First and foremost, Earthmonkey has the word "monkey" in its name, and everyone loves monkeys! OK, maybe you need a little more than just a quality simian reference. The gangly orangutan behind Earthmonkey happen to be Peat Bog (Nurse With Wound, Inflatable Sideshow) with production and sound samples by Steven Stapleton. Simply put, you will go bananas for this one and might even find yourself chanting "MONKEY, MONKEY, MONKEY!" Go ahead, say it now---you'll feel exhilarated and will notice that you have become ever so slightly more hirsute. Now, we naked apes live in a world where the term "psych" is thrown around with such frequency that it seems to mean little more than "weird guitars," which is everything nowadays, and could well mean Cher for that matter. So, when we say "psych" in relation to Earthmonkey, we mean Monks. We mean Bonniwell Music Machine. We mean Wolfgang Dauner. We mean Amon Duul II. We mean Taj Mahal Travelers. We mean a bunch of other stuff that Earthmonkey wishes we mentioned but did not. Earthmonkey DOES have weird guitars, and organs, and percussion. But it also has that unnamable, freely streaming "other" quality that sets it apart from being a somewhat avant-garde rock record. The music is, well, music. It's very outré, but is nonetheless bounded by time signatures and melody (These, however, are not ties that bind, rather, they are ties that will get you high). Earthmonkey is dark, droney, deep and , dare we say, groovy. The music walks along through a thick fog of Peat and signature NWW will-o-the-wisp squeaks and squeals. Each of the 10 tracks follows brilliantly from the last, with certain tracks gaining enough momentum to peel all your 'nanas. In fact, the curves and turns of this release are so perfectly wrought that we think the songs may actually now be part of our body. Maybe we are experiencing devolution. THANKS EARTHMONKEY! Unlike many other modern acts, Earthmonkey's members do not sound like they are trying to make a trippy record, they just do...and it just is. It sounds like a bunch of stoned marmosets got together and actually managed to type the complete works of Shakespeare. And let's not forget that the lucky people who order directly from Beta-Lactam Ring mail order will get a BONUS 12" record featuring an introduction by Jimmy Carl Black. Who, you say? JIMMY CARL BLACK: legendary Mothers Of Invention alumnus who has collaborated with Arthur Brown, Eugene Chadbourne and numerous others for the past 30+ years, and, most importantly, he's the Indian in the band. So don't delay, bring a gibbon or two into your home. Don't be a chump...be a chimp! MONKEY, MONKEY, MONKEY!
PEAT BOG-EARTHMONKEY, A BRIEF HISTORY.
Peat Bog's formative years were largely spent casting about the English countryside with The Convoy; a conflagration of acid crazed, medieval brigands (see also "hippies"), who traveled en masse via an armada of beaten old trucks & buses, making their homes in teepees and living as freely as possible. While tuning in and dropping out with this loose collective, Bog began to ingest not only psychedelic drugs, but also psychedelic music. From The Mothers Of Invention to Chrome, Bog was a head for it all. It wasn't long before he began to bake the minds of others with his own brand of trance inducing (and induced) music. It was with this burgeoning sense of a musical universe that Peat Bog moved to Ireland in 1989. Eventually settling in County Claire in 1992, Bog found kindred spirits in Ruby Wallis and in the family Stapleton. The Stapletons' pseudo-nomadic lifestyle, traveling by horses and wagons, appealed to Bog, and so he found himself as something of an auxiliary family member. In 1993 Steve Stapleton asked Bog if he would like to sit in on recording sessions for a Nurse With Wound track slated for the compilation album "50 Years Of Sunshine" (a musical tribute to the 50 years since Albert Hoffmann first stumbled upon LSD 25). As it happened, Bog had just the right experience in both music and Sunshine usage. Thus was born another Nurse With Wound adjutant who would later appear on such NWW albums as "Who Can I Turn To Stereo," "An Awkward Pause," "Alice The Goon," "Funeral Music For Perez Prado" and "Rock And Roll Station," as well as other projects. Concurrently, Peatbog performed with a band called The Big Bag Of Stix. This group was known for playing grueling three hour sets of tweaked out, Irish punk/traditional. Quoth a member of the band: "Bog would go mental on percussion and didgeridoo." 1995 saw the birth of Peat Bog and Ruby Wallace's child Freddy. It was at this time that Bog started to work with the band The Inflatable Sideshow. With Darragh Greally and some assistance from Stapleton, the "Bonefrequency" track was completed in 1996 and appeared on the "Foxtrot" compilation LP. The Inflatable Sideshow then spent quite some time touring Ireland and the European continent. In the late 90's, some friends asked if they could use a selection of Bog's home recordings for their Burning Man documentary, "Dust Devils." This suggestion dovetailed nicely with the new musical notions percolating in Bog's mind. Inspired by memories of similar festivals in the UK, Bog elicited the help of Andile Meeshec, Molly Gowen and Ian Cahill, and a series of pieces were created for the film under the new project name; Earthmonkey. The music finally used in the film appears as tracks 6 & 7 on Earthmonkey's "Autosapien" album, released by Beta-Lactam Ring records in 2003. More Earthmonkey releases are to come in 2004, including a collaboration featuring Steve Stapleton and, appropriately completing a circle, Jimmy Carl Black from The Mothers Of Invention.