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“If electronic industrialist Marc Plainguet (pronounced Plan-J) is anything, he’s imaginative. It is unusual to find someone so unafraid to go against the grain and offer sounds that both challenge the established norm and stimulate the much neglected grey matter between the ears. His ever changing style has embraced everything from industrial noise and post modern dance to requiems and humorous punk-folk storytelling. His lyrics bombard his listener with some of the oddest visual pictures on could imagine. Skeletons at Disneyland, a suitcase toting Godzilla looking for work in Hollywood, melting clocks, choking cats, televisions with eyes, psychotic TV preachers, old factories grinding out machine laden rhythms, and microscopic amebas who fall in love to a Latin salsa beat are only a few specks from Plainguet’s menagerie of supporting cast members.
In 1985, Plainguet and soloist Mike Futch formed a strange duo called Nutty Faith. As Nutty Faith the two produced a cassette release titled It’s Our Job! and released it on the streets through Futch’s Plan 7 Distribution label.
That next year, Plainguet and Futch teamed up with Shaka and formed a band called Crazed Bunnyz. Using pseudonyms like Futch, Shaka, Gadget (Plainguet) and Box (the name of Gadget’s drum machine) they played an odd sort of punk rock using a bass synthesizer and drum machine. Soon, they recorded Achtung: Musik Klirrfaktor! and found themselves in the Christian underground scene which, until then, they did not even realized existed. A small following began to pop up across the United States and even overseas through their small mail order catalog. It was during this time that Plainguet started doing some recording of his own on a four track.
Amebas In Love, Plainguet’s first solo cassette, consisted of little casio sounds, programmed bouncy bass lines, monologues and his own brand of off-beat humor and social commentary. The tape really took off after the first review of it was published in The Cutting Edge and Plainguet quickly establised his own label Corpqii Music. He chose the name ‘CORPQII’ by ramdomly picking letters off the top of his head and created the logo in a similar manner.
After leaving Crazed Bunnyz, Plainguet released World Media to another round of great reviews, Demovision a tape which he used for obtaining booking for his multi-media solo live shows, and Crazed Bunnyz Live! as way to gain something back from the whole experience.
He then released Blood & Fire, an experiment to record one continuous piece of music in an improvisational manner, not completely writing and arranging the music before it’s recorded, and using excerpts from pre-recorded speeches by Martin Luther King, Jr., Winston Churchill, and the Apollo astronauts.
Under the moniker of Gadget, Plainguet recorded Joyful Noize and became one of the first Christians to be performing industrial music. Joyful Noize contained pounding rhythms, spacey soundscapes, and haunting renditions of the Psalms. The acclaim for this project spread quickly and Plainguet’s tapes were now being distributed by Spring Arbor, Key Records, and Long’s Christian Music in America, and Embryo Arts in Europe.
In December of 1987 Plainguet released Security Shelter Hope which dealt entirely with Christian themes and their application to the real world. Plainguet then spent most of 1988 composing new instrumental music and growing creatively. A comic rendition by him of his monologue Afterlifestyles was printed in Safe Comix #1, and writing and recording began for his epic project Stange Tales.
In August of 1989 Plainguet moved from Los Angeles to Youngstown, Ohio where he became a member of Artatak Studios. With his new studio space completed he changed the name of the company to Corpqii Productions to represent his new broader creative focus. He then released Surrealism For Beginners, containing an instrumental requiem for Salvador Dali. It received great reviews from both Christian and non-Christian publications alike. Also stemming from the same creative growth period, Marc found he had recorded four compositions all dealing with cats. These pieces were then released on the EP Cats Welcome You Home.
Marc then jumped into an array of projects. For history buffs, he released T.W.D.N.R.T.P.A.C.T.R.I. a cassette containing the original 4 song garage recordings by Crazed Bunnyz and a recording of an interview with Plainguet and Futch which was printed in The Activist #21. He also produced and wrote and performed music for Chris Yambar’s Weird Outtakes Vol. 1, and contributed various artwork of his Leon the Skeleton character for publications like The Cutting Edge, The Itinerant Iconoclast Emporium Catalog, and an appearance in Rebel Graphics #2 as The Grim Reaper.
The next Marc Plainguet release proved to be incredibly fun. Strange Tales was a concept album based on the old monster comics of the 1950’s with a spiritual bend to it. The tape came with a book containing the story and artwork along with instructions on various activities to do as you read the story and listen to the tape, and contained play money and various other goodies.
In 1990 Marc performed solo at the Cornerstone festival with film and slides. The performance was chosen by several publications as one of the best of the whole festival. Strange Tales was first released at the festival and sold out quickly. Soon, Marc did many other live performances including a Central American Independence Day benefit show at Cedars in Youngstown, a show at Artatak Studios, and was the first live music performer at The Artery in Pittsburgh. Marc was also asked to appear on TV on two episodes of HisPlace TV show and on Tom Greene’s syndicated music video show Light Music. Amidst all of this, however, Marc was already recording other projects.
1991 saw the release of Gadget’s follow-up to the classic Joyful Noize titled Gnashing of Teeth. The reaction was incredible. The cassette was praised as a new form of expression in Christian music and Gadget was hailed as “the Keith Green of noize”.
In late 1991 Marc left Artatak Studios and moved to Pittsburgh to attend The Art Institute of Pittsburgh for two years. During that time most of Marc’s time was taken up with school, but he did have time to keep Corpqii going. He collaborated with ex-fireman turned poet extraordinaire Richard F. Hay, Sr. on the poetry and music project Almost Poetry, Not Quite Prose, and turned to producing songs for Terry McCabe and Zuzu’s Petals, and various projects such as 35 Little Ducks in a Basket’s tape Live At Artatak, and the compilation More Bad Karma.
In conjunction with The Banana Rodeo Gallery, Marc co-curated “The AIDS Awareness Group Show” and displayed his mixed media work “Know Your Enemy” in the show, and contributed a work titled “Homecoming” in the gallery’s “Statements of Faith” exhibit. Marc also produced and provided music for a cassette titled A Tale of Peeper Rabbit was also produced in collaboration with Chris Yambar as part of his art show “Beatrix Unleashed”.
Marc then began doing music under the name Graveyard Cafe. The demo tape Fresh Ground was produced and Graveyard Cafe gave it’s first live performance at the “Bobbing for Dobbs Subgenius Devival” in Akron, Ohio. The group featured Marc onstage at the keyboard and an array of costumed characters such as skeletons passing out pamphlets, nuclear missles fighting on the dance floor, and more all backed by film and slides. Marc also appeared that night as Pastor “Smilin’” Jack Stomachpump from his Strange Tales project and delivered the sermon “What I Want”.
In 1993 Marc graduated from The Art Institute of Pittsburgh and moved back to Youngstown to be closer to his fiance Francine Vitullo. At this time Marc took time off from doing music to get ready for their wedding and get his life settled and in order. However, “The Industrial Blues” by Graveyard Cafe was included on the R.M.I. Mind / Body Volume 2 compilation from Atomic Records in 1994.
Several of Marc’s short stories have been published in literary magazines, he has contributed several tracks to compilation releases including a rendition of the classic “Amazing Grace” by Gadget with Francine Plainguet on vocals, and made his first endeavor into multimedia with Marc Plainguet: An Interactive Discography, a point and click guide to his complete recorded works. To celebrate his 10th anniversary Marc released a “best of” compilation of his music titled alt.music.marc-plainguet.best-of and released The Curiosity Shop, a collection of rare and never before released tracks from the archives dating from 1986 to 1998.
During 1999 & 2000 Marc finished reissuing his entire back catalogue on CD and contributed an ambient industrial rhythm track for a song by the band 9 Bob Note. October saw Marc return to the stage for a rare live performance called The Skeletons & Robots show. It was a multimedia extravaganza with video, slides, and people in costume featuring old favorites and some great reworkings of classics.”
|1986||Amebas in Love||Corpqii Music|
|1986||World Media||Corpqii Music|
|1987||Blood & Fire||Corpqii Music|
|1988||Security Shelter Hope||Corpqii Music|
|1989||Cats Welcome You Home||Corpqii Music|
|1989||Surrealism for Beginners||Corpqii Music|
|1989||Marc Plainguet||Corpqii Music|
|1990||Strange Tales||Corpqii Music|
|1991||Electric Campfire Songs||Corpqii Music|
|1991||Live at Cornerstone '90||Corpqii Music|
|1998||The Curiosity Shop||Corpqii Music|
1986 Corpqii Music (CM-1)
All music and text was written, produced, and performed by Marc Plainguet
CD re-issue songs:
The first 50 tapes on Corpqii Music had the artist and title hand stamped in dark blue on a light blue label on the cassette shell.
1986 Corpqii Music (CM-2)
All music and text was written, produced and performed by Marc Plainguet except:
“The Repeated Course”: Guitar and co-written by Mitch Coughlin
CD re-issue songs:
1986 Corpqii Music (CM-3)
* This is a different recording from the one on World Media and contains an extra verse.
This tape was originally made as a demo for live bookings but was later sold as a sort of “best of” sampler.
1987 Corpqii Music (CM-4)
Written, produced, and performed by Marc Plainguet
1987 Corpqii Music (CM-5)
Written, produced, and performed by Marc Plainguet
CD re-issue songs:
1989 Corpqii Music (CM-8)
Written, produced, and performed by Marc Plainguet
“This cassette came with four cat related covers: 1) Catnip dealing cartoon pimp cat. 2) Cartooned cat with claws that scratched up everything on the cover. 3) Photo of cat sitting in sunshine. 4) and the most popular - An image of Lee Harvey Oswald sitting in the window watching as the Kennedy motorcade passed by underneath. Beside him sits a shadow cat whispering, “Here he comes now.” These covers were on the ‘Corpqii Productions’ cassette releases only and never made it onto the CDs issued later by ‘Corpqii Arts’ in the 1990s.” (from http://www.yambar.com/audio/corpqiiarts.html)
The Corpqii Productions version was made available with 4 different covers.
1989 Corpqii Music (CPCS-7)
“This delightfully moody and abstract salute to the late Salvadore Dali was originally a cassette-only project until it was reissued on CD. On the original cassette cover, Yambar designed the simple but effectively haunting ‘clock head’ art which did find its way onto the new millennium release.” (from http://www.yambar.com/audio/corpqiiarts.html)
1989 Corpqii Music
* These are actually the 4th and 5th “movements” from Blood & Fire Part 1.
This tape was made as a gift for friends and was limited to only 25 copies.
1990 Corpqii Music (CM-9)
“The packaging for the original 14-song cassette only release of this project was completely designed by Yambar and came with an activity book and props so you could actually participate in the ‘physical adventure’ as well as the audio experience. There was even a phone number for you to call in order to get a secret message from Marc (aka: Pastor Smilin’ Jack Stomach Pump) which got updated every once in awhile and was available to callers for several years. The cassette and booklet package also included a pair of signed and numbered surgical gloves. The original packaging was overhauled for a new millennium CD release but still kept plenty of Yambar’s artwork intact, including the infamous ‘Prayboy’ logo parody. This project was also available with a variant electronic book for more hi-tech listeners. The Prayboy logo made its way onto several dozen t-shirts which raised even more eyebrows than those gloves! An ever-evolving and maddening audio magic moment!” (from http://www.yambar.com/audio/corpqiiarts.html)
The cassette was packaged with an illustrated booklet of the story, signed and numbered rubber gloves, Church Of Holy Profit play money, and an Eddie Ego & The Love Sicks concert flyer. The CD release has all the same items plus added artwork and a redesigned book. The book has gone through 4 revisions.
1991 Corpqii Music
This was a limited edition cassette of 25 copies. All previously released songs are new recordings.
1991 Corpqii Music (CPCS-20)
“The original art on the cassette-only edition was designed by Yambar but was altered when this project was reissued for a brief time on the now-defunct Corpqi Arts label. Like the ‘35 Little Ducks in a Basket - Live at Artatak’ project, the contents of this CD captures the heart and soul of the Artatak/Corpqii alliance in the 1980s. Every key member of that art community was on hand to assist Marc on this historic live performance gig which took place in a packed out airplane hanger at the Cornerstone Music Festival near Chicago, IL. Yambar made sure all the multimedia and film ran on time while Marc delivered the goods.” (from http://www.yambar.com/audio/corpqiiarts.html)
1996 Corpqii Music (CACS-MP-9)
* CD only tracks.
Barbie's Lament, Afterlifestyles, They Saved Gidget's Brain!, The Uncle Sammy Show, Godzilla Vs. The World and Hole In My Body are newly recorded versions. Skeletons, Amebas In Love and Maria Durant are the Electric Campfire Songs versions. Blood & Fire (Beautiful Broken Record) is actually Blood & Fire - Part 2, Movement 5. Blood & Fire (King) is actually Blood & Fire - Part1, Movement 5.
1998 Corpqii Music (CACS-MP-10)