Thursday, July 14, 2011
Can a Denton punk rock band and a Denton polka band become one?
Two unlikely Denton bands with very different musical styles have come together to release a seven-inch split EP for your auditory pleasure.
When notorious Wee-Beasties frontman Richard Haskins met members of Brave Combo during a recording session, a friendship sparked, and from it arose Don’t Shred On Me: Vol 1, a four-song split EP which will be released July 16 during the bands’ show at Hailey’s in Denton.
Haskins’ onstage antics include wearing women’s underwear during oftentimes-unpredictable performances, and they've earned the punk rock band quite a following. Brave Combo’s music spans many genres including polka, meringue, and salsa -- and in fact, punk is not a style that is often listed when the two-time Grammy award-winning band is brought up during conversation. Haskins, a die-hard punk aficionado, disagrees:
“Regardless what anyone says, Brave Combo is a punk rock band,” Haskins said. “Punk rock was always supposed to be something awesome that wasn't what the mainstream was doing. Brave Combo has always stayed true to what they are and have always gone out of their way to be the best at what they do.”
Although the EP is a mere four tracks, the record is chock-full music that proves, as Haskins says, that “punk rock is still alive and still ‘not of the norm’.” Take the second track on the album “Zombiefied” by Brave Combo for example. The song tells the story of a zombie’s woes of embodying the undead, and they do it to a tango beat as lead singer Carl Finch sings in a deep, almost monotone voice, much like that of a zombie. If zombies could sing, that is.
Brave Combo opens the EP with a polka tune called “What Do You Want.”
When The Wee-Beasties make their two-song appearance on the EP, you bet that they bring the punk rock that most people correlate with the genre: loud, in your face, and obscene. However, unlike most punk rock bands, The Wee-Beasties incorporate the use of a brass section, which gives them a bit of a big-band thing going on. Unfortunately, it's only used for the surf-inspired track “Lauren in a Bathing Suit.” But, legendary hardcore punk guitarist
Gary Greg Ginn of Black Flag plays on the track, and that's impressive in itself.
The boys bring on the obscene in the final song “Fleshlight,” a punk rock track in which Haskins yells “I want to feel your inside, baby, with my fleshlight.” Only in punk rock.
The best part about the split seven-inch EP, other than the music, has got to be the dedication, which is to the late “Macho Man” Randy Savage. Haskins happens to be a lover of professional wrestling.
“Well, ‘Macho Man’ was a great warrior,” Haskins said. “He fought for truth, justice, and the American way. And in a way, we all should have a little Randy Savage in us.”
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