Being the frontman of two major and influential bands (Devildriver and Coal Chamber) as well as running his own SunCult brand, Dez Fafara might just be the busiest man in metal. We were lucky enough to steal a few minutes out of his day by asking him to share with us the 5 greatest Alternative releases he has ever heard. As you would expect from Dez, this list is a wild one!
1) Kava Kon – Tiki For The Atomic Age (2009)
Everyone from musicians to agents to managers that I turn onto this band say thank you, and they in turn send it to multiple friends! I could have listed all 3 records so here’s a fair warning: “every record is incredible.” Kava Kon is… hard to explain really – a bit of chill, bit of tiki, bit of Alt – it’s really music that stands on its own as unique and different. There’s a “genius vibe” here. When you hear it you're thinking to yourself… “ok I found something truly special!”
Thank me later!
There is a theme here so stay with me…
2) The Tikiyaki Orchestra – Aloha, Baby!
This record is fucking amazing, especially in those times you're in need of a reprieve from your standard fare. A mix of synth sounds, acoustic guitar, and haunting melody – Tikiyaki is RIPE WITH VIBE. At times you’ll be in a spaghetti western vibe riding across the desert, the next you’ll be landing on a desert island concocting homemade mai tias under a shady palm… It’s just great – pure and simple!
3) Al Bowlly – The Cedar Series (1990)
Look man, it can’t be heavy all the time and life is made better by listening to a diverse array of music, so in keeping with a summer view and music I jam when I’m chilling or road tripping – here you go! Al Bowlly…
Albert Allick Bowlly was a Mozambican-born South African–British vocalist and jazz guitarist, who was popular during the 1930s in Britain. He recorded more than 1,000 songs. The voice is unmistakably PERFECT for the era, when I think of crooner 1930s ….I think “Al!” If you're out by the pool or chilling at dinner, Al is a perfect choice for a getaway.
Here’s my all time fav Alt record…
4) Janes Addiction – LIVE! (1987)
I’ll date myself here, but fuck it! I was working at the SCREAM CLUB in LA when I was 18 when Janes first came out and saw them live before anyone knew who the fuck they were and right there and then, I knew we had a superstar on our hands! This record is perfect from start to finish and although I fell away eventually from the more current records and placid Janes, this one's always been solid.
5) The Deftones – Adrenaline (1995)
This record…. !
Start to finish, amazing. They were young, hungry, and like the rest of us in the LA scene at that time… they were out for blood! I was there the night Madonna rolled up & signed em, love em as people and have rooted for em since day one! Dare you to find a bad song… dare ya! I’m not gonna explain their sound cause if you haven’t heard em you’ve been in a coma!
The Cure – Disintegration (1989)
For those who don’t know, I’m a punk rock goth guy who eventually found and participated in metal because I liked it vicious! Never been a “standard” metal cat by any means, it’s gotta have vibe if I’m to give in and GOTH HAS VIBE, darkness, all the good stuff. That being said, I would be terribly remiss to not say I LOVE THE CURE! Always have, always will – Robert Smith is a god walking and surely will go down in history as such!
This record needs to be played when you're inside with a beverage of your choice watching the rain on the window with dim lighting and a fireplace burning… It’s essential, it’s viably perfect!” Wait for a summer storm, dig out the vinyl and get to it promptly!