The death of David Bowie in January triggered a meltdown of activity in the Circo Perrotti recording studios in Gijón, which will no doubt fuel the enthusiasm of fans of the three zanies who make up the Doctor Explosion phenomenon. It all sounds like a very Doc.Ex story. On day one there was nothing, not a word, not a riff, not a tune, just a response by Jorge Explosion to the media coverage of Bowie’s demise: fast forward a week to eight songs recorded and ready for mixing. Planned release date for the resultant album, on the Subterfuge label, is some time in September.
It may be called On the Hoof, a suggestion by Red House Work that appealed to Jorge Explosion after he talked about working sobre la marcha. Hard work but inevitably full of spontaneity of the non-stop explosive variety.
“Six days from nothing to a CD of all original songs is some achievement,” said Jorge. “I was composing as we went along. We were due to do some recording in the studio and I was in front of my mates pretending I already had some proper ideas but I was actually coming up with the ideas there and then, changing them all the time. I used their faces to judge the value of the ideas so sometimes I had already changed the idea because I was reacting to their expressions before they’d even managed to get their comment out.”
Red House Work was treated to a solo performance by Jorge Explosion of David Bowie Murio, a song which obviously tickles Jorge’s sense of the ridiculous. He was and is full of respect for Bowie the musician but not for the huge media chain-reaction to the megastar’s death. “In the song I’m making fun of the drama in the media and that whole thing on Facebook when stars die,” he said. He quotes a line from the song by way of illustration: ‘Now stars are passing away in tragic accidents in their golf carts.’
The whole song is a comic irreverence. It tells of someone sitting eating lobster in a restaurant when he hears the news of Bowie’s death. ‘So I finished my food, had some dessert, had a liqueur, paid my bill and left. So David Bowie murio, so what? My life went on as normal.’ All very Doctor Explosion, as you’d expect.
And aficionados do expect that integral mix of humorous irreverence and tongue-in-cheek comedy in Doctor Explosion albums, which at times is a double-edged sword, according to Jorge. “We always include a funny cover-version and that’s often the song that gets all the attention and takes away from maybe another really good song on the album. So this time we haven’t yet decided what to do. We may release a mini-album of the songs we’ve just been working on and then release a very silly song as a single, or we may include a silly one in the album, we don’t know.”
Then his face creases up: he knows which silly one he has in mind. “I thought it would be really funny to do a Spanish version of Bo Diddley’s I’m A Man but using some Julio Iglesias lyrics, so you’d have a very romantic, very cheesy song but in a totally different context, in a punk-blues sound. It would be fun.”
No doubt but we’ll have to wait and see in September. The Subterfuge people are also planning to re-release Doctor Explosion’s whole discography later in the year: 2016 will be treated to a positive plethora of explosive materials. ML
***Jorge Explosion has just confirmed that their new CD will be called Titivating On the Hoof. The Red House Work input is confirmed: the word ‘titivating’ was how RHW described Jorge’s tweaking and adjusting his tunes and lyrics as he went along.