Informed and connected by a cursory yet immersive knowledge of contrarian art (Dada & Surrealism, the Beats & Dylan, the awkward extremes of jazz & prog rock, avant garage & the Poor Theatre of Cruelty, and punk & new/no wave), the Dancing Cigarettes coalesced in late-1970's Bloomington, Indiana out of a tangle of friends and relationships. The LP Dance Dogs Dance is a collection of tunes spanning the band's entire career. Most were recorded after the 1981 Gulcher EP, with the exception of the song "I Don't Like Linoleum" which was recorded before it as a failed 1st single project and was finally mixed down in 2015 for the release. Three other songs on the LP are excellent live recordings from Space Place in Chicago, IL, that have never been made available before. All of the material on the LP has been remastered for improved fidelity.
Loud, snotty, and fully loaded, the Hemingers carry the trash-rock torch like a fistful of dynamite. Fronted by rock-cult illustrator Ben Lyon, the trio adds scuzzy freakshow alchemy to atomic-era tittyshakers and frat rock. Their debut EP WHAT'S A HEMINGER? is a party platter of reckless thrills that will leave you with sticky mysteries to savor long after the pie's been had.
In the beer-soaked tradition of garage punk ala the Mummies, the Oblivians, and Thee Milkshakes, the Hemingers play ROCKnROLL stripped down to its primitive pulse. Add to that vicious guitar rips, rattletrap rhythms, and a face-diving, lucha libre performance style
Wake up, garbage people, the rooster is crowing! First off, your morning dose: Psychic Baos. Close your eyes and step into the fry-daddy's dream: You're on a muddy BMX track in eastern Tennessee and there's a band playing what sounds like the Chocolate Watch Band melting in hellfire. A man named Will Fist is screaming a fully-blown scream, and zoom goes some wily pfink on a soiled banana bike. That's your daily medicine! The hypnotic rhythms waxed in this stereo resin have a great effect upon the listener. Don't worry about the false prophets of car commercial garage rock. This isn't that, this is Psychic Baos.
More street-grit than surfside, Thee Tsunamis are a rock'n'roll joyride with Tura Satana at the wheel. On their debut full-length Saturday Night Sweetheart, the trio (Betsy on guitar, Jenna on bass, and Sharlene on beats) blend girl-group bubblegum with feral punk, hugging every hairpin turn of Kim Fowley's twisted, trashbucket heart along the way. With jagged harmonies over fuzz-crusted pop hooks, theirs is the sound of Brill Building teen-sploitation with bloodier results. From heart-in-a-blender tales to drag-race party anthems, these 12 tracks are as catchy as they are cutting and together they tell a story as old as time: what the men don't know, the little girls understand. Like Thee Tsunamis' tape A Goodbad Man Is Hard To Find (2013) and horror-concept EP Delirium and Dark Waters (2014), Saturday Night Sweetheart (May, 2015) was recorded to tape in the basement studio of Magnetic South and has all the signature fidelity of a subterranean rock'n'roll echo-chamber. So play it loud, and hold on to your seat!
The Nevermores is the Kingsmen covered in toxic slime; it’s Question Mark & the Mysterians stripped of its dark mirrors and reveling in cross-eyed ghoulishness. Here is the sound of close-quartered Indiana teens dissecting the vestigial jangle of the ’60s to birth a true rock’n’roll Frankenstein. Play it loud, but be sure to Lock Your Doors…
Lock Your Doors is a testament to the wild abandon and iron-clad will of bored teens full of rock’n’roll conviction, and captures their live sound in all its feral and fanged glory. Under the tutelage of John Terrill (Dancing Cigarettes, Mad Monk) and Dan Willems, the Nevermores gathered around a 4-track tape machine in a soggy basement, and blasted through their repertoire. Here, the Nevermores give you a monstrous platter of gut-punching one-take tunes. Fate doesn’t permit second chances and these kids could give a fuck about doing it right.
After three LPs and a clutch of 45s, Southern Indiana's Apache Dropout have loosened an adherence to the divine mono sound and forged a scaly stereo technique for Heavy Window. This is a deeper, blown out swagger of peer-less rock 'n' roll filtered through a lush three-dimensional spectrum. Just as their self-titled debut snapped heads back, Apache Dropout has proven again they can rescore the garage rock aesthetic and remain undisputed purveyors of true lysergic North American boogie.
Club's debut full-length HEAVEN IS TOO HIGH fries you blind with pleasant and poisonous psych-pop. The Indiana four-piece delivers infectious bubblegum chewed up and spit out by the agitated, chemical laced mind of misspent Midwestern youth. In the tradition of HOOSIER HYSTERIA proto-punk, ala the Gizmos and the Panics, the Vacation Club boys turn out mutant sunshine and junkstore adrenaline. HEAVEN'S 11 tracks of sweet-tart melodies, catchy punk riffs and teenybop backup vocals dart through stratospheric layers of reverb and corrosive fuzz guitar. With equal parts Daniel Johnston's boy wonder and Johnny Rotten's snottiness, Samuel James's hormone-fueled voice cuts through all the paranoid chatter and leaves your better angels dead on the dissection table.
HEAVEN IS TOO HIGH was recorded by John Dawson in the sonic caverns of Magnetic South in Bloomington, IN, and features the artwork of Xerox the Kid.
Tsunamis couldn't surf if their lives depended on it, but that doesn't mean these waters are safe to tread. This landlocked trio rattles the rock and roll cage with waves of teenage hysteria. Betsy's Mustang, Josie's Univox, and Sharlene's bongo beats form a Bermuda triangle of sonic wreckage that channels Link Wray, the Sonics, and their High Priestess Poison Ivy. The junkyard twang and many-tentacled fuzz contained herein will sear your eardrums irrevocably with rock's best kept secret: SHE LIVES!
In 2013, after years in the midwestern freak scene pushing ear splitting cassettes, the rest of the Earth will discover Thee Open Sex. With their first proper full length, they approach the midwestern American alienation of Rocket From the Tombs as reductionists, aligning with German art rock robotics from the viewpoint of John Lydon.
While there’s a thousand bands mining the 70’s German minimalist psyche aesthetic, Thee Open Sex gets down on the Berlin street of Eno or Bowie as much as it explores Can's Inner Space. Songs come unhinged in the the cosmic pathways connecting the trance of Popul Vu, with Eddie Hazel's electromagnetism and the hypnotic thump of “Lust for Life.” The captivating aggression in vocalist Miss Mess suggests a spiritual depth while staying grounded on the planet where the Pagans and Dow Jones and the Industrials set up their amps. Her delivery emanates the bad-girl vibes of influential exploitation film “The Switchblade Sisters” instead of New Age ether.
Each of these songs were recorded at the all analogue Magnetic South studio in Bloomington, Indiana by John Dawson and Haley Fohr (aka Circuit des Yeux). Cover art from the mind of Mad Monk.