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Jef UK, frontman and lead singer for Americans UK, has never had an album reviewed in Pitchfork, and he hasn’t established an indie following in Williamsburg. But the Gowanus sci-fi rocker has done something that no other band has done: he’s traveled through time to save rock ’n’ roll.
No, really. It’s all documented in his comic books and LPs.
For example, not too long ago, UK’s band had a rumble with the Beatles where John Lennon kicked UK in the groin. That was in Liverpool. The year was 1964.
Sometime afterward, UK and his bandmates found themselves starting a robot revolution in the year 2048 to defeat a pop-musician-terrorist named Stang.
“Sure, I had to rewrite reality for these things to happen,” UK told The Brooklyn Paper. “But I did it anyway. All for you. All for rock.”
Back in Brooklyn — the real Brooklyn, 2009 — Americans UK has continued its mission to preserve rock’s vital essence.
For its debut album, Rocktronic, the band created a 10-song assault on the senses and sensibilities. Its infectious pop beats and post-punk riffs channeled the sonic specters of The Dickies, The Ramones and Electric Six. The lyrics invoked tales of zombie invasions (“Zombies Attack”), dancehall mavens (“Rocktronic”) and bawdy teenage fantasies (“Inappropriate Words To Your Mother”).
“I have one rule for every song we write,” said UK. “It has to make me want to dance.”
Dancing is just one component of the band’s frenzied live performance. On stage, the foursome dons superhero costumes and unleashes “cheesy rock stunts.”
“We don’t just stand there and play our songs,” said UK. “We dress up, we play the part. We dance and pose and posture and head bang and jump around. This is f—ing rock ’n’ roll, you know?”
In addition to cutting tracks and tearing up the stage, UK pens and publishes a comic book series, aptly titled “Americans UK.” The series chronicles the band’s episodes through space and time.
“Every page of comic needs its verse, chorus and hook like a two-minute punk song,” said UK. “The stories are fast-paced and bigger than life, and in that way, hopefully evokes our songs.”
Americans UK at the Royale [506 Fifth Ave. between 12th and 13th streets in Park Slope, (718) 840-0089] on Nov. 12. The first three issues of the Americans UK comic book, plus some of the band’s songs, are free to download off the band’s Web site, www.americans-uk.com.
©2009 Community Newspaper Group
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