“The underlying aim is to produce music that successfully opposes the social system within which we are all immersed. To produce music that is a particular style is to invite the system to use your music for its own ends. We’ve seen that happen with punk music. But if you take the system’s own propaganda as your ‘style,’ it defeats that process. Dubs also make use of the massive conditioning of the population. Between today’s alienated individuals, no real dialogue exists…any non-mainstream attempts to communicate have to start from the zero point.” – Perry Webb/Mark Flood in SICKO #1 (January 1987)
Formed in 1980, experimental noise rock band Culturcide and their version of performance art converged with the early punk and underground music scenes. By 1987, the year SICKO magazine covered the release of “Tacky Souvenirs of Pre-Revolutionary America”– the band’s controversial, now classic, LP featuring comedic dubs of overplayed mass media songs–Perry Webb/Mark Flood had already created a distinct surreal/cut-up language of his own using sardonic humor and satire to create a new noise that opposed “the social system within which we are all immersed.”
Mark Flood: Gratest Hits is an artist interpretation/reflection spanning a 30-year history. The exhibition, which includes ephemera from Culturcide, is on display at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston through Aug. 7, 2016.
CULTURCIDE ALBUM REVIEW: “Tacky Souvenirs of Pre-Revolutionary America” LP (SICKO #1, January 1987)
Purveyors of modern psychedelia, the FLAMING LIPS are Norman, Oklahoma’s latest & greatest rock export. During their first stay in Houston, we spoke to Wayne Coyne, guitarist & vocalist, outside the AXIOM.
H: The sound tonight, the hard fuzz psych guitar, and the jamming reminded me a lot more of the first record than the other two. W: We’re a lot more psycho live. We get out of hand. We love to play with each other, cuz [sic] we’re all into the same thing, just to psycho-out. D: What would you want everyone to go away with? W: I wish they would go away after seeing us and know that they can do whatever they want. If they wanna start a band, they can go out and start a band tomorrow. We just do what we want, and that’s a lot.
“We’re a rock band, we’re people who should have no limits. The people who are building nuclear weapons should have limits. But we shouldn’t. We should be as creative as we can get…on records we try to present a lot of ideas.” – Wayne Coyne
The first of Houston’s underground bands to play in Europe, Culturcide received a warm welcome from Dutch and Belgium audiences. They landed in Den Hague and went on to play a government-sponsored rock festival in Amsterdam at the Paradisio theatre, with such acts as Bad Brains, Nick Cave, SPK, and many other bands. They also played in Eindhoven, Vin Ray, Nijmegen (Holland) and Ghent and Antwerp in Belgium. Another week of dates in Germany unfortunately fell through, but Culturcide made lots of new contacts and friends in the cities where they played.
They received coverage in the Dutch magazine 007 and Britain’s SOUNDS. While in Antwerp, they caught an art-video installation about violence in America which featured Ed Gein and replicas of some of his gruesome “leather” crafts.
Upcoming Culturcide projects include recording their live set for release, tunes like “Pizza Hut,” “Death Speaks,” “Feeling I Was Gonna Die,” “Pass for Normal” and all of their other great songs which until now have been heard by a lucky few. Dan Workman, their guitarist, will do a solo performance at Lawndale as part of the “On the Edge” series on September 26. Be there.