Being in a touring rock band is challenging enough without internal conflicts, but when two members of the group are separating/divorcing each other, there are only two paths to take: 1) the Fleetwood Mac route, in which all the trauma is poured into an album for the whole world to hear, or 2) the Groovie Ghoulies' route, in which the group calls it quits and everybody moves on to other projects. When the Ghoulies announced their breakup in 2007 (not long after singer/bassist Kepi Ghoulie and guitarist Roach got divorced), fans of the garage pop-punkers were bummed — but not for long, because Kepi Ghoulie released two albums on Asian Man Records in 2008, Hanging Out and American Gothic. Both records were solid, filled with Kepi's trademark nasally vocals singing about supermodels, brain death, and bats, over oo-wah-oo backing vocals and minimalist garage rock backdrops (think the Ramones, but a little more jangly). Ghoulie recorded the albums with a full band (dubbed "Kepi The Band"), but he also performs solo acoustic sets. He'll be playing the latter this week, plucking out folk-punk versions of songs like the melancholy "Girlfriend" and the supercharged "Bye Bye Brain." Harry Nilsson may believe "one is the loneliest number," but Kepi Ghoulie makes it sound fun.
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