Onus Records recalls “tempest in a t-shirt,” The Evolution VI

There was a time when calling someone a punk was not a compliment. And that time was February 7, 1966. Punk rock history was made on that day, for that was treal-revoltwhen Nicky Mollash walked into a Safeway supermarket on La Cienega Boulevard to purchase some Gleem toothpaste so he could look his best for a photo shoot at Pandora’s Box, a then popular hangout on the Sunset Strip. Mollash picked up a tube that was incorrectly priced at a whopping $5.99. When the gum chewing, non-plussed cashier, evidently a stranger to both retail and fluoride, demanded he pay the denoted price or put it back on the shelf, an irate Mollash completely lost it and started a small scale mini-mart riot, threatening the checkout girl, Procter and Gamble, its shareholders and of course, The Man for once again keeping him downer than he ought to be. The Evolution VI’s volatile lead singer was already smarting from being refused service at Bob Dalton’s Restaurant the night before, mostly because the feathers from his ostrich vest were landing on other patrons’ Porterhouse steaks.

Once the Channel 3 Action News Team reported this story, Mollash blew off the photo shoot, electing instead to dash off to his girlfriend’s house for a pity screw. Following that, he commemorated the day’s harrowing events by penning “Real Revolting”, which the group speedily recorded the next night while Mollash’s bile over the gunk caked on his pearly whites still churned inside of him. As blistering a rant of monetary outrage as this track was, Mollash (who has since mellowed about rock music and dental care) prefers the stereo version that appeared on the Here Comes The Evolution VI album because “Someone forgot to include bass and drum cymbals on the single version.” Still, some punk audio purists maintain the only true version of the song is the first take of the song found on initial German mono pressings of the Hier Kommt Die Evolution VI LP, which breaks into a fistfight during the harmonica solo and dissolves into plate throwing and name-calling thereafter.

The group’s collective moment in the spotlight proved to be profoundly brief, but some members continued to garner notoriety in a post-Evolution VI world. Drummer Bobby Munsey became an injury law specialist whose omnipresent Munsey, Rimbaldo & Associates billboards stare down on the seedy Strip where he and his bandmates marauded nearly half a century ago. When lead guitarist Denny Tollesen perished at sea in a tragic Segway Personal Transporter accident, Munsey wasted no time contacting Tolleson’s widow to tell her that she was entitled to a huge cash settlement that made them both obnoxiously rich.

But what of the angry young Nicky Mollash? In an ironic twist to an already moronic story, when Mollash left the world of rock music to write his 1975 self-help book Still Revolting: Channeling Your Inner Spoiled Brat, he admitted to the world that his rage was little more than “a tempest in a t-shirt.” It turned out that he was actually the son of Walter P. Mollash and stood to inherit the family fortune his Daddy amassed while he was president of Procter and Gamble’s chief rival, Lever Brothers. So much for punk rock.

To download  or stream “Real Revolting” as well as other great free music, visit onusrecords.bandcamp.com


From Woodstock with love, Thunderbear lays tracks

From time to time, Onus Records expands its horizons from its Sunnyslope confines to somewhere else where fine music is made. This week it has plunked us smack dab into bear country–Thunderbear Country, which geography and band bios tell us is located in Woodstock, NY.

Yes, that Woodstock. Their 5 song self-titled EP has Garth Hudson playing accordion on it. You don’t get much more Woodstock than that.

You can sample their unique blend of American roots music traditions, which they morph into their own acoustic/electric style in its entirety on their Bandcamp site. A standout track,  “Almost Forever,” is being featured as an which Onus Records “Single of the Weekend.” Go on, click on the cover, and it can be yours to stream and download.


Group founder Bill “Thunderbear” Barrett was born in NYC. He grew up in Woodstock, NY, and received a BA in communications from Hunter College in Manhattan. He wrote, illustrated and published the novel Brown Water Café, his photographs of lightning were featured in calendars by BrownTrout Publishers, and his political cartoons have been featured in Earth Times and

He has been writing songs and playing gigs (including a time busking in London) since he was a teenager. In the late 1980s he became involved in the NYC music scene, playing with the legendary Joey Miserable and the Worms and in the acoustic band Les Ismore and his Excess Express which featured Jono Manson, John Popper and Joan Osborne.  Now back in Woodstock, he writes songs, sings and plays guitar in THUNDERBEAR.

Now meet the rest of the band:

David Andersen studied at Berklee College of Music.  He plays electric & acoustic bass and has performed with numerous local and regional acts.  He is also an accomplished recording engineer, producer, and arranger, and in addition to playing bass, he also engineered the sessions for the THUNDERBEAR CD.

Originally from Northern California, pedal steel/guitarist Rob Stein has played with a wide variety of artists, from Broadway show orchestras to the Bob Dylan Band. He relocated to Ireland in 1999, where he became deeply involved in Irish traditional music, working with some of the best and most exciting musicians in Ireland. He was introduced to the Woodstock area playing guitar for the legendary John Herald back in the 1990s—and he’s now back in the USA, back in Woodstock, bringing his unique range of musical experiences to THUNDERBEAR.

As a composer Eric Parker has written the top forty hit “Crazy Keep on Fallin” and his song “I’m the One” was featured on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. His song “Ramona,” as recorded by Grammy nominated jazz artist Cornell Dupree, was the theme for the 1997 Newport Jazz Festival. Eric has toured and recorded with Steve Winwood, Joe Cocker, Lou Reed, Bonnie Raitt, Carly Simon, James Taylor, Ian Hunter, Mick Taylor, Kingfish, Todd Rundgren, and Public Enemy, to name a few.  He has also worked directly with Philip Glass on a number of projects.  He brings his considerable talents as a drummer and composer to THUNDERBEAR.

The Extended Play gives us a peek into his satanic private world

ep brite.jpgUsually such eccentricities are reserved for the very rich and clinically insane, but If you’ll push him  or pretend to be interested long enough, The Extended Play a/k/a Franklin Hanyak will let you in on a little secret.

Not only is Their Satanic Majesties’ Request Hanyak’s favorite Rolling Stone album, it just may be his favorite album EVER!

“It’s got a very autumnal feel to it, so that’s probably why it resonates with me,” says Hanyak, who admits the 10 song album which critics lambasted as a “cosmic joke” and “lukewarm Sgt. Pepper without the smarts” is not for everyone.

“I had a real good friend, shove me after I insisted he give it a chance.  For me ‘Gomper’ could go on another three minutes before I’d fade it out.”

And if you really win Hanyak’s confidence, he’ll show you his Satanic Majesties memorabilia. None of this stuff comes cheap, and remember, he’s a drummer who will eat ramen every day of his life to purchase anything a trifle Satanic that arises. The giant 24-inch lenticular reproduction of the cover used in record store displays. An original set of bricks from the original Artchie Studios where the original cover was shot in 1967, polaroid peels and orange feathers from the original shoot, photo outtakes, hours of unheard studio outtakes, a hat tried on but not used by Bill Wyman. You name it. He’s paid for it. Dearly.

As you traipse through the musician sqaulor of his New England apartment, he will lead you into the Majesties Room, where he has recreated as much of the album cover as the nearby Michael’s Crafts store can supply him with.
“Saturn had to be taken down for repairs,” he apologizes. He delights in showing you where the Beatles faces are hidden in the psychedelic shrubbery. “When people see the big orb of Jupiter or hear the millionth play of “Sing This All Together,”  that’s when you really know who your friends are.”

Oddly enough, nothing on his recent track “Brite and Sunny Future” reflects none of this musical influence. It’s about as psychedelic as a wooden toothpick but that’s just the way The Extended Play likes it. “I try to keep my fascination for Rolling Stones trying to be Hawkwind out of my music.”

extended ep
To download  or stream “Brite and Sunny Future,” “Serenity” and  other great free music, visit onusrecords.bandcamp.com
ep maj.jpg

Wednesday Progress Report: No Volcano CD Release Show

Thanks everyone for coming to the CD Release party for No Volcano’s Dead Horse Power. We had a lot of fun! In case you weren’t there, the evening started off with Less Pain Forever. James and Chris  showed up like dual Gordon’s fisherman, complete with yellow raincoats and a real life alien that didn’t do very much or meet the minimum drink requirements. They did however premiere a bunch of riveting new songs which may be on an Onus EP in the near future if you badger these men to relinquish some leisure time!

Next came No Volcano, striding onstage to the theme to Mister Ed while playing a set mostly consisting of songs from the new album and some unreleased as of yet standouts such as “Like an Eagle,” “Day in the Sun” and “To the Left.” Their four-month layoff from live work showed the band more raring to go than we have ever seen them. Jim also designed four brand new t-shirts that sold briskly, although the show’s MC and World’s Greatest Merch Booth merchant was heard to crow, “Was I right about the green shirts or wasn’t I ?” to anyone who’d listen.

Capping off the night was the always exciting Scorpion vs Tarantula who filled in gamely for The Father Figures on short notice. They blasted through the set with  selection’s from their new eponymous ten-inch. Yes it’s a ten-inch- don’t be intimidated , kids.

The next big Onus show will be the second anniversary show which is in the planning stages no, tentatively in January. There is some controversy on whether the company which started in January of 2015 is celebrating the 2nd  or 3rd anniversary. Onus Records CEO Tommy Globbit was heard arguing, we’ve only been around two full years. I’m not celebrating the third year until it’s over. Let us know if you agree or disagree with this summation.

Thanks to all the photographers who shot these wonderful photos!


Heritage Hump Day: Ca-Ho-Nus reissues Cole Summers’ hit “Scranton”

scantonOnus Records’ alt-country subsidiary Ca-Ho-Nus has thus far  issued recordings by Carol Pacey and the Honey Shakers, The Extended Play and Mills End but as of yet has not ventured into vintage country sounds. This week  we reach far back into the 60s, when boot scooting was a way off notion in the future and country music was shedding its fiddles but found itself flush with strings nonetheless.

This set the stage for a Phoenician named Cole Summers and his composition about love lost over cried tonic drinks called “Scranton.”

When Glen Campbell rocketed to the top of the charts in the late 60s  with a series of Jimmy Webb compositions about American cities, from “By the Time I Get to Phoenix” to “Wichita Lineman” to “Galveston,” it made sense for country singers looking to crossover to the pop field to find a city to wallow about in song. Cole Summers put pen to paper and in twenty minutes wrote about Scranton, Pennsylvania and the strange hold it had over his then-girlfriend. Because of the opening line “When night closes in on this palace of gin,” the business savvy Summers was able to coordinate a promotional marketing tie-in with Gordon’s Gin. Such cross-promotion is commonplace with rappers today but it was unheard of in 1969, unless you want to count astronauts and Tang. Suddenly, Summers was contracted to drink Gordon’s at every personal appearance. It was an obligation the singer was only to happy to comply with.

“Scranton” gave Summers his first pop hit–it went to number 52 in Cashbox’s country charts, but only  92 in the stingy Billboard listings. The Arizonan-born singer, prone to exaggeration, still claims to this day it went to number one, but we only have evidence of it being listed as such on singles charts handed out at  appliance stores that sold 45s. No matter. Summers, performing in Tucson one fateful night,  celebrated like it was number one by filling the bathtub in his Marin County hotel suite with slices of rum cake ordered up from room service. This on top of the congratulatory case of Gordon’s Gin  his tour sponsors had sent him.

“I stacked the caketure in the tub two feet high and rolled around in it naked just to see how it felt,” confessed Summers in his unpublished 2003 autobiography Let Me Loose, Mama: The Cole Summers Story.

“The massive room service bill for the rum cake was easily dwarfed by the amount of legal fees and courtroom fines I had to pay for driving around under the influence of alcohol and confectioneries I incurred later that night. I hadn’t figured that the rum would purse through my pores and put me over the legal limit. Made me kind of loopy. It’s a mistake a lot of novices make.”

The drunk and disorderly charges soon wrecked what career momentum Summers had but he continued to have several middling chart records, including “What Are You In For” (later covered by Maricopa Beef Exporters) and “I’m Running Out of Bended Knees.”

To download  or stream “Scranton” as well as other great free music, visit onusrecords.bandcamp.com

Butane Bros: “We’re not a covers band” band issues another cover song


Born twin enfants terribles, Mit and Mod Butane did everything competitively. They played sports competitively against one another. They went after the same women, including losing their collective virginity to the same ambidextrous camp counselor (each claiming they were the first to lose it). And they both went to jail after a misunderstanding preceding a drinking contest where each thought that the loser was that evening’s designated driver. Both pleaded for mercy in the same monotonous harangue. As anyone there would tell you, it was awful. But that was when they first realized they could harmonize.

butane-twins“Prior to that,” says Mit, “we were always trying to outdo each other, but once we were both fitted for orange jumpsuits, the only time we dress alike up to that point, we found that nothing was more self defeating than two people who look exactly alike plotting against one another.”

Despite the newfound cooperation, competitiveness between Mit and Mod is still in full play, as you can see by each brother’s  reluctance to let one brother sing more than four syllables without the other chiming in defensively. And the lack of Butane songwriting credits could be indicative of Mit and Mod’s inability to let the other brother get the first song.  To date, The Butane Brothers have only released a David Bowie cover (“Breaking Glass”) and now here is a cover song of New York based band The Holiday Slides which featured a once teenaged Serene Dominic.


The song has an interesting history. “Priceless is Right” is the final track on the Holiday Slides debut recording “Can You Count the Brunettes?” which was released on cassette only in 1987. To commemorate the 25 anniversary of its release, Serene Dominic re-recorded the entire album over again and released it on Related Records again on cassette only (those who bought the digital version also got a download of the original 1987 version as well).

Not that the Brothers are paying homage to anyone in any way. “We’re not a covers band at all,” insists Mod. “It just so happens we were at loggerheads about what to cut and we were running out of studio time. Our producer Don Glasser basically bullied us into recording it. Something about not having to pay Serene Dominic anything. It was all very hush hush.”

The Butane Bothers Selected Discography

bowie twopriceisright-new

“Breaking Glass” released July 2016
“Priceles Is Right” released September 2016

To download  or stream “Priceless is Right” and “Breaking Glass”  as well as other great free music, visit onusrecords.bandcamp.com









The Extended Play extends his reach to Sunnyslope

extendedRemember that hoary old joke? “What’s the last thing a drummer says before he gets kicked out of the band?”Hey guys… check out this song I wrote!”

Well Frank Hanyak never submitted any songs when he was timekeeper for Serene Dominic and the Semi-Detached and later The Beat Angels, maybe he was just biding his time, writing songs until he felt comfortable enough to hide behind a group name and present his emotional palette. An exodus from Phoenix  to Fayetteville, NY at the turn of the century was followed by a long woodshedding period recording songs at home..

“The Extended Play is me,’ says Hanyak. “I write everything and pretty much play/record everything. I do have friends play on certain songs and my good bud Leo McClusky is considered a member. He worked a lot with me when I lived in Connecticut (he lives in Jersey), but since I’ve been back in New York it’s me, myself and I for the most part.”

epPreviously, on the Onus Records imprint Ca-Ho-Nus, The Extended Play debuted with a song called “The Measure.” Then we issued the confusing Extended Play EP (retitled The Extended Play Dual Play to assuage easily puzzled) that paired “The Measure” with “Just for Two.”

“Pure melodic bliss! This artist is on the rise and bringing the lush of thick melody back to the beat of the bang!”— Zack Harding, New York Underground

Lest you might think  this latest track “Serenity” might be a dig at his old bandleader, Hanyak counters, saying, “The song is about someone who ripped me off. Sold some snare drums on me for cocaine. I don’t want his name used…but you can relay the scenario if you like. It’s about cutting him and others like him from my life and as a result finding serenity. That recording is all me except for the solo parts throughout the song which is played by my long time bud Mike Tarolli.”

Hanyak has another batch he’s getting ready to put the finishing touches on recorded and mixed at his home studio.. “It’s around 7-10 songs in various states of “almost done” phases. So I hope to be putting more online in the next 4-6 months.”

The Extended Play remains very much  a recording-only project but Hanyak also plays drums in a country band called Grits N Grace

Although he hasn’t set foot in Sunnyslope in, like, forever, he is an honorary Sloper to Onus Records CEO Tommy Globbit. “I don’t understand half the shit EP,a I like to call him, sings about. Hell, I thought ‘The Measure’ was about a shot glass and who’s to say I’m wrong? He is quite a soulful warbler, kinda like Elliot Smith meets, I don’t know,  Paul Simon’s barber. I’d love him to cut something here in AZ but I’m happy to have EP be our lone Fayetteville representation.”

To download  or stream “Serenity” and “The Extended Dual Play”  as well as other great free music, visit onusrecords.bandcamp.com