I decree that anyone who fails to raise a mirth or grin is missing something akin to a soul. ‘Television‘ is puerile and singularly cool. It’s self knowingly silly and raucous. And we’re not talking punk, it’s far cuter than that, with a teen Weezer faux fratboy fuzz.
Dismantling this strips out the fun. The West Coast DIY and the Dadaist drive, the acute observations and the absurdist vibe, all these things need to be kept intact. There’s a sharp 60’s cool and early 90’s grub-pop, there’s a tongue in cheek taste to *almost* every word. Guitars bump and grind while the bass simmers by, and a synth organ swells out the sound. The result is cartoonish under-pumped gem that induces a wide and wry smile.
As if the sounds weren’t enough, look below. In this self-produced video there’s enough freaky pluck to cement those lysergic flick love-ins. Singing ice creams and spirals of lollypop swirls take an aim at that B-Movie sweet spot, we make use of the crudest of green screens for baseball crowds, voxpops and gameshows. If watching TV makes us lazy and dumb, this this song does exactly the opposite. Then we get to ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’. Where I almost spat my Sarsaparilla.
But with all the above, and with all the aplomb, this is not just some comedy track. As throwaway as it seems with its high camp and fun, King Whisker are sharp and clever enough to know how not to descend into novelty. They also know how to hit home. And that a track made of sideswipes at cultural norms shouldn’t shy from the bad that surrounds us. “The world seems like a burning shitheep and it’s hard to even breathe / And when you’re killed for being black and just for living / the whole world starts to bleed”. Having these words as mainstream as Baseball and gameshows, it helps keep them high and on show.
So let’s end where we began, with the fun that exudes. It’s sarcastic, it’s clever, it’s caustic and crude. It’s as catchy as bad habits and it’s B-Movie cool. Fans of Thee Oh Sees, King Gizzard, Pixies, C33s, maybe hang by and see what comes next.