The PopCulteer
November 13, 2009

Scrap Iron Pickers CD Release Show Tonight

Tonight at The Sound Factory, accompanied by Bud Carroll and His Southern All Stars and The Barkoloungers, The Scrap Iron Pickers, guests on Radio Free Charleston episodes 57 and 72, celebrate the release of their first CD.

The CD is actually a double EP, contained on one disc, joined by some found audio in between. The first six numbers–all instrumental save for some archival spoken-word interludes, are the “Redeeming Metal” EP and feature the Scrap Iron Pickers trademark blenderized soup of progressive metal music with hints of reggae, blues, country, near-ska and thrash. It’s a crunchy mix of styles made possible by the raw talent of the Pickers, Johnny Sizemore on guitar, Roadblock on bass and Matt Wolfe on drums.

These guys are veterans of many different local bands, and they have chops that most musicians would kill for. Guest virtuosos on the last song of the first EP include Bud Carroll, Jeff Ellis and John Chic, whose harmonica on “Swamp Thing” signals a stylistic change that not many bands could pull off. The tune mutates from mellow blues into a pop-metal masterpiece.

Other standout tracks on the first half of the CD are “Coal Bucket” and “Too Pissed Off To Sleep,” which have both been performed on Radio Free Charleston.

After an uncredited smoke break, the second EP, “Union” kicks off with “Searching For The Scientist,” a showcase for guest guitarist Chuck Biel and spoken word bits from Frank Zappa  and a Dupont spokesman. The “Union” EP demonstrates the Pickers spacier side, with longer, jazzier musical excursions.Guests on the last six songs include Michael Lipton, Bud Carroll, Slider, Skip Cromer, John Lancaster and from Unknown Hinson’s band, Tiny Kohrs. The songs on this more experimental EP range from 27 seconds to 24 minutes, and are more challenging, musically than the earlier tunes. It’s great to hear a local band creating modern-day “headphone music” like this.

The Scrap Iron Pickers make metal music for the thinking man, and you should not pass up the chance to catch them and purchase their CD tonight at The Sound Factory on Kanawha Boulevard. The show kicks off at 9:30 and the cover charge is one of life’s mysteries. Take enough money to get in, buy a CD and maybe even a T Shirt. This music is too good for you to be cheap bastards about it.

Leftover Photo Essay

I’ve run a lot of photos here in PopCult over the last few weeks, but here’s a few images that escaped publication.

The crowd at the Experimental night of art and theater at Kanawha Players last month.

Kreeture Komforts at Taylor Books.

Mother Nang at LiveMix Studio. Catch them at The Boulevard Tavern later this month.

Sierra Ferrall and James Brown at The Vandalia Grille.

The Velvet Brothers at LiveMix Studio.

Tony Slack, Kevin Pauley and Jeff Bukovinsky of The No Pants Players at The Book Exchange, reading Poe.

The first “Big LeBowlski” at The Dunbar Lanes.

Late-night bowling while the Coen Brothers’ classic was shown on the big screen. You should’ve been there.

The beginning of Adamfest.

WATT4 at Adamfest.

Adam, Tony and Mandy at The No Pants Players Scaretacular.

Melanie Larch as Zombie Gypsy for Halloween.

Your PopCulteer as Zombie Billy Mays.

Cool Comic Of The Week-Sky Doll

Sky_Doll_Vol_01_La_Ciudad_AmarillaHey, imagine if somewhere out there in the far-flung reaches of space there was an alien culture that was very much like us Earth humans, only they’d developed advanced technology. Okay, now imagine that, being like humans, they had some pretty draconian and hypocritical religions. Do you follow me?

All right. Now follow me on this premise that this interstellar society has developed very realistic androids that they use as sex surrogates. And one of these surrogates goes rogue and turns out to be the messiah.

Yes, this series was previously published in “Heavy Metal” magazine. Why do you ask?

planche_bd_171_skydoll1Sky Doll is a beautifully-drawn and cleverly-written satire of the hypocrisy of organized religion with more than a few parallels to our own Earthly issues with such matters. The artwork is a bit of a hybrid of European “Metal Hurlant” style and Anime, with a hint of Disney on display, too.

Currently published by Marvel through an arrangement with French publisher Soliel, Sky Doll is the creation of Alessandro Barbucci and Barbara Canepa,and it’s everything an arrested adolescent could ask for in a comic book. It’s got cool sci-fi action, scantily-clad sexy wimmins and an iconoclastic attitude toward organized religion.

Sky Doll is definitely not for kids, and it might be offensive to those people who are so much fun to offend, but it’s great fun if you like you science fiction with a little T & A and religion-bashing.

Marvel’s published a collection of the first series, and is currently releasing a stop-gap follow-up while the sequels are being translated. You can find the collection here.


Next Week…

PopCult gets back to normal with our Sunday Evening Videos, Monday Morning Art, and some other cool photo essays and articles coming your way. The next RFC will be here in two weeks, but you need to watch this week’s show first, or you won’t be able to follow any of the clues that will lead you to the special prize!