As the band gears up for the release of a new studio album, dark alternative and indie rock act The Church has announced plans to embark on a tour of North America this summer. The band will be sharing the co-headlining spot with fellow alt./indie act The Afghan Whigs, with the tour spanning June 18 to July 13; serving as the support act on all but one date will be Ed Harcourt, while the Brooklyn date of June 20 will see Kristin Hersh in the opening slot. Stops on the tour include Boston, Toronto, Chicago, Indianapolis, Denver, Seattle, San Francisco, Portland, San Diego, Los Angeles, and more! A full listing of tour dates and ticket links can be found via The Church’s and The Afghan Whigs’ websites.
Despite the love and history between the twp groups, this marks the first time The Church and The Afghan Whigs will tour together, with The Church founder/vocalist/bassist Steve Kilbey commenting that “playing some shows together certainly feels like an idea whose time has surely come. Get ready for a double blast of the power and glory of rock & roll!” The Afghan Whigs frontman Greg Dulli adds, “I was an 18-year-old college freshman lying in bed listening to WVXU late one night when I heard a song that I described later as sounding like David Bowie fronting The Byrds.” That song was “The Unguarded Moment” off The Church’s 1981 Of Skins and Heart debut, with Dulli becoming a fan soon after and forming The Afghan Whigs in 1986. The band would dissolve in 2001, and reform in 2012, continuing to tour and release albums, with 2022’s How Do You Burn? being the latest.
The tour sees The Church celebrating the release of the band’s 27th studio album, titled Eros Zeta and The Perfumed Guitars, whose themes are a continuation of the highly acclaimed 2023 album The Hypnogogue, the dystopian narrative following the exploits of a failed rockstar using a dream extractor to reclaim his former glory; the album had previously been available at The Church’s merch table on the band’s global tour this past fall, with the reveal of “A Strange Past” acting as the latest single after “Realm of Minor Angels.” Of the song, Kilbey states, “The musical genesis of this piece was a while ago via guitarist Jeffrey Cain, but when The Hypnogogue reared its dystopian but not ugly head, we felt ‘A Strange Past’ had found its true home.” Both the single and a video for “A Strange Past,” directed by Clint Lewis, were released on February 6, while Eros Zeta and The Perfumed Guitars will arrive on March 29, with pre-orders now available.
Accompanying both The Hypnogogue and Eros Zeta and The Perfumed Guitars is an eBook penned by Kilbey that expands on the albums’ shared universe, titled Eros Zeta and The Hypnoguge, now available via all vendors.