Friday, December 06, 2013

The Strangest Album Ever Made?!

"Trout Mask Replica"..."Eskimo"...The Shaggs...any such list is now incomplete without a mention of Five Starcle Men's  "Gomba Reject Ward Japan." Coherent biographical info on this band is hard to come by, but apparently Five Starcle Men were two nuts in the '90s making low-fi (presumably) home recordings out in the desert town of Lancaster, CA.  Or maybe they were from Austin, Texas. Or maybe they heard the works of those two town's most famous loonies, Capt Beefheart, and The Butthole Surfers, and said: "That's nuthin; get a load of this," and proceeded to lay down 28 tracks over the course of a few years that in comparison makes Ween sound like Journey.

At first, it may come off as a couple of stoners' self-indulgent mucking about on a Teac four-track, and there may be some truth to that, but keep listening, and one starts to wonder if there may be some genuine insanity at work here (apparently, one of the members killed himself, thus ending this band's "career.")  Every sound is warped beyond recognition, lyrics range from unintelligible jabbering to surreal nonsense, samples and tapes loop themselves into delirium, unnatural rhythms pound away, all adding up to a mind-melting experience. Some "songs" sound like they were made up on the spot, many are less than 30 seconds long, and a surprisingly high amount of the tracks are really quite good. Play this for over 99% of the population (even those who consider themselves "alternative"), and they will probably will scrunch up their face and say, "What are you listening to?!"

Free listening/download here:

Five Starcle Men  "Gomba Reject Ward Japan"

courtesy of 'net-label Lost Frog, who have also blessed us with releases by R. Stevie Moore, The Happy Flowers, Animals Within Animals, Big City Orchestra, and some people who make noise music out of bicycles.


10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Someone left a comment on WFMU's twitter feed about this post, saying that the band member died from robotussin.

And that there's an interview with them in Whump zine #1.

Mr Fab said...

I was under the impression that it was suicide, but I can believe cough syrup, would not surprise me at all.

Couldn't find that interview on-line. There's apparently a pretty amazing audio interview on a record that came with the zine.

Diamond said...

Ummmm....

Diamond said...

Fucking love this... twisted am I? or just real...

ubunoir said...

I remembered them very recently too! I used to play their music on my radio show 7 years ago. However I can't see their first album on the current Lost Frog website nor on archive.org. So I've just decided to set up a quick blog for sharing some lost net-releases and I've begun with FSM's "Only Kids Of Nothing Star". Enjoy!

http://lostnetreleases.blogspot.com/2013/12/five-starcle-men-only-kids-of-nothing.html

Mr Fab said...

Thanks ubunoir, looking forward to checking it out.

Captain Bananafish said...

I just can't stop listening to this damned thing!!

I would like to learn how to play music someday, not because I dream of being a rockstar and getting all of the [insert dehumanizing slur for women or female genitals here], but because I dream of making something like this.

Certifiablockhead said...

coherent and genuine insanity may describe this work, also complex and direct, full with hints allusions innuendos? It's fiction wanting to sneak into the real world desperatly...and did I say I love it...you gone done it Mr Fab, it transcends even our dear Maniacs...

Anonymous said...

This is genius! I feel like making a Five Starcle Men T-shirt and that is the highest compliment I can pay

Anonymous said...

greetings If anyone here is really in to these guys Id also check out this guy:
https://djzen1.bandcamp.com