The Airborne Toxic Event
When aspiring novelist Mikel Jollett was diagnosed with an auto-immune disease, suffered a bad break-up and received the awful news that his mother was diagnosed with cancer all in one week's time, The Airborne Toxic Event was born as a means of coping. Jollett abandoned novel-writing for songwriting and by the end of 2006, he had recruited guitarist/keyboardist Steven Chen, bassist Noah Harmon, drummer Daren Taylor and keyboardist/violinist Anna Bulbrook to help channel the pained-yet-relatable lyrics through their new wave-inspired indie pop musings. With Jollett's literary background, the lyrics read like stories set to music, while their dismal retelling is cloaked by the band's mostly upbeat tune. With ready comparisons to Arcade Fire and Interpol, The Airborne Toxic Event released their self-titled debut in 2008, followed by All At Once in 2011.