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Who is VivaL'AmericanDeathRayMusic?

Jeffrey Bouck, drummer/percussionist (Lithops, Polyphonic Spree), and a designer chef who specializes in cooking in confined spaces. Harlan T. Bobo, bassist (The Limes, Timothy Prudomme), who also cooks, but mainly for himself and occasionally Shawn, is stricken with night blindness yet he still is able to construct mechanical simians and sings at breathlessly low decibels. Nicholas Ray, singer/guitarist (The Limes, Valentines), is graced with the gift to work just about any job, some of which are hard to actually classify as 'jobs' and although he has no discernable experience in the art, he none the less harbors the belief he would make a good shoe maker.

So why do these men with such prodigious and nebulous skills bother to steal away into the dark night after night to play "music" to trodden and often malicious groupings of various size? And why do they gather in living quarters and various "studios" to record there musings as it were" Nicholas states, "we do these things for the large sums of money we receive". But are we glibly to be lead to believe that this gathering of minds is simply for the temporal venture of "moneys".


But I believe there is more to this strange case.

Come along shall we.

What is VivaL'AmericanDeathRayMusic?

For this question we shall put aside the obvious ramifications of their elongated and lofty title and their trepanacious and often-shifty social-politico ideas that they align with said title and concentrate on the musical.
First off there appears to be no easily definable method for there music. They make tumbling attempts at grandiosity while taking awkward stabs at virulent pop. They are magazine collage artists whose finished products are as much murky as they are obvious. They willingly throw themselves into derelict and hopeless improvisational alleyways to emerge relatively unscathed at the other end. They embrace and invite the listener to converse with them and then leave them standing awkwardly alone as they move on to talk to someone they are more acquainted with. They make music for people who believe they are listening to music of their generation.

They are truly ninjas at play in the fields of the Lord.

-The Robot
Headquarters 2004



TIYL Velvets, Television, Taking Tiger Mountain (by Strategy) -- that is, roots music, Lower East Side style
- Robert Christgau's Consumer Guide

They sound like Television and have the drummer from the Polyphonic Spree. Rather obviously, they are ace.

Memphis' Death Ray have made a fantastic record of manic echoes: the vocal acid of Lou Reed; Jerry Harrison's churning garage organ in the early Modern Lovers; Andy Mackay's sequined, squealing sax in Roxy Music; the crusty fidelity of old Sun 45's. With fun like that, who needs radios?
- David Fricke, Rolling Stone

Sexy rock chic from Memphis with a touch of Let It Bleed-era Rolling Stones and White Light White Heat Velvet Underground
- Rolling Stone

They should have be the Cutest Band in Seattle. Oh, except they're from Memphis
- Three Imaginary Girls

Die Band Viva L’American Death Ray Music retten unsere Seelen
–Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung