October 26, 2009

Kinda punk, kinda lounge, kinda-sorta funk ... rich and tasty like Butter (08)

Released in 1996, this album is not from the "golden vinyl era" by any means. I just happen to have it on vinyl, since 1996 was a year of "vinyl obsession" of sorts for me and I tended to buy anything I could on LP instead of CD. Listening to this album again recently, I was reminded of how thoroughly it rocks, so I felt it needed to be resurrected.

Butter 08
was a collaboration of several musicians from different groups, including Yuka Honda and Miho Hatori from Cibo Matto, and Russell Simins from the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion. Intended to be a side project, they released only one self-titled album, on the Beastie Boys' now-defunct Grand Royal label. I was really into Cibo Matto at the time (still am), so I was compelled to see them during what was probably their only tour, at Lee's Palace in Toronto. It was an incredible, high-energy show that included a big freaky guy in a Yoda mask who busted out on stage and started jumping around and providing "yelling" vocals (you can hear him on the track "Degobrah").

The music is a mish-mash of raucous neo-punk ("9MM", "It's The Rage", "Degobrah"), laid-back lounge ("How Do I Relax"), funky guitars ("Shut Up", "Hard To Hold"), and Beck-esque lo-fi grooves ("What Are You Wearing", "Sex Symbol"). It's not for everyone, to be sure, but if you like any of these genres, or if you're a Cibo Matto fan, you'll likely dig some of the stuff from Butter 08.

Listen for the incongruous Hall & Oates homage at the beginning of "It's The Rage". They also made a video for the track "Butter 0f 69" that I didn't know about until I started writing up this blurb - it can be found here:

[Link to "Butter Of 69" video]


Ron Caddigan said...

Excellent! I was (and am) a big Cibo Matto fan as well. I had a horrible girlfriend who I actually got into a huge fight with because she thought it was stupid that Cibo Matto had a whole album on the theme of food. I should have dumped her for that alone. After we broke up (far too long after that incident) my dream was to go to New York, find Miho and profess my love (too revealing?).

This album was so hard to find back then. Thanks so much, Ryan!

Tinkl said...

Ryan! BUTTER 08!!! You rock man. I was just listening to this album on VINYL the other day. We had some pretty cool times at Bloor and Oss listening to that album back in the day and countless other ones as well. Awesome man.