Reclusive Pennsylvania-based indie rock pioneers The Long Afternoon formed in Pittsburgh in 1985 and consolidated in State College in 1987. The organization has pursued a strategy of deliberate obscurity, opting not to participate in conventional rock and roll career-building activities and eschewing traditional notions of success entirely, leaving their ultimate ambitions and intent unknown to any but the group’s inner circle.
High-profile opening slots for indie-rock luminaries like Dinosaur Jr. yielded a deal in 1987 with Bulging Eye, then the Flaming Lips’ management company, in 1987. A self-titled EP was recorded and a national tour planned, but acrimony led to the suspension of all organizational initiatives, and the 1987 EP remains unreleased.
The Long Afternoon later embarked on a new series of initiatives. The organization’s first album, “The Luxury Problem,” came out in 2006 to enthusiastic reviews in The Big Takeover and, ironically enough for an organization whose personnel no longer indulge, High Times. Their second album, 2009’s Signifying Nothing, was named one of the 10 best indie albums of the year by A Future in Noise.
The group’s third album, 2011’s An Index of Maladjustments, added additional guitar muscle and also contained “The Chameleonaires,” a single that, while typically ambiguous and open to multiple interpretations, was nonetheless adopted as an anthem of sorts by Occupy Wall Street protestors. The Long Afternoon neither encouraged nor discouraged this use of their statement.
The organization’s fourth album, the eerily prescient Regression, was released in August 2016, steeped in themes of thoughtless automata, top-down control, conspiratorial hallucination, and corrupt denial of reality.
The Long Afternoon continues to issue recorded statements and proffer live demonstrations as situations demand. They are deeply grateful for the opportunity to spend part of their lives creating music, and twice as grateful to those who listen to the music they create.