As we reported about this time last year, K-Holes are “a sleazy, late-night group grope… all stumbling tom-toms, orgiastic screams and porn-stache saxophone wail”—and this sleazy dry-hump only ripens with age. Moving from garage staple HoZac up to Sub Pop-affiliated poptimists Hardly Art for their second album, Dismania (out May 1), the band has stepped up their slime-grind into something much tighter and meaner, rendering all those sloppy Butthole Surfers comparisons irrelevant (though the Scientists comparisons stand stronger and smarter). First single “Rats” is a churgle of pukeworthy distortion, “I’ve been a jerk” self-loathing, party-band swamp-sax, caveman drums, finger-pointing and finger-poking and sticking their finger in your peanut butter.
What is “Rats” about? What inspired it lyrically?
Sara Palmquist, sax: Rats.
Julie Hines, bass: Mickey Mouse.
Jack Hines, guitar/vocals: Parallels between humans and rats. Myself and other people we know who are a lot like rats. The second verse is about a very un-bright girl who is pretty unattractive, meeting most guys at a shitty dive bar.
Vashti Windish, vocals: And it’s about the regular problem of being broke and frustrated living in today’s broken system.
Jack Hines, vocals/guitar: You are never more than fifteen feet away from a rat!
Vashti: Living in the concrete jungle and feeling like you are in a filing cabinet.
Julie: Standing on the subway track you realize how the rats are sometimes smarter than we are, at least they know where they are going and why.
Vashti: Yeah we forget how simple life is and should be.
What experiences have you had with rats in New York City?
Julie: I rode the Cyclone with one once.
Jack: I had a rat pot pie for lunch, I voted for a rat for mayor.
Sara: When I first moved to New York, I was sleeping on floors with a friend with dreads and she woke up with a rat stuck in her dreadlock!
Vashti: That really puts the “dread” back in dreadlock.
How was recording this album different than recording K-Holes?
Vashti: The first record was fun [because] it was at Live With Animals, with really good tequila and a full moon, but this record was like being at summer camp…
Jack: We went to Detroit to record with a funky bass player, no tequila…
Julie: Chris Koltay, producer/engineer and Akron/Family member, is cool. And we had a week, not two days.
Cameron Michel, drums: I had a way bigger drum kit.
Vashti: Chris not only recorded us but made awesome breakfast every morning. It was like being on vacation!
K-Holes’ record release party takes place on May 5 at Secret Project Robot.