As Writer Chris Varias recounted in Cincinnati com today, the day after the ultimate Cincinnati local music throwdown featuring hometown favorites, The Afghan Whigs and Wussy: “The Whigs – probably the biggest rock group ever to come out of Cincinnati based on any number of subjective and objective measurements – reformed earlier this year and played their first hometown gig in this millennium Thursday night to a sold-out room. Tickets were scooped up in about a minute after going on sale.”
As Chris also correctly noted: “The Whigs are known for an expansive taste in covers with a concentration on R&B. They mixed in whole versions or parts of Frank Ocean’s “LoveCrimes,” Prince’s “Little Red Corvette” and “Purple Rain,” Marie “Queenie” Lyons’ “See and Don’t See,” Drake’s “Over My Dead Body” and Bo Diddley’s “Who Do You Love.”
The Afghan Whigs (or just The Whigs to their very loyal and demonstrative fans) originally played from 1986 to 2001. After calling it quits in 2001, the band reformed and announced plans to tour this year.
In the day, the Whigs – with core members Greg Dulli (vocals, rhythm guitar), Rick McCollum (lead guitar), and John Curley (bass), was one of the leading groups of ‘90s alternative rock, rising up around the grunge movement.
Reese Higgins writing recently in the washingtoncitypaper.com, picks up the story from there: “When The Afghan Whigs broke up in 2001, the band from Cincinnati, Ohio, ended an underappreciated career as one of alternative rock’s most soulful and sinister acts. Leaving behind a legacy of ups (creative) and downs (commercial), The Afghan Whigs hopped from a self-released debut (1988’s Big Top Halloween) to Sub Pop success to major label victory (1993’s Gentlemen). A follow-up to Gentlemen, Black Love, failed commercially, leading the band to take time off—eventually changing labels for the release of 1998’s swan song, 1965.”
1965 was, of course, a monster and master work, considered one of the seminal works of the 90’s, if not all rock recordings. In short, 1965, is a dark soulful and intense work, characterizing everything that was, and is again great, about the Whigs.
As Joe Tacopino wrote earlier this year in Rolling Stone: “Plenty of songs have been written about failed relationships, but no one can plunge into the depths like Greg Dulli, who led soulful Ohio rock outfit the Afghan Whigs in the Nineties, taking us on dark trips into his troubled psyche with each passing record. Dulli wrote songs about the worst love affair you’ve ever had: a beautiful disaster of emotional turmoil that you’d repeat all over again in a second.
The Afghan Whigs concert tour in 2012 is neatly timed to hit 25 years after their first live show in 1987 . The Whigs have received much love on this tour, nationally, internationally and especially at home. The Afghan Whigs performed “My Enemy” on Jimmy Kimmel Live on September 19th