The French Situationalist movement of the 1960s for the most part has been ignored here in the United States, but its call to re-examine art, media, and culture has been taken up by writer/poet 99 Hooker and the musicians that make up rev.99. Their “environmental improv,” Turn A Deaf Ear
mixing rants with new experimental improvisation exists as a document of a sonic cultural jamming.
Parts of this disc feel as if it were consumed in fire. The musicians Ernesto Diaz-Infante and Chris Forsyth from San Francisco and Brooklyn respectively collaborated with the duo of Japanese ‘noisician’ Akio Mokuno and poet 99 Hooker. Their sonic background and the eventual studio overdubs by engineer Ross Bonadonna give us what 99 Hooker eventually states, “How the hell do you sing along with this, anyway?” Indeed. Be it the powerbook of Mokuno or guitars of Diaz-Infante or Forsyth these musicians are spinning sounds from menus beyond standard musical choices.
99 Hooker delivers his poetry/rants like a mix between Ken Nordine and Bobcat Goldthwait. He is famous for his work on the rare (because of a court ordered destruction) Bible Launcher (Tzadik Records) disc that united evangelists with pornography. He takes his proselytizing seriously, covering subjects from the destruction of music to the enslavement of popular culture.
Is this music? Maybe. Is it performance? Yes. Is it enticing? Yes. Does it bear repeated spins? Absolutely.