Singer and mastermind Jeff Mangum became a hermit, residual members carried on with other Athens, Ga., Elephant 6 projects, and the vault was sealed on one of the most inimitable standouts in underground music since Trout Mask Replica
. Then Mangum started playing solo again a few years ago, eventually resurrecting the whole band, and now the album is once again a topic of discussion. A less-explored thread worth following in the folklore of Aeroplane
is its relationship with Merge Records
, the venerable indie label that put the record out at the zenith of the pre-Internet CMJ era. Stylistic cues aside, your favorites from indie heavy-hitters like Spoon, Arcade Fire and She & Him may not have existed without Aeroplane
. âEvery fall, kids head off to college and decide itâs their job to own a copy of Aeroplane
on vinyl,â a friend who works at Merge once told me. âItâs not Arcade Fire money, but itâs kept the lights on long enough for us to be there when Arcade Fire decided to shop for a label.â If nothing else, consider zoning out to âThe King of Carrot Flowers, Pts. 2-3â your due diligence to the livelihood of indie rock.
SEE IT: Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside St., 225-0047. 8:30 pm Sunday-Monday, April 6-7. Sold out. All ages.