Onkel Zbyndas Winterrock

Never Greeny

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AllMusic Review by

Onkel Zbyndas Winterrock deserves a book. It has cult status written all over it. When Never Greeny came out, their first and only album, this sextet had been active for 14 years and had given about as many concerts. They perform in outrageous costumes that involve decontamination suits and masks two-feet high topped by cowboy hats. The lyrics are written by the group's "patron" (uncle Zbyndas) and ridicule about everything possible to attack, including politics, McDonald's restaurants, and Pink Floyd. Most of all the music is a twisted form of experimental rock: heavy, funky, cabaret-like. It evokes early Talking Heads, New York City no wavers like The Stickmen, and late Extempore, for the Czech touch. Zdenek Lorenz plays trumpet when he's not singing in the weirdest voices, from "Mr. Roboto" rip-off to operatic fake-Russian, or simply utterly strange. Choruses often transvestite as Russian choral songs or military marches, adding to the surreal nature of it all. Two guitars and two basses form the core of the music, and they are not shy of slipping into atonal soloing or Sonic Youth-esque noise. "Igelitovej Pepík" and "Disco Club Robotu" kick things off in a mutated disco/new wave fashion. Prog rock, nursery rhymes, speed metal, and funk will all be referenced later. There is no way to describe this album, except maybe like early Residents meet Funkadelic if they had hailed from a former Communist country. It's one of the most dadaist yet infectious, avant-garde yet stupid, rock albums out there: all reasons to love it, of course. Recommended.

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