🎧 TISM’s Damian Cowell’s songs from the 90s zeitgeist (Take5)

Listened TISM’s Damian Cowell’s songs from the 90s zeitgeist from ABC Radio

TISM were one of the biggest Australian bands of the 90’s. They were the godfathers of musical comedy, captains of satire and frankly, a band that when I listen to today, I’m still gobsmacked by. They hailed from Melbourne but played all over; masked men who would put on insane shows full of bizarre concepts and songs like “Defecate On My Face” and “Saturday Night Palsy”. TISM were the ultimate shit stirrers, and we loved it. Humphrey B Flaubert AKA Damian Cowell reminded us of why the 90’s helped a band like that flourish, and share five songs from the zeitgeist himself. From pop princesses to Brissie bands that have never played by the rules, it’s not only one of the funniest Take 5’s you’ll hear but a capture of a unique and wonderful time in Australian music. This is seriously, one for the ages.

Caligula – ‘The Bluff’

Kylie Minogue – ‘Did It Again’

Regurgitator – ‘Black Bugs’

Custard – ‘Nice Bird’

Fauves – ‘Easy (Easy)’

This is a fascinating reflection on the 90’s between Zane Rowe and Damian Cowell (aka Humphrey B. Flaubert) and how it allowed a band like TISM to thrive. Whether it be Custard, The Fauves and Regurgitator, Cowell spoke about the power and potential of the strangeness and disruption. Rather than sticking to the script, he argues that music should sometimes challenge us:

Use your power wisely … Treat them to an anchovy.

It is funny thinking back to the nineties in Croydon. Although not one of those students asking Mr Cowell if he was on the drug that killed River Phoenix, I will not forget his last lesson before leaving teaching when he brought in a video recording of TISM on Rage. By the time he had wheeled in the TV, we managed to catch a lengthy rambling between he and Ron ‘Hitler’ Barassi about nothing much, before announcing three tracks from the Ted Mulry Gang. The mask was definitely off.

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