The Teeth was a name commonly on the lips of Philly indie enthusiasts in the mid-2000s. And though the celebrated band’s all-too-brief tenure ended in 2008, they’ve just announced their first live shows in over 15 years: two headlining nights at Johnny Brenda’s in January of 2024.
Fronted by singing and songwriting twin siblings Aaron and Peter MoDavis (on bass and guitar, respectively), with Brian Ashby on guitar and Jonas Oesterle on drums, The Teeth pulled on an eclectic array of classic and contemporary influences. You could hear David Bowie and Queen, Roxy Music and The Walker Brothers, Pavement and The Apples In Stereo, The Shins and The Walkmen in their DNA, a heady melange of melodic psychedelia and theatrical charisma which, fused with speedy rhythms and lyrical character studies, found them forging a singular lane in the realm of punk cabaret.
The band parted ways not long after their sophomore album You’re My Lover Now, frustrated with the paltry fruits of the indie rock grind; some of its alums formed the band Purples, which had a lively run in the 20-teens. For the past few years, though, signs of life from The Teeth writ large have been present: first, their single “Ball Of The Dead Rat” went viral on a Spotify “Discover Weekly” playlist a decade after its release, an algorithmic phenomenon documented in a long-form piece at Hard Noise; in the wake of that resurgence, the band’s old label Park The Van re-issued Lover and their debut Carry The Wood on vinyl. And this week comes news of the band’s return to the stage.
The concerts will take place on Friday, January 12th, and Saturday January 13th; a press release from the band says that each show will have a different setlist, and that the band “will be playing ‘the hits’ as well as ‘deep cuts’ for new friends and old!” Tickets go on sale this Friday, May 26th, at 10 a.m., and more information can be found at the WXPN Concerts and Events page. Revisit some faves from The Teeth and check out a gig poster below.