(For more info on Elastic No-No Band, check out the link to their first CD, THE VERY BEST OF ELASTIC NO-NO BAND SO FAR, on the left side of this page.)
Currently hard at work on their new studio album, Elastic No-No Band has this collection of "No-No's" to share in the meanwhile. Not quite "rarities," and never released on the "B-side" of any singles, these are therefore just "leftover" songs, matched up with some interesting live performances to create a kind of audio scrapbook of the past couple of years.
The CD starts with "Sally's Strut," a nouveau blues number featured on the Crafty Records compilation, ANTICOMP FOLKILATION, which documented NYC's Lower East Side "antifolk" music scene.
It immediately segues into "Would You Care?," a tongue-in-cheek political song with the atmosphere of a field recording that asks the question: "If Iraqi civilians did stupid shit on TV -- like Anna Nicole Smith did -- would you care when they died too?"
A live performance of the bittersweet comic duet "Nobody's Wife (You're The One)" follows, telling the story of one of the world's most awkward first dates.
Then, there is the almost haiku-like "What I'm Good For." In less than 10 lines, songwriter Justin Remer manages to communicate volumes about heartache, disappointment, and bitterness.
To lighten the mood, a live performance of the lowbrow favorite "Let's Fuck" follows. This recording features an impromptu storytelling bit where Justin Remer talks about a Christian listener's reaction to the song and pianist Herb Scher pulls off an unrehearsed solo.
Next up is "Nobody's Listening," a narrative diptych about the tricky job of musicmaking.
Then, there is a pair of live recordings of 2 fan favorites, "You Never Swam" and "Cheese Fries," which highlight the laidback, goodnatured energy of ENB live shows and feature ENB's new drummer Doug Johnson.
"Lone Gay Man's Last Words" is a song that was written for the soundtrack album of the upcoming Troma movie, POULTRYGEIST: NIGHT OF THE CHICKEN DEAD. The seemingly nonsensical lyrics are actually based on dialogue from one of the movie's comic death scenes.
"Younger Than Me" humorously documents a quarter-life crisis in almost exclusively pop-cultural terms -- especially during the extended 2 1/2-minute monologue which makes up the middle of the song, where the harmfulness of MTV's "My Super Sweet 16" is discussed.
The included version of "I Am Klaus Kinski (And This Is My Song)" is from a live performance where lead singer Justin Remer was so annoyed by two drunks in the audience who were talking loudly, that he got down off the stage and screamed half of the song at them.
Frank Hoier is the songwriter behind "New York City Girls," which makes up the first half of the last (listed) track on this CD. You can hear Frank's original version on his album LOVE IS WAR, but in this performance, ENB give it a vaguely Latin flavor and add some of their own lyrics. Then they follow it up with a rousing rendition of "You Think It's Wrong (To Sing Along)" that gets the crowd to do a lot more than just SING along.
This eclectic disc makes a nice compliment to E.N.B.'s first release, the low-key collection THE VERY BEST OF ELASTIC NO-NO BAND SO FAR, also available on CD Baby.