Kustard Kings "BLAM!"
Featuring the songs:
Multi-instrumentalist and singer/songwriter David Terhune formed The Kustard Kings in 1992. Terhune, who in 1992 was playing in no less than four bands, thought of the idea as a side project. Its genesis came from his desire to combine the sounds of his influences, like The Meters and Booker T. & the MGs, into a tight pop sound. Today’s Kustard Kings are now releasing their first full-length studio album ”BLAM!“
To realize his dream, Terhune recruited a variety of the best musicians on the New York scene: Joe Katz, a veteran of The Mumps and The Swinging Madisons, signed on to play bass. Former Psychedelic Furs sideman Joe McGinty brought his Farfisa organ. Kris Woolsey (Cardinal Woolsey, future Fountains of Wayne associate) was on guitar. The ensemble was rounded out by Clem Waldmann of Blue Man Group, on drums. Little did they know that over the next ten years, this side project would become one of the most written-about, talked-about and in-demand bands in New York.
2002’s BLAM! finds the band returning to their instrumental roots. Most of the songs, like the lovely “Elena Laura,” named for Terhune’s twin daughters, and the synth extravaganza “The Golden Ram,” were recorded live in the studio. The exceptions are the classics “Jungle Boogie” and “Spiderman,” which were culled from a live set performed on legendary freeform radio station WFMU. It’s a long way back to the day in 1992, when, clad in bathrobes and cardboard crowns, the Kustard Kings debuted. They played small bars and developed a wickedly tight sound. The band both settled in and branched out, writing and arranging songs according to their individual influences and tastes. Then came the Loser’s Lounge. Joe McGinty had been tinkering with the Loser’s Lounge concept, casually backing various singers paying tribute to his musical heroes. It soon became clear that the Kings would make the perfect house band for this up-and-coming New York musical series. The Kings played their first Loser’s Lounge show in 1994. It was a tribute to Henry Mancini at NYC’s Fez, where the band played a set of instrumentals. Immediately, their performances drew the attention of the press.
Write-ups followed in The Daily News, USA Today, New York Magazine, Time Out, Pulse! and The New York Times, which called The Kustard Kings ”a backup band extraordinaire.” The rest is carefully documented history [www.loserslounge.com]; the Loser’s Lounge was on its way to becoming the renowned, professional event that it is today. The Loser’s Lounge performances quickly began to dominate the Kings’ activities. Word of mouth spread, and sold-out shows at Fez featured guest appearances by the likes of John Flansburgh, Deborah Harry, Lenny Kaye, Cyndi Lauper, J. Mascis, Bob Mould, Joey Ramone and Ronnie Spector. Other early fans include Burt Bacharach, who, upon learning of the Loser’s tribute to his music, even invited the band to hang out while he was recording ”God Give Me Strength” with Elvis Costello.
In 2000, the Loser’s Lounge moved to a new, larger location, The Westbeth Theatre on Bank Street. Notable guests continued to drop in, including James Iha (Smashing Pumpkins), John Cameron Mitchell (composer and star of “Hedwig and the Angry Inch”) and Parker Posey. The Kustard Kings were honored in 2001 when Paul Williams attended and performed at his own tribute show. Paul’s guest, actor Richard Dreyfuss, even took the stage for a rendition of “Rainy Days and Mondays.” Lee Hazelwood also took the stage the evening he was being hailed, and was feeling no pain when he made some memorable extemporaneous comments. Loser’s Lounge tributes have included such diverse artists as David Bowie, Brian Wilson and Donovan. And the Kustard Kings have backed up every song. They have understandably picked up a few tricks while learning the entire catalogs of such a variety of musicians. Their diversity is evidenced by their lounge- and surf-tinged original tunes such as “BLAM!,” and “Scream Savers.” The band achieves a sound that will amaze you, and an album that bursts out of the speakers and puts the listener in the best seat in the lounge. The Kustard Kings are currently hard at work on their next album “A Kustard Kristmas,” which will be released by Confidential Recordings in late 2002.