February 24, 1995 in Seven

Schlong Stays Loyal To Punk Scene As Others Bail Out For Fame, Fortune

By The Spokesman-Review
 

Recently, East San Francisco Bay bands Green Day, Rancid, Samiam, Jawbreaker and face to face have been bombarded with criticism from their hometown punk and anti-corporate rock magazine MAXIMUMROCKNROLL for signing to major labels, selling out, making their videos accessible to MTV and going against everything they once stood for and what punk rock stands for in the name of fame and fortune.

The argument is: Punk is not punk when its owned by a corporation.

Fortunately for the fragile scene, there’s a band, Schlong, which won’t succumb to the contracttoting parasites of corporate rock.

Yet I doubt a major label would be interested in Schlong, because the giant entity would have no clue on how to market the punk pest.

Here’s why.

Schlong, which plays the Big Dipper Thursday with Mother Load and Screw 32, sounds like a punk, thrash, bluegrass and ska band all at the same time, and its vocals are sound like they’re being sung by cartoon characters.

A typical corporate rock CD hovers at around 10 songs long. Schlong, on the other hand, packs the same amount of songs onto a seven-inch record. The trio pulled this off with “Tumors,” the entire Fleetwood Mac “Rumors” album and its latest slab of glory, “Pooploops.”

What’s a major label to do with a 37-song CD titled “The Essential Schlong,” when it sounds as if it was written and recorded inside a padded cell on the planet Mars?

And, I don’t think they’d want to push Schlong’s 1994 “Punk Side Story,” a spoof of “West Side Story,” either.

Or, is pop radio really going to embrace Schlong’s hit singles, “Pooploops Vs. Barry Manilow,” “Killing Rock and Roll” and “Pooploops Vs. Nancy Kerrigan” every hour? The odds are, no.

That’s why Schlong is cool.

The band is so discordant, disjointed and totally left of center, it’s feverish.

Music starts at 9:30 p.m. The cover is $4. Bring ID.

The three guys live in leftfield.

The band is as far left of center as one can get and then some.

Elsewhere in the night

Spokane band Black Forrest plays the Cotton Club in Hayden tonight and Saturday.

The band’s newly released, debut CD is titled “Tales …,” and has a nice ‘70s rock chime to it. It’s an overall strong first album.

Music starts at 9 p.m. The cover is $1.

Tonight, Spokane’s Distorted Silence plays the Big Dipper along with Solomon Kane and Chain Reaction.

Distorted Silence just unleashed its self-titled, eight-song tape, a head-banger’s delight, on the local Beyond label. Music starts at 9 p.m. The cover is $3. Bring ID.

xxxx ON THE SCENE Four years ago, San Diego’s Three Mile Pilot, which plays the middle slot for the Sweaty Nipples show Saturday at Mother’s Pub, set sail for the unexplored waters of rock ‘n’ roll in a quest to discover a new, untapped sound. So far, the band, which is still deep in its journeys, has sent back two albums that serve as logs of the band’s findings. With the band’s new album, “The Chief Assassin to the Sinister,” Three Mile Pilot forges an untapped frontier of rock ‘n’ roll. The album, on DGC, breaks ground in many ways. First, there is minimal guitar in the music. T.M.P. relies mostly upon bass and percussive sounds. Further, the band introduces a host of other exotic and handmade wind and horn instruments into its music. Plus, the 10 songs on “The Chief Assassin …” are uniquely structured. However, T.M.P.’s latest album, as groundbreaking as it may be, might be a difficult listen for the pop-trained ear. “It’s not an easy road for us to take, to make an album this diverse,” said singer and sometimes guitarist Pall, in a phone interview. “I think it’s a challenge for a lot of people.” The show starts at 9:30 p.m. Tickets, $8, are available at Mother’s Pub and 4000 Holes.


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