When I moved to the Pacific North-West in the spring of 1991, Grunge may have been ascendant but the alternative sound du jour was still funk-punk (a.k.a. funk-metal). Licentious California funk-punk related bands like the Red Hot Chill Peppers, Fishbone, Jane's Addiction, Faith No More and Primus ruled the day. While each of those bands had their virtues and sins, the worst aspect of this micro-genre was the wave of pseudo-funk it unleashed upon the world. Slap-bass became ubiquitous, token funk tracks invaded set-lists and white kids tried, and oh how they tried, to rap. Infectious Grooves, Bootsauce, Mind Funk, Mary's Danish, Psychefunkapus: the gruesome parade was so wretchedly phony that it makes you question if Stone Temple Pilots really represented the nadir of nineties derivation.
It was upon this funk-addled world that The Weirdos staged their most ambitious comeback attempt. Between 1990 and 1991 the Weirdos released their first two full lengths, both of which I bought on L.P. in the summer of 1991. While 1991's Weird World collected up SOME of their old singles and demos, 1990's Condor was in fact, thirteen years into their career, their debut album!
Weird World's flaw was its omission of "Destroy All Music" while Condor's was giving sock-dick'ed funky bass-man Flea a slot in the band. Flea does have accomplishments to his name (many would dispute me) but Cliff Roman was the Weirdos key song-writer and he should not have been side-lined. No matter what, side one of Condor is packed with warp-speed weirdness (much of it co-written with Roman) like "Shining Silver Light", "WWYD", "Tropical Depression", "Terrain" and the positively psychotic, "Cyclops Helicopter". The problematic side two, where the funk bleeds in on such songs as "Night After Day" and "Her" suggests The Weirdos metier was the short form.
(P.S. I've added the rawer Condor Demos becasue they contain "Nowhere To Run" which should've made the album.)
MRML Readers: Was funk-punk/funk-metal really all that bad?
Is Condor a good/bad/mixed album?
Leave us a comment!
Condor (and Condor Demos) links are in the comments.
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For more out-of-print Weirdos (and further L.A. madness) go visit the estimable Mr. Roky Manson.