VANASHING TRIBE -
By Alan Benson
Call them the Commitments of
Boston. Just as they were poised on the
brink of national recognition, the venerable rock quintet
last week that they're calling it quits after nine years.
In an e-mail message posted
April 21 on their Internet-based electronic
bulletin board, bassist Greg Lo Piccolo confirmed that
the band are
breaking up. "We've been working on this project
for most of our adult
lives, and we've made music that we're all very proud
of, but it's time
to turn our energies toward some other pursuits."
One of Boston's most popular
bands, Tribe earned a rabid local following
with their effervescent mix of pop and dark lyrics.
garnered critical praise and won them three Best Music
Poll awards for
local rock act. Lead singer Janet LaValley won the best
vocalist award three years running; _Abort_, the band's
was named best local rock album in 1992.
Although their three albums
-- the self-produced _Here at the Home_, and
_Abort_ and _Sleeper_ -- were strong sellers in the
Boston area and drew
local critical acclaim, Tribe were never able to break
onto the national
scene. They came closest with "Supercollider,"
their eerie tribute to the
Texas nuclear-research project. The song got national
airplay and landed
them on _Late Night with Conan O'Brien_.
"Some of us may reappear
in the future in other projects, so don't count
us out completely -- but as Tribe, we're packing it
in after we play the
shows that we have booked," Lo Piccolo said in
his e-mail message. That
means the two remaining opportunities for area fans
to see them will be
tonight, April 28, at Worcester Polytechnic Institute's
Alden Hall (with
Letters to Cleo) and Sunday May 8 at the Orpheum, when
they'll be opening