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The Evaporators
Gassy Jack And Other Tales
Mint Records


Canada is a place of mystery to Upper-Middle Americans. It's a frosty wonderland of French-speaking NTO protesters, the native land of comedians, the birthplace of D.O.A. (the Canadian ones) and Subhumans (the Canadian ones.) A marvelous place where music television means music videos rather than insipid reality shows about rich 16-year old girls. And it is the natural habitat of the Nardwaur, the most annoying mammal in North America . Boasting a Prince Valiant haircut and squeaky voice, The Nardwaur is related to the Peter Pan Pixie of Pixyland.org fame, except that it performs ambush interviews on Muchmusic.

Surprisingly, when the hairy-chested Nardwaur fronts The Evaporators (the Canadian ones,) it's no more irritating than say…The Dickies or Vandals. Once the high-speed classic punk and garage rock silliness kicks in you're hooked. The Smugglers' David Carswell is a brilliant guitarist. More Joey Santiago than Yngwie Malmsteen, he utilizes masterful tones playing just the right notes. Nardwaur (real name Nardwaur the Human Serviette) fancies himself a historian of punk (the Canadian ones.) Tidbits of local legends serve as lyrical clues like a bizarre version of National Treasure letting us in on the inside joke. And offhand onstage comment from The Pointed Sticks becomes a self-abusive dance sensation "Do the Eggbeater." In a scene worthy of a Cremaster movie, an incident on the 21 Jump Street set involving testicle stapling delivers the punchline, "Where's the Butterknife?" "What if I Care About the People Who Live in the Seas Around Me?" features a sweet hippy sentiment, an even sweeter organ warble and Carswell picking out a buzzy Flaming Lips riff. Several notable figures from Vancouver's rich past share time with tabloid subjects Sasquatch and lunar conspiracy theorists. These catchy tunes will visit you on a rotating basis like a festive spectre bent on instilling the Christmas spirit.

Joyful videos of keyboard surfing and superheroes only exacerbate the stupidly giddy fun. Nardwaur riles crowds up with his endearingly retarded enthusiasm. The band and one fem-tard demonstrate more national pride than the combined cast of The Red Green Show. The Evaporators more than make up for foisting Martin Short on us.

-Gus the Talking Mute


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