The Pixies were one of those bands that could get you slack, sex, money and help you find eternal salvation. To qoute J.R. "Bob" Dobbs in a recent on-line chat with Goblin Magazine, "The Pixies were true Subgenii musicians, second only to Devo." And their three most slack oriented albums, Bossa Nova, Surfer Rosa, and Doolittle are must gets if you want to impress pinkos with your developed alternative musical tastes and get sex and money from them. Frank Black's latest work, The Cult Of Ray, is his attempt to focus attention on acclaimed science fiction writer Ray Bradburry. "Bob" was also quoted as saying. "Frank Black's The Cult Of Ray is bullshit, the only true cult is the cult of me."
Black, who has been noted for his bulldada-esque lyrics, as from Kicked In the Taco, "Say, it's a bit nightmarish / From here to albondigas* Parish / Underneath the stars / Hey, I got kicked in the taco / There's a brewing sirraco / On the planet of Mars / And from me, you got my message of love."
The most frightening song on the new album, however, is his single Men In Black** -- about a group of alien flesh-eating, plastic utensil using, watchers for the extremely evil Elder Gods, that pull the strings of the world leaders and are responsible for most of the earth leaders secretiveness and corruption. Black sings, "I'm waiting my visitation / From the men in black / Are they gray or is it my own nation?"
Frop, a wonderful Slack plant sometimes found in the pipe of "Bob," is often used a source of inspiration and "bulldada" appreciation, yet Black says he chooses not to use mind alteration in the quest for "morealism" and creative truth.
"I am not really a "drug" user, although I have been known to partake of the wacky tobbaccy now and then. Smoking marijuana, while it has given me much pleasure, has never given me any creative ideas. Or if I do have any creative ideas while stoned on pot I forget to write it down. Generally I do not pursue that method. I've heard of people describing THC as a focuser and I can see that -- I'm not that focused a person when I'm straight -- so I think trying to get more focused by smoking a joint wouldn't work with me. It just makes me talk a lot and become the most annoying person in the room.
"I think in a really innocent college student kind of way I obviously became fascinated by this period of art and film (bulldada and surrealism) when I heard about it. I thought it was interesting so I think there's an influence in a small way. I was an anthropology major who took general classes, although I've had my "arty" moments while making records."
Goblin Magazine: Is the space program you advocate so earnestly a Conspiracy plot to divert funds from the have-nots to rich old white men; or is the reverse true that the anti-"Bob" is trying to prevent the discovery of Slack we may find in space and put us at risk to being conquered and destroyed by space aliens and stray meteors?
Frank Black: Well certainly that (feeding the homeless) should be a priority over going into space. I agree with the writer Ray Bradburry though, who said that men on earth are the ones responsible for war, and this tendency towards war is never going to be removed -- it's in our blood -- and he thinks the interests of going into space and developing technology is a suitable replacement to war. He's not saying we've accomplished that although we have space industries and have just barely gone into space. He thinks that if we pursue space with the same passion that we pursue war that would be a good thing. If the money put into war could be put into space programs, that could alleviate a lot of suffering in the world. There's all kinds of suffering out there, and I'm willing to bet an awful lot of it is due to war.
GM: How has Ray Bradburry helped the genre of science fiction express "raw humanity in all its shit-kickingly flawed glory?"
FB: I'm probably the wrong person to give you much insight. I think his writing is very fun, enthusiastic, positive, and it has an attitude that includes everybody. It's not elitist but very friendly. What's attracted me is the fun positive atmosphere, the excitement about mars and whatever is there. Even his darker more sinister stories have a sort of fun and exciting feel to them. I know that he has suffered in his own life and his bitterness is not what reigns, it's the opposite.
GM: How can Conspiracy-dupes regain the connection to the cosmos they've been cheated out of?
FB: Probably by looking up is the best thing. If we could eliminate a lot of the day time which we bring into our night time. The have-nots of the world probably live in darkness and know more about the world than you or I do. But I think the best way to regain our connection to the cosmos is to look up and dim the lights a little in the evening so we can look at the sky. Artificial light isn't a bad thing but it's used too much and it drives people to work when they should be relaxing.
GM: Does that mean in order to get in sink with our inner Slack and the natural order we should wake up at dawn and go to bed by dark time?
FB: I don't live like that but I think I might be a better person if I did. I'm not planning on living like that tomorrow so am I full of baloney, am I hypocrite? I don't know. It's like living in cities, I'd probably be a better person if I lived on a mountain top and hiked around all day and killed my own meat and everything else. But I'm not like that, I'm a totally urbanized creature and I'm afraid it will take something like anarchy to drive me into the hills.
GM: Did the Pixies inspire those seduced by false slack and the "Anti-Bob" to become watered down "Pixies Pretenders" for consumption in the Conspiracy's alternative rock marketing plan?
FB: I don't think anyone really knows who influences who. Critics are always telling them the answers so they can sell more magazines and create more of a story. There's nothing wrong with that but I think it takes the focus off the music itself -- with constant over analyzing and trying to put everything in its little place, I think its best to just hear music and decide whether its good or bad and not think about what gave birth to the next thing, because I don't know if it really works like that. The history of rock is a tougher thing and you can't come up with a model on how it works, other than follow certain trends and patterns.
GM: May "Bob" be with you.
*A Mexican style hamburger soup
**Who visit those who have encountered Aliens to shut them up on pain of death.
Frank Black Website