Smoking Popes Announce Concept Album, Tour and TV Special

There are some big happenings in Smoking Popes land. We'll start off with their new album, This is Only a Test, the band's first ever concept album, exploring the life of a fictional high schooler.

The album hits the street on March 15th, sparking a spring tour to celebrate, beginning at SXSW in Austin.

Before they hit the road, the band will launch This is Only a Test by playing live on the national broadcast of WGN TV in their hometown of Chicago.

This is Only a Test's songs explore themes of identity, musical aspirations, love and teen suicide." Singer/Guitarist Songwriter Josh Caterer explains, "When I first got the idea to write from a teenage perspective, the individual songs came really quickly. I wrote a song a day for five days. That's half the album in less than a week. I never write that fast! Each song stands alone as a snapshot from this kid's life. The story doesn't unfold like a narrative. It's more like a collage." Recorded at Chicago's Atlas Studios in 2010, the album was produced by Matt Allison (Alkaline Trio, Lawrence Arms, Less Than Jake).

Some may assume that This is Only a Test is autobiographical but Caterer lays that notion to rest, saying, "The main character on this album is definitely a creation. He's not me. Well…he's similar to me, but he's not limited by the realities of my own experience. I created a character that basically has the same view of the world that I had when I was in high school, but he's his own person and he does some things that I never did."

Tour Dates
2/19 Rosemont, IL Montrose Room
2/25 Joliet, IL Mojoes
3/17 Austin, TX SXSW (tba)
3/18 Austin, TX SXSW (tba)
3/19 Tempe, AZ The Sail Inn
3/20 San Diego, CA Casbah
3/22 Fullerton, CA Sidebar
3/23 Los Angeles, CA Key Club
3/24 San Luis Obispo, CA The Crepe Place
3/28 Portland, OR Alberta Rose Theatre
3/29 Seattle, WA El Corazon
3/31 Salt Lake City, UT Urban Lounge
4/1 Denver, CO Hi Dive
4/2 Kansas City, MO The Riot Room
4/3 Chicago, IL Double Door

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