PINK FILTH

Part of the Bubblegum Undertable (that's like "Underground" in other types of music), PINK FILTH considers their short songs, sweet lyrics, and chewy-delicious beats PSYCHEDELIC BUBBLEWAVE and who are we to argue? They recorded an album of Bubblegum covers called PINK FILTH PRESENTS 17 BUBBLEGUM SMASHES and released SUGAR SHOCK which included 10 more shock-coated bubblegum smashes!



PINK FILTH PRESENTS SEVENTEEN BUBBLEGUM SMASHES!

(Out Of Print, Lost Records, Dallas TX, 1998)

1. Sugar And Spice
2. Quick Joey Small
3. Bubblegum World
4. Sweeter Than Sugar
5. Blue Eyes, Orange Skies
6. Green Tambourine
7. Clones
8. Box On Wheels
9. Chewy Chewy
10. Sunday Morning
11. Blueberry Blue
12. Hang-Ups
13. Don't Call Us (We'll Call You)
14. Let It All Hang Out!
15. Quark, Strangeness And Charm
16. Sipping Strawberry Tea
17. I Enjoy Being A Boy

Originally distributed on vinyl and in cassette form wrapped with a piece of bubblegum, Pink Filth covers bona fide bubblegum songs and unwraps a few bubblegum-ready nuggets to arrive at Seventeen Bubblegum Smashes. Averaging less than two-minutes, the Devo/Barnes & Barnes-influenced trio rips through the gummiest of bubblegum, psychedelic bubblegum and whatever Alice Cooper's Clones was. If I were to pick a single from this group however, it would be the Texas twanged Sugar and Spice backed with Clones.

The Filth steps off the bubblegum train with the covers of T.Rex's Hang-Ups, Sugarloaf's Don't Call Us, We'll Call You, The Hombres' Let It All Hang Out, and Hawkwind's (!) Quark, Strangeness & Charm. Somehow, they stretch these songs out and snap them back into a mouth full of gum.

The opus here is the "Nirvana-meets-Weird-Al" version of the Banana Splits I Enjoy Being A Boy. Adding layers of vocals while exploring every melody hidden in this bubblegum classic, the pounding drums propel the song to a surprising Space Invaders ending.

The Pink Filth formula of blending sound effects, sped up vocals (probably recorded in real time though), and adding a Texas twist makes for one of the best party discs to come along in some time. I suspect that if enough people ask, they will re-release this classic, if only for the children's sake. E-mail them today!


SUGAR SHOCK

(Uncle Buzz Records UBR09, 2001)

1. Sugar Shock
2. I Love Plastic Bags
3. Special Girl
4. T.V. Screen
5. Dee-Licious
6. Vinyl Junkie
7. Girl In The Saccharine Suit
8. The True Wheel
9. Pineapple Pinwheel
10. Pink Plastic Playpen

Put on your saccharine suit, throw a pineapple in a blender, sit in your pink plastic playpen in front of the TV, toss some gum in your mouth, and be prepared for a sugar shock. Pink Filth is preempting the Brady Bunch tonight to bring you this special album.

It's all silly of course (although Special Girl and Pineapple Pinwheel sound serious!) and if you're into looking for serious influences, you will find them. There's the Chipmunked Ramone open and Who-like riffs in Sugar Shock, the Alice Cooper cloning in T.V. Screen and Vinyl Junkie, and the ultra-nasal reading of the 1910 Fruitgum Co.'s Dee-Licious (note the sly use of "Duh" instead of the Fruitgum's "Dill" in the chorus). But once you get past the pointless "name-the-influence" game, you will find two pink-vinyled sides of highly original bubblegum. You'll find classic lines like "Now I got bags to hold all of my bags/Paper or plastic, do you have to ask?" in I Love Plastic Bags and "I think she's fine/She thinks I'm funny/She gives me love like a chocolate bunny" in Saccharine Suit.

So, why did a group of Texans put out a bubblegum album in 2001? Well, at the time bis was big. Powerpuff Girls were popular (even if their big-budgeted, over-produced CD doesn't measure up to Sugar Shock). 


I popped a few questions towards Nick Velvet, lead singer for Pink Filth, and he chewed and spat out these answers:

Andrew Bergey (AB): Where are you based?

Nick Velvet (NV): Texas, ya'll.

AB: Are you a touring group?

NV: Yes.

AB: Bubblegum-wise, who influenced you?

NV: The Monkees, Kasenetz & Katz, Joey Levine/Ohio Express, 1910 Fruitgum Co., Banana Splits, Tommy James, John Fred, The Archies, Josie and the Pussycats, to name just a few.

AB: What makes a song Bubblegum "worthy"?

NV: Simplicity, a killer beat, lotsa hooks!

AB: How does the Bubblegum music genre rate in American music history?

NV: Neglected & slagged by the historians, but an influence on many groups. Bubblegum elements are constantly popping up in today's popular music -even country!

AB: If a new Bubblegum Music Scene started, what would you call it?

NV: "Bubblegum" - a more perfect description, you'll never find.

AB: Who (or what) is your favorite Banana Split?

NV: I dunno, they're all pretty sexy.

AB: What's your favorite gum?

NV: Bazooka Joe.