After focusing on newer goodies for a bit, I thought a shift back in time might be nice. You know you miss the early 90s. It's been ages since you listened to Ten, Nevermind, The Chronic, or either volume of Use Your Illusion. You wouldn't know where to begin looking for your Zubaz pants and Hypercolor shirt even if you wanted to wear them. It's a sad state of affairs.
While Seattle ruled the music world and Dre was introducing us to Snoop, one of the little bands toiling under the radar was a sort of proto-elephant 6 project called Chocolate USA. The band was the first of Julian Koster, who would later be a member of The Music Tapes and Neutral Milk Hotel. According to e6.com, Chocolate USA was founded in 1989 under the moniker Miss America but later changed its name as a result of legal threats. The band released scores of tapes as well as two full-length albums, All Jets Are Gonna Fall Today (1992) and Smoke Machine (1994), before its members moved on to other projects. Notably, the band's second album would also include contributions by Eric Harris and Bill Doss, who would later achieve noteriety as members of Olivia Tremor Control and related acts.
The albums include the same experimental tendencies associated with later e6 projects, with sound collages and a sampled grandmother interspersed among a generous number of psychedelic pop songs. While these albums may not measure up to some later e6 masterpieces, they offer insight into the musical development of a key e6 collaborator.
from All Jets Are Gonna Fall Today:
Chocolate USA - Two Dogs
Chocolate USA - All Jets Are Gonna Fall Today
from Smoke Machine:
Chocolate USA - The Boy Who Stuck His Head in the Dryer
Chocolate USA - USA Milkiest Theme
For more info, visit the fine folks at elephant6.com. You can purchase AJAGFT or Smoke Machine online.