One year ago today…

On April 2, 2022, my son’s band Car Seat Headrest performed at the Anthem in Washington, DC. Will wasn’t feeling well, so he sat for a portion of a set he described as “more acoustic-y” than usual.

I recorded the ending of his song “Sober to Death,” which features Will singing lead and guitarist Ethan Ives singing the high harmonies.

The next day, Will tested positive for Covid-19, and the band had to suspend its tour.

Statement to School Board

Last night I made the following comments in a meeting of the Loudoun County School Board:

First, let me thank you all for your good work – I do appreciate your service.

My name is Jim Barnes. From 1989 through 2010, I served as the public information officer for the Loudoun County government. In fact, I was the county’s first public information officer.

After leaving that job, I worked as a journalist covering local news across Northern Virginia for about a decade.

As you might imagine, I have sat through hundreds of public meetings, but I have never gotten up to speak as a private citizen – until now.

For many of the years I was working for the county, Wayde Byard was my counterpart for Loudoun County Public Schools. So I can appreciate what a hard job he has, and how good he’s been at it.

And when I was working as a journalist, covering Loudoun schools, he was always honest and straightforward with me, and helped steer me in the right direction.

I have always found Mr. Byard to be a hard-working public servant and a person of integrity.

Now he is facing a serious charge, and I understand that he has been placed on leave without pay. I don’t know the facts behind the charge, or even what he is alleged to have said that led to his indictment.

I trust that those facts will become known in his trial. But that won’t take place until June 20.

Six months is a long time to go without a paycheck. Six months! Please consider how that would affect your household budget. And he may not have even done anything wrong. He deserves the presumption of innocence.

It seems only fair that Mr. Byard’s pay be restored until he has his day in court. I respectfully ask that you consider doing so.

Again, thank you!

Car Seat Headrest in the News – April 2022

“It was a homecoming of sorts, as Toledo called DC his hometown, having been raised in suburban Virginia and starting his musical career, as he said, sitting with a guitar playing songs.”

David LeMason on Parklife DC, April 4, 2022

“Car Seat Headrest has hit the road—again redefining how rock is made and played.”

Sarah Smith in Washington City Paper, April 1, 2022

Car Seat Headrest in the News – March 2022

“Prolific indie-rock band Carseat Headrest makes its way to The Pabst Theater in belated support of the May 2020 album Making A Door Less Open.”

Milwaukee Record, March 17, 2022

“Seven years since they broke big in indie-rock terms with the clever lo-fi garage-rock album ‘Teens of Denial,’ Virginia bedroom rocker Will Toledo and his now-Seattle-based band lived up to the hype with their most ambitious album yet, 2020’s ‘Making a Door Less Open,’ which incorporated more electronic and new-wave influences but maintained a rocking spirit. They’re finally out promoting it with Bartees Strange opening.”

Minneapolis Star Tribune, “Ten Concerts to See in the Twin Cities This Week,” March 9, 2022

Car Seat Headrest in the news – Oct. 2021

“The excursion will see Car Seat Headrest selling limited-edition tour-only CD, The MADLO EPs, which features the band’s Summer 2021 digital releases of the EPs MADLO: Influences and MADLO: Remixes. Influences features covers of artists who the band cite as influences, including David Bowie and The Who, on their stellar 2020 album, Making A Door Less Open, while Remixes sees interpretations of MADLO songs from Superorganism, Scuba and more as well as from Toledo and Katz’s CSH side project 1 Trait Danger.”

–Nate Todd on JamBase, Oct. 28, 2021

“Car Seat Headrest have unveiled the details of a North American tour which will take place during March and April next year.”

live4ever, Oct. 27, 2021

“Car Seat Headrest has just revealed that they will be hitting the road this spring. In March, the band will launch an extensive run of dates – traveling the East Coast, West Coast, and points between.”

Glide Magazine, Oct. 27, 2021

Car Seat Headrest are heading out on tour in 2022. Bartees Strange will support on the majority of dates, and, at the shows, the band will sell some limited tour-only CDs compiling their summer releases: MADLO: Influences and MADLO: Remixes.”

–Evan Minsker on Pitchfork, Oct. 26, 2021

“Will Toledo and his merry band of indie pranksters have today unveiled the Car Sea Headrest Masquerade Tour, kicking off March 16 in St. Paul and wrapping in Vancouver on May 20.”

–Michael O’Connor Marotta on Vanyaland, Oct. 26, 2021

“The tour celebrates their 2020 album Making a Door Less Open, which our own writer Alessandro Gueli described as the band’s best album to date: ‘Picture yourself watching the sun go down, except it doesn’t hurt when you stare into the light.  Sure, there’s less direction on this album, less cohesion than projects before, but that somehow feels like the key to all its success.'”

–Skyler Graham on, Oct. 26, 2021

Car Seat Headrest in the news – June 2021

“While some of us patiently wait for a studio version of the ripping take on Lou Reed’s ‘Waves of Fear’ that Car Seat Headrest brought to Brooklyn Steel in 2018, we have a four-song covers EP from Will Toledo to tide us over, including his bouncy take on David Bowie’s Station to Station classic ‘Golden Years.'”

–Jason Lipshutz & Joe Lynch on Billboard, June 28, 2021

“June’s EPs double down on the new direction, enjoying newfound energy in ‘Running Up That Hill’ and inviting unlikely collaboration in a re-work with Superorganism.”

–James Reynolds on The Indiependent, June 24, 2021

“Car Seat Headrest share ‘Making A Door Less Open’ remix and cover EPs”

–Matthew Neale on NME, June 23, 2021

“A year on since the release of ‘Making A Door Less Open’, Car Seat Headrest are sharing two new EPs consisting of influences for the band’s 12th studio album and remixes of its tracks.”

DIY Magazine, June 22, 2021

“Car Seat Headrest are dropping not one but two digital-only EPs today – MADLO: Influences and MADLO: Remixes.”

–Logan Blake on Spin, June 22, 2021

“Last year, Car Seat Headrest released the underrated Making A Door Less Open. Today, Will Toledo has put out two new EPs attached to the album, one called MADLO: Influences and the other MADLO: Remixes.”

–James Rettig on Stereogum, June 22, 2021

“MADLO: Influences includes covers of David Bowie’s ‘Golden Years’, Kate Bush’s ‘Running Up That Hill’, Nine Inch Nails’ ‘March of the Pigs’, and the Who’s ‘Substitute.'”

–Konstantinos Pappas on ourculture, June 22, 2021

“MADLO: Remixes features reworks by Superorganism, Scuba, yeule, Dntel, and 1 Trait Danger.”

–Evan Minsker 0n Pitchfork, June 22, 2021