Kid Congo & The Pink Monkeybirds, Cruel Summer, Silver Shadows, DJ Omar Perez (Popscene)
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Kid Congo Powers & The Pink Monkey Birds
Waking from a nap in the swamps of outer space, Kid Congo & The Pink Monkey Birds ride a geisterbahn into the hypnagogic, a place between sleep and consciousness also known as the “Haunted Head”. “Haunted Head" is the third LP Kid Congo & The Pink Monkey Birds has oozed out for In The Red Records. Legendary guitar stylist Kid Congo Powers (The Gun Club, The Cramps, Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds) and long time cohorts, bassist Kiki Solis (Knife In The Water), drummer Ron Miller (Up The Academy), and guitarist Jesse Roberts (Sandrider, The Ruby Doe) take matters into their own mitts by having Jesse engineer and Ron mix the record at the now well-known Harveyville Project High School in Kansas. “Haunted Head” reflects the band at its purest distillation.
The Pink Monkey Birds create a cocktail of fuzz guitars, New Orleans drum beats, soulful strut bass lines, and sonic ambrosia from beyond. The trip of your dreams includes the “cheap and tawdry” in a tribute to dearly departed actress Susan Tyrell (“Su Su”), the morphing of Jerry Lee Lewis with Phyllis Diller (“Killer Diller”) and the plain ol' insanity of romantic love (“Dance Me Swamply”). The band will also tell you how they LIKE “the mondos and the cholos and the weirdos and he freaks” on the rollicking track “Let’s Go!” and how they DON’T LIKE “neocons in square back suits" and "throwing up in a dirty phone booth “ on the punky proclamation “I Don’t Like”. I mean, who does? In the title ballad “Haunted Head”, Kid Congo & The Pink Monkey Birds ask the listener “What’s inside your Haunted Head? Are you alive or are you dead? Are you kissing and a huggin? Are you pushin’ and a shoving? “. Perhaps only in dreams could you answer such a question.
Cruel Summer's sound evokes the dazed, fuzzed-out, swirling noise of the late 1980s UK sound while still sticking to their pop roots--they’ve aptly been crowned San Francisco’s “jangle darlings.”
Following their 2013 release ST/EP on Sacramento’s art/vinyl imprint Mt. St. Mtn., Cruel Summer is in the process releasing a split with SF’s Moonbeams; the four-song 12” release is recorded in the propulsive, crisp style of the Los Angeles Part Time Punks Sessions with Michael Stock. Mastered by Kramer of Galaxie 500 and Low, the Part Time Punks Sessions recordings feature a louder, raucous version of “Leeches”--a cacophonous love song to the soul of San Francisco before the tech boom began to bleed it dry. The moody cover of Pylon’s “Crazy” features the sharp, chorus-y guitars of its original with the hum of Mexican radio hidden under the surface.
In 2014 the four-piece played the TBD Festival in October with Blondie, Kurt Vile, DIIV and Beach Fossils, to name a few. To wrap the year up they released 'Leeches' on a single-sided leathe cut on Rocinante Records and finally released a awesome video showing the true spirt of San Francisco.
2015 had the band back in the studio for their long anticipated full length release, working with recording maestro Jason Kick (Maus Haus, Rent Control), it will definitely something to pay attention to in 2016.
DJ Omar Perez (Popscene)