BOMBAY HARAMBEE “Wolfman Fellowship” (Wiener Records)

I can’t imagine anything remotely interesting happens in Little Rock, Arkansas – it may be the capital of the state that rhymes with Kansas (wait, it doesn’t?), but c’mon, who’s it kidding? Arkansas’s too far west to be a southern state and too far south to be Midwestern, so it has no discernible cultural identity that I can think of. I’ll tell you one thing though – it’s the state that Missouri’s butt touches. That’s all you need to know. You’re welcome.

Bombay Harambee is from Little Rock. They’re probably the most exciting thing to come out of the city in decades, and they’re a four-piece indie rock band indebted heavily to the Pixies. (Who wasn’t though? I’ve been in band’s exclusively indebted to the Pixies.) And while they don’t necessarily sound like the Pixies (thank goodness they don’t come off as a “cover” band of sorts), the elements are there – the crunchy guitar, the quick pace, the tongues in cheek, etc. Two of the guys have beards. One of the beards is super long and bushy.

This tape is a “hodgepodge of tracks recorded for the You Know Better EP and forthcoming Goldmine LP,” and it’s fun while it lasts. Your tolerance for straightforward and mildly quirky indie rock certainly must be taken into consideration before listening, and needle of my indie rock dial sort of hovers in the middle depending on my mood. (For those not understanding my strained metaphors, I get a kick out of this stuff sometimes.) I like the shorthand and/or quirky titles, like “BLVD,” “BRKN HND,” “Oh, IDK,” and “$Millionaire.” Side A, track one “CCCM” gets a thumbs up in my book for reminding me of this song from the great film The American Astronaut:


So get it together and get yerself this tape if this here’s yer thing. It’s the music that brings us together, isn’t it? That’s what “harambee” means, anyway – “Let’s pull together,” in Swahili, a popular Kenyan idea of coming together as a community, one which has been appropriated by many organizations working for peace and harmony in the world. Bombay Harambee’s doing that too, in their own special and local way. From Little Rock. Then why “Bombay”? ’Cause it rhymes, jackwad.

--Ryan Masteller