Wild Mercury Sound

Turbo Fruits, plus Smashing Pumpkins (slight return)

John Mulvey

I know I vaguely promised not to keep going on about this, but some of Smashing Pumpkins' more extreme fans keep dropping by here. Today's contribution comes from Bobby, who remains convinced I haven't heard "Zeitgeist".

"Any true Pumpkins fan would know that Zwan was awful," says Bobby. Time I came clean, then, and reiterated that I'm a True Zwan Fan and a fairweather Pumpkins follower. Which is probably why I skipped the opportunity of seeing Pumpkins Mark 4 in London last night. Sounds good, though: according to Farah's report, the show featured covers of "The Star Spangled Banner" and "The End", amongst about 800 other songs.

I can't imagine Turbo Fruits ever playing a three-hour set. In fact, listening to their self-titled debut album, it's hard to imagine them keeping it up for 30 minutes.

Turbo Fruits are two teenagers from Nashville who also figure in the rather feisty Be Your Own Pet. On the cover , they are blindfolded and tied together back to back. This, we might assume, is the only way the photographer could get them to stay in the same place long enough. Apparently there's a bassist involved called Turbo Max, too.

Anyway, they're fun. Total tearaway gonzoid punk with titles like "Fight This!", "I'm Excited" and "Devo Girl". At times they sound like an even brattier Ramones, and though they play dumb, it's clear Turbo Fruits are heavily immersed in outsider rock lore. Not so much that they approach these ramalams ironically, mind: a bash through the MC5's "Ramblin' Rose" is breathless and ingenuous, not some arch manoeuvring into rock tradition.

"John beat the drums to hell!" it says in the credits. Sure did. Their Myspace is here, by the way. Sounds relatively mellow and together now I've hyped them up as some insurrectionist noise chimps, but there you go.


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