TRIBE
Articles

Spin Magazine:
1989

Tribe are a mish-mash of influences and musical styles: 70s artrock, 80s punk and classical training. They're a Boston band that takes rock'n'roll history into their basement, disassembles it, and designs different ways to put it back together. Just for fun.

"We all do lots of things together," says Tribe's lead vocalist, Janet LaValley. "We all live in the same house. We're friends. That makes great chemistry in a band."

We feel like a bunch of kids from middle-class backgrounds," says bassist Greg LoPiccolo, "living as a family without parents."

At Christmas, the five members of Tribe buy each other lots of toys: blow-up Godzillas, battery-operated water Uzis and Coleco race cars. Their independent EP, "Tribe" (on Rutabaga Records), sounds like the excited mayhem of Christmas morning-spontaneous and unruly. On the funky, groovy "Abort," high, dissonant guitar screeches collide with a constant dance beat, setting the stage for LaValley's deep, ominous voice. It's loud, organized chaos.

Though they're still without a recording contract, Tribe has attracted the attention of several major labels. They've been together for three years, gig nonstop (mostly in the Boston area), their demos get lots of radio play and, for the past two years, they have been voted "best unsigned band" by the Boston Phoenix. But, while the size of their following grows and offers get more enticing, the band keeps its perspective.

"It's important to keep testing ourselves," says LoPiccolo, "and our music so that as a group we develop a more centered direction with an eye toward longevity."

--Christopher Kehoe

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