Seeing how the topic is fake bands, and Keller Williams and the WMDs are coming through town this week, it's pretty serendipitous that Electric Apricot: Quest for Festeroo just happens to be debuting in Albuquerque on Tuesday. Primus bass-master Les Claypool wrote, directed and stars in this mock rockumentary chronicling the highs (cough) and lows of a jam band reaching for cult status in the jam circuit.
The press packet trumpets that "where This is Spinal Tap and A Mighty Wind meet up with Best in Show is a place called Festeroo, and Electric Apricot is the jam band trying to get there!”
Of course, where those three films actually meet is a man named Christopher Guest, and Les Claypool is clearly trying to filch his flavor. Still, there are plenty of untouched music genres that open themselves to ridicule (or at least a good-natured ribbing), and jam band culture is a forehead-smacking goldmine. It's hard to believe it hasn't been parodied before.
The 91-minute film "pokes loving fun at the legacies of traveling jam bands, their fans and the culture" with appearances by real-life jam royalty Bob Weir (The Grateful Dead), Warren Haynes (Gov't Mule) and Mike Gordon (Phish). Claypool wisely hired ensemble-adept Seth Green (Austin Powers, "Robot Chicken"), Matt Stone (”South Park”) and Arj Barker (Flight of the Conchords) to keep the thing afloat with proven comedic talent and spontaneity.
If you're into the jam band genre, you'll delight in the zillions of inside jokes Electric Apricot promises to deliver. If you can't stand the patchouli-scented vestiges of hippy culture, you'll enjoy watching the noogie it gets here. And, closest to home, the lure of a jam band named Electric Apricot won't be lost on Albuquerque scenesters who remember that 15 years ago, Apricot Jam was one of the most popular acts in town.
Electric Apricot: Quest for Festeroo plays at the Guild Cinema this Tuesday, Jan. 29, through Thursday, Jan. 31. Show times are at 4:30, 6:30 and 8:30 p.m. The 4:30 p.m. screenings are just $5. After that, admission is $7 general, $5 seniors (60+), kids (up to age 12) and students with valid I.D.