Classic Primus lineup to kick off 'Willy Wonka' themed tour at Tower Theatre

Weirdos of the world, unite—after all, there's no better reason to do so than a Primus show. California's favorite experimental rock band announced today that they'll soon be releasing their eighth studio album, Primus and the Chocolate Factory with the Fungi Ensemble, and launching a US tour this October. What's more, it's with the band's classic lineup: frontman Les Claypool, drummer Tim "Herb" Alexander, and guitarist Larry Lalonde.

And it's all kicking off Oct. 22 at the Tower Theatre in Upper Darby.

Primus and the Chocolate Factory with the Fungi Ensemble, of course, is a particularly heady homage to 1971's Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory—a reference the band is playing up with the re-release of a line of candy bars they created earlier this year. The album comes out Oct. 21, just a day before their inaugural show at the Tower, and the band has already released the first single: a cover of "Pure Imagination." 

The candy bars, made by Pennsylvania's Asher's Chocolates, include flavors like Mr. Krinkle (puffed rice), Professor Nutterbutter (peanuts), and the Bastard Bar (dark chocolate), a move that Claypool says was inspired by the recording industry's willingness to have "rolled over and let this internet s**t all over us." 

"That’s the whole impetus of this entire project. Because the f—ing recording industry rolled over and let this Internet shit all over us," he told Rolling Stone. "So we had to come up with another income stream, so we’re making chocolate bars because you can’t digitize a chocolate bar — yet.”

With any luck, however, the lasting legacy of Primus and the Chocolate Factory will not be a way to make a quick buck, but a way to memorialize the original 1971 film—complete with golden tickets. As per the Rolling Stone interview: 

“We need to make sure that kids in the future watch the original ‘Willy Wonka’ and not the horrendous, horrible remake that came along and left the taste of feces in our mouths. There are a lot of very talented people on the planet. And Tim Burton and Johnny Depp are two of those very talented people. But like all human beings, every now and then, we crap in our pants.”

A noble goal, to be sure, and one we're pulling for. Check out the tour dates below: 


  • 10/22 – Upper Darby, Pa. - Tower Theatre
  • 10/24 – Albany, N.Y. - Palace Theatre
  • 10/25 – Boston, Mass. - Orpheum Theatre
  • 10/26 – Burlington, Vt. - Flynn Center for Performing Arts
  • 10/28 – Waterbury, Conn. - Palace Theater
  • 10/29 – Baltimore, Md. - Hippodrome
  • 10/31 – New York, N.Y. - Beacon Theatre
  • 11/01 – New Brunswick, N.J. - State Theatre
  • 11/02 – Rochester, N.Y. - Main Street Armory
  • 11/03 – Detroit, Mich. - The Fillmore Detroit
  • 11/05 – St. Louis, Mo. - Peabody Opera House
  • 11/07 – Cincinnati, Ohio - Taft Theatre
  • 11/08 – Atlanta, Ga. - Tabernacle
  • 11/09 – Orlando, Fla. - Hard Rock Live
  • 11/11 – Miami Beach, Fla. - The Fillmore Miami Beach at The Jackie Gleason Theater
  • 11/12 – Clearwater, Fla. - Ruth Eckerd Hall
  • 11/14 – Biloxi, Miss. - Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
  • 11/15 – Austin, Texas - ACL live at the Moody Theater
  • 11/16 – Dallas, Texas - The Majestic Theatre
  • 11/17 – San Antonio, Texas - Majestic Theatre
  • 11/19 – Phoenix, Ariz. - Orpheum Theatre Phoenix
  • 11/21 – Los Angeles, Calif. - Orpheum Theatre LA


[Rolling Stone]