Sunday, January 19, 2020

Team Fright - "A Kiss, A Cheek"

This song originally appeared on the Let's Get Killed vinyl compilation. On that recording, it was just me and a guitar. It sounds even better with a full band though, and Team Fright does a nice job here. It was nearing the end of the set, and my voice was getting a bit ragged and the guitar a bit out of tune (I had broken a string earlier, and fortunately, Joe Meno was on hand to read a chapter from his then new book Hairstyles Of The Damned to fill in the time, but the new string was still settling in), but overall, I like this version. I particularly like Ray's background vocals, but the entire band really gives the song a nice Wedding Present feel with those hyperstrummed jangly chords. The song is still in my set. It is a fun one to play and as timely as ever since it points out how daft religions are. I am wearing my shiny shirt in the video. I bought it at a Fashion Bug sidewalk sale in 1996 or so and always found it good stagewear. I still have it. Now that I seldom play out, the poor thing languishes in my closet. It's not something one wears for everyday use, at least for me. We had played a Smiths song that Jason liked, so I had channelled my inner Morrissey and hugged the audience while unbuttoning my shirt. That's why for this song the front of the audience is all female. It's not so much that my bare chest attracted them so much as I terrified all the males into retreating to the back. Sorry, guys! The political sign at the end references some inside joke that Ray's friends had, something about a teacher of theirs who had done something naughty (I forget the details now). I have at least one more Team Fright video from this show to share, probably next week.

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Team Fright - "Dead Man's Food"

Here is another gem from my old stack of VHS tapes. This one's from a Team Fright gig. Team Fright was the last band I was in. It was a good band. It featured Ray from The Joslyns on guitar and Matt and Jason on drums and bass respectively, who kept playing together after Team Fright broke up, most recently in Bwak Dwagon. This clip is specifically from a gig at Pat's In The Flats, a cool club in Cleveland, Ohio USA. It was recorded on 7 August 2004. This song was based on a true story where I went with my friend Rob to guard his uncle's house after the uncle, who had lived alone, had died. We had to spend the night there, so we were told that we could eat all the food in the house, which was nice but eerie since we were eating food the uncle had planned on eating. Ultimately, it was a creepy experience but an interesting one. Musicwise, I particularly like the riff leading into the chorus here. You can see some more Team Fright videos courtesy of my pal Zartan here.

Monday, January 6, 2020

PFE Live!

It may be a new decade, but I am still going through my old videotapes.  This track comes from the one and only performance of PFE.  PFE was the joke industrial band that Mark of The Escaped Fetal Pigs and I always wanted to do as a side project.  We never quite got around to it, but in 1992/1993, The Pigs were invited to play an AIDS prevention benefit for the Bowling Green State University Campus Democrats.  Since The Pigs were no more, Mark and I decided to do PFE but as a serious project.  Unfortunately, we were billed as an Escaped Fetal Pigs reunion, which was not true, and which probably annoyed Jim, the bass player from The Pigs, who was working at the bar we were playing at that night (talk about awkward).  I believe we smoothed it out with Jim that night once he saw the band, which sounded nothing like The Pigs.  We had two drummers, Jeff from Pogeybait, whom I had played with in The Flaming Toasters, and Dave from The Angry Housewives (in fact, this might have been Dave's first show, and he might not have been old enough to be in the bar otherwise).  Brett from Armadillo played bass, and Mark and I played guitar and sang.  We had to throw the entire show together quickly since Dave and I lived in Pennsylvania, so we basically had the day before to learn the set and practice in Bowling Green, Ohio USA.  It came together pretty well.  This track, which probably isn't actually "Here And Now", but whose actual name escapes me, was a bit more garagey than the rest of the set, which indeed was fairly abrasive like Ministry (we even did a pre-Marilyn Manson industrial cover of "Sweet Dreams"), which you can hear a taste of at the end of the video.   It would have been fun to see what this band would have developed into, but since the band lived in different states, it was not to be.  Dave and I would go on to play in Yeast? and Anal Spikemobile, but it was the last time I played with the others.  This band in a way was a bridge between my college rock days and what was to come.  PFE didn't really stand from anything.  We would just make jokes that it was an acronym for Pure Fucking Energy and whatnot.  It later came in handy though when I needed a name for the rock band in my first novel.

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Poem Of The Week!

It looks like The Red Fez has chosen "Wednesday Evenings" as their "Poem Of The Week".  Back in 2015, they chose a couple other poems of mine as poems of the week, so it's nice to have another poem of mine join them.  I didn't write much poetry in 2019 as I was concentrating on the new novel, but we shall see what 2020 holds.

Sunday, December 15, 2019

I Hope That You Have A Cool Yule 2019!

Well, that's a wrap on this blog for another year!  And, I suppose the decade as well.  We'll see what 2020 and the Twenties in general have in store for us.  Until then, I hope that you have a cool Yule!  

Looking back, on the blog, I released a few songs this year including an album of the noisy demos.  I also chucked up some poems that needed a good home.  I even found the time to do a Thirsty Bear & Hungry Snake strip.  Mostly, it was videos this year as I work my way through my remaining VHS tapes.  I have a few more left.  If there are any good performances from my old bands and whatnot, then I will share them here.  I also will be devoting quite a bit of time to my new novel, Edna's Employment Agency, which should be released next year.  Beyond that, we will have to see what the year holds.  If you missed anything this year, please just use the sidebar dates to check them out.  See you . . . next decade (only get to say that once a decade)!  In the meantime though, please feel free to take this 1980 Ziggy ornament off my hands . . .  

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Wred Fright On BookTV

In 2003, Canada's BookTV did a nice feature on the Perpetual Motion Roadshow I was on. They incorporated the footage we took on the tour along with what their camera crews in Toronto and New York City shot. Unfortunately, I never got the raw footage back from the Chicago tape (everything else was on the other tape). Maybe someday I will get to see it. The Chicago stuff in this video is all I have ever seen of it. And, while we're on the subject of old grievances, seeing the copy of The Pornographic Flabbergasted Emus zine at Quimby's in this video reminded me that they stiffed me on the consignment. At that point, all one had to do was check-in once a year to collect one's money or one's zines, but at some point they decided to purge the store and sent postcards out at some random point, so even though I had dutifully checked in each year, I had moved, never got the postcard, and they disposed of the zines that hadn't sold. Uh, thanks, guys. I never consigned anything else there as a result. Cool bookstore though! Overall, this tour was really fun, and this video gives a nice summary of it. I also like that Canada got to see me get interviewed drinking beer and brushing my teeth outside, fortunately, not at the same time! That night in New York sleeping on the towel was rough! The only worse night's sleep I ever had was also in New York on a floor where Michael Jackman's dog kept running laps all night around the apartment and running over me each time. The lesson there for me is avoid sleeping in New York, I suppose. I also like the woman hiding her face in the NYC audience. Was she a celeb? In the Witness Relocation Program? Or just shy? Whatever the case, she's probably not thrilled the damn video's on the Internet forever.

Monday, December 2, 2019

Wred Fright On The Perpetual Motion Roadshow Part 2 Of 2

This is another performance from The Perpetual Motion Roadshow in September 2003. This one is from the Cincinnati stop where we were joined by an awesome hip-hop duo called Crack Heist. They were quite funny. It looks like for this stop, I channeled dead professional wrestlers again, which was always improvisational, but if the crowd chose a heel, or badguy wrestler, they were usually sure to be made fun of by the heel, which happens here. I probably also read some from The Pornographic Flabbergasted Emus, which was finishing its zine serialization then. I bought that Mexican wrestling mask for $20 at a comic book convention in Pittsburgh. I certainly have had some fun with it.