With the deluge of “suggested” bands thrown at us through music app algorithms, it seems like it’s become harder and harder to organically discover something new and exciting. I discovered the Pixies in college and honestly, they set the bar so high I never thought anything could compare. Did it matter that I didn’t understand a goddamn thing Frank Black was talking about? Hell no, as long as he was screaming like a mental patient about talking to fish or slicing up eyeballs, I was hooked.
Without realizing it I had given up on finding new music that excited me. Then, just the other day I was walking home from the pharmacy and chanced upon Frank’s heir apparent: a random bald guy on the corner of the street, screaming nonsense at anyone who wandered into this field of vision.
This guy was good. He was treating everyone within earshot to a one-man show, and I for one was hooked. He turned to me and yelled, “MY BRAIN CAN SEE THERE’S A PHALLIC KEEPING/LEMURS LAND AND I MAKE SLUDGE!” It may not seem like an earworm written down but I swear to god it’s been stuck in my head all week. What hat the fuck does that even mean?! Who cares, just add some late-80’s alt-rock guitar and it might as well be “Doolittle.”
I couldn’t really decipher if he had a setlist of if this was all off the cuff, but I think he at least had one song called “Face” because he kept slapping himself and screaming “FACE” about 400 times in a row. The only explanation I could think of was that he was some kind of artist, what with the spray paint cans he had with him.
I can’t say that my fellow pedestrians recognized him as the next Frank Black the way I did, but I think the parts of his performance that weren’t about incest or murder really intrigued people.
The moment I knew I was staring at the next coming of Black Francs was during a seven-minute rant about a trip to New Jersey: I FELL INTO A FIRE HOLE I DIDN’T KNOW/THIS REAL UNDERWATER TURNS ME INTO GARDEN STATE!” I don’t know what happened to him in New Jersey, but it must’ve been epic to come up with a line like that.
I wanted to stay longer but he started throwing stuff into the crowd, which was clearly to indicate we’d come to the loud part of the song since he didn’t have a guitar. I came back to that street corner for a week straight but he wasn’t there, but I asked around and apparently, he’s a part of some group called Qanon? Gonna have to check them out.