After more than two years, Telefon Tel Aviv finally gets the chance to entrance fans at Lodge Room before taking a break from performing

Telefon Tel AvivBy Josh Herwitt //

Telefon Tel Aviv with Chasms //
Lodge Room – Los Angeles
July 29th, 2022 //

More than a decade has passed since Joshua Eustis tragically lost the other half of Telefon Tel Aviv.

Forming the band with his high school friend Charles Cooper in 1999, the two would go on to release an EP, three LPs and a number of remixes together while carving out their own space in the glitch and IDM scenes alongside Leftfield, The Future Sound of London and Boards of Canada to name a few. But just two days after unveiling their third full length Immolate Yourself, Cooper was found dead.

Cooper’s accidental death marked a major turning point for Eustis. Had the time come for him to shut it down for good or should he continue to make music under the TTA moniker in honor of his bandmate?

Over the next four years, Eustis would find himself working with other bands. He co-produced Puscifer’s Conditions of My Parole in 2011 and then toured with Nine Inch Nails, manning any instrument that was requested of him whether it was guitar, bass, keyboards, saxophone or even the erhu.

Eustis, though, wasn’t ready to give up on a solo career quite yet so he returned to the studio in 2014 after NIN’s “Tension Tour” to focus on a different project named Sons of Magdalene before turning his attention to recording the first TTA album without Cooper.

Telefon Tel Aviv

The end result, almost five years later, would be 2019’s Dreams Are Not Enough. The nine-track effort on Ghostly International officially put TTA back on the map as it garnered high praise from music critics, including Pitchfork (if you can believe that), and offered him the chance to take the stage again.

So when Eustis announced in early 2020 that he would be playing a TTA show in his current hometown, it was an opportunity to cross another 90’s electronic act off my bucket list. Of course, the performance would end up being rescheduled twice due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but it finally came to fruition last Friday at LA’s Lodge Room inside the same historic, three-story building that the Highland Park Masonic Temple once called home.

To make things all the more special, Eustis had previously said on social media in advance that Lodge Room and Grey Area in San Francisco would serve as TTA’s final two dates in support of Dreams Are Not Enough and the last ones he’ll perform live (“like, not DJing” in his words) stateside for a while.

That might not be what TTA fans outside of California wanted to hear after waiting patiently for live music to come back safely, yet given the fact that Eustis has produced Apparat, Drab Majesty, Tropic of Cancer and Vatican Shadow among others and spent a few years in synthwave trio The Black Queen with Greg Puciato and Steven Alexander of The Dillinger Escape Plan, it’s not hard to understand why he’s taking a break now.

And while no one knows how “long” it will be except for maybe Eustis, if this was the only night I ever got to see TTA in the flesh, it will certainly not go lost on me.

Setlist:
Intro
The Means Whereby Lovers Are Waylaid
A Younger Version of Myself
Standing at the Bottom of the Ocean
Mouth Agape
What It Is Without the Hand That Wields It
Introductory Nomenclature
Something Akin to Lust
Not Breathing
Arms Aloft
Mean Friend (Telefon Tel Aviv Remix)

Encore:
I Dream of It Often
The Birds

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: