Jane's Addiction's highly anticipated reunion tour got off to a rough start for frontman Perry Farrell when he tore a calf muscle during the first song of the group's set May 10 at Atlanta's Lakewood Amphitheatre.
But considering he had waited 18 years to tour with the original lineup of his band, Farrell wasn't about to let a little pain get in the way of the group's return.
He didn't miss a show, and in a mid-May phone interview, said he was coping just fine — thanks to the miracle of modern pharmaceuticals.
"They (doctors) actually told me to kind of work through it so the muscles don't knot up," Farrell said. "They told me moving around isn't such a bad thing — and they gave me some great meds."
Jane's Addiction's current tour (with Nine Inch Nails, no less) is not the first time fans have seen a version of the influential band come back to life. But it's never been the original lineup until now.
Following the band's split in 1991, Farrell, guitarist Dave Navarro and drummer Stephen Perkins reunited for a reunion tour in 1997, with Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers filling the bass slot that had been held by Eric Avery.
The group then went its separate ways once again until 2001, when a more extensive reunion came together, this time with Martyn Lenoble (who had been in Farrell's first post-Jane's Addiction band, Porno For Pyros) and later Chris Chaney filling in for Avery. The Chaney lineup lasted long enough to make a 2003 studio CD, "Strays," before coming apart in 2004.
Farrell went on to form a new group, Satellite Party, but always held out hope that the original Jane's Addiction would one day get together again.
Finally, an occasion presented itself when word came that Jane's Addiction would be honored with the "Godlike Genius Award" at the first-ever United States NME Awards in April 2008.
The wheels started turning about the possibility of reuniting for that awards show, and this time, Avery agreed to participate.
For several months, it appeared that would be the extent of the reunion. But then the group played an after-hours show during the South By Southwest Music Conference in March, and then came word of the tour with Nine Inch Nails.
But life in the resurrected Jane's Addiction has not been all smiles and giggles.
Recently, the group entered the studio to record a pair of new songs, with Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor and producer Alan Moulder producing. Farrell said the sessions were marred by the re-emergence of long-standing tensions, and the band didn't finish the two new songs, "Embrace The Darkness" and I'll Protect You."
Exactly what is responsible for the tensions that exist in Jane's Addiction was something Farrell said he couldn't really explain.
"I wish I could express myself exactly what it was," he said. "But unfortunately, a lot of it, I'm not really sure what it is because it's not been expressed to me."
But Farrell does have ideas about one source of the problems, and he also knows why he walked away from the band in 1991, after two albums, 1988's "Nothing's Shocking" and 1990's Ritual de lo Habitual" had made Jane's Addiction a leading force in alternative music circles.
"I think a lot of it has to do, let's face it, we're all people that love attention and some of us maybe would love to get more attention," he said. "It could be that, you know what I'm saying... But again, this is all conjecture.
"You know, I was the guy who originally in 1991 left the group," he added. "Let me tell you my reasons. I felt that the group wasn't united. We were not friends. We didn't care about each other. We were working against each other behind each other's backs. That was why I decided (to leave). To make music, as far as I'm concerned, you have to be united and you have to be — it's like a marriage — you have to be in love with each other. (In order) for the other person to make music with you, you have to trust them and everything else, and I felt there was no trust."
Despite the struggles the reunited band had in recording "Embrace The Darkness" and "I'll Protect You," Farrell said he hopes the group will be able to return to the studio and finish those songs before its Lollapalooza show in August. He said the band is getting along well on tour, playing a show that concentrates on the music made by the original lineup.
"Those are the albums that we recorded with Eric Avery," Farrell said. "So out of respect, I suppose, to Eric, we felt it would make him the most comfortable playing those songs."
Still, Farrell is making no promises about Jane's Addiction's future beyond the current tour. He knows the band could come apart at any point.
"Jane's Addiction is together again, so catch it while it's hot," he said. "Catch it while it's here."
Jane's Addiction, with Nine Inch Nails and Street Sweeper Social Club
When: Wednesday, June 3, at 7 p.m.
Where: Comcast Center, 885 S. Main St., Mansfield
Tickets: $58, $38, $18
Info: 508-339-2331 or www.livenation.com/venue/comcast-center-tickets