Caroliner - ToodoosCaroliner, formed in 1982 in San Francisco, is an Industrial Bluegrass/Experimental/Noise conceptual art Costume Rock band, dedicated to creating a fever dream of American psychedelia – utilizing bluegrass music instruments, weird effects, other-worldly pageantry, and day-glo character outfits similar to those of a “Disneyland ride with a Spike Jones and his City Slickers sense of individuality.” For example, band member Puppy Whowoundup built an actual spinning heliotrope animatic cap that revolved on top of her head. Member The Brazen and Meticulous Pintle sports a spinning Brittleback wheel as a codpiece for her stringed instrument.

Jamie Rake, in Sound Choice, described Caroliner’s music succinctly:

“Caroliner is the sound of atrophy, the noise of salvation and damnation’s collision in a parallel dimension to purgatory, the random rumbling of the bowels of the universe turned inside out to become a semblance of music complete with lyrical vantage points so convolutedly arcane to make comprehending them impossible, save for the few gnostically inclined aspirants bent in similar psychic permutations.”

According to the band, “Caroliner formed as a tribute band to the singing bull of the 1800s who had the same name. Influences include most and foremost The Skillet Lickers, Barrel Gordon Trio, and Dock Boggs, also making nods along the way to The Hoosier Hotshots, Spike Jones, Tiny Tim, and buckets of nails being kicked down the stairs. The Caroliner name stands alone (as seen on the cover of the organ based long play record “Toodoos”), to represent the band on most printed materials. The following “rainbow” word is only used when it is in conjunction with a line from Caroliner lyrics. The possibilities are endless: “Caroliner Rainbow Charlie Stink Creek”, “Caroliner Rainbow Bowed Wart at the Turn”, “Caroliner Rainbow Moth in the Waves”, ” Caroliner Rainbow Double Snap-Passion of Vaunted Elderly Fashion.” Every 10 LPs results in a ‘live’ LP that sums up the next ten albums with some “songs in progress” between the live “hits”.

Doey Didduoghlbulch, a “Caroliner Rainbow Legs Tied Round the Ankles” member for the last 10 years, described the band as such:

Alex Ross of The New Yorker noted:

“On top of the visual extravagance, Caroliner has somehow forged an original musical style. The songs typically fuse together a grinding, relentless bass line, country-ish banjo strummings, spastic vocals ranging across several octaves, a wheezing organ drone, and screeching violin tremolos. Despite the splintered aesthetic, a lumbering grandeur gathers …… Space does not permit a description of the lyrics, which purport to interpret the prophecies of a 19th-century Wisconsin cow.”

Successful tours of Europe and Japan resulted in “stick to your gums” USA tours. The band is reportedly awaiting the “building of a horticulture twist spindle farm of 1844” for the next tour that will “hopefully include face roulettes”, and “fantastic new deformed sheep faced instrumentalists”.

Back to artists
Buy Caroliner albums from
Caroliner @
Caroliner @

This article is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article “Caroliner”.