Eugene Chadbourne and Camper van Beethoven

Eugene Chadbourne and Camper van Beethoven

Used Record Pile

Knitting Factory

I forget exactly where it was I first heard “Life X 2.” Some Eugene Chadbourne record lost to multiple moves. It’s been years since I heard it, but I can remember it being a defining moment for me. If this was music, maybe the musicians should play the same song. This Chadbourne guy can’t sing, and these lyrics aren’t even mathematically correct! And what the hell is it with the giant toilet plunger at the end? Screw this noise. Wait, let’s play it again.

Chadbourne’s ease at mixing magic and mania here blends nicely with the monumental instrumental talents of Camper van Beethoven, not that you can tell right away. Spanning the years 1987-1991, the music on here sounds as off-the-cuff as it gets. In order of diminishing concordance, we have Mr. Chadbourne’s words and vocals, and his stringed instrument, then rhythm, chords, key. It’s all going to hell in a handbasket, but it’s quite a ride.

Knitting Factory Works, 74 Leonard St., New York, NY 10013; http://www.knittingfactory.com

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