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The Insect Trust
The Insect Trust
One of the more interesting one-shot bands in rock & roll, the Insect Trust's most famous member was writer/critic/ethnomusicologist Robert Palmer, who played alto sax and clarinet. Less famous, but still a notable member, was guitarist/songwriter Luke Faust, who went on to add creative input for the Holy Modal Rounders' string of wonderful early- to mid-'70s records. The Insect Trust released two albums, their self-titled 1968 debut on Capitol, and their second and final LP, Hoboken Saturday Night. Along with the loose-limbed music, Hoboken Saturday Night features musical contributions by heavy hitters (no pun intended) such as drummers Elvin Jones and Bernard "Pretty" Purdie, guitarist Hugh McCracken, and novelist Thomas Pynchon. The music ranges from surreal folk-rock (à la the Holy Modal Rounders and Fugs), to Booker T.-like pop-soul, to flat-out free jazz. Decades after its release, Hoboken Saturday Night sounds a bit dated, but its charm is irresistible, especially when Nancy Jefferies sings and the band cranks up its raucous onslaught of reeds and percussion. Never intended to be a traditional pop act, the Insect Trust should be best remembered for extending rock's boundaries and taking the genre to a much hipper level without resorting to a lot of banal technique. Good luck locating their records. ~ John Dougan, Rovi
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