It's dangerous to debut your band with a live album; really, no good can come of it. Live music and recorded music have two distinct personalities, in addition to having two different goals, so killing the two nerds with the same bone is, well, unadvisable. There are exceptions: for instance, Fat Monkey on Gorilla Warfare: Live and Direct, the band's recently released document. Luckily, Fat Monkey is an incredibly tight, funky hip-hop band, one that's gigged around St. Louis so often that the act is as shiny and slick as a chrome bumper. Like the amazing Roots, Fat Monkey pulls it all off without the aid of a DAT player; real humans are creating this vibe, and it is good. No, they're not nearly as smooth and flowing as the Roots. The Monkey jerks more, and starts and stops way more. But in all, Gorilla Warfare is tight and impressive.... The recent dissolution of two great St. Louis rock bands -- the Phonocaptors and Johnny Magnet -- has left a deep, dark hole in our world, one that's not as sexy as it sounds. So the recent merger rumors of the remnants of the two bands -- guitarist and bassist combining with guitarist and drummer -- is cause for glee. We'll keep you posted on debut-gig info.
Send local tapes, tips, discs and detritus to "Radar Station," c/o The Riverfront Times, 6358 Delmar Blvd., Suite 200, St. Louis, MO 63130; e-mail: Radarstation@rftstl.com.