...who thought it was a good idea to take a bit of Funkadelic’s spirit and beat, the Cosmic Jokers’ synth sound and an interest in the after-life and make it into what genuinely sounds like, and to all intents and purposes is, a zombie musical.
Dead Zone Boys – Jookabox
Well, where would we be without promotional notes from record companies? The one for Jookabox's tells us that this their 3rd LP, Dead Zone Boys, is “part love story and part psychedelic zombie-musical.” Hmmm…
What ever it is, it’s a damned entertaining listen, if a wee bit unhinged. The opener Phantom Don’t Go is a high-falutin’ stomp, backed up by some strange groaning synths and strident, almost tribal drumming. It’s pretty shit hot, all told. Next up is Don’t Go Phantom, (see what the band did there?) which – on examination of the lyrics - is as close to necrophilia pop as you’re going to get. The music; a cod-funk mid-tempo march, with a chorus driven – seemingly –by members of The Chipmunks, is pretty shit hot too. Imagine; Chipmunk necrophilia.
Some kind of musical normality in the form of a breakneck camp-fire sing-along follows with You Cried Me. However the inspiration for the lyrics seems to be drawn from the re-enactment of some form of the Demeter/Persephone myth. Still, it’s all a bit of fun, innit? Gonna Need The Guns/Doom Hope sounds like Talking Heads’ The Great Curve re-worked for a bunch of cowpokes, which is a lot of fun it has to be said. Other leftfield campfire moments can be found in Glyphin’ Out (what is “Glyphin”? Anyone?), which has the feel of Akron/Family played at 78rpm.
I’m unsure precisely who thought it was a good idea to take a bit of Funkadelic’s spirit and beat, the Cosmic Jokers’ synth sound and an interest in the after-life and make it into what genuinely sounds like, and to all intents and purposes is, a zombie musical. But whoever they are, I would like – on the evidence of such stompingly brilliant and idiotic slices of fun as East Side Bangs/East Side Fades – to shake them by the hand.
And please, do hang around for the utter mayhem displayed in the Kingdom of Roger-style Zombie Teardrops, which combines a mean synth blurp with a tribal chorus. Light’s a bit whacked out, too, in a Hapshash and the Coloured Coat style…
Hats off to the lunatics.
Words: Richard Foster