When 1970 album Don't Crush That Dwarf, Hand Me the Pliers
was inducted into the Library of Congress's National Recording Registry, prolific audio-sketch forebears Firesign Theatre were once again, as so many journalists, admirers and insiders had done before, dubbed "the Beatles of Comedy." It's little surprise that much like September's Fab Four reissuefest, Phil Austin, Peter Bergman, David Ossman and Phil Proctor have similar plans to reissue their entire back catalogue. But while their remaining mop-topped counterparts have long lacked the option, the Firesign members will reunite for four L.A.-area live shows. The Forward, Into the Past! run marks the 40th anniversary of the group's "Nick Danger, Third Eye, America's Only Detective" character, the most famous focal point of the troupe's absurd, semi-psychedelic, pop culture-cobbling narratives. Though they'll come together to present classic, reworked, updated, new and improv material, reports of their own comedy-themed edition of Rock Band have yet to be confirmed.
Wed., Oct. 14, 8 p.m.; Thu., Oct. 15, 8 p.m.; Fri., Oct. 16, 8 p.m.; Sat., Oct. 17, 8 p.m., 2009