The Thinking Fellers Union Local 282 Controversy

Because they know how Allah feels about flawlessness, TFUL282 recordings often include big doses of Feller-filler: badly recorded noodlings about as enthralling as an overheard conversation at the Dress-In-Black Cafe. Imagine what Rod Stewart imagines underground rock sounds like.

Some people love it. Myself, I find it kind of warmly amusing ("Aww, the kitty threw up again....") when I'm not feeling particularly driven. But it can have a dreadful effect on TFUL282 neophytes. Witness this recent message from the patriarch of the Parmenter political dynasty, a well respected figure in his time:

Date: Tue, 11 Jul 1995 21:48:43 -0400
From: (Tom Parmenter)
Subject: The Thinking Fellers Controversy

keeps on ticking!
keeps on licking!
fick nick mit der raketeman!
fulton j. fineman will dance again!
Oddly, breathtaking ensemble tightness (à la the Arditti Quartet or the Famous Flames) is what the Thinking Fellers Local 282 in-concert experience is all about. It's only on record that they screw around.


According to TFUL282, this is an important part of the TFUL282 experience. There's a flabby noise group wanting to bulge above the stone-washed jeans of these otherwise trim hipsters. Hugh Swarts says:
People make a distinction between songs done in a normal studio and tape pieces. It's all the same to me really, but since it has lower fidelity and lacks verse-chorus-verse-chorus structure, it's often taken that you're purposely making your music less accessible.
And in other interviews they've compared their Filler to such catchy found material as Raymond-and-Peter. But creating "catchy found material" on purpose may be beyond even the incredible powers of Thinking.

Which isn't to say that there's no point in screwing around. It's just a question of how you handle the post-coital glow.

Two Faces Have They, Apiece, for a Total of Ten

Can you tell the difference?

Copyright 1995 Ray Davis, except for musical selections from Lovelyville by TFUL282, used with permission