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Hey Boy, wanna laugh so hard the dust shoots out both nostrils? Wanna carve the bowls of hell on a cheese pizza? Can't skate? Guess you can van surf with Styles then, unless the vikes are too strong. Hidin' from the pigs in Dike Dale's Ponytail fingerpaintin' anarchy signs on your big brother's Elvis Costello record (the good one). The present sucks but no more than the future's gonna, so stuff everybody in that PARTY TIME MACHINE while flippin' the bird to the flux capacitor and setting the controls for LAST NIGHT. What!? We're outta whip cream cannisters? Then pass out some stand up drums or just pass out, but you're gonna get some fully detailed Converse sharpied on yer feets and curlie pirate moustaches to match. (It matches). If you don't know who the COCONUT COOLOUTS are get an Orbitz ticket up to Seattle and watch them flush the other bands down the toilet of the FUNhouse, if only to realize what a miserable time you've been having show in and show out. Kinda like when that one babysitter (that only got to babysit once) let you stay up till your parents climbed up the driveway to mull over all the Whoppers (not the burger) and Suicides (Pepsi/Sprite/Dr. Pepper/Orange) and hot dogs ampin' up your brain while trippin' out on how awesome the F-word was in the Breakfast Club. A peek outside of the D R O N E...

As usual (for the second time) I asked Ruben to go through their album song by song:

Lars: "Chocolate Money"
Ruben: Lacey based riff. Lyrics inspired by dating, not committing, breaking up. Title is from a gift sent to Lacey from her family...chocolate coins. I tried to sing like Mark Arm on this one.

Lars: "Stick Up"
Ruben: I came up with this concept. It was to be a song about robbing a certain club. The lyrics were changed to robbing a bank. Our plan was to play this song at this certain club and actually rob them before the song was over.

Lars: "Head Full of Stones"
Ruben: Another Lacey riff. Lyrics are about things we/I don't like. The title comes from a personal opinion of myself.

Lars: "Party Jail"
Ruben: I wanted it to be like the Stooges meets "Jailhouse Rock". Lyrics are self-explanatory. The title came from a description to a co-worker about my previous night and a night that lay ahead.

Lars: "Spell It Out, Dummy"
Ruben: I wrote this for one of my "one-off bands" based around pizza. The band was called Pizza Taxi (the later band was called Pizza Wars). It is sort of the theme to Pizza Taxi. The music was written when I was in high school by a buddy named John Monge. The chorus then was "R.E.S.P.E.C.T. / find out what it means to me". I later used the same music and chorus in a band called Negative Step. The verses were changed but we kept the chorus, which I sang. This time around...I switched it all up..changing the RESPECT part to PIZZA TAXI. Thanks John! He's also the guy who had a band in San Antonio called Charming Snakes, too. I steal everything. Sorry for the boring story. The song is about being hungry and being late at the same time.

Lars: "32 Wives"
Ruben: Another Lacey riff. Lyrics are about Mormon living. Not really. I wanted to use 96 Tears in something...so I figured 32 wives...32 eyes....32 lives...96 tears...

Lars: "Coconut Weekend"
Ruben: I don't remember why I did this. It's autobiographical. Shotgunning beers, taking acid, waking up, feeling bad, eating pizza, riding the bus....a Coconut Weekend.

Lars: "Barrel Chested Baby"
Ruben: A song I wrote for Lacey for Valentine's day a couple of years before Coolouts came to be. We needed a song to round out our early sets. Ross really made this sound good though.

Lars: "Twins"
Ruben: A night of heavy duty pills and booze. We were at the Sunset. Pete wrote this while walking down the street. It's about the movie Twins with Arnold and Danny Devito. I remember it was a big Schwarzenegger quote phase. These days it's the GORCH.

Lars: "Created Complicated"
Ruben: One of the first songs, maybe the first Coolouts jam. Lacey came up with the riff. I did the lyrics. It's a revenge song, lyric-wise. I am going to be "walking on the moon" one of these days. I tried to tell "them". They don't/didn't want to listen...

Lars: "Hidden track-TFL"
Ruben: A Steve Miller hit sung by Lacey. That's me on guitar solo. Eat your heart out Steve! (Please don't sue us or expect any money. We aren't making any.)



Lars: What's your favorite and least favorite thing about living in Seattle?
Ruben: Our favorite thing about living in Seattle is the summer. More daylight means you don't feel so bad about sleeping in. Our least favorite thing is all the uptight pro jerks that ruin the party.

Lars: Can you describe your ideal day off here?
Ruben: Let's see...waking up late, eating pizza, not feeling real shitty (or too shitty) from getting wild and dumb the night before, not regretting anything...not being in jail, going to the drive-in theater, drinking a malted, finding some money, playing Apples to Apples with my pal Lilly. Maybe checking out a friends awesome new band.... then...an after hours party.

Lars: Do you like the music scene here?
Ruben: Yes. I really liked it when I moved here. There were a lot of really great bands. Like who? The Cripples, Popular Shapes, New Luck Toy, A-Frames, Dipers, (the original line up of) Unnatural Helpers (later versions are great too), Display, Chromatics (early version/late versions all great), The Pulses, Tractor Sex Fatality...the list could go on. These days we have really amazing bands like Talbot Tagora and Partman Parthorse. So, still it's not so bad. what we don't like...the clubs stink. Well, most do. The "pro" clubs and the "want to be pro" clubs ruin it for bands that are starting out. I guess the whole pro aspect of it takes the fun out of everything. Can we not just party for no reason...without guarantees of money or a press release or a sound dude that makes more than all the bands on the bill combined?

Lars: Can you talk about the band starting? Whose idea was it? Why? I almost feel that it was a response to the more serious (compartively) Charming Snakes? Or filling a bit of the void of the Flying Dutchmen or just seattle being kinda uptight in general?
Ruben: It was for a band night for the record store where I work. I was in charge of putting on a show once a year with bands featuring employees of the record store. The Charming Snakes played it the year before and when I was asked if they were playing again I said "No, my new band Coconut Coolouts will be". The thing is, we did not exist. The name came from Kid Creole and His Coconuts plus a rap artist by the name of Count Coolout. I had about a month to get that band together. It started with me, Lacey and Harry. We wanted it to be like Tuxedomoon or Butthole Surfers. The name didn't really fit so we ran in a different, more party-band direction. The Amazing Barnanas had just quit The Invisible Eyes, so we asked him to join. He always seemed really mean, but turns out he's a real nice guy. He's also an amazing bass player. Ross came next. We were at a party and I think his other band the Cripples had just called it quits. He was a little unsure about saying yes when I asked him to join. I told him it would be for one show (he too is a genius). Pete Zaparty came later. He was in the front row of our show and at the end of it, Ian said he should be in it too. He said "Hey, you know what? This dude Pizza should be in the band". The rest is party history. (Sorry for the boring story.) The music is not a response to anything. The name dictated the sound. It, the band, is an accident of strangers that all kind of knew each other from around. It's kind of like the TV show LOST.

Lars: Can you talk about the song writing process? Do you bring in the main bits or does everyone do their own thing or is it always different?
Ruben: We write songs, so far, with four different methods. 1) I come up with chords, beats, and words and then everyone churches it up. 2) Lacey and the band will jam. Later I will write some words. 3) Harry will come up with chords...band churches it up...I write words. 4) We hang out, joke about garbage like bad movies or whatever...sometimes we will watch a great film like Revenge of the Nerdsor something and then Pete will come up with some lines and then we just put some noise around it.

Lars: Talk to me about Brainiac!
Ruben: Brainiac are the best. They came up with some cool shit. I don't know how they did it. They seemed like they were a gang when I saw them hanging out in Austin. They were fantastic live, too. They are the coolest. They were way ahead of their time (or not). I bet you wished you would of had a chance to have seen them. Too bad you went to see the Ruins.

Lars: What do you think your best song is?
Ruben: Right now I would say our best song is "Nerd Holocaust", it's very Brainiac singing-pattern wise (not really). The concept was thought up in song writing style number 4 (inspired by Revenge of the Nerds). It's going to be a concept album. The holocaust we speak of is in reference to destroying things by fire. It is not about The Holocaust...that would not be cool. It is unreleased at the moment. It might turn into more of a concept single than album. Lacey likes "Swim". I think that one is pretty good too. It's a song I wrote all by myself to sell to Unnatural Helpers. It's on the B-side of our first single (now out of print..sorry nerds). Oh, I forgot "You Don't Know Me Pepperoni" is also a new fave of mine.

Lars: Is it ever tough being such a fun times band? Like some show in some shit town on a Tuesday, is it ever hard to get fun/funny and exicited about, or does that nature of the band come out anywhere?
Ruben: Sometimes you feel tired and maybe the crowd you are playing to is tired too...or just hates your guts...but I think we, as a group, will always have fun, be fun, or die trying. We are a novelty band that wants to be taken seriously. The hardest crowd we ever played to was in a park for a bunch of toddlers. Our opening act was a dude with puppets. Take that Sex Vid!

Lars: What is it like being in a relationship in the band?
Ruben: You know. You know what it's like! The Amazing Barnanas and Pete Zaparty have their ups and downs on the road but they have each other...and that's what really counts.

Lars: What are the band's favorite drinks?
Ruben: Drinks we like include the Brosef (ask Pete), The Babybird Shot (don't ask, it's gross), any BOMB: Car Bomb, Jagerbomb, etc.., Sparks (they don't have it in Vancouver, BC! We have vowed never to go back there, but we probably will...), beer in cans that you can shotgun or "teenwolf". "Teenwolfing" is where you bite into the can and then pop the top...drinking it in a shotgun manner. I prefer root beer with booze in it.

Lars: What's your take on cigarettes?
Ruben: I wish we had our own brand. Those things are money making machines!

Lars: Who usually drives after the show?
Ruben: Lacey/Pete/Ross...we don't have a van so there is usualy two cars involved. If we do borrow a van, it's usually Lacey.

Lars: Will you talk about Tyvek some? Your first time seeing them?
Ruben: The first time I saw Tyvek was in Detroit. They were very amazing. It was love at first sight. Back then they were a three piece and they played a song called "Blessed Sacrament" or something like that (sorry Kevin, if I fucked up the name). They even recently brought that song back from the dead just for me. Lacey has some Tyvek lyrics tattooed on her arm. They are the coolest...legendary stuff. We went on tour with them recently and had a pretty "OK" time. We love "The Kid", Matt Z, Damon, Kevin, and Chief Cheeseburger.

Lars: What new bands do you like?
Ruben: Home Blitz, Wax Museums, The Beach Men, Tyvek, The Carrots, Talbot Tagora, Flexions, Partman Parthorse, Sleepwalkers R.I.P., Meth Teeth, Phantom Lights, Kurt Vile (not a band), and Baby Shakes.

Lars: What are you favorite cities to play?
Ruben: Places we like: Milwaukee, Austin, Portland, and San Francisco/Oakland, Seattle, Vancouver.

Lars: Least favorite?
Ruben: L.A. AND Seattle.

Lars: What band is the biggest bunch of dicks you've ever come across?
Ruben: Um...The Really Randys.

Lars: What is your opinion of analog vs. digital recording?
Ruben: Everything that Rainbow Rags has recorded of us has been on a four-track cassette recorder. Our full-length was analog dumped onto a computer. Same with our Magical Basement recordings. Harry and Ross will record us in the future using a computer. Both are fine. No opinion.

Lars: what's the worst thing on your ipod?
Ruben: I poured whiskey on it accidentally. So that is the worst thing on it. Track-wise, probably Patton Oswalt. It's the same joke that keeps coming up. It's nothing against Patton Oswalt...

Lars: What old records have you been digging lately?
Ruben: Old records...digging...um....Kurtis Blow "Ego Trip" and the first Danzig record. Killer stuff.

Lars: Has the banana costume really been retired?
Ruben: The banana suit is falling apart. The Amazing Barnanas said "The next time you will see it, it will be hanging on the wall at the EMP"(EMP = Experience Music Project).

what is next for you guys? Tour? New record?
Ruben: We have some more seven-inches coming out. One on Florida's Dying, another one for Seeing Eye records, some Jenkem compilation seven inch, World's Lousy Vol.4 comp, the release of "Party Time Machine" on vinyl (with bonus tracks), a cover of Head's "Tire Shredding" on the (out as of now) Funhouse Compilation Thing Vol.2, and then recording another full-length. We have a bunch of new songs. We would like to do a bunch more singles. Touring wise...We were going to tour Puerto Rico, but we blew all of our money going to Texas, so maybe soon, as in next year, we will tour the States.

END INTERVIEW






DISCOGRAPHY
'Spinaround' b/w 'Swim' 7" (Heads Up)
'Headfull of Stones'/'Pizza Regret' EP (Seeing Eye)
'Party Time Machine' CD (Haunted Horse/Xeroid)
'World's Lousy with Ideas Vol.4' 7" comp (Almost Ready)
'Funhouse Comp Thing II' CD comp (My Fat Ass)

Coconut Coolouts on the web.

Pics graciously provided by Ruben, the B&W one is by Jason Fisher, if anyone else would like a credit please contact the editor.


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