassurance that keeping it real transcends all. Brilliant musicians and songwriters apparently can continue to burn down a house if they stay true to what made them great all along. If you can, catch the band at one of their tour dates here.
The Carnabetian Army, a local Kinks cover band, opened. Resplendent in their dandy outfits, the group delivered tight and faithful renditions of many of the Kinks tunes that were so influential to first wave power-poppers like The Nerves. The venue’s odd lounge-style seating and open floor plan left The Carnabetian Army afloat amid emptiness that threatened to suck the energy out of their set. The fact that many Portland venues feature cool outdoor patios and fire pit havens occasionally leaves early openers with little to do but play for themselves. Nevertheless, The Carnabetian Army gave it their all, adding details like the adolescent “oh, go home!” before the charged solo in “All Day and All Of The Night.”
Filling the middle of the bill were Summer Twins, a sister-led pop-rock outfit that had a very astute knowledge of the songwriting and spirit of the headliners. The Riverside, Calif.-based group, presumably hand-picked by Case and Collins, played a set of strong, shiny tunes to the slowly gathering crowd. “I Don’t Care” in particular, showcased Chelsea and Justine Brown’s perfectly blended harmonies. Guitarist Marcio Rivera was also nice to listen to. With his curly goth hair and bored expression, he resembled one of the Reid brothers while playing very simple yet arresting guitar patterns that nearly beat the sisters in brightness and quirk. — Edward Charlton
THERE’S SOMETHING HARD IN THERE (online music blog) – Seattle. show review with photos.
Peter Case & Paul Collins: Bringing back the songs of The Nerves (along with some Plimsouls and Beat tunes)
˛ˇ ˛ˇBy Andy
Peter Case once called me from a pay phone in Hollywood.
Thanks to my former journalism adviser at San Jose State University — and Case’s ex-brother-in-law — the man who practically helped invent power pop in the mid-’70s with The Nerves and Breakaways chatted with me in ’89 about his second solo album, “The Man with the Blue Post-Modern Fragmented Neo-Traditionalist Guitar,” for the Spartan Daily.
I caught the ex-Plimsouls leader at Club Oasis on that tour and was impressed with how the acoustic tunes from his solo LPs translated live.
Twenty-three years later, Case jammed an electric guitar into his hands while rocking along with former Nerves/Breakaways bandmate Paul Collins (he has his stellar Beat, too) at Seattle’s Funhouse on March 2.
Alongside Amos Pitch on drums and Timm Buechler on bass, the two old pals rolled through a 25-song set of numbers that spanned their careers (see set list!)
Backstage after the gig, Case pointed at my Nomads T-shirt and reminisced about writing a song (with Jeffrey Lee Pierce) in the mid-’80s for the Swedish band: “Call Off Your Dogs.” When he was in Stockholm, the band kept him up all night to write lyrics for the tune, he laughed.
Collins and Case each spoke with me briefly about playing together again and embarking on a two-month tour (Seattle was the second stop):
* COLLINS, who noted that he and Case played a show together a couple of years ago with their respective bands, but they haven’t played in the same band for more than 30 years —
I think it’s going great, we’ve got a crack backup band and the songs speak for themselves, so it’s really kind of easy.
I would say more people have not heard of (The Nerves) than people who have heard of them — but I don’t care about that. It feels great, I’m very proud of what we did. Those songs will live on forever– I love it. It’s just wonderful… you know, you work hard and you can do good things.
(On memories of playing with Case)…It’s more looking forward, that it’s fun to be doing this and that we can, that’s what I think. It’s great to hear those songs again, play them again — it’s a rush.
You know what’s great? For me, it’s like a lot of fun: One, we’ve got a lot of history, you know, and I’ve always believed that soul is when you’re proud of where you’ve been. So, if you’ve got history with people, it’s nice to be able to go — even if it’s not just a group, but friends or something — to be able to go out and share life with some people you go way back with is always a real fun thing to do. So, that’s good, even though there’s certain difficulties we’ve always had working together, we love working together, because it’s really fun…
The other thing about it is the song catalogue that we made up. All these songs from back before 1983, it’s really fun to kind of revive them and bring them back around because we made them at the time to be sort of timeless– we never went with gimmicks or the time.
Andy’s Spartan Daily review from ’89, plus pic below by Kendra Luck
THE PORTABLE INFINITE (L.A. online music magazine) – L.A. show mention with live photos from Vancouver show
SKOPE MAGAZINE (online music site) – Tour news posted March 5th
SILVER PLATTER (Phoenix online A&E site) – Positive show preview
Peter Case and Paul Collins
I still am a massive Plimsouls fan and really enjoyed the music of The Nerves and The Beat. Shows like this remind me how special music was back in the late seventies and early eighties, totally psyched for this show!
Tuesday, Mar. 13, 2012
Peter Case and Paul Collins
* 07:00 PM
* Rhythm Room
Only $15 for two power pop legends folks, do not miss this show! Peter Case and Paul Collins played in two different highly influential Los Angeles power pop bands together, The Nerves and The Breakaways. The Nerves created some outstanding music during their career, including “Hanging on the Telephone” that became a huge hit for Blondie. The Breakaways formed out of the ashes of The Nerves.
When The Breakaways broke up Paul Collins left his place behind the drum kit and formed a new band known as The Beat, a band he was the singer and rhythm guitarist for as well as the primary songwriter. That band later became The Paul Collins Beat in the early eighties and various line-ups of the band continue to perform to this day.
Peter Case formed one of power pop’s all-time great bands The Plimsouls after he parted ways with Collins. The Plimsouls had a short original run from 1979-1983 but in that time appeared in the cult classic movie Valley Girl and penned the massive alternative rock single “A Million Miles Away”, along with a string of other great singles such as “How Long Will it Take” and “Shaky City”. The band’s second album Everywhere at Once that was released in 1983 remains a power pop classic.
Folks, this show is going to be an ultra-special affair with these two artists reuniting to play songs from The Nerves, The Breakaways, The Beat and The Plimsouls. Do not miss this 21+ show! http://silverplatter.info/shows/20242
WILLAMETTE WEEK (Portland weekly) – Positive show preview
Peter Case and Paul Collins, Summer Twins, Carnabetian Army
9 pm, Saturday March 03 | $15
13 NW 6th Ave.
[PILLARS OF POWER POP] What’s that saying on the dollar bill? “Out of many, one”? Well, in the case of Peter Case and Paul Collins, it’s more like, “From two, a friggin’ lot.” Their intertwining discographies represent a large chunk of the best power pop made post-Big Star, beginning in 1975 with the Nerves. Although together only long enough to release a four-song EP, all four of those songs were phenomenal; one of them, “Hanging on the Telephone,” was later immortalized by Blondie (it was technically written by bandmate Jack Lee, but still). After then playing together in the short-lived Breakaways, Case and Collins went their separate ways, with Collins forming the underrated Paul Collins Beat and Case gaining the most fame with the Plimsouls, whose “A Million Miles Away” is one of the great singles of the ’80s. On this reunion tour, the pair draw from both their songbooks, offering a history lesson in some of the most underappreciated music of the past three decades.
THE STRANGER (Seattle weekly) – Positive show preview with Nerves audio stream.
Peter Case & Paul Collins, Summer Twins, Bang Sha Bang
(Funhouse) Both Peter Case and Paul Collins have enjoyed long careers as great purveyors of real-time-and-beyond post-punk pop: Case fronted the Plimsouls (makers of 1983 hit “A Million Miles Away”) and launched a troubadorian solo career (his 1986 cover of the Pogues’ “A Pair of Brown Eyes” was the “My Heart Will Go On” of my high-school class), while Collins carried on as the leader of the Beat (not the English Beat—Paul Collins’s Beat). But everything you need to know to love both of them forever can be found on the only release by the Nerves, a four-song EP made by Collins, Case, and guitarist Jack Lee and released in 1976. Kicking off with the great, gritty original of “Hanging on the Telephone” and perfect till the end, The Nerves captures a talent-packed band finding their voices, and people with ears will love it forever. Tonight the Funhouse hosts the Peter Case & Paul Collins Reunion Tribute to the Nerves, which is exactly what it says it is, and hurrah. DAVID SCHMADER
THE SUNBREAK (Seattle online A&E site) – Best Bet show preview with “Plimsouls video.
Your Live Music Bets for March 2nd to the 4th
by Tony Kay
Tonight (Friday, March 2):
Peter Case and Paul Collins, Summer Twins, Bang sha Bang @ The Funhouse. $20 day of show. Doors at 8pm.
Together as The Nerves and separately as members of The Plimsouls and the Paul Collins Beat, Case and Collins helped lay down the groundwork for the punchy/sweet dichotomy that is power pop. If you’re a fan of Weezer, Ted Leo, or OK Go, and you want to hear the roots of those sounds, this should be unmissable. Expect to hear plenty of gems from these guys’ deep back catalogs, and Case will surely belt out that classic of classics, “A Million Miles Away”.
THE PORTLAND MERCURY (Portland weekly) – Show preview with “Plimsouls video (Same positive preview that ran in Seattle’s The Stranger)
Up & Coming
Highlights in Music the Week of March 1-7
PETER CASE, PAUL COLLINS, SUMMER TWINS, CARNABETIAN ARMY
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) Both Peter Case and Paul Collins have enjoyed long careers as two of the great purveyors of real-time-and-beyond post-punk pop: Case fronted the Plimsouls (makers of ’83 hit “A Million Miles Away”) and launched a troubadourian solo career (his 1986 cover of the Pogues’ “A Pair of Brown Eyes” was the “My Heart Will Go On” of my high-school class), while Collins carried on as the leader of the Beat (not the English Beat, but rather Paul Collins’ Beat). But everything you need to know to love both of them forever can be found on the only release by the Nerves, a four-song EP that Collins, Case, and guitarist Jack Lee released in 1976. Kicking off with the great, gritty original of “Hangin’ on the Telephone” and perfect ’til the end, The Nerves captures a talent-packed band finding their voices, and people with ears will love it forever. Tonight the Star Theater hosts the Peter Case and Paul Collins Reunion Tribute to the Nerves, which is exactly what it says it is, and hurrah. DAVID SCHMADER
ILLINOIS ENTERTAINER (Chicagoland music monthly) – Feature/interview with Paul to preview Chicago show in March issue (with front cover billing!)
Hello, My Name Is Paul
IE: You’re currently on tour with Peter Case. Were there other occasions when you performed together since The Nerves broke up?
Paul Collins: Only once. I did some songs with him during an encore at one of his shows.
IE: Are you pretty familiar with Chicago?
PC: Chicago was a real mainstay for us [The Nerves]. In fact, we stayed there between tours. Do you remember La Mere Vipere? They threw a party for us. We played Huey’s, Ivanhoe Theatre, and B’Ginnings. Cheap Trick came out to see us.
IE: Some critics have said The Nerves could have been really successful if they’d stuck around. Do you ever imagine what might have been?
PC: When we broke up, I was devastated, but I never thought of it that way. It wasn’t until recently when I read an article where someone said, “Makes you wonder what would have happened if these guys had stayed together” that it really hit me. I’m glad I didn’t think of it that way before. I’ve had a great ride. For a bunch of kids who had no backing, it’s amazing the impact we had with just one EP.
IE: Have you and Peter kept in touch over the years?
PC: On and off. I’ve lived overseas so there were big chunks of time when we didn’t have any contact.
IE: Considering that you and Peter were in The Nerves, he was in The Plimsouls, and you were in The Beat, this show seems like a power pop fan’s dream come true.
PC: It’s power pop, but it’s more than that. It’s American rock and roll. At the time, everything was skinny ties, new wave, and power pop. I embrace [the label] now, but back then it hurt us. Radio stations would say, “Power pop? We don’t play that kind of music!” I wondered why people weren’t getting it.
IE: How will the show be structured?
PC: We’re still working on that. There are so many great songs, you could put them in a hat and just pick them. This is really two guys getting together because of the music.
IE: Is there any chance that you and Peter will do a CD together?
PC: That door is wide open. If the rock and roll gods are willing and we come up with a good batch of new songs, we’ll record them. Most definitely.
Paul Collins and Peter Case play Empty Bottle on March 25th. The Plimsouls recently released Beach Town Confidential, featuring a live performance recorded in 1983. Q&A by Terrence Flamm.
AMP MAGAZINE (national print & online music magazine) – Tour news with tour poster, dates and related links.
BLURT MAGAZINE (national print & online music magazine) – Tour news with artist photos, dates and related links.
VAN MUSIC (Vancouver online music site) – Feature with Paul interview to preview show. Vancouver post-show review also scheduled (per Jason)
The Nerves reunion tour kicks off at Iron Road Studios in Vancouver on March 1st 2012.
Back in the 70’s The Nerves were a trio of lads burning up the LA punk scene. They released only one EP that included a little track called “Hanging On The Telephone” which a young lady named Blondie covered and got a hit song out of. As prolific musicians Peter Case and Paul Collins have been involved in many projects since their days in bands together.
They have worked with and influenced some of the greatest names in the biz, from T-Bone Burnet and Mitchell Froom, to Ry Cooder and Bruce Springsteen.
With the success of “One Way Ticket” their 2008 compilation release of remastered tracks from the original EP plus previously unreleased material on Alive Records, the boys decided to reunite for a spring 2012 tour to pay tribute to their bands, The Nerves, The Breakaways and The Plimsouls.
I managed to get a few questions out to them as they were prepping for the tour.
1. How does it feel to be back touring together again after so many years?
Very strange but good, we have not actually started yet so it’s a big musical adventure!
2. Looking back on the LA Punk scene that you helped developed how do you think it has changed? For better or for worse?
That’s too big a question for me. I have not lived in LA for many years now and I am not really in touch with the music scene there, but if it is like everything else it has changed, more than likely some of it for the better and some for the worse. Things stay the same and re-invent themselves at the same time. That is how it should be in my opinion. The same goes for the music we lovingly call Power Pop.
3. What do you find most satisfying about playing live?
The feeling you get when the band is really rocking out and we are all in sync and of course when you really connect with the audience that is an amazing feeling… like no other I know of.
4. How does it feel to have your songs live on through other artists, like Blondie and Def Leppard, etc.
It is a very nice feeling when respected peers in your field pay you the complement of recording your songs. You are of course referring to “Hanging on The Telephone” written by my old pal Jack Lee and I can tell you for a fact he is delighted about it!
5. What made you decide to tour again in 2012 as a tribute to The Nerves?
We were hoping to make a million dollars and retire gracefully in big houses with swimming pools. I am not sure if that will happen though.
6. Paul, you spend a lot of time in Spain. How has this influenced you as a musician and as an artist in general?
I had a blast, drank a lot of really good red wine, ate way too much delicious food and enjoyed the woman immensely! Artistically speaking it allowed me to get out from under the American Music Business scene which I do not enjoy or support. I am now pretty much 100% DIY and I love it.
7. As musicians who have quietly influenced other musicians from Blondie to Bruce Springsteen, do you have any advice for new musicians and bands who are trying to make their mark in music today?
Work your ass off.
8. I’m sure you have many great stories of being on the road and of recording with so many artists. Do you have any that you would like to
share with our readers?
I think it would be better if they came to one of our shows so we can tell them in person.
9. What can we expect from you both together and independently in the future?
Hopefully a lot of great honest rock n roll.
THE PROVINCE (Vancouver weekly) – Feature/interview with artist photos (per Tom Harrison)
Case, Collins aim for timeless power-pop
By Tom Harrison, The Province
Peter Case and I met over Wilson Picket.
I’d been intrigued by the Wicked Wilson’s “Mini Skirt Minnie” since I heard it as a kid in 1967. I had the 45 but, as far as I know, the song isn’t on an album, be it a regular release or an anthology. Picket’s next single was the immeasurably greater hit, “Funky Broadway.” So, “Mini Skirt Minnie” might have been buried and forgotten.
Case came about it the same way. He had the single and knew nothing else. Nevertheless, his Plimsouls recorded “Mini Skirt Minnie.”
“Lots of guitar,” Case exclaims admiringly. “Steve Cropper.
“I met Wilson Picket on an airplane about 10 years ago. I went up to him and introduced myself. ‘Hi, I’m Peter Case of The Plimsouls; we did ‘Mini Skirt Minnie.’”
Instead of being flattered, Picket blew up.
“I never got paid for that session,” he growled and that was the end of the encounter and possibly explains the fate of “Mini Skirt Minnie.”
It’s doubtful that Case will perform the song at Iron Road Studios. There is so much else to do.
Case has reunited with Paul Collins and they will play material from their subsequent bands starting with The Nerves. The Nerves were a trio during the heyday of the L.A. punk underground. When they split, Collins and Case briefly had The Breakways. They split again, Collins to form The Beat, Case The Plimsouls. Both were exemplary power-pop. After The Beat, Collins relocated to Spain, produced and recorded intermittently. Case struck out as a solo folkie and has had his ups and downs. Both have kept their head above water and getting back together seemed like a good idea.
“It’s all coming together,” Case said. “Me and Paul are so different.”
How different might be measured by contrasting The Nerves with The Plimsouls.
“We were in a band together that had a gestalt, a style,” explains Case. “The Nerves were minimal, very stripped down. The Plimsouls were a full rock and roll band; we even had a lead guitar. The Nerves had its own thing; we had a lot of clashes, we got thrown out of buildings.”
Case and Collins didn’t write The Nerves’ claim to fame, “Hangin’ On The Telephone,” as covered by Blondie. They were, however, able to build on it, The Plimsouls racking up a hit in “A Million Miles Away,” a great song in the mould of The Byrds’ “Eight Miles High.”
“A Million Miles Away” is more likely than “Mini Skirt Minnie” to be featured at Iron Road. The Plimsouls have a new album, Beach Town Confidential, but the material is old. The quartet augments the live set with covers of The Creation, Easybeats, Kinks and Moby Grape songs.
“Buddy Holly . . .” Case says, unexpectedly. “. . . when I heard Buddy Holly, it all made sense. It was timeless.”
So, timeless power-pop is the aim. Collins sings his songs, Case his. Iron Road is the only Canadian stop on the tour, but the first. Case is looking forward to it.
“The thing Paul and I have always agreed upon is that we want to do great songs.”
OC WEEKLY (Orange County, CA weekly) – News story on tour with Paul photo, Nerves video and related links.
The Nerves’ Peter Case and Paul Collins to Reunite on Tour and Release Material Recorded at the Golden Bear
By Lilledeshan Bose
Mod/power pop pioneers Peter Case and Paul Collins, who first banded together in the seminal new wave band the Nerves, are going on tour together. They’re skipping Orange County, but on Mar. 7 they’ll be at the Echo in LA, Mar. 8 in San Diego at Bar Pink, and Mar. 9 at Pioneertown (near Joshua Tree) at Pappy & Harriet’s–so there are enough SoCal venues on their list.
The tour will see Case and Collins performing songs from the Plimsouls (which Case played in after the Nerves) and the Beat and the Breakaways for Collins. They’ll have a full band, so they’ll probably be playing a load of gems on this eight-week tour.
According to Soundspike,
Case is also set to release Beach Town Confidential, a live album of Plimsouls material recorded onstage at the Golden Bear in Huntington Beach, CA, on Aug. 13, 1983, when the four-piece was at the height of their fame. “Beach Town Confidential,” featuring six songs that have never been recorded by the Plimsouls before, will be released on Feb. 7.
BLOG SAN DIEGO (San Diego music blog) – Poster art and show info posted on their hoempage.
THE ONION A.V. CLUB (Twin Cities weekly) – Show preview.
Also Playing: Peter Case
A long, winding musical road brought singer-songwriter Peter Case to 2010’s Wig!, a route that travels through bar bands, new wave innovators, flirtations with folk-rock, a brief fling with a major, and a life-saving heart surgery. Not that the former leader of The Plimsouls hoped to capture all of that in Wig!’s 12 tracks. Instead, he turned out a dozen blood-simple blues-rock numbers recorded in quick-and-dirty fashion recorded with X drummer DJ Bonebrake and fuzzbox-stomper Ron Franklin. He’s now touring behind a recently released collection of rarities, The Case Files.
Amsterdam Bar And Hall
6 W. 6th Street
Twin Cities MN 55102
all ages $20
WXPN “FREE AT NOON” CONCERT SERIES – Live performance Friday April 13th at noon in Philadelphia (All XPN “Free At Noon” concerts are now being simulcast via National Public Radio’s website – npr.org, and via online broadcast at WBFO in Buffalo, New York / KUT in Austin, Texas / WITH in Ithica, New York / WRUR in Rochester, New York / Vermont Public Radio)
NASHVILLE SCENE (Nashville weekly) – Nashville show preview with photos
Power-Pop Giants Peter Case and Paul Collins Are Playing Mercy Lounge April 19, and You Should Care
Posted by D Patrick Rodgers
First of all, yes. We know that this show was initially announced several weeks ago. And yes, there was some question regarding what venue would host the show — why in the world would Peter Case’s website (among others) list the venue as “The High Watt”? As ticketed, it’s definitely taking place at Mercy Lounge, and not in some as-yet-unannounced, still-gestating, fetal-stages baby venue. Where would you get that idea?
But here’s the thing: If you heard the names Peter Case and Paul Collins, scratched your head and thought, “Eh, must be some random pair of old singer-songwriters,” then you’re doing it wrong. Extremely wrong. Collins and Case first collaborated in the short-lived but highly influential mid-’70s power-pop trio The Nerves, who released only one four-song, self-titled EP. The lead-off track, “Hanging on the Telephone” — a performance of which was captured in an in-store during SXSW 2007 (see above) — proved to be an enormous hit for Blondie. Puerto Rican garage-rock outfit Davila 666 also does a version that’s a lot of fun to watch. But I’m getting sidetracked here.
Now, after The Nerves, Collins and Case again collaborated in The Breakaways, not to be confused with English girl group The Breakaways. There’s not a lot of Breakaways tunes to be dug up online, but “Walking out on Love” is a highlight:
Then Case and Collins parted ways, with Case going on to front the influential Plimsouls, and their 1983 release Everywhere at Once is essential listening for the power-pop fan. “Shaky City” is my favorite on the LP, but “A Million Miles Away” is on YouTube, so we’ll listen to that instead:
As Case did his Plimsouls thing, Collins went on to front the prolific The Beat, whose “Rock ‘n’ Roll Girl” is what we in the biz call “undeniable”:
There’s your cursory, mildly unimpressive, I’m-working-on-some-other-stuff-and-thus-have-to-leave-it-at-that crash course. There’s plenty I left out, and I apologize. As a token of my regret, listen to “When You Find Out,” as it is dope:
April 19 at Mercy Lounge
NASHVILLE’S DEAD (Nashville music site) – Nashville show preview with photos
GET YOUR ONE WAY TICKET
For the last few years we’ve always seen Paul Collins take his bag around the area but never hit Nashville. Not sure exactly what’s been stopping the Nerve from coming to our fair city, but it won’t matter anymore this April. Paul and Peter Case will be stopping in at “The High Watt” on April 19th to play a mix of Nerves, The Beat, and Plimsouls jams. Color us stoked. We’re not exactly sure what The High Watt is just yet, but the address on the site has it listed as right near Mercy Lounge. You can check here for all the rest of Peter & Paul’s tour dates. We went ahead and posted one of our favorite Nerves songs at the bottom for good measure. Gimme Spring, bebe…
EXAMINER (online A&E site) – News story on tour
Paul Collins/Peter Case tour dates announced
The Nerves co-founders Paul Collins and Peter Case tour dates are official. This comes after their initial announcement in November that the two would reunite to co-headline together this year.
Collins and Case will be accompanied by Timm Buechler on bass and drummer Amos Pitsch. They will perform classics from the bands they formed together, The Nerves and The Breakaways, as well as tracks from Collins’ Beat and Case’s Plimsouls.
While some venues have not yet been announced, here are the official Collins/Case tour dates and cities…
NO DEPRESSION (Americana online music site) – News story on tour with photos, tour dates, videos and related links.
Press release: Peter Case & Paul Collins of The Nerves 2012 Reunion Tour
ike many bands, they said it would never happen; there were no plans to reunite The Nerves. When I interviewed both Case and Collins a few years ago, they both praised one another, but stated that a Nerves reunion was unlikely. More recently, The Nerves experienced a resurgence in popularity when their songs were covered by Cat Power and several other indie rock artists. In 2011, Green Day covered The Nerves’ song Walking Out On Love as part of their Broadway Special. Collins also joined Green Day onstage for live performances in New York. Apparently, Billie Joe Armstrong is an outspoken fan of The Nerves.
Peter Case & Paul Collins – Two longtime friends, musical partners, Americana heroes and founding members of legendary rock group The Nerves will be joining forces for a North American tour in 2012, including special dates at the SXSW music festival in Austin, Texas and some appearances in Canada. The tour is a reunion of Peter Case and Paul Collins, two founding members of The Nerves. Rather than focusing only on The Nerves’ material, their sets will encompass the entire careers of Case and Collins. Expect to hear classic tunes such as Hanging On The Telephone and Walking Out On Love, in addition to key songs from The Plimsouls, The Beat and related works of Case and Collins.
This will be a full band electric tour where the duo is backed by members of The Paul Collins Beat. Paul Collins and Peter Case are 2/3 of The Nerves. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, likely to be the closest thing to a band reunion of The Nerves the world will ever see.
Peter Case and Paul Collins have both established themselves as hard-working singer-songwriters. As the story has been told, Peter Case began his musical career as a folk singer, writing and performing on the streets and in the clubs and coffee houses of San Francisco. Collins moved to California in 1974 with only $75, a station wagon and a guitar. His life changed after meeting Peter Case and Jack Lee and the trio began writing songs and performing as The Nerves. The group funded their own studio recordings and North American tours, performing in the U.S. and Canada.
Collins managed the group and handled their bookings, which included a tour with The Ramones and respectable spots on the USO tour, performing for the troops. The Nerves disbanded around 1977 and Collins and Case formed The Breakaways, which literally “broke away” into two groups, The Plimsouls and The Beat, later known as The Paul Collins Beat. Case became a solo artist in the 80s and has since recorded dozens of prolific albums as a singer-songwriter. Aside from The Beat, Collins recorded his first solo album in 1990, which included members of Chris Isaak’s band. Several more solo albums followed, until Collins re-formed The Beat.
BLURT (national print & online music magazine) – Positive news post, with Plimsouls photo, “Magic Touch” download and tour dates
Plimsouls Live LP; Case & Collins Reunite
Duo planning a full-band tour – including stops at SXSW – to showcase Nerves, Breakaways, Plimsouls and Beat classics.
By Blurt Staff
Punk, garage and power pop fans need no introduction to the late, great Plimsouls, the group that brought Peter Case to international prominence. Over the past few years Case has been releasing unearthing material (solo and with bands, including Plimsouls) from his archives for the Alive Naturalsound label, and this time he’s got another ‘souls good ‘un: Beach Town Confidential, due on Feb. 7.
Recorded at the height of their onstage power at The Golden Bear in Huntington Beach, CA on August 13, 1983, this captures Case, Eddie Muñoz, Dave Pahoa and Louie Ramírez ripping through 16 tracks with a youthful and reckless abandon. Six of these songs have never been recorded before by The Plimsouls (“Making Time,” “Fall On You,” “The Price Of Love,” “Who’s Gonna Break The Ice?,” “Jumpin’ In The Night” and “You Can’t Judge A Book”), plus it also features the only live recordings of “Magic Touch,” “Oldest Story In The World” and “Hobo.”
MP3: “Magic Touch”
Meanwhile, Case has announced he’s teaming up with Paul Collins for an extensive spring North American tour that will include several performances in Austin at SXSW. Prior to the Plimsouls, Case was in The Nerves and The Breakaways with Collins (who would later go on to form his own highly-respected group, The Beat); music buffs will recall that Blondie took Nerves gem “Hanging On The Telephone” all the way to the bank in 1978. For this tour the two (along with bassist Timm Buechler and drummer Amos Pitsch) will be performing classic numbers by those bands as well as Plimsouls and The Beat material.
SOUNDSPIKE (online music site) – News story on tour with Peter photo, tour dates and related links.
Peter Case, Paul Collins join forces for tour
Story by Dave Soref
California New Wave pioneers Peter Case and Paul Collins are reuniting for a spring tour that kicks off Mar. 1 in Vancouver, British Columbia and is slated to wrap eight weeks later in Orlando, FL.
Case and Collins first worked together in early San Francisco new-wave band The Nerves, before Case went on to form the Plimsouls in Los Angeles while Collins played with The Beat (not to be confused with the English Beat) and The Breakaways. The upcoming tour will feature Case and Collins backed by a full-band as they play songs from their back catalogs at bars and clubs across the U.S., including several performances at South by Southwest 2012 in Austin, TX.
In addition to the roadwork, Case is producing “Beach Town Confidential,” a live album of Plimsouls material recorded onstage at the Golden Bear in Huntington Beach, CA, on Aug. 13, 1983, when the four-piece was at the height of their fame. “Beach Town Confidential,” featuring six songs that have never been recorded by the Plimsouls before, will be released on Feb. 7.
POWER POP OVERDOSE (online music blog) – Tour news with poster art and tour dates featured.
ANTIMUSIC (online music site) – Tour news featured.
CW’S PLACE (online music blog) – Tour news with poster art and tour dates featured.