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A guy gets into a three-way with two girls draped in the American flag…

from the NY Daily News

Odd forms follow funk with Was (Not Was)

Sunday, April 20th 2008, 4:00 AM

Was (Not Was)

It’s safe to say there’s only one living funk band who would record a lyric with the following plot:

A guy gets into a three-way with two girls draped in the American flag, then meets an insane skinhead who hurls an anti-Semitic comment at him, causing him to kill and dismember the lout, after which our narrator sees a UFO land on the Hollywood sign, out of which emerges Tom Cruise and Scientology leader L. Ron Hubbard in postcoital bliss.

Who but the twisted talents of Was (Not Was) would dare match such a heady scenario to the low-down fire of funk?

Was (Not Was) Boo!

Not that they’re entirely without antecedents. George Clinton made surreality a central part of his shtick. And Frank Zappa pioneered the whole universe of nut-case funk, even if he never got the sexual chemistry part quite right.

Was (Not Was) has that part down. In fact, no band has so perfectly balanced the pull of funk with language worthy of the theater of the absurd.

To broaden the band’s already sprawling music, they brought in a special guest orator – Kris Kristofferson – who grumbles his way through the existential poem “Green Pills in the Dresser.” No less a talent than Bob Dylan came along too, co-authoring the crazed tale “Mr. Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore.”

But it wasn’t the great bard who came up with lines like this typical Was quatrain: “High in fiber/low in fat/come at your mama/with a baseball bat.”

Even on the odd chance that someone else could have written those lines, only the Was brothers could make them dance.

[ click to read full article at NY Daily News ]

Posted on April 20, 2008 by Editor

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