Question: Is a live novelty act still a novelty when recorded, packaged and taken home to enjoy? Oakland (by way of Tucson, by way of Chicago) artist Justin Champlin performs as Nobunny what seems to be nightly these days, complete with evil bunny mask, skimpy, trashy outfits and not much more than a jukebox accompanying him. He’s got an action figure, a slew of videos on Youtube and an army of fans who post pictures and reviews of his trashy antics with devotion. But does this old-fashioned entertainment hold up at home on your turntable?
“Prayer is translation. A man translates himself into a child asking for all there is in a language he has barely mastered.” —Leonard Cohen
Answer: (fart blast!) This quirky numbskull in the vein of TV’s Kramer, plays simple pop-punk like Caporino and his MOTO morlocks playing through Ariel Pink’s PA speakers. Oh brother! Where art Pinocchio? ‘Tis a sugary taste in my straw, but I dig the 1910 Fruitgum Co. and maybe even the Tuff Bananas. The cover to this record is a Ramones homage (the vinyl is as pink as my tongue!), and there’s also a GG Allin variation available that’s in an edition of 30 copies (or less!). So this is poppy punk, but fear not young Doug-fan this don’t sound like Rancid, Green Day, Mustard Plug, MXPX, Bouncing Souls, Fifteen, Mr. T Experience, US Bombs, Swinging Udders, Blink 182, Alkaline Trio, Dillinger Four, Face to Face, Discount, Skankin’ Pickle, ahem... the entirety of the Vagrant records discography. It’s catchy. Doug likes it. Summer’s hot ‘n’ fun, and so is sweatin’ along to this karaoke mama.