The PopCulteer
September 25, 2009

The Return Of The Mother

Mother Nang, one of Charleston’s top alternative bands of the early 1990s is gearing up for a reunion. Friday night, at 8:30 PM at LiveMix Studio, they’re holding an open rehearsal. It’s a BYOB affair for their old friends and fans. They’ll play for about an hour and rekindle the old magic in advance of a full-fledged show to be held sometime in the coming weeks (we’ll have full details on that show as they emerge).

Mother Nang is a four piece made up of Spencer Elliott and Brian Young, currently of the band, Whistlepunk, plus Jay Lukens, who has been seen on Radio Free Charleston as part of The Sleeping Dons, and Deron Sodaro, who plays bass and sings with several bands, including RFC guests VooDoo Katz, Comparsa and The Sleeping Dons. This winning combination of musicians has been secretly rehearsing for much of the summer in preparation for their first official shows together in over fifteen years.

We featured the entire line-up, spread over two bands (Whistlepunk and The Sleeping Dons), on the first two episodes of Radio Free Charleston, and we had a vintage clip from 1993 by the band on episode nine, which you can see below.

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Mother Nang was one of the “New Music Feast” bands, along with Strawfyssh, Crazy Jane and Todd Burge. Members of all of these bands are still plugging away in the music scene. Todd Burge and His Odd Urges (an all-star assemblage featuring Joseph Hale, Rodney Critchfield and Billy Matheny) are playing a show in Athens Ohio Tonight, while Tofujitsu, a duo consisting of Crazy Jane’s Karen Allen and Strawfyssh’s Sean Richardson appear around town frequently, and can usually be found at The Purple Moon during ArtWalk. Whisltepunk’s bassist, Dan Jordan, was also a member of Crazy Jane.

Friday night looks to be a lot of fun, with a “high school reunion” vibe, minus all the sucky people you actually went to high school with. If you were a fan of the band back then, or are a fan of any of the current musical projects that the guys are involved in, stop by and check it out.

“The Blob” Oozes With Fun

You can see a couple of songs from the CYAC musical “The Blob” on the newest episode of Radio Free Charleston. You can also read the review by Melanie Larch (based on a dress rehearsal) here. There was one paragraph cut for space, which Melanie has asked me to print here.

“Katie McNulty, Samantha Oxley, and Maria Fioravante also give notable performances. McNulty, as Jane’s little sister, performs her Act II solo “Out There” with bravado, singing of facing down the monster and the Communists with her toy gun. Oxley, as Nurse Porter, displays great comedic timing during the Act I finale “It Ate Nurse Kate”. Fioravante plays a number of smaller roles, all to great effect.”

It’s a fun show that runs this weekend and next at the WVSU Capitol Center Theater. Seek and enjoy!

Cool Comic Of The Week
Final Crisis Aftermath: RUN!

Okay, this is a tie-in mini-series to a huge mainstream company-wide crossover “event” that would take hours to explain and make me sound like The Comic Book Guy from The Simpson’s in the process, so I’m going to try and make this as painless as possible. In DC Comics’ Final Crisis a bunch of superheroes got killed. Also the world was threatened by some sort of cosmic hoo-hah time-travel menace, and Batman got sent back to the beginning of time, and is presumed dead.

In one part of Final Crisis, a loser super-villain, The Human Flame, has his powers boosted by one of the other main villains, and kills The Martian Manhunter. The Manhunter is a fairly obscure, but beloved, character in the DC mythos, which, unfortunately for him, put him exactly in the demographic of potentially killable super heroes.

It was one of the big shocks for the series, like when they killed off Supergirl and The Flash back in the original Crisis On Infinite Earths series back in 1986.Only less so, because it was that green guy with the big brow, instead of a major hero.

RUN!, tells the story of The Human Flame, who has lost his boosted powers at the beginning of the series. He’s being hunted by super villains, who want him dead because he brought so much heat on them, superheroes, who want to bring him to justice, the Russian Mafia, who want him dead because he ripped them off to get money to go underground, his ex-wife, because he stole her car, and a different gang of super villains who re-boosted his powers with some sort of nuclear nipple-mounted flamethrower device.

So we’ve established that this isn’t going to be nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature.

However, the writer,Matthew Sturgis, has done something brilliant. He’s taken a character who was essentially a throwaway plot device in Final Crisis, and he gave him a personality. What’s more, he gave him the personality, characteristics, and look of Carl, from Aqua Teen Hunger Force. The Human Flame, in this series, is a tubby, balding, middle-aged loser with an over-active libido and a strong sense of self-preservation. Imagine Carl as the star of the movie “Shoot ’em Up” and you have an idea of what Final Crisis Aftermath: RUN! is like. It’s crass, crude, mean-spirited, fast-paced, loud, obnoxious and funny as hell! Terrific artwork by Freddie Williams graces this six-issue series, which should be collected in trade paperback form soon.

Random Photos Of The Week

A photo of one of Melanie’s photos. Taken at Taylor Books.

The ceiling at Taylor Books, digitally assaulted.

Music outside Callen McJunkin Gallery and Good News Mountaineer Garage Gallery during last week’s Art Walk.

Patrick, Sierra and James at the Tuesday Open Mic at Sam’s Uptown Cafe. Look for these three on the next RFC.

The cast of “The Blob” doing a preview during the intermission of last Saturday’s Rubber Soul concert.

Speaking of which…..

Rubber Soul At The Capitol Center Theater, 9-19-09

Next week in PopCult

Art, videos, and the last Radio Free Charleston for a couple of weeks. We’re gearing up for our big Halloween special!