By Jeremy Essig
By Jason Robinson
By Hans Morgenstern
By Joseph Hess
By Peter Gilstrap
By Julia Burch
By Jeremy Essig
By Nathan Smith
Most of the numbers are revamped versions of the sort of simple, straightforward love songs that were once the stuff of classics. "I'll Be Loving You," for instance combines ice pick-in-the-amplifiers distortion with boilerplate soda-fountain jukebox lyrics like "Baby, I can see the blue moon in your eyes/and when you cry stars fall from the sky." These would sound cheesy if they weren't sung so earnestly. Then there's "Crystal Ball," which belies its tight, jangling guitar riff with Khan's confessions that "Hopin' and prayin'/livin' and dyin'/got my mind in an awful state," before he joyfully howls the refrain, "Whoaaaa, the truth is gonna set you free."
Together, it all makes for a remarkably eclectic and unique mishmash of material that somehow manages to avoid sounding contrived, despite borrowing heavily from every garage-rock, doo-wop and punk-rock band with a cult following from the last fifty years.
The work, Khan proclaims in his most serious tone and with typical modesty, comes from tapping his own strangely brilliant psyche.
"There's not conscious decision in this band," he says. "It's all unconscious. If you see some kind of pattern developing, it's a complete whatchamacallit, a coincidence. We just do things as they come along; there's no formula or plan. We make music because we love to make music, not because we want to attract a certain market or please people. We please our fans by being who we are."