Why Devo Is Retiring From Touring
After half a century of touring, Devo is retiring from the road.
Two of the band's co-founders, Mark Mothersbaugh and Gerald Casale, recently spoke with The Guardian about how time and varying opinions on creative direction have played a role in the decision. "Are you married?" Mothersbaugh asked the journalist. "Imagine you had four wives and you worked together. It's tricky being in a band."
"You've got a body of work informed by a whole manifesto and philosophy," Casale added. "Do you let go and move on to the next thing? You want change, otherwise you're stale, but you don't want to be contrived."
The band is currently performing their farewell tour, "Celebrating 50 Years of De-Evolution," with dates booked through early December. A final date has yet to be announced. "I'm looking forward to 2073," Mothersbaugh joked. "We'll play 100th anniversary Devo shows and then maybe retire."
There's still plenty to look forward to, though. A box set, Art Devo 1973-1977, is scheduled to arrive in September, featuring mostly rare, unreleased material, plus a documentary about the band currently in production.
There's also the possibility of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, for which Devo has been nominated three times, but have yet to be included. "We were excited about it," Mothersbaugh said to Consequence in 2022, the year they were last nominated. "It's a wonderful honor. And it’s nice to be recognized for things you did that you think you work really hard on and you put a lot of time and effort in it. And for somebody else to acknowledge that and to say it has some sort of value is nice."
"I'm in denial," Casale admitted to The Guardian about the band's upcoming retirement. "Because I love performing and I'll hate to see it go. It was part of Devo's DNA. But we did as well as we could, for as long as we could."