Tag: Video Review: Van Goose Last Bus

New Video: Van Goose’s Twitchy and Neurotic Take on Post Punk

Shlomi Lavie is an Israeli-born, Brooklyn-based singer/songwriter and drummer, best known for stints in Habiluim, one of Israel’s most unlikely major label acts, an act that developed a reputation for pairing dark and subversive lyrics into a heady mix of punk rock, Balkan folk and klezmer music — and it eventually brought him and his bandmates to a Brooklyn recording studio. “I always felt like something was missing,” Lavie explains in press notes, “like there’s a whole world inside my head about to explode. That’s when I started writing my own music.” Lavie’s first post-Habiluim project was something like a manic theater piece with an electro-punk soundtrack rather than a proper band. “I was playing a character — wearing face paint and screaming in a raspy, Tom Waits-y voice,” he recalls. “We had people with gas masks handing onions to the crowd, dancers and a rubber rat. It felt oddly safe.” 

After that project’s run, Lavie pursued two entirely different paths — he joined the multi-platinum selling act Marcy Playground in 2008 and started his solo recording project Van Goose. Lavie’s Van Goose full-length debut Habitual Eater is slated for release early next year and from album single “Last Bus,” the Israeli-born, Brooklyn-based singer/songwriter drummer specializes in a twitchy and propulsive, post-punk that recalls Freedom of Choice-era DEVO, early DFA Records and New Wave as its centered around lean yet throbbing bass lines, chintzy drum machine and processed beat, hollowed out, synth flashes and surrealistic, ridiculous lyrics. It’s dance music for hyperactive  nerds and those with severe neuroses. 

Directed by Van Goose’s Lavie, and starring Saki, Hitomi , Yoko, Gooch. Avery Brooks, Tsugumi Takashi, Eamon Lebow, Charlie McGrath, Freddie Nunez and Lavie begins with Lavie, his backing band and some random dancers squeezed into a small apartment before heading out into the streets. It’s surreal yet manages to bring early MTV to mind.