Joe Jack Talcum

Joe Jack Talcum

Coolzey, D&D Sluggers, Todd Fausnacht

Tue, February 23, 2016

Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 8:30 pm

$8.00 - $10.00

This event is 21 and over

Joe Jack Talcum
Joe Jack Talcum
For most people the idea of an intimate evening with Joe Jack Talcum playing songs in their living room sounds terrifying given the reputation of his better-known band The Dead Milkmen, but the appearance in 2011 of Home Recordings: 1984-1990 revealed a sadder, more intimate side to a songwriter better known for his sense of humor.

Self-released on cassettes over the years, HHBTM is proud to give Joe Jack Talcum’s work the exposure it deserves. Vol.1 remains one of the best-selling records in the label’s illustrious history, and now comes the second volume, an unexpected tour-de-force from one of America’s great unheralded songwriters, pulled from an archive that makes you want to hear more, to wonder what else might be in there.

If Vol. 1 worked a kind of ‘Daniel Johnston-esqe’ vein, Home Recordings: 1993-1999 contains a cosmos of emotion—from funeral marches to raveups, irreverence to lament—sometimes even in the same song. A solo album in every sense of the word, it’s like eavesdropping on a soliloquy. The kind of thing that K records folks like Lois and Mirah used to do all the time—sentimental without being cloying, sincere without being twee—only Joe Jack was doing it simultaneously, and in some cases before.

And though it falls on the analog/4-track side of home recording as opposed to today’s digital/infinite-track version, with all the expected warmth and hiss you’d expect, Home Recordings: 1993-1999 shows an unusual amount of experimentation/avant-garde-isms for someone essentially working in confessional acoustic singer-songwriter territory. The whirring technological breakdown in the middle of ‘Call Me a Fool,’ an avalanche of machinery,mirrors the emotional breakdown in the rest of the song, and goes places that few of Talcum’s contemporaries ever did. Think less Lou Barlow, and more Tall Dwarfs.

‘Madonna’s Weep’ has a tweaked-out 3am surreality that recalls Robyn Hitchock’s I Often Dream of Trains. ‘Another Time’ is as intricate and broken as early Elliott Smith, until this synth break comes along that melts your soul, that makes your perception of everything outside your window change, that gives meaning to the swaying and sweating of the trees.

With these recent solo releases Joe Jack Talcum displays a depth and longing that his time in the Milkmen only hinted at, so even a bratty line like ‘The sun shines out of my asshole’ is immediately followed by the pathos of ‘and rain pours out of my eyes.’

It’s never going to be a hit. No one’s looking for this. It’s too subtle, too heartfelt, too understated. But everyone who hears it is going to fall in love, and isn’t that enough—after all there are better ways to measure success than stardom.
Golden era hip-hop roots planted in black Iowa dirt, tempered by 90s alternative era rock influence, yields a juxtaposition of the dark, horrific nature of life paired with a slapstick and comedic view of the world, allowing for a wide, unpredictable arsenal of material ranging from soul-spilling indie bedroom rock to wise-cracking battle rap and on to radio pop.

Coolzey stepped into the public eye around 2005 with a demo album and a series of exploratory DIY tours with rapper/comedian and friend Schaffer the Darklord. Interest spread quickly and Coolzey found himself touring alongside hip-hop legends from Brand Nubian and Jurassic 5 as well as punk rock heroes like Dead Milkmen. Coolzey's first album 'The Honey' was released in 2010 and second official full-length 'Hit Factory' in 2013. In these albums as well as in a number of EPs, collaborations and side projects, he finds his niche as a songwriter, navigating hip-hop, rock, punk and pop in the spirit of genre defying influences such as Ween, Beck, The Beastie Boys and Outkast.

Coolzey's love for multiple genres can also be evidenced in his record label Public School Records, which curates music from grimy underground hip-hop like Bru Lei and DJ PRZM of Spitball to the pop punk ear candy of Lipstick Homicide. In 2014 Public School Records partnered with Fake Four Inc's Four Finger Distro to bring the label global distribution.
D&D Sluggers
D&D Sluggers is the solo venture of Tim White, a musician that seamlessly blends electronic instrumentation with indie-rock inspired guitar work and pop-punk driven melodies.
(The) songs are built at their core through a Nintendo DS and fleshed out with White's infectious vocal melodies and simplistic yet rhythmically dense guitar work. Through a combination of loops and organic instrumentation, D&D Sluggers build brilliant and quirky tracks with minimal arrangements, but they're liable to get you dancing along in no time flat.
Todd Fausnacht
Blending traditional folk, blues, and country music, Todd Fausnacht aims to blend old sounds with new times.
Venue Information:
Kung Fu Necktie
1250 N Front Street
Philadelphia, PA, 19122

Leave a Reply