1 "COSTES / TOSHI _ NO SEX BOY"
(B+ - Static (USA) - November 1997)
2 "PORNO MUSICAL SHUT DOWN BY PROTESTERS"
(Masquerade (USA) - September 1997)
Performance artist and musician Costes and painter Anne Van Der Linden were assaulted by demonstrators in Neufchatel, Switzerland, on june 13, 1997, for their participation in a "socio-porno musical" entilted "Aux chiottes" (translated as "In the can"). The musical plot revolves around the various activities that may take place in a public toilet. Written by Costes and performed in the nude, "aux chiottes" enjoyed a short run in Paris and in the french provinces before taking the road.
The swiss protesters, many of whom belonged tn the group "Union des Etudiants Juifs de France", claimed that the work was racist and pornographic. "The musical draws upon the whole mythology of shit" explains Anne Van Der Linden, "we show everything on stage without inhibition, but many people interpret art too literally these days. That is, they do not interpret at all, and the result is a total confusion of spirit". The swiss protesters, who did not allow the performers to take the stage, were not impressed. "When you hear that a girl is going to be raped on stage, even if it is only a play, you must react", one said. Besides stricking Anne Van Der Linden in the face, protesters destroyed the company's set, costumes and sound equipment.
3 "HE WAS COMPLETELY ALONE, AND HE PERSEVERED"
(Lisa Carver - Rollerderby 21 - july 1997)
Jean-Louis Costes and i married at Philadelphia city hall in 1988; i was 19, he was 34. It was a funny wedding. I forgot to take my work apron off for it. when i laughed at Jean-Louis for passing out when they drew his blood (to make sure we were not brother and sister?), he threatened to call the whole thing off. He could not say the woves right, his nervousness finishing off what small bit of skill he had back then in pronoucing english, and i laughed so uncontrollably (nerves) i could not say mine. The justice of the peace was incensed : she accused us of making a mockery of the ceremony. Jean-Louis then got so mad and flusterd his fingers swelled up like balloons, the ring would not fit on, and it fell to the tile floor with what seemed like a very loud "ping". And in fact, he never got the green card which was half the reason we got married. Because when the green card man behind the desk questioned the authenticity of our marriage (that's his job), Jean-Louis started yelling at him! So he threw Jean-Louis out, and Jean-Louis had to work under-the-table for an asian immigrant family restaurant, and they made him work 14-hours shifts with no break for only $3 an hour!!! Then we moved to France and it was my turn to be the poor starving immigrant.
We had a good marriage. You know how people really bug you when they are always around? He never did. My husband was foul-tempered and looked like a ferret, he liked to work all day long everyday on his music, and was so funny he'd crack me up till spit would come out of my nose. We were incredibly poor. One time we had nothing to eat for ten days but yogurt with sugar and this hard, flat, strangely delicious flour and water bread Jean-Louis would bake. Then i sold 8 Suckdog tapes and we celebrated by buying and eating an entire chicken in 15 minutes flat! Oh, we got so sick! We were on the floor for hours throwing up as Jean-Louis did this comedy routine about the chicken that made me even sicker from laughing so hard.
I think the reason we broke up was we just kept having sex with other people. Well, OK, i kept having sex with other people; he just thought about having sex with one particular person. But he thought about it a lot!
The Costes family was bourgeois and catholic. Two of Jean-Louis' brothers committed suicide and the third emigrated, so i gather the home life was difficult for the boys growing up. whatever it was that broke the spirit of his brothers only made Jean-Louis stronger-- or just crotchety and stubborn. No one can stop him, so God knows many have wanted to! the industrial music people tried to drive him out of France, saying he was giving a bad name to the French Industrial (what, like it had a good name before?); french rappers stalked him in the streets, yelling that they would kill him, the anarchists with whom we used to do a radio show turned their backs on him; and now the French jewish students are suing him.
I remember when "Livrez les blanches aux bicots" in 1990. The only three persons who respected him (his ex-girl-friend Anne Van Der Linden, his current girl-friend Darlyne, and me) disapproved strongly of the direction he was going in. (Anne because it was probably racist and would definitely cause nothing but problems (socially suicidal); Darlyne because how could he earn money or social position enough to earn her respect by putting all this time into this dreadfull shit (financially suicidal); me because he messed up his music in the mix so unlistenable--it's actually quite beautifull underneath all that, but no one will ever know!-- and yelled and spit without ever the relief of a melody (musically suicidal). As did all the people who didn't respect him. Everyone was against him, and he didn't care. To date, he has made 18 CDs and i don't even know how many tours. He didn't know why he had to make those weird, ugly things, he just knew he had to. Now that Jean-Louis has become "a figure", i'm sure that people are going to start rearranging their memories, saying how they supported him all along, they recognized his genius all along. I was there, i know it's not true. No one supported him. No one recognized his genius. He was completely alone and he persevered.
4 "UNADULTERATED GENIUS"
(Buzzmonger - april 1997)
One day I was surfing the Net looking for some nude pictures of Lisa Suckdog
(don't ask where my fascination for her came from) and along the way I
stumbled upon an interesting web site for this French guy Costes. My
attention span being what it is, I found myself immediately distracted by
this amazing frog who releases CDs almost as fast as Wesley Willis. I
quickly decided to E-mail Mr. Costes, figuring that at the worst I would be
told to go to hell and at the most I might score a free CD out of the deal.
Two weeks later, my package from France arrives. Inside were three Costes
CDs; Jap Jew, No Sex Boy (with Toshi Hiraoka) and The End of the Trail. All
three are abrasive, angry, psychotic & atonal, pure, unadulterated genius.
Jap Jew - Jap Jew is an entire album's worth of xenophobic rants whose thesis states Japs now own everything (including the Jews) and they are the proprietors to be despised on this occasion. Costes' outrage is barely contained and bile oozes from the speakers at all times. When the litany of Jap-made vehicles is recited, you almost want to drive your Toyota over a cliff in a fit of blind jingoistic pride and allegiance to the Costes cause.
But then again, it might also be healthy to remind you of the all the wonderful French made cars I'll even list them for you _________ .You know what? There are no well made French cars. The only French car I can think of would be the Renault and they're barely better than Yugos. Yes, Japs own everything but not your government, so at this point, I wouldn't sweat anything until they stop printing your stereo instructions in your native language.On the other hand, Costes' paranoia makes for some great music.
No Sex Boy - No Sex Boy is a sexual odyssey with Toshi Hirakoa as copilot. With oddball crashes and sound loops, NSB is more on the level of a stripped down Einsturzende Neubauten with a karoke twist (if you can picture that) than an experimental noise marriage. The dog and cat angle and it's parallels to Mom and Dad's half-hearted couplings on the songs "Dog Shit / Cat Pee, Dog Dicks" and "Cat Cunts & Kitty Pussy" are both funny and scary. There isn't a parental advisory sticker big enough for this CD.
End of the Trail - 19 tracks dedicated to the demise of Costes' relationship between Lisa Suckdog and himself. Spiraling out of control, the Costes persona stalks Lisa Suckdog across the continents with a stream of consciousness noisefest. I don't blame Costes one damn bit for going ballistic over the loss of the beloved Suckdog. I've never even met the woman and for some reason I'm enamored with her as well (and that's just based on one 7", a couple of photos and a video of her yelling about GG Allin in an attic dressed in the sexiest black underwear you will ever see). Good luck Costes, I hope you get her back. If not, I hope I get a crack at her.
5 "JAP JEW" AND "NO SEX BOY" REVIEW
(Greg Chapman-Ugly American-January 1996)
The Sly-Wandering Vagrant was headed to Europe, so i encouraged him to hunt down Costes to see if he was still alive. It's been four years since he soiled our soil, and lo, he was found in his usual haunted hole, and evidence was procured. It seems Costes has been making excursions into the Orient, waving his oui-wee about the japanese. "Jap Jew" is racist spew of corporate conspiracy theories some may dismiss because Japan has no real army and GATT changed the free-trade stakes, but never underestimate the yakuza (if you are to believe they are behind the Oklahoma City bombing). Obviously Costes has been playing too many youth corrupting video games (the real battle zone is in our mental states) and the koopas have messed with his already sketchy mind and so his new bete noire is the Japs. The first track, "Jap Pot", for example, consists of blasts and bleeps to make Blip McPong proud as the body count rises...and in the end, Costes insidiously awards himself the "all-times highest score - 1,000,00 dead Japs!" It goes on from there with a barrage of mega-byte boners, graphic graphics, geisha mockery, threats, laughs, insults and onslaughts aimed at the ennemy techmakers. Costes is rabid in his denouncement of the Far East's industry wizardry, and like Gaul Revere, yelling about the yellow stain while riding yoshi with a french tickler. Perhaps his most offensive, degrading, violent, loudest moments yet, he takes out wimpy, talentless Masonna-noise merely by the gaseous flex of his raging buttocks..."No Sex Boy", however, is as filthy in his paroxismal impiety, as Costes out-Herod's Herod in a nonsen-sexual obduration w/ the help of slant eyed ally Toshi Hiraoka. Thet will sleep on a tiger-bed in Hell for this one...Some favorite song titles include "(Be Bop) Boy Boo", "I'm in your cunt", "Cut my dick" and "The last fuck". A real charmer...both are disgustingly entertaining as per usual, if you think Costes is all noise and bosh, think again. He concocts his crap with a keen alchemy craftsmanship to prendre la lunacy avec les dents like a tortured arteur trapped in a toilet infested world, performing w/o a spotlight or a net for a few apreciative weirdos in the resistance...We'd like to present him the Croix De Diablerie for his efforts. Ardently recommended, apes.
6 "LUNG FARTS" REVIEW
(Lisa Suckdog-Rollerderby-May 1992)
When Costes was eight years old, his father took out his hairy, erect penis and said :"Come and look close at this. In some years yours will grow big and hairy like this. I want you to see mine now so that you will not be afraid when it happens to you". Madame Costes sat in a hard chair a bit away, smiling a small smile, as she always does.
The Costes family was a strict catholic family. Confused little Costes learned DUTY well.When he left his family house at the age of twenty-six, he kept that sense of duty, but it was no longer to God... It was now a duty to his own fame. In the last six years Costes as made available to the public over fifty hours of music on cassette, LP, and CD. He has also performed over fifty shows, seven of which are on video. And on each one of those cassettes, LPs and CDs, and in everyone of those shows, he has made himself in everything the rich catholic women and the strict Army men hate, fear, keep secret, and secretly are. Costes wants you to come very close and look at his hairy, erect penis.
"Lung Farts" is full of penises, some erect and some unable. It's as full of Costes' broken, screeching, yelling voice. He loves his voice so much, and he is so afraid you might ignore it that he has turned it up to 10, so you can merely hear the music behind it. The music is a wreck of synthetiser squeaks, banged tin, and frenzied, out-of-tune guitar.
First Costes sings all his Defacating Ecstasy songs ("my cock is my puppy looking for poops", "Fart in my face", etc...). Then come all his homosexual songs ("I'm not a faggot but why not? I don't like to see the poor boy sad, holding his hard cock; don't be sad, come in my bum!"). Then he sings his anti-cunt songs ("I see the truth, a dirty hole full of cheese. Love is alie"). And then he falls in love!? (Oh brightest star in my sky..."). She leaves him, he "wants to sleep in her ashes". But he always wanted her to leave him; it was the dead ashes he was in love with all along. He loves the photos, the video image, and his own fantasies."The lovers leave but the mirror stays".
Costes is a lonely old man making stories in his little cardboard studio in France. "I'm a queer. I'm playing my bad guitar alone in a basement and my guitar is never loud enough. I'm a queer, i'm stupid. My shoes are the wrong shoes. My shoes are too small for my feet, and my socks are stinking. And i'm eating only bread with eggs. It's bad for my cholesterol. I don't know what to say, i don't know good english. I should shut up, shut up. I'm a poor queer alone in his basement. I make music waiting for the death.