By Melissa Fossum
By Lauren Wise
By New Times
By Amanda Savage
By Jason P. Woodbury
By Troy Farah
By New Times
PFP-TAT, as it's been helpfully acronymed, is a multi-pronged project benefiting the Kristen Brooks Hope Center and its National Hopeline Network. The Virginia-based Center provides community-based suicide prevention services in needy areas, while the Network consists of a group of linked, certified crisis centers throughout the U.S., able to receive calls 24 hours a day at 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433).
While the press packet abounds with words and phrases that sound fairly rote when you say them aloud (empower, proactive, crisis issues -- this is exactly the kind of institutional rhetoric that hisses like white noise in the jaded ear), that's mostly for the PR benefit. PFP-TAT walks the walk as well, laying out the precise percentages and dollar amounts earmarked for the recipient institutions: 10 percent of the total artists' revenue for the multi-act tour goes to the Hopeline Network, while 5 percent goes to community-based crisis centers.
This, after all, is how charity is supposed to work in a democratic society, or at least that's what the conservative anti-government-assistance lobby keeps telling us. And so it's particularly heartening to see that the related compilation CD, also called Plea for Peace/Take Action (Sub City), is absolutely loaded up with commie pinkos.
Kidding. But it does feature bands whose leftist politics are largely well-known and endemic to their music, like acoustic folkie Mike Park, El Paso revolutionaries At the Drive-In and Swedish Marx-rockers The (International) Noise Conspiracy. At a meaty 77 minutes, and featuring 28 bands delivering a song apiece (most previously unreleased), the disc is more than worth its special low price ($6, suggested). Again, 5 percent of the sticker price goes to the Network, as does 5 percent of sales of all Sub City Records releases.
The Plea for Peace/Take Action Tour and its associated comp disc distinguish themselves in the bottom-line delivery of charity funds to an eminently worthy cause. Here's a bill that doesn't simply roll, like a contented armchair activist, in the piety of its own "awareness raising."
Plus which, the music is righteous. After the shameless procession of target-marketing festival juggernauts we've just endured, it's almost enough to make you start feeling good about rock again.