The Circumsized – Products of Rebellion

The Circumsized
Products of Rebellion
198? (no label)

Houston, Texas, USA

Oatmeal – vocals and/or instruments(?)
Chaz – vocals and/or instruments(?)

  1. Mommy’s Little Racist
  2. Sin Equals Death
  3. Where’s the Way Out?
  4. [the evils of tv]
  5. Blow Up Your Television Set
  6. [phone message]

This is fast and intense skate punk from Oatmeal and Chaz of Red Ink. I’m not sure of the date, but this was on the Tone Deaf tape with all of the other Oatmeal side bands, but this one was referred to as an older band. You got to love a band that casually states “One Bad Pig eat your heart out” in the middle of a song. I’m not sure who played what, and I’m not even sure who this Chaz is that Oatmeal said was in Red Ink. This is basically 4 songs, with a sermon/discussion about the evils of television for track 4, and a weird phone message for track 6. To me, it seems to be the beginnings of what became Tone Deaf (but I could be wrong). The sound is pretty in step with underground skate punk at the time (and I know Houston had a cool skate park in the 80s, so there were some legitimate connections to the style as well). Most of the song titles above are guesses based on the phrase that seemed to be repeated the most.

Missing Information: release date, who played what, actual song titles, cover art

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DSD – Memorial Phlebitis

DSD
Memorial Phlebitis
1990? (no label)
Houston, Texas, USA

Oatmeal – vocals and/or instruments(?)
Ash Henson – vocals and/or instruments(?)

  1. Wisdom Famine
  2. Dirge
  3. Heavy Metal Rules
  4. Romans NIV
  5. Annihilation Mutilation
  6. Revelation NIV
  7. 12,000
  8. The Christmas Song
  9. The Cat’s Meow
  10. Directions To Nowhere
  11. Memorial Phlebitis
  12. Explorations Into African Culture

This collection of songs is a grind/death where all songs are 30-50 seconds long. This is another project from Oatmeal (Red Ink/Tone Deaf/The Bumpus Hounds), and like the others this one was tacked on to the same Tone Deaf tape. This was more of a full project than the other songs on the tape. This also had some commentary along with the music. The title of the tape and “half the lyrics” are inspired by the Simpsons TV show. Matt Hallen of Red Ink wrote the lyrics to “The Cat’s Meow.” “Directions to Nowhere” is just actual directions to a concert read over music. “Memorial Phlebitis” is the imaginary disease that Bart Simpson claimed to have to get out of a test at school. Not bad if you are into this type of music. The date of 1990 is assumed because it was on a Tone Deaf tape from 1990, but could be incorrect.

Missing Information: the actual release date, who played what, cover art

Oatmeal – Demos

Oatmeal
(untitled solo tracks)
1990? (no label)
Houston, Texas, USA

Oatmeal – vocals and instruments(?)

  1. [untitled]
  2. [untitled]
  3. [untitled]
  4. [untitled 1950’s industrial song]

I might start listening to all my tapes to the end. These songs were not an actual demo per se, but someone was listening to the Tone Deaf tape and found several other demos and various songs tacked on the end. So they let me know about it, and I am featuring them here. What this mystery collection of music is was Oatmeal (Red Ink / The Bumpus Hounds / Tone Deaf) sharing songs from various bands he had also been a part of (DSD, Gramatical Enfurbulence, and The Circumsized). There were also some solo tracks that I am putting together as one “demo” because they all seem to fit together. The first three tracks were together, and the fourth track was actually elsewhere on the tape but I moved it here because it fits better. The songs were pretty quiet sounding – boosting the sound lets you hear it better, but adds a lot of tape hiss. The first track is pretty much punk rock with hard to hear vocals, with a sample from an old “prelude strummer organ” commercial tacked on at the end. The second track is alternative rock – mellow and moody and more keyboard based. The third track is still alternative rock – with some more samples at the beginning – but the music is based more on guitars than keyboards. Vocals are a bit clearer on this one – something about wind chimes and not fearing God. The fourth track had some commentary that basically referred to it as a 1950’s industrial song. But something about all four songs seems to tie them together, so I have put them together. The date of 1990 is assumed because it was on a Tone Deaf tape from 1990, but could be incorrect.

Missing Information: the actual release date, did Oatmeal play everything, and did the songs ever get titles

Tone Deaf – Mild Concussion

Tone Deaf
Mild Concussion
1990 Mush Mosh Music
Spring, Texas, USA

Oatmeal – All music, vocals, and lyrics
Chris Fales – Back up on “God Skull”

Side 1:

  1. Death Squad
  2. God Skull
  3. Forgiveness Song
  4. In the End
  5. Norm
  6. Corruption
  7. Hell Bound

Side 2:

  1. Soon, My Love
  2. Oatmeal’s Hairdo
  3. Dudley The Happy Dinosaur Goes West
  4. Mild Concussion

Yes, that is the same Oatmeal that played in Red Ink and The Bumpus Hounds. This is a lo-fi punk rock demo (with a few songs that border on crossover thrash). How lo-fi? The liner notes say “I used home utensils and a cookie canister and microphone case for drums.” I did find this review about it online, but the weird thing is that the song that is posted in that review is not “God Skull” on the demo. The main issue with this demo is that the recording volume is too low, with one channel so much lower than the other that it is almost nonexistent. This issue makes it hard to listen to. There is a trick in Audacity to bring both channels up to the same level (do the Normalize effect and then select the option for “normalizing stereo track separately”). Once you do that, it is easier to listen to (this was also sent to me as a trade, so I was able to normalize it and listen a few times). So, yes, it is lo-fi – however, there are some interesting ideas in raw demo form. Its kind of what I like about underground demos 🙂