September 4th, 2012 | Album reviews

Ding Dong Devils
Tassels, Mai-Tais, & Mischief
Tiki Tunes

Edwin Letcher has been an ambassador of arcane counterculture for years, both as publisher of the Garage & Beat fanzine but also as a wig-wearing weirdo of wacky wonders. The same crowd who attended February’s premier of the Cacophony Society documentary will also certainly remember Letcher’s retro-romancing, Mr.-T’s-Bowl-frequenting bands such as the Tuffies, the Fleagles, and my personal favorite, Bangers & Mash, which was a tribute not to the Beatles but to the knock-off “Beetles” albums clueless parents were buying their confused young’uns at the height of the original British Invasion. This, his latest project, is a garage-infused trip through his favorite obsession: mid-century cocktail culture and the 90s revival of the same, though Letcher has his tongue far more in his cheek than, say, the Tiki Tones ever did. There’s as much George of the Jungle on here as there is Eden Ahbez. And if you don’t know who either of those people are, just get the CD, put it on, and let the lyrics about leopard men and luau pigs take you away to to a land where drinks are served not by the glass but by the coconut husk.

-D. M. Collins