MUSIC BOX: Get weird with Peelander-Z

By on April 14, 2015
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Punky comic book characters come alive in each Peelander-Z performance. (Photo credit: Peelander-Z)

Jackson Hole, Wyoming – Introducing, from Planet Peelander, the Japanese action comic punk band: Peelander-Z. Based in New York City, it’s highly unlikely Jacksonites have seen any such act with Japanese-style theatrics and constant crowd interaction coupled with over-the-top antics. From Bonnaroo to Vans Warped Tour and TV spots on VH1, the colorful intensity will be incomparable, with perhaps some flashbacks to your comic book days. Whether that’s a good thing or not, you’ll have to find out for yourself.

“In Japan I really grew up with lots of idol music, anime and sentai, pro wrestling, comic books and super heroes, those kinds of things, they all inspire me,” leader and frontman Peelander Yellow told Connect Savannah last month. “So much of what we do in Peelander-Z is based on performance. I’d say probably 90 percent performance and 10 percent actual music, that’s why the wrestling, sentai, and anime is a big part of my influence. I want to be an idol myself but I’m too ugly, so I can’t be. I’d really like to be a music producer for idols someday.”

“I’m not good at playing music so just kind of do two, three, chords: buh, buh buh! I try to make everything simple — sometimes, somebody playing, I can’t do that. I can’t do anything crazy — all the music, way sounds [sic], music, staging. I try to make everything simple, same as life. If you have a program, let’s make simple everything, easy to go.”

With songs like “Taco Taco Taco” and fan favorite “S.T.E.A.K,” the tongue-and-cheek could spill out from the stage in the form of human bowling, back-and-forth chants, pulling audience members onstage, the limbo, and any other completely wacky impromptu human experience you can fathom. Oh yeah, and the tunes could be punk, metal, children’s music or beyond.

“I like metal music. We made a CD … a spacey album, a kid’s album, and a metal album, and the new one is coming,” Peelander Yellow explained. “We recorded in Austin, live album. Next … maybe hip-hop? Woo-hoo! Maybe blues? Maybe dancing, maybe club music? Maybe eight-bit gamer music? Maybe only talking? Maybe movie? Maybe make a restaurant! Yeah, tofu restaurant.”

“The people I pick [to come] up on stage change: somebody has crazy pink hair, we give them pink bass,” he said. “It looks like basketball, moving, changing. We are gonna get to that place and join together. That is the Peelander style. Rainy day, maybe we want to do something rainy. Somebody has doughnuts, we going to eat doughnuts with them. We are very flexible. We want to make happy everybody in that moment.”

Band members Yellow (guitar), Pink (vocals, encourager), and Green (drums) will have you clanging bowls, crowd surfing and singing along. Come with an open mind, and you’re bound to leave with it full of off-season memories that you won’t soon forget.

“Touring is kind of a weird thing, since our music is largely inspired by simple punk music,” Peelander Yellow said. “We usually don’t resonate much with the punk audience, especially since we’re more about the show and theatrics more than the music. I just love the bands that have a similar theatrical quality and really gets the crowd involved and has fun shows, like Anamanaguchi, Electric Eel Shock, The Octopus Project, Koo Koo Kanga Roo, etc.”

Peelander-Z, 10 p.m., Sunday at Town Square Tavern. $10. 307Live.com, 733-3886.

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About Aaron Davis

Aaron Davis is a decade-long writer of Music Box, a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, member of Screen Door Porch and Boondocks, founder/host of Songwriter’s Alley, and co-founder of The WYOmericana Caravan.

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