After waiting 22-years for a Replacements reunion that seemed all but impossible, the band’s relatively brief reformation may soon be over, according to a source with knowledge of the situation.
The band’s long-awaited Back By Unpopular Demand reunion tour, which kicked off in April, is seemingly done and short-lived after the last European date on June 5 at the Primavera Sound festival. Last week, the band announced it would not be playing make-up dates for its canceled Pittsburgh (May 5) and Columbus, Ohio (May 6) show; and, according to the same source, the band has no plans to return to the recording studio after several recent attempts.
While the band’s management and press rep did not return Billboard’s request for comment, another source said he believed the new line-up is not formally breaking-up but rather just “taking a break” two years since reforming for 2013’s Riot Fest shows. He called the break a “natural progression of things.”
One possible clue to the band’s state of affairs–and possibly their state of mind–may lie in the letters Paul Westerberg cryptically wore on his t-shirts for this tour. On a “Paul’s Shirt” Facebook page dedicated to deciphering the sartorial message, several amateur etymologists claimed the shirts’ yet-unfinished message will spell out the following: “I have always loved you now I must whore myself.” As cynical and/or over-the-top sarcastic as Westerberg’s sentiment may be, Replacement fans just don’t want it to end.
I’m taking it with a grain of salt since the only thing predictable about this reunion is how unpredictable and unexpected it all has been. It may be over, it may not and if it is, well then, that just paves the way for a Paul Westerberg solo tour/record!