Public Access TV Tickets

Over the river in Brooklyn, New York City looks and sounds just like it does in all the magazines and on all the TV shows: the loft spaces, the nonchalant rich kid slummers, the same old same old. And across the bridge in Manhattan? Not much better: in fact if you ask John Eatherly, singer, guitarist and songwriter with Public Access TV, it’s worse: a garage-band, buddy-up-a-Stroke, pose-a-thon hangover that shows no signs of subsiding. It’s like the thing that was supposed to happen after the 2001 configuration of punk never happened, because it didn’t ever happen.

“It’s crazy to me,” he says. “It’s like 13 years ago now, and nobody has moved on at all. You’d think that it would have died out by now, but no: it’s the same. The whole garage thing is so played up until this point. I don’t hear anything that I relate to.”

But Public Access TV know that New York City can do better. That it deserves better. John grew up in Pegram, Tennessee (population 2,093), and fell in love with the idea of the romantic ideal of this city and its music. When he got there himself, it was not-so-fresh off a $40 bus into Chinatown that took him 18 hours. He didn’t know what was going on then, and he knows that there’s nothing much going on now. In other words, this is someone who is going to make damn sure that he and his still very new band make things happen. It may have taken a while, but boy are PATV moving fast now.

To date they have played just one show, at Niagara in the East Village at the end of January. It was free and it came soon after one song, ‘Monaco’, went up online. There were people hanging out in the bar while they soundchecked, trying to get a sneak preview. And that night, yes, there were “industry” people in attendance who had had their ears prick up at the band's taut, breezy, Buzzcockian pop melodies. Importantly though, there were also a lot of people jumping around, a lot of people PATV had seen around, and a few who just heard what sounded like something fresh and exciting from the street and wandered in. Everyone in that packed little room knew this was something special.

And then, for now, that was it.

Because Public Access TV are a band who understand the power of not giving away too much, too soon. There are stacks of great songs (written by John), but no more NYC shows for a while. The next step is in the UK, and even then just a few shows. You will have to find them, to keep looking, to catch them if you can. Not the other way around. Public Access TV believe in the lost art of bands maintaining their mystery.

“That’s important to us,” John says. “A lot of bands give that up easily, but a little bit of mystery goes a long way. We are not going to be tweeting at other bands or whatever. I want PATV to seem separate from everything else. I want to be totally new. I don’t want to be in any scene, or any world of bands that already exist in New York. I want to start something fresh.”

And he and his band are making it look very easy so far, aren’t they?

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