The Airborne Toxic Event at The Commodore

Photos by Ronatron

A few years ago, all the way up in beautiful Pemberton, British Columbia, I stumbled onto this multi-talented band from the bright lights of Hollywood. It wasn’t so much of a stumble, but more of a graceful fall and ever since that fateful day, I have been hooked to the melodramatic tunes of The Airborne Toxic Event. They were all down to earth, unaffected by the glamorous lifestyle that LA brings, and never compromised their artistic creativity to satisfy a record label. Looking back now, I think one of the reasons why I fell in love with their music was because of their personable nature. I was more receptive to their stadium rock sound because I had a chance to talk with all members, and to be able to put a friendly face to the music definitely played a huge part in my new-found love for this indie rock band.

TATESince that glorious music festival, The Airborne Toxic Event has gone on to do wonderful things. They’ve toured the world, gained numerous fans, and most importantly, recorded another EP titled “Happiness is Overrated.” With their hard work and dedication, they are on the verge of breaking it big, and I’m incredibly grateful for having witnessed their humble beginning.
So when I got word that they were coming here to Vancouver to play at The Commodore, I knew I had to go cover the night. I wasn’t disappointed one bit, except maybe for the smaller crowd, but regardless, the boys and girl from TATE put on a very impressive performance that left the audience wanting more after each song.

Comprised of Mikel Jollett, Steven Chen, Noah Harmon, Anna Bulbrook, and Daren Taylor, this five-piece played their epic stadium rock and got their dedicated fans to sing along to their catchy choruses and dance to their rhythmic riffs. With hits such as “Wishing Well” and “Sometime Around Midnight,” The Airborne Toxic Event put on a very impressive performance, and the small crowd was treated to a very memorable night. As Mikel interchanged between guitar and keys, his rustic yet tender voice never wavered and provided the essence behind each song. Anna was superb on the violin and was thoroughly entranced in the music, while Steven played it cool and made every guitar solo look simple. Noah played the traditional electric bass, but pulled out the upright and proceeded to wow the audience with his exquisite bow. Daren, who made a brief appearance at the end of The Henry Clay People’s set, was perched up high and hit those skins with such vigor that I was sure he was going to break his drum set.

Overall, The Airborne Toxic Event was just as I had remembered them, but better. They’ve matured as performers, developed a stronger connection with one another, and established themselves as a band to look out for in the near future. With so much talent residing in one band, it’s kind of scary actually, because one of these days, they’ll be hitting it big around the world. There is only one way I can describe how I feel about their potential as future rock stars, and in the words of my buddy Josh, all I can say is “YEEEEEAAAAHHHHHH.”