Out Of The Shadows

by Brian Krumm.
Diversion, pg. 4

Did you ever wonder about that wonderfully twangy band that you heard while watching the Kids in the Hall on HBO? Me too. So I was quite pleased when I was handed a press release and a tape from the group that does that wonderstuff. The tape is called Dim The Lights, Chill The Ham, and the group is called Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet. Guess what? These guys cook even more when they're not coming out of a crappy two-inch television speaker. They take elements of punk, surf guitar rock, jazz and cheesy cabaret humor and roll it all up into a big beach ball of instrumental bliss. But don't wince when you hear "instrumental music" as I usually do. These guys know when to lay it on thick and when to go for the quick riff. Their tape has 23 songs on it! Most of them are short and sweet, but they are always memorable. Some of my personal faves include "5 American 6 Canadian" (phrase repeated several times in a row to 'Viva Las Vegas' feel); "Exit from Vince Lombardi High School," "Hunter S. Thompson's Younger Brother" and "Ben Hur Picked Off by a Gazebo." All splendidly bizarre, but "they have a good beat and they're easy to dance to." Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet will be at the Blind Pig on Tuesday.