Bloodhound gang

Bloodhound gang

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Founded:   1991
Ended: Active
City: King of Prussia
State: PA
Country: US



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Music industry problem children Bloodhound Gang have upset many a record company boss with their satirical songs about bestiality and 'boobies'.

"We've been dropped by every label there is; Columbia, Universal, Sony, Geffen - the list goes on," boasts singer-guitarist-sampler Jimmy Pop with a hint of pride.

Pop, no relation to Iggy Pop as far as we can tell, formed Bloodhouse Gang in the early 90s with high school pal Daddy Long Legs and together they sifted through pop culture's sordid dustbins to produce a sexed-up sound where The Beastie Boys meets The Jerky Boys at a Saturday night frat house.

They played small clubs and parties on the back of a demo cassette, Just Another Demo before landing a residency at New York's famed CBGBs. An independently-released EP Dingleberry Haze preceded their 1998 Geffen-released album One Fierce Beer Coaster which produced the successful single Fire Water Burn.

A year later Pop and cohorts made the leap from indie obscurity to mainstream acceptance with The Bad Touch, a song that somehow managed to simultaneously insult the French, gays and chefs alike with its Pet Shop Boys synth riff and ridiculous rhyming refrain "you and me baby ain't nothin' but mammals, so let's do it like they do on the Discovery Channel". The track, written on a bus at Florida's Disney World, rocketed into the top ten US and European charts.

"There's a whole section of the Disney park that's just devoted to grown-ups," explains Pop, "They have these bars that are right next to each other and each one is different. They have this sort of backwards Texas honky-tonk bar and I think I wrote it in the parking lot of that place.

"Our bus had the Discovery Channel on and maybe I made a connection between all these people trying to get laid at these shitty bars and these animals on TV. Who knows, I just thought here's another song that no-one will like, except maybe some fat girls at karaoke!"

Always crass and often obscene, Bloodhound Gang recognise the mileage in low-brow toilet humour. Having sold six million albums and outlived most of their 90s contemporaries, the band is indeed having the last laugh.

"It started out as a goof so it's always surprising," shrugs Pop. "I don't know if I could be in a real band, like the Soundwave bands we're playing with in Australia, you know, Nine Inch Nails and Lamb of God and Alice In Chains and what they're singing about. The bum joke is all I know how to do."

Born James Franks, Pop was raised in Philadelphia by his good-humoured parents who sold pharmaceuticals - "mouth wash actually" - and encouraged in young Jimmy a unique philosophy on life.

"They were never about 'don't do drugs' or 'stay in school'," he says. "Their whole thing was 'whatever you do, do not work a real job, unless you want to sit in a cubicle'. They never had real jobs so I guess that's where I got it. So when I finished going to university this opportunity came up and here I am at 36 telling poop jokes."

The comic material for Bloodhound's Gang's most recent album, 2005's Hefty Fine was built on in-jokes and stunts, namely a scene involving MTV's Scavenger Hunt.

"We got a lot of lawsuits and things like that during that time," says Pop. "But the Scavenger Hunt was where we had to pee off a building, a three-story parking garage, and into a cup. So Gerard our bass player went to the top of the ledge and the cameras are filming and I'm at the bottom holding a little Dixie cup, like they give you at the dentist's office.

"And he's peeing all over me but it turns out we were at the wrong parking garage and the police came. I ran but he got thrown in jail and we had to pay a fine and do community service."

All this, it seems, was too much for guitarist Lupus Thunder who departed the ranks last October.

"We really don't have any rules in the band but we had to make up a rule on tour and it was 'no open toed shoes on men'," says Pop. "If you work for us you can't wear flip-flops and I understand why he quit because things get a bit ridiculous with drugs and things like that. He's married now and he just called it a day on us.

"I guess I don't blame him for removing himself from this situation, you know, when you have people that work for you who are starting their day by snorting the coke off a transvestite's dick - then I guess I don't blame him."

Having toured heavily for three years from 2004, Pop and band took time out last year to work on unfinished demos and collaborate on various projects.

"There was a bunch of music I agreed to do but never got around to it," he says. "I'm not really a business man but I get myself in these messes."

Currently recording new material Pop is unsure when the band will follow up Hefty Fine but he does concede there's no guarantee future songs won't offend.

"We'll have a few beers and try to figure out if there's a new way to talk about poop and sex," he laughs. "It's hard because only two of us still live in this area in Philly, two of the guys are in London and one is in Berlin. But we'll get together and try to figure it out."



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