I hadn't listened to these recordings in at least a decade, but for some reason "Bureaucratic Itch" has been stuck in my head intermittently for the last few months so I thought it was time to open up the closet. ANCIENT CHINESE PENIS started in summer 1991 - initially it was just Dave and me in his apartment living room, but by the time the fall semester got rolling we were jamming with Dan on drums and Matt playing guitar in a tiny room connected to my place in Norman. We hit the road shortly after we recorded the Fistful O Penis demo in '92 (I think we spent something insane like $700 on that session), playing a whopping six shows over two weeks (two of those we jumped on at Raji's in LA), met NAKED AGGRESSION in Albuquerque, got kicked out of DeDe Troit's apartment, and played what I remember being a brilliantly fun show at a teen center in Eureka. When we came back home, it was like we had legitimized ourselves simply by touring, and our shows were actually pretty good. Maybe it was the frequent nudity and lazily executed amateur antics (play your local college bar and shower the crowd with marshmallows...trust me, it's fun), or maybe it was....nah, I think people just came to laugh at us. We recorded ANCIENT CHINESE PENIS: Envy the following year and got the itch to tour again...this time we booked shows in towns where we didn't know anyone (which was most of the towns) by posting up at the college library, pulling out microfiche (remember that, kids?) for phone books from the towns we wanted to play. We would find the record store listings, call the stores and ask where punk bands played, then cold call clubs and see if they wanted to host some mutants from Oklahoma called ANCIENT CHINESE PENIS. And if that's not weird enough, some of them said yes. We sold shirts in grocery store parking lots on our days off to get gas money, we saw BORN AGAINST and AVAIL in Cudahay, Wisconsin (a show that's been written about at length in previous TE posts), we broke an axle outside of Bloomfield, Indiana and spent a weird weekend partying with local teenage dropouts waiting for the only garage in town to open up Monday morning, we got wooed by a bizarre promoter/pervert in the hills outside of Asheville who promised us main support on a festival with BUTTHOLE SURFERS and didn't we want to get in his sports car and check out his hot tub? We booted Dave shortly after that tour and enlisted Dan Riffe (oft mentioned on these pages, he was a then-recent Tulsa transplant and frontman for ILLEGITIMATE SONS OF JACKIE O) and cranked out our last demo, Al Fresca, but we were not long for the world. Matt had recruited me for MULTIPLE CHOICE, a band that seemed much more "legitimate" and that band relocated to California in early 1994, morphing into FUCKFACE the following year. I'm pretty sure that Al Fresca is the most listenable of the three demos, but I don't have a copy...hell, I don't even have artwork for the first two (though I can assure you that the imagery is every bit as dated as the sound). Included in the download are the first two demos in their entirety, plus an alternate version of "Bible Belt Blues" from the first session, and never before released TWISTED SISTER and MY LIFE WITH THE THRILL KILL KULT covers from the second. Inexplicably, we did release the 5+ minute "Down Wit' A.C.P." on Envy...just one of many questions that will remain unanswered.
Terminal Escape turns six years old today. 2,000 posts and counting, and more than two million visits to the blog...hopefully some of you have found some killer tunes in the process.