Occulty folk-noise society (not "New Weird America"—that shit's for bindi-wearing, cross-dressing pussies) Caroliner has been around so long their claims of being actually from the 1800s might seem plausible if it weren't for all the carved foam costumes and fluorescent-painted cardboard. When they play live, which is a rare phenomenon, they cover their entire stage in what looks like totem pole hieroglyphs and references to a personal history, a secret language along the lines of the cryptic communication methods you invented with your junior high BFF just in case Mrs. Hyde confiscated your spiral full of notes and found out who fingered you at the movies the other night. Their records look like hobo arts and crafts projects cobbled together from scraps of thoughts found on a freight train, paintings of clown auras, and their trademark chicken scratch drawings. We asked them to please explain what it was all about.
Vice: Who am I talking to?
Caroliner Rainbow:You are talking to Rarespit and Palliver Goldgout after a practice on Monday afternoon. We both draw from some of Chance Century's wit and his notes which are all over the practice space. We include his spirit. The whole band of Caroliner draws inspiration and destiny, with a dynamite dash of concern from each of the notes. It's too bad his imbecility was cured in a way. As soon as the brain was removed of most rust spots, he began to write, which takes up most of the time walking (away from us) in California to Nevada to Arizona and back. His writing seen on train cars, doors, food crates, moving or non- moving vehicles. A destiny formed and off he took seizing his kit and hopping the hoot. Every public foray has a scribe that works with us. Marie Hayden is our type setter and communicator for your electrical device with which we are very uninformed with.
OK then. Where does all this scribbly scratchy stuff come from? I mean, do you all work on drawings and do you talk about it or is it understood at this point where you're at and you all just go for it?
We have a general understanding of what the 1800s had to offer. To sketch out an idea for a live show based on a Caroliner song there is usually a central figure or a ravaged pastoral scene. In some works, under that very pastoral bordering mundane scene there is a whole other world, "White Star Route," "Concert from the Pit," and "Fingers of the Underworld and Their Unbreakable Bones" are three examples of mining and snakes. These are incredibly hard to draw, so if you see an overdrawn shadowy black peice of paper nailed up somewhere you might apply one of these musical scripopholy bumbles to it (if there is no title card).
This is all admirably obsessive-compulsive. I know that's a comment, not a question.
This question of requesting a comment might be a ruse or a courtesy design, either way it invites conversation. The band Caroliner is an history "obsessive" unit who design a living proof of the 1800s around the music and live show under the spread ultraviolet of sunstroke and ergot poisoning. As far as convulsive, we have designed a number of ergot based dances that those in their right minds view as problematic, and intrusive. The "Turbulent Burial" dance is one of being thrown into his grave without consent from the throwee. It works well in shallow pits or a "live pit" which people have offered to pantomime in the past 20 years.
Another fine jig is the based on the Caroliner song called "Gallant Falling Figleaves." It's mankind working without the consent of God under an anger of nudity in a strong body whip against the elements. There is no turning back so we let the figleaves fly and do our best to stay warm and sweating in a 4 part movement. Each section is familiared to a season of Earth. This has caused the more excited members to become broken and careful with destruction of the tender body. You might notice one or two at a live show. They are the ones to help on and off the stage. (Bread Reader left for overzealous self hurricaning crippling).
What would you say to someone who'd call your art "outsider" or "schizophrenic"?
We are inside the 1800s and you (as audience) are for the most part on the outside. If someone would call it schizophrenic we would have to ask "how can paper translate a condition of mental incapacity?". There is some refinement, care, and deep thinking that worries the depths of the ocean in its "pen as photograph" with an intention to leave the interested pegging, and pew armed. Does the intricate drawing of Thomas Jefferson on a paper note denounce a provender to the brain? I would blame the bark of a tree for complete marble loss and inconsistancy, bordering on cuckold flippancy, before one of our 1800s society.
How do your drawings inform your performance? (or is it the other way around? or both ways?)
Drawings often start as a writ scene that jumps out at one from a Caroliner song. Each ditty has a visual content that is expressed in words, we express in scripted caricature. Everyone nods at the most intense and finely executed picking that as a 'next show' stage set up. Then the Caroliner character clothing comes in. There are 935 (or more) people or things that are in the singing bull's songbook. A member will pick a personality, face, and costume and begin the transformation into the live pastiche. Each show usually has an amalgamage of 6 different individuals.
As Chance Century wrote on a box of recordings "Woe is the centure we work in. There is one tasteless strawberry grey'd as want per discolored to chew from that all feed on it's dry fertilizer." Our diet is of savory tubers and varied salts aged with differed wraps and cellars.
Caroliner's so labor-intensive. Why get collagey? Why not just print up flat LP covers and call it a day?
There is a frightful leviathin of passive terror sitting amongst the minds of today. It is the very numbing rootless rot that is "to-day". The backstory of history has many crafts and functions that trample the weakness of mass produced refuse that clutters at every corner of the eye. You face one way to see musician on a street corner, inside the abode there is someone coming into the house with an electric inter connection-communication doing the exact same formula of bore-numb. There is no honor. There's no clean hankerchief to the brow. This is a rogum or pogum with a man behind the pig taking collections. If there is one thing we can throw into the pillory yard, it would be the present day.
Each Caroliner release is with a courting to the audience whom we regard with great respect! Our "intensive" work has many functions to the appreciator, one being enlightenment in the day existence of a common listening moss eared mot.
What's the next Caroliner emission into the universe?
There are three or four records that need to be picked at with tines from a eagle feather, and handcuffs from a woodsmith. Band members seem vaguely interested in the dirty working, the sweat and decisions that come with a recording release...When that's done you should be proud of Caroliner for another few weeks. Until that moment there is a fine stack of recordings that sit idle for your wallet to regurgitate it's green estate into our needs. The more you purchase the sooner the new release. If you hold back, then you have yourself to blame for this incursion of our astute, untarnished timeliness!