DID YOU READ

Blink-182’s Tom DeLonge talks Angels & Airwaves movies, his new video and being inspired by youth

Blink-182's Tom DeLonge

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By Chris Harris

Not that you probably couldn’t have figured this one out on your own, but Tom DeLonge is one busy lad.

In between running Macbeth Footwear and practicing with his Blink-182 compadres for the United Kingdom leg of the reunited band’s 20th Anniversary tour, Tom is also working on new tunes with his avant rock act Angels & Airwaves.

On top of that, Tom runs a technology design firm you may have heard of called Modlife; the company handles the official Web sites and fan clubs for a number of bands, including the White Stripes and Pearl Jam.

“I’ve always got 50,000 things going on,” DeLonge — also a devoted family man — tells IFC, just days before hopping a plane to London for a spate of Blink shows.

DeLonge — with Angeles & Airwaves — has also been branching out artistically, into film.

“We have three movies in the works,” Tom says. “One, I have not talked about at all. Another, people know about — it’s called ‘Poet Anderson,’ which is basically an epic about dreams. There is one that will come before that that I haven’t talked about yet because we are still deep in the discussions of who we are going to make that with and how. Those are coming, and we have a huge announcement about Strange Times,” a recently-launched site devoted to extraterrestrial life, paranormal activity, cryptozoology, and conspiracy theories.

“Strange Times is an Angels & Airwaves initiative as well, so this fall, when I get back from tour, we are launching a lot of stuff and there will be some large announcements for the rest of the year,” DeLonge says.

Tom insists he never had the desire to do anything with film until he “convinced” his pals in Taking Back Sunday to let him direct the video for their track “This Photograph is Proof (I Know You Know).”

“I did it [in 2004] and it was so artistically satisfying,” DeLonge recalls. “I just loved it, everything about it. I think I have an understanding of that medium. When we created Angels & Airwaves, we knew that we weren’t really going to be able to compete in a normal, orthodox way because we didn’t have a label, so we kind of felt like the only way we could get people interested in our art was by doing ambitious things. And we decided one of those things would be film.”

Last year, the band’s first film, “Love” — the story of an astronaut, cut off from Earth, waiting to die as he orbits through space — was hailed by critics for its beauty and imagination.

“We took five years to make ‘Love,’ and I think we did a really great job,” DeLonge says, before taking a second to reflect. “You know, people say, ‘I think we did a great job.’ I think we did a fucking awesome job.” He laughs. “That got us excited about going into more ambitious territory.”

In addition to feature length films, Angels & Airwaves continue to push the proverbial envelope with their videos — like latest one for the track “Surrender.”

The video was inspired by the political unrest and social media-fueled uprisings that have rattled the Middle East within the last year plus.

“We had the idea of doing kind of a protest video, and we had a tiny budget — $60,000,” Tom says. “A week later, Kanye and Jay Z released a video that’s very similar; a bunch of kids in the street with riot police, and I guarantee you they spent a half a million bucks on that. There’s no difference in the production value whatsoever, and that just shows what we can do and how talented the individuals are we get to work with.”

DeLonge says he was inspired by the youth of the globe, “so it made sense to really celebrate the free speech and that protest element,” he says. “That, to us, is an important message. They would not let people keep them down and oppress them. The idea of freedom, free speech, and free will will triumphing over the long term — we are seeing that. I think we are seeing a reshuffling of the geo-political order right before our eyes. The new world order everyone has been talking about is starting to take shape, but not in such a malevolent way, hopefully.”

While universally recognized for his contributions to rock, Tom comes across as humble when asked whether he’s considered how he’ll handle being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

“I couldn’t imagine that we would ever be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,” he laughs. “I mean, I don’t know. I don’t know how the process works. If we ever did, I would laugh, and say, ‘It all started with a few dick jokes. Who woulda thought?’”

Indeed.

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”


Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”


But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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Draught Pick

Sam Adams “Keeps It Brockmire”

All New Brockmire airs Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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From baseball to beer, Jim Brockmire calls ’em like he sees ’em.

via GIPHY

It’s no wonder at all, then, that Sam Adams would reach out to Brockmire to be their shockingly-honest (and inevitably short-term) new spokesperson. Unscripted and unrestrained, he’ll talk straight about Sam—and we’ll take his word. Check out this new testimonial for proof:

See more Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC, presented by Samuel Adams. Good f***** beer.

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