Lets get Downs with the kids!?
There's no greater marketing strategy in music than to make a virtue of a disability, ask Stevie Wonder, Beethoven,Suebo and Ray Charles. Then there's Kilburn and the High Roads; a band that was jam-packed full of physical disability! However, it is pretty rare to have any band member to have a genetic learning disability such as Down's Syndrome. Devo did write a song about it once, with the non-pc title of 'Mongoloid'; the hero of which 'brought home the bacon so that no-one knew'!
But,everybody knows by now that Reynols is a trio of Argentinian nutters led by Down's Syndrome-afflicted drummer/vocalist Miguel Tomasin (their name was chosen randomly by a chihuahua walking on a TV remote control unit: Burt Reynolds appeared on the screen – losing the "d" after threats of legal action...allegedly?), whose releases include a "Dematerialized CD" (i.e. an empty box), a recording of 10,000 chickens in a battery farm, and an album of treated tape hiss for Bernhard Günter's trente oiseaux label (“Blank Tapes), not totally original,(check out The New Blockaders' “Epater les Bourgeois” cassette) but very 'Wacky' indeed?
Once nearly arrested in Buenos Aires (on the grounds that they might reflect a negative image of
Argentina) for plugging their axes into pumpkins, the trio caught the attention of the new music media with "Pauline Oliveros in the Arms of Reynols", which brought them an invitation to play a seven-hour Lincoln Center concert with Pauline herself. All of this is well-known, but what about the music?
The "Barbatrulos" album, recorded in 1997 and 1998, sounds like an outsider Glenn Branca on downers, playing free form improvised droning guitar noise,backed by the Prats rhythm section;with a person who grew up, abandoned as a baby,locked in a cupboard on a desert island, singing in a language only he speaks. There are no track titles,because "they went to buy osobuco [sic] to feed (their) chihuahua."..?
I'm half-tempted to learn Spanish, or Gibberish,just to be able to figure out what Tomasin is on about (though I'm not sure it would help much).
There are,hopefully, hundreds, maybe thousands, of people hidden away in garages and bedrooms all over the world making this kind of noise, or something like it.
Whether Reynols' undoubted knack for self-publicity makes their musical output more worthy of attention is debatable, but in today's superficial 'Beauty' 'Sex' and celebrity obsessed world, it's rather comforting to know that these 'wrong' people are out there. And out there they certainly are. Way Out There!
DOWN's LOAD this syndrome HERE!
alternate DOWNS here!