Get hep to The Gomers - Scene article by Jim Lundstrom
THE GOMERS, Mike Zirkel The Album
The Gomers are a Madison institution, and two Madison mayors have issued proclamations to prove it. The band appears weekly at the High Noon Saloon as a human karaoke machine called Gomeroke. They are also the house band at the annual Madison Area Music Awards. All of which explains why The Gomers are also known as “Madison’s House Band.”
Recorded in “lush, stereophonic Gomer-Vision," Mike Zirkel The Album provides several sonic clues to why The Gomers have become a household word in Madison homes.
For example, the Wisconsin Dept. of Tourism ought to get in touch with The Gomers about using their song “I Been Over Dere” in future promotional efforts. In a deft bow to Johnny Cash and his song “I’ve Been Everywhere,” the Gomers’ pack as many Wisconsin city and town names into the song as they can in 2 minutes and 20 seconds. See if your favorite one is there. Plus they use the term “dairy air.” Can’t wait to see the tour that takes them to every community mentioned.
The eight members of The Gomers are musicians, comedians and master parodists. And they have some cool friends, such as Adrian Belew (Frank Zappa, David Bowie, King Crimson), who plays some furious guitar on “Things Fall Apart; Robert Fripp (King Crimson, David Bowie, Peter Gabriel), who ads voice and guitar synth to “Fripping the Rude Oud”; and Icelandic drummer Siggi Baldursson (The Sugarcubes, Bjork, Reptile Palace Orchestra), who beats his trademark dry ice sound in the brief “Homosexuals & Lesbians.”
Nice to have those guys stop by, but The Gomers don’t really need any help. Not since dear old Vivian Stanshall and the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band have we had anything as buoyant and pixilated as most of the 20 songs on the new CD. String wizard Biff Blumfumgagnge’s “Crime Scene” – which begins with the line “Don’t you hate it when the toilet’s a crime scene?” – is especially in the Bonzo mold.
Mixed in throughout are odd, cartoonish sounds, commentary, rants, asides, bon mots and killer licks. There is also a dance song that could be as big as the Macarena – “Dance Jack Palance,” a discussion of the “Hobo Jungle Circuit” and a Les Paul rant on “Les Floyd or Pink Paul?” (The Gomers once performed with Mr. Paul, so the rant may be real – and, if so, it’s even funnier).
The album goes out on a commercial for The Gomers, with professional “ululations” provided by Rob Haggar, who has a great outro punchline when he identifies himself at the end.
Oh, the album is named Mike Zirkel because Mike Zirkel, chief engineer at Smart Studios in Madison, worked on The Gomers’ last album but was inadvertently left off the credits. What a very Gomerly thing to do! Check out the band at beeftone.com/gomers-home.html, or catch them live at the High Noon http://www.high-noon.com and http://www.beeftone.com/youtube.html
"Mike Zirkel The Album" is an audio thrill ride mixed mostly by Smart Studios’ Mr. Colson (Nirvana, MTV's Reverb), stuffed with oddly bizarre sound sculpture-sendups and brimming with even more off-kilter parodies. The group is very proud of the midrange on this record, which was recorded in lush, stereophonic "Gomer-Vision" by Lance Ketterer of Mazo Audio.
Sure hits include a Wisconsin-style parody of the Johnny Cash tune “I Been Over There”, entitled “I Been Over Dere”. A dance-hit entitled “Dance Jack Palance”. A tribute to aging human bodies. An ode to halitosis. A song about chandeliers. A tune about rocking. A lament about public bathrooms. All that plus little treats and nuggets (recorded during actual Gomer studio sessions) peppered throughout, giving the impression of just hanging out with the band. With whiskey.
"Mike Zirkel The Album" is the fourth official stereo release from Wisconsin, USA's 22-years-young (not counting years off for inactivity and mischief in other markets) musical supergroup, The Gomers. For this digital record, 'Madison's House Band' have ensnared a short list of notable special guest recording artists / heavy hitters: Robert Fripp*, Adrian Belewª and Siggi Baldurssonº.
It is called "Mike Zirkel The Album" because Zirkel (of Smart Studios) mixed the Gomers' previous release (Salt & Sugar) and somehow got left off the credits. So the Gomers promised to name the next album after their main but mis-credited man, "Magic Mike Zirkel." And they did.
A free download and the following is from: http://www.thedailypage.com/daily/article.php?article=19282
MadTracks -- 'Things Fall Apart' by The Gomers
Tom Laskin on Thursday 01/10/2008 1:15 pm
Mike Zirkel (The Album) by The Gomers
Say, doesn't that howling, squalling, downright otherworldly freak-out guitar work punctuating "Things Fall Apart" from the new Mike Zirkel (The Album) by The Gomers sound familiar? Well, it should. At least to connoisseurs of weirdo pop and rock.
That's because it comes from Adrian Belew, who's blown out more than a few fuses with the likes of Frank Zappa, David Bowie, and King Crimson -- and of course, his own bands. His contributions to this tough, lowing prog groove were recorded separately at Belew's home studio outside Nashville by The Gomers' Biff Blumfumgagnge, who's spent nearly 20 years serving on Belew's tours as a guitar tech and sometime violinist.
Unsurprisingly, the guitar craziness adds energy to the tune, but it also merges seamlessly with the sardonic, Zappa-meets-Kiss vibe The Gomers are working. Undoubtedly, the prog blogs will be impressed.
An MP3 of the track are available in the related downloads at right. More music by the group can be found at its MySpace page with details of its illustrious past available on its Wikipedia entry. The Gomers will debut their new album with a one-night only edition of The Midnight Special with Wolfman Jack + Gomers CD Release Party at the High Noon Saloon on Saturday, January 12. This show will pay homage to the old-school rock 'n' roll TV show featuring the iconic disc jockey, and introduce The Gomers' latest to Madison.
from http://scenenewspaper.com/cdreviews.html -
* (King Crimson, Peter Gabriel, David Bowie, Brian Eno, Daryl Hall, League Of Crafty Guitarists, David Sylvian, Blondie, etc).
ª (Talking Heads, Paul Simon, King Crimson, Frank Zappa, David Bowie, NIN, Les Claypool, The Bears, Laurie Anderson, etc).
º (Bjork, The Sugarcubes, Bogomil Font, Not Just Another Pretty Bass, Þeyr, Grindverk, Kukl, Steintryggur, etc).