Good Music We Can Know

Monday, June 14, 2010

An Entirely New State of Becoming: Sun City Girls- Live Room (1994)


This represents the opposite end of the Sun City Girls spectrum from Torch of the Mystics. A harrowing and hilarious series of rants backed by off-kilter free-form fake-jazz, this finds the Girls exploring their inner Burroughs/conspiracy theorist/schizophrenic poet. Paranoid, faux-official ravings abound, delivered in the voice of fringe scientists, g-men, hermits, maniacs, street people, and Uncle Jim.
Fans of seriously fucked up poetry will appreciate this, but it's not exactly spoken poetry for the sake of literature; it's something stranger and more damaged than writing, conveyed with an urgency that undercuts the silliness of the play act and manages to completely unnerve and engross. It's like when you hear field recordings of possessed people, speaking in the voice of their demon, and it sounds really fake and ridiculous, but something about that phony unscariness makes it hair-raisingly horrifying. By the end of this record, you will wonder if these dudes really do have a line on the secret of the Sasquatch and the extraterrestrial man-farming of the planet. Maybe these dudes are right when they say the seventies never happened.


The best section is probably Alan Bishop-as-Uncle Jim's "The GHENGIS-Necro-Nama-KHAN Pt. 4." Here are some tidbits from that track:

"Sometimes a dead man can be a powerful enemy."
"Let's face it Mr. President: I'd be immortal in your world, you'd last a minute in mine."
"Socialite pals are a dime a dozen, but I'm the crime of the century, cousin."
"Who cares who killed Kennedy? Cuz your Uncle Jim's gonna pull out the scalpel and lance all your Worth, Fort!"
"You don't want the woman riding on top, she'd probably screw ya into the dirt cuz that's what the missionary's been doin' to her since Jesus wept for a little variety in his sex life with Mary Magdalene... kinda like not havin' much to rhyme with Gnostic... cuz they want ya to forget it... but that's not true of King James, now, is it?"
"And while you're waitin' for the cows to come home, and they won't be believe me... something else needs their blood more than you need their milk, can I interest you in a little game of, 'let's spot the black chopper....'"
"yer gonna count sheep in a pine box til they turn into pterodactyls..."

He's really a master of paranoid locution and nervously guttural inflection, wrangling deliciously awkward little rhymes with a murderer's delight and never stopping to complete a thought before moving on to the next bit. But the whole group excels at this kind of hallucination poetry theater, and the record takes you on a tour of many kinds of crawling insanity, both institutional and syphilitic. Uncle Jim's diatribe is merely the most accessibly poetic, whereas the rest is a visceral, verbal nightmare... a lot of folks have balked at this type of material (the similar Sun City album, Jack's Creek, is universally panned although I love it, more on that later), but I find it so affecting, stimulating, and thoroughly believed and inhabited that I must say: love it or hate it, it's undeniably Art. Vibrating on multiple planes.

This recording comes from a live radio broadcast done in 1994.
Get this album and experience another moment in the unpredictable career of these three men, America's most vital closet sorcerors. Because you are all just a bunch of Moveable Food...

Live Room

1 comment:

dale flannels said...

Whoa. This is fucked up stuff. Tickles my brain, it does... in a good, hurty way.