TV Eyes

Hollywood, CA - May 13, 2003

photo by Shari Susich

photo by Shari Susich

photo by Shari Susich

photo by 'Anita Captured'

photo by 'Anita Captured'

photo by Shari Susich

photo by Shari Susich

photo by Shari Susich

photo by Shari Susich

photo by Shari Susich

photo by Shari Susich

photo by Shari Susich

photo by Shari Susich

(Photos submitted by Shari Susich and "Anita Captured")

STUDY (She's a Study)
MISSION (Mission: Submission)
PARTYS OVER (The Party's Over)

Note: Setlist submitted by "Anita Caputured." She says: "This is the setlist from the Troubadour show (I don't have one or anything, but someone I know was allowed to take a picture of it)...Actual song titles appear to have been abbreviated for the most part."

Read a short review posted in Filter magazine.

My Review:

"I think we're ready," Jason said to me hours before the TV Eyes were to play their first live show. Ready they were. The TV Eyes blew away the packed house with an extraordinary opening gig.

Having heard a few songs before, I thought I knew what to expect. But Roger's mastery of the keys, Brian's tight percussion and Jason's driving axe and slick bass-playing superseded my expectations. The band has skillfully mixed electro-clash with rock, and even managed to add in a little harmony to the mix.

The most delightful surprise were perfectly synched video montages made for each song, which were displayed as the backdrop to the stage. In an English accent, Jason inquired of the audience in the beginning of the set, "Do you like our movies? They're a bit perverted." Most shots were of strange old dance movies with scantily-clad women; and a couple even starred Jason. An interesting twist to the set was one video featuring Jason singing while driving his car and walking down the streets of Hollywood, while Jason played bass to it live onstage.

During the entire show, some guy kept bumping into me. When I glanced over to who it was, it turned out to be Beck, so how can I complain? Some other notables in the audience were Johnny Knoxville, Air's manager, and some members of Beck's band.

Near the end of the show, some people started making silly requests. A familiar voice in the back was heard to yell "Fuck Jellyfish!" which brought a couple sly grins to Jason and Roger's faces.

The boys returned after their relatively short set for only one encore. Jason explained to the audience that they would have played more, but they only knew one more song. After the set I got to see old friends and meet new ones. Jason's brother Ryan was in the audience, as were their parents.

I brought my Logan's Sanctuary cd for the three boys to sign. I approached Brian with it first, who upon seeing what it was said "Ah, this is my baby! What, do you want me to sign this?!" He was initially hesitant to sign it, not wanting to "desecrate" it, but I reassured him I had a pristine one safe at home. He went on to describe all the photos inside: "That's my backyard. That girl is Roger's girlfriend's sister. The guy wearing the suit in the corner is me! And *laughs* look how I made Jason pose! Roman Coppola took that shot." Sweet as can be, he even complimented my rhinestone Led Zeppelin tank, and repeated it even more enthusiastically when I explained that I had handmade it.

Next up was Roger, who said he has two solo albums currently in the works. I mentioned how impressed I was with the video montage. He replied that he and Jason spent nearly two months compiling and editing the videos so they would synch-up perfectly with the songs.

As the house lights went on again, indicating that it was time to go, I finally got to congratulate Jason on a fantastic show. He introduced me to Beck, who recognized me as the girl standing next to him during the show. He remarked that I was one of the only people in the audience moving at all and went on to make fun of some girl up front who was getting "a little too into it."

All in all, the show was an amazing success, and I can't wait for the next show!

Kevin Packard says:

Well, my Jelly-kif and kin, it is the morning after TV Eyes made their LA debut and I am still recovering from how incredible it was. Though the band only played for about 50 minutes, it was almost surreal in its level of perfection.

The line just to get to Will Call stretched past the smoking patio at Dan Tannas (the restaurant three doors down that Phil Spector was seen at before he killed that chick a few months ago.) My girlfriend and I were a little nervous because we thought we might miss something. However, the starpower in the line (Johnny Knoxville, Beck, half of Beck's band, ect.) convinced us we wouldn't miss anything if they were in line too.

We had just enough time to get in the room, navigate through the crowd and find a place in the back, before the band took the stage. It was my assumption that the three would have another member to handle bass duties, but it was just Jason, Roger, and Brian. Rog was sporting a new, shorter do that was almost De De Ramone, and took the stage in a vinyl jumpsuit that would have given Kraftwerk a run for their money. He was surrounded by an assortment of vintage keyboards, had one mic for vox and one for vocoder, and at times played percussion and sample patterns on a Roland Octapad. Jason was pretty much wearing the same thing he was the last time he played the Troub (Velvet smoking jacket, red tiger tee, old jeans.) He bounced between playing guitar, bass, and a mini-Moog positioned to his right. Brian transitioned between a Lugwig Vistalite Clear kit in the front and a Roland V-kit positioned to his left.

The songwriting, structure, and arrangement was impeccable. I remarked to my girlfriend that I could play her about 50 bands from the 80's that it sounded like, yet it didn't sound dated; it was fresh as produce. The first couple of songs bounced between "Pleasure Victim"-era Berlin to a tinge of the first Pseudo Echo album. Very high energy, strong melodies, two-part vocal harmonies, with loopy backbeats.

Every song was accompanied in perfect synch with action projected on a giant screen behind them. The video footage was impeccably edited in time with the music that was being performed live, and ranged from "Big Brother"-esque, to 80's pop-kitsch, to auto-erotica, to clips from wonderfully obscure 80's films (including "Brainstorm",) to Euro-Techno Wave. All of it was controlled via DVD by Brian Reitsel. I was quite taken by how well the footage matched the tone of each song. There were even times where video footage of Jason handled the lead vocals while the real Jason sang alternate melodies or harmonies.

To say the least, both my girlfriend and I were blown-away, and just the slightest bit aroused by the show and the music as a whole. Not a dead song or moment in the lot.

I am so floored in my excitement to hear this stuff recorded. All I can say is, strap yourselves in and feel the G's, because TV eyes are going to thrust you into another musical dimension.

Oh, and they make cool T-shirts too!

CuffySaff says:

OKay, this TV Eyes experiment must stop. Jason, remove any doubt you have about your solo work. There are not enough synonyms for the word "suck" to describe that techno-drone crap that TV Eyes made loyal Jason/Jellyfish/Grays fans endure.

And that opening act looked like the edited scenes from a David Lynch home video.
PLEASE stick to rock, Jason.

Geoff Koboldt says:

Unfortunately, I got to the show late and only caught one song - the encore! I thought it was very moody music with brilliant textures and all the sounds of the 80's post-punk music...although with more arrangements within the song. The video stuff was great in the background to enhance the mood and add a bit of curiousity. I prefer Jason doing his own stuff but this was a great little adventure/side project with good market potential - Good luck Jason! I spent some time after the show with Jason - I hadn't spoken to him in quite some time. He said he was trying to network both of his projects - ie. find a label. I told him I would gladly manage his talents... he said go for it! ahah!

Matt "The Smartest Monkey" Sebastian says:

I went into this gig expecting Jason Falkner to unload a slew of new songs that would tickle the fancy of just about every industry rep, critic, songwriter, and niche fan in the house. I was expecting good writing, good melodies, and good production. I was expecting satisfactory. Something that I could appreciate but not love.... just another reminder that Jellyfish was fantastic.

I was wrong. TV Eyes blew me away. They bent everything great about pop songs, punk rock, and 80's quirk to strike you down and make you wonder why you yourself write a positive way. And it's got a good beat too. Melding 80's techno beats with brit-pop has never sounded so good. This kind of art comes beaming through as a messiah, saving us from the plague of nu metal and mall punk bullshit. A true inspiration. I'm glad that at age 18 I was able to witness this marvel first hand.

Thanks TV Eyes

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