Saturday, March 24, 2012

Finally, from the King of Trash Pop

Nearly a decade into his ambitious project Dance America Dance, Monrovia's musical mad scientist Desmond Thesman, 25, has finally let slip a bit of his progress. The title track, featured here, is not strictly new. Though this is the first time it's been released, the song was among the first Thesman conceived when he began planning his genre-bending assessment of the state of music in 2003. Since then, Thesman - who has referred to himself as King Dez, King Thez, The sMan, and other permutations of his name - has devoted nearly all of his time to creating what he promises is not just a pop masterpiece, but "the pop masterpiece." Dance America Dance is to be a quadruple album that deconstructs the last 80 years of American popular music and reimagines it through his vaguely dancey, trash pop lens. His endless devotion to the Dance project has become a source of constant worry for his family and friends, however. "There were several nights when... he simply did not sleep," says mother Bethany. "He developed a serious caffeine addiction [and] when he got withdrawals it was terrifying." Eugene, a friend of Desmond's, recalls a particularly low point during which Thesman rode his bicycle naked around Library Park. "Even after all these years he's locked himself away," says Eugene, "he's still the best cycler around. The cops couldn't catch him for days." There was also the issue of recording. If Thesman was unhappy with any part of a recording, he simply destroyed it and began again, a practice that eventually led to an astronomical sum spent on cassettes. Despite these difficulties, Thesman was able to send us this song as proof of his progress. The artwork, of course, is the same that was released in 2008 much in the same spirit, though we're still unsure whether this is the definite cover for the album. What is certain is the engaging nature of this song. "Dance America Dance" is most likely a take on the disco era, though from another universe where disco groups recorded strictly onto cassette, and it invites one in to search among its contents for hidden treasures. This is too broad a work to reduce it to one description, thus we will leave it up to you to analyze in the comments. Get ready to enter another dimension:

Catch Desmond Thesman this César Chávez Day at the Brass Elephant's Banquet Hall at 8PM. We'll keep you in the know on any new developments on Dance America Dance.