Are you ready to dive into some prime counter-culture? Let’s start here: The Dr. Demento show airs every Sunday and brings a variety of ideas and attitudes you are unlikely to find on Top 40 radio shows, gaining a cult following in the process. Among his listeners is John Cafiero, founder of punk band Osaka Popstar — a project with cornerstones in the punk canon (collaborations have featured members of The Ramones, The Misfits, The Voidoids, and more).
This moves us to the present, where Cafiero has decided to create a collection of favourite tracks from Dr. Demento’s radio show while bringing together a range of artists to contribute to the covers. With sixty-four tracks, this collection is expansive to say the least. For a true taste of the strange and wonderful work that Dr. Demento has brought attention to — as well as the talent of Osaka Popstar — check out the cover of Barnes & Barnes’ 1978 track “Fish Heads” above, in all its energetic and surreal vitality.
The clip for the track is animated and pure-punk fun. Dr. Demento and Barnes & Barnes make appearances among the literal visualizations of the lyrics. “I took a fish head out to see a movie, didn’t have to pay to get it in,” Cafiero sings. It’s this kind of ridiculous tone that sets the song, the clip, the whole project apart. You aren’t likely to forget this experience.