February 5, 2008

The Format calls it quits

Arizona indie-pop band The Format posted on their MySpace yesterday that they are going their separate ways. To put it eloquently, this sucks.

These guys put on one of the single best live shows I’ve ever seen [show video & interview here]. There’s an earnest and incisive timbre to everything that Nate sings that always snags me, with multi-instrumental cascades on so many of their shimmering songs. Their shows are well-attended by 16 year olds, but they are all very enthusiastic sixteen year olds that make the audience feel like a single writhing organism, singing along with one voice. I’ll bet this announcement made at least a few girls cry after fourth period class yesterday.

Format MySpace Blog Post

“We have just put out word that we will not be making a new Format album. Please understand this was a tough decision and we’re both upset about it. While we accept there will be false speculation as to why, understand that Sam and I remain extremely close and in fact are still passing the twin peaks box set back and forth in an attempt to figure out who REALLY killed laura palmer.

We also want to thank everyone with and within the Format, particularly Mike, Don, and Marko, whom without, none of this would have ever even been fully realized. We both suggest you support their musical talents and whatever they decide to do. And lastly we want to thank the fans who made this the best 5 years of our lives.

- nate”

There’s such a wonderful confessional narrative in this song, “On Your Porch.” This is the acoustic version from the Snails EP. The lyrics seem appropriate today, for several reasons.

I was on your porch
The smoke sank into my skin
So I came inside to be with you
We talked all night
about everything you could imagine,
Cause come the morning, I’ll be gone

. . . .

So now here I sit
In a hotel off of Sunset
My thoughts bounce off of Sam’s guitar

And that’s the way it’s been
Ever since we were kids, but now
well now we’ve got something to prove
And I, I can see their eyes
Then tell me something — can they see mine?
‘Cause whats left to lose?
I’ve done enough,
And if I fail then I fail
but I gave it a shot

And these last three years I know they have been hard
But now it’s time to get out of the desert
and into the sun
Even if it’s alone
Even if it’s alone

I was on your porch last night
The smoke it sank into my skin

On Your Porch (acoustic) – The Format

[photo credit – Losanjealous]

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  • AWW…I’m in no way a 16 year old but I do like their music. Dog Problems is in heavy rotation on my iPod.
    Dang it, another one down

    Anonymous — February 5, 2008 @ 9:46 am

  • Dang. I wish them the best. We were kids back then.

    Chase Abner — February 5, 2008 @ 10:23 am

  • Aww, this is the first time I’ve ever been disappointed I came to your blog. I could have gone on living in happy oblivion for a while, but oh well, life goes on.

    Anonymous — February 5, 2008 @ 11:56 am

  • Listening to Dog Problems, shedding a tear.

    Barkalounger — February 5, 2008 @ 1:03 pm

  • This is sad … they had a unique sound, and their songs were certainly catchy as all hell. Well, better to know now …

    Amy — February 5, 2008 @ 1:42 pm

  • Disappointing, but hope that they will continue making music in their own separate ways.

    mel... — February 5, 2008 @ 2:57 pm

  • What a shame. I was just thinking the other day how hard it will be to follow up two perfect albums. Sadness!

    Hi-Fi Heart — February 5, 2008 @ 3:49 pm

  • Sad news. I bought Dog Problems on this blog’s recommendation and wasn’t disappointed.

    last year's girl — February 5, 2008 @ 4:01 pm

  • Awww no! I love them! ‘Dog Problems’ is one of those albums I could listen to everyday and never be sick of.

    Now I’m sad.


    Anonymous — February 5, 2008 @ 4:51 pm

  • It’s been over a score since I was 16, but add my voice to the “Dog Problems is on permanent rotation up in here” chorus.

    Mike sad.

    Michael — February 5, 2008 @ 5:13 pm

  • Yes, Heather, this truly does suck.

    I was lucky to see them twice, 1 in ’04, and again last year. It all started with The First Single and I was hooked. Those guys have hearts of gold and wish them the best.


    bg — February 5, 2008 @ 9:45 pm

  • This ruined my day yesterday. The Format is one of the most fun live bands that I’ve seen recently. I’m a huge fan, and I hope the “hiatus” doesn’t turn into an official break up. :(

    Samantha — February 5, 2008 @ 10:25 pm

  • I’m glad you covered this. I’ve been in musical mourning for several days.

    Their concert this summer was the best one I’ve ever seen. They will most certainly be missed.

    this-gypsy — February 5, 2008 @ 11:35 pm

  • Dang! I am not 16 but thought this band had big things coming in the future.

    Rollerpimp — February 6, 2008 @ 5:47 am

  • I’m so far removed from being a sixteen-year old girl, both in age and sex, but great music is great music and “Dog Problems” certainly fits that description to a T.
    I’m really disappointed to hear this news and recently had wondered why there wasn’t any news coming from the band.
    Well, we can always replay the music they gave us and enjoy it, albeit with a touch of sadness for what more wonderful stuff they could have shared with us in the future. Hopefully as individuals, they’ll be able to provide us with some more fine music.
    Also, a big thanks to you too Heather, for introducing them to me.

    Larry F. — February 6, 2008 @ 9:50 am

  • Never heard of The Format, love the song! I keep playing it over and over.

    Introduced to the Blog because I am huge PJ fan…return daily now to hear new music.

    Love it thanks.


    Anonymous — February 6, 2008 @ 12:30 pm

  • No! I have really gotten into their music this past year and was really looking forward to catching them live in the near future. A real drag.

    Anonymous — February 6, 2008 @ 1:55 pm

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

Mp3s are for sampling purposes, kinda like when they give you the cheese cube at Costco, knowing that you'll often go home with having bought the whole 7 lb. spiced Brie log. They are left up for a limited time. If you LIKE the music, go and support these artists, buy their schwag, go to their concerts, purchase their CDs/records and tell all your friends. Rock on.

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