On Feb. 3, 2017, legendary Canadian band, The Tea Party, began their “20 Years of Transmission” tour, better known as #TX20 across social media. As British Columbia eagerly waits for the band’s arrival across our province, Rock.It Boy thought it might be fun to reflect back at the last two decades of incredible music The Tea Party has delivered to its fans.
Some quick background for new fans: The Tea Party formed in 1990 in Toronto by members Jeff Martin, Stuart Chatwood and Jeff Burrows. The band drew inspiration from many elements including the Beat Poets, Mythology, Psychedelic Rock and Middle-Eastern sound. In 1991, they released their first album, The Tea Party, originally recorded as a demo album. The Tea Party was a success and earned the band a signing with EMI Music Canada in 1993.
Following The Tea Party’s signing with EMI, the band released their next album, and first major label recording, Splendor Solis. The studio album included new material as well as re-recorded singles off their first album.
In 1995, The Tea Party released their third album, The Edges of Twilight. The album was a huge success and went double platinum in Canada as well as platinum in Australia. The success of the album launched a tour which took the band across Canada, Australia and Europe.
In 1997, The Tea Party released their album Transmission – and the namesake of their current tour. For this album, the band added electronic instruments to their music resulting in an appealing industrial edge. Transmission achieved enormous success including earning double platinum status in Canada, reaching #3 on the Canadian music chart and receiving a Juno nomination for “Blockbuster Rock Album of the Year”.
Following the huge success of Transmission, The Tea Party released Triptych in 1999. In Triptych, the band explored melody and produced songs like the Juno-nominated song “Heaven Coming Down”. This single also rose to #1 on radio. Triptych was a huge success in Canada, achieving double platinum sales, reaching #4 on the Canadian album chart, and earning a Juno nomination for “Best Rock Album”.
Live at the Enmore Theatre was The Tea Party’s first live release and recorded live in Sydney, Australia on October 7, 1999. It included five tracks: “Heaven Coming Down”, “Underground”, “Gone”, “The Messenger” (Daniel Lanois cover) and “Halcyon Days”.
In 2000, The Tea Party released Tangents – The Tea Party Collection. The platinum status compilation album included singles and B-sides from their previous albums as well a cover of The Rolling Stones’ “Paint It, Black” song and the single “Walking Wounded”.
In 2001, The Tea Party released a nod to ancient mysticism and mythology with The Interzone Mantras. This album would prove to be their highest charting album in Australia. In Canada, it earned certified Gold sales and was also nominated for the 2003 Juno Awards “Rock Album of the Year”.
In 2004, The Tea Party released Seven Circles, their last studio album before a lengthy break-up in 2005. The album was a dedication to the band’s late manager, Steve Hoffman. Seven Circles achieved #5 on Billboard’s Top Canadian Album chart. Seven Circles also achieved gold status in Canada as well as a 2005 Juno Awards nomination for “Rock Album of the Year”.
In 2011, to the extreme delight of fans everywhere, The Tea Party reunited and in 2014, they released their album, The Ocean at the End. For fans who had waited almost a decade for more music from the Tea Party, the album delivered a powerful return to the band’s signature Eastern and hypnotic sounds.
As The Tea Party embarks on their “20 Tears of Transmission” tour, fans can only wonder what this means in terms of what is next for the band. Could there possibly be a new album on the way? Our fingers will be crossed!
In the meantime, we will be able to enjoy the tour which will see The Tea Party playing their Transmission album in full along with their greatest hits.
“With another set classic material and two encores, the band left the stage 3 hours after they stepped on it. Close to midnight on a weeknight, the crowd was still packed and demanding more. The band was happy to oblige, in this building they affectionately dub “the temple of The Tea Party,” they played an extra encore no other city got, closing with the song that started the band, “The River.” Some may believe rock n’ roll is dead, but no one here believed it. If it is, this was a seance to resurrect it.”
Excerpt from review by Richard Brunette – Author of Tea Party + The Road Heavy @ Metropolis – 2nd March 2017.
The Tea Party dates are selling out quickly. There are still some tickets left for Kelowna – March. 27, Nanaimo – March. 28, and Victoria – March 29. Get your tickets now!