On one of my first days here at WFMU, I noticed Mike Lupica drinking coffee out of a mug emblazoned with the “Go-Nuts” logo. Magic factory, indeed, Mr. Lupica. How did this piece of west coast rock memorabilia find its way into a Jersey City cupboard?
During my final year of residence in the people’s republic of California, I had the fortune of bearing witness to the mighty food-fighting genius of the Go-Nuts. A self-described snack-rock band, their music is poppy, punky, fun, and super cheesed up. But the live show, friends, the LIVE SHOW pushed the limits of reason.
With names like Kap’n Korn Nut, Donut Prince, Donut Hole, and Korn Dog, they could only be outfitted in superhero regalia (capes and masks included), with Go-Go Gorillas at their sides. At the time, I was told that the Go-Nuts only perform every few years because their stage act was so expensive. At first, the black plastic forming a sheath over the venue’s speakers and bar seemed overly cautious. Only when the show began did I understand that this effort was, in fact, an underestimation of the mayhem associated with a Go-Nuts performance.
Three thousand Twinkies. Fifty pounds of confectioner’s sugar. Popcorn, Ho-Ho’s, Sno-balls, various sugar-coated cereals, whipped cream, marshmallows, bananas, chocolate Quik, corn tortillas (apparently the flour ones don’t fly as well). The sound of the first chord commenced the food fight. Massive quantities of junk food were launched via Snack-A-Pult, rigged-up leaf blower, or by hand. Clouds of powdered sugar filled the venue throughout the entire performance, at times mixed with a rain of Frosted Flakes, a pelting of Twinkies and marshmallows, or tortillas whizzing by. The crowd was half dodging food missiles, half participating in the fight, and half eating the unsquashed ammo.
I left the show with sugar-coated lungs, cereal twisted into my hair, Ho-Ho shellacked to my ear and forehead, and Twinkie filling on my sleeves and shoes, all evenly coated with a thin white layer of powdered sugar. And, oh, how I wanted more.
Experience the full glory of the Go-Nuts (Real Audio from archives of “Greasy Kid Stuff”). But first, smash a Twinkie on your face.