Into the Oblivians

How Eric Oblivian turned Jesus into a punk rocker.

This approach also colors Popular Favorites, the Oblivians' second full-length. The opening number, a sneering version of Brownie McGhee's "Christina," finds Eric and his mates playing with the same sort of drunken abandon that marked their earlier work. But barn-burners like "Guitar Shop Asshole" and the nasty, tequila-drenched grooves that highlight "Hey Mama, Look at Sis" and "You Better Behave" display a certain gritty proficiency. Eric feels that Favorites represented an important step for the group: "We realized we could do more than write the most moronic songs we could think of. Soul Food was more of a straightahead kind of punk-rock record, while Popular Favorites has more of an R&B flavor to it." With less than total sincerity, he declares, "On our next record, we're just going to hire some big guitar guy with an Afro, and he's going to sing the songs instead of us."

In the meantime, the Oblivians will be taking their meat-grinder blues to the masses--and they are confident that their Mr. Quintron mate-rial will blend nicely with "And Then I Fucked Her," "She's a Hole" and other less reverent pieces. "It's a big world," Eric points out in a rare moment of philosophical introspection. "I think all these things can co-exist. There's nothing wrong with having it all in one big mess. Just saying one thing is boring."

The Oblivians, with Boss 302 and the Down-and-Outs. 9 p.m. Monday, November 10, 15th Street Tavern, 623 15th Street, $5, 572-0822.

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