As is the case with a multitude of other bands from Austin, TX -- consider the case of the Butthole Surfers, Big Boys, Dicks, or Roky Erickson -- the Fuckemos reside in near-alien peculiarity, a hodgepodge of absolute originality, savant-wizardry, punk rock playfulness, and absurdity. The band owns the distinction of possessing a name not reprintable in most publications. Musically, this quartet is a hybrid of the aforementioned Butthole Surfers and the straightforward metal of acts like Judas Priest or Dio. With frontman Russell Porter pitch-shifting his vocals to sound like a 78 record played on 33 rpms and using themes that even Butthole Surfer Gibby Haynes might not have touched, the Fuckemos are perhaps one of the strangest metal bands to have emerged from planet Texas. They have also developed a career where many similarly silly or whimsical acts have not.
Developed for amusement in the early '90s, the band was the demented brainchild of Russell Porter and Ed "the Creep" Rancourt, who began writing songs using a toy guitar with a built-in speaker and a voice-altering microphone. Recording to a four-track, the duo began demoing material under the moniker Warthog 2001UK. When they were able to secure opening slots in Austin's scummiest dives, Porter was handling both vocals and drums. After an incident with security at Austin's famed Emo's nightclub in 1992 in which Porter tried to retrieve his wife from within the club after hours, he went home and sticker-taped the words "Fuck Emos" on his kick drum. The next morning, Warthog 2001UK became the Fuckemos. A simple story. Shortly after, Porter began handling vocals, trombone, and Casio exclusively, handing the drum reins to Sean Powell. Catching the ears of local pop artist Frank Kozik, the band recorded its first album, Fuckemos Can Kill You, in 1994, through Kozik's Rise Records (reissued via Man's Ruin in 1999).
Numerous singles and drunken, unrehearsed shows followed. In 1995, the band recorded the follow-up, Lifestyles of the Drugged & Homeless, on poster artist Lindsay Kuhn's No Lie imprint (now out of print). A year later, the band returned with Black Helicopters, later to be reissued on Man's Ruin. By 1997, Porter and Powell had gone through lineup changes too numerous to mention, but secured bass player -- and former Cherubs drummer -- Brent Prager and guitarist Brian McGee and created the oddball, upbeat Celebration!, their first album release through Man's Ruin. In 1999, Kozik reissued Can Kill You and Black Helicopters. The band followed in 2000 with Airshow 2000, perhaps its most involved and sophisticated recording. ~ Patrick Kennedy