Ramble #1: The name of this band – The Venetia Fair – has been jammed into my head like a goddamn splinter for months now. I know I’ve heard it somewhere before, and regrettably it isn’t from their magnificently mental 2009 debut album The Circus.
And then I read one of the funniest interviews I’ve ever read in my life between our own Miss Mendes and a certain Joe Brown (he tickles the ivory for The Venetia Fair, and by tickle I mean repeatedly smashes his face into the piano).
And in said interview – A Chat with Joe Brown from The Venetia Fair (08.11.13) – I stumbled upon this:
“How did you decide on your band name and does it have any special meaning?
Joe Brown: Our band name came from that whole big thing when Pluto was not going to be a planet, then going to be a planet again, and then not again. The little girl who named the planet was named Venetia Phair. We just changed some letters around because we don’t respect her. She’s dead now.”
I LOL’d so goddamn hard I fell right off my chair. Anyway… I probably should have paid more attention in school or something; not that it matters now – Pluto is fucked.
Ramble#2: Since being introduced to Mike Abiuso’s killer band, The Mayor, a little while ago I’ve been following The Venetia Fair all over the place. Their Facebook page must be one of the most ridiculous and funniest band pages I’ve seen in a while with absolute gem’s such as: “If you have any questions about life, you should definitely ask us. We give fucking horrible advice because we are huge pieces of shit,” and “All of our girlfriends are breaking up with us,” and “We’re a band called The Venetia Fair and we have no fucking clue what we’re doing” to be found everywhere. It’s pretty much official – these guys are fucking crazy. Stone Cold Crazy. And you cant help but wonder what would happen when you put a couple of instruments in their hands and throw them into a room together.
That brings us to, the actual album review:
Every Sick, Disgusting Thought We’ve Got In Our Brain is the second work of Rain Man-like genius by the 5 men hailing from… Their Van… Somewhere… and was funded with the support of their fans via that mean bastard Kickstarter. Wait… they have fans? Damn right they do! It was with great anticipation that I finally put this album on; and I’ll be honest, the first time ’round I kinda ended up breezing through it.
A well-known fact is that I’m a total bastard asshole when it comes to reviewing music sometimes; sometimes I don’t give albums the complete attention they deserve and that very nearly happened with this one. I listened to it and it gradually faded into background music while I schooled some bitches in Battlefield 4.
Let’s go back to Joe Brown for a second. What finally drew my undivided attention to the album? It was in fact the monstrously awesome piano work. Every now and then he would do something so ridiculous and catchy that you simply cant help but stop and listen…and then you find yourself listening to everything else too.
I don’t know what genre to put this band in – rock, I suppose, because they do in fact rock their faces off; but I have never before heard a rock band produce the sounds that Venetia Fair manage to produce. From horns and trumpets, to fucking sleigh bells; and of course – “the piano holds sway over all” – stealing the show again and again.
The Venetia Fair are beyond a rock band, and this album is beyond a rock album; it demands multiple listens, but that is only to your own benefit. Every time I put it on I find something new. Layers upon layers of awkward, magnificent sounds; distorted guitars; damaged pedals; caveman-like drumming; craziness, madness, hysteria, the stage is on fire, the band is on fire, people are throwing beer on them – and to tie it all up, frontman Benny Santoro’s magnificent vocal range and strange, captivating lyrics.
If you have the decency to give the album the attention it deserves, track by track, you will find it immensely enjoyable. ‘We Used To Worship The Moon’ and ‘Only In The Morning’ are my personal favourite tracks, but they’re all really great in their own ways.
I can see why their devoted fans were unhesitant to throw their money at them, demanding another album, another masterstroke in the history of musical ‘Savant Syndrome’.
Wait, they have fans? Damn right they do. They just gained another one.