Funhouse: Generation Generator
Kerrang! Magazine November 10 1990
Written By Chris Watts
“They’re right. The girls are going to have a problem with Funhouse. Cute, astro-dreadlocks and the obligatory bare chests on one hand. Loopy, sinewy slabs of downright deformed beachcore on the other. Ugly, nasal scat-singing. The girls are going to want to give birth.
Funhouse- the LA quintet claim- are too pretty to be a Speed Metal band. They want to play for 15-year-old Valley girls, and someone in the band likes Deep Purple. They’ve got a song about a porno queen (“Christine In Chains”)< and guitarist Marc Vachon used to go to school with Tracii Guns. That apart, Funhouse and California seem to have parted company.
“Generation/Generator” is a fashion catastrophe of dangerous rhythms and a bullet-brained hero of splattering dynamics. If it could talk it would probably insult you. It’s lean and baggy, sometimes fussy and over-demented, and I just bet mainman Chris Hazard has never even heard of Mike Patton.
Still, Funhouse attack their non-song groove with commendable exuberance. The studio side picks the carcass of Sabbath, Danzig and Charlie’s Angels. “YRS” (Yuppie Rock Syndrome) get’s one back on the A&R men-with-attitude, although if I didn’t have the lyrics in front of me Hazard could be singing about life underwater for all I know. “Preacher (Down The Hole)” and “One Funhouse” follow similar mutant routes of grinding guitars and thrusting hips, leaving space for three live tracks on Side Two that sound like, er, fun.
Of these, the title track steals the show. Three minutes of performance fury. A song- in the old farty sense of the word- that stands out for being just that and something that can only accelerate Funhouse’s schizo cause. Nasty pin-ups and bandaged knees? Maybe we won’t have a problem with Funhouse after all.”
Sounds Magazine January 5 1991
Written By Trish Jaega
“Funhouse aren’t the type of band that you’d expect to come out of the glam-ridden LA rock scene. The cover portrays them in what looks like remnants from Haysi Fantayzee’s wardrobe- all dreadlocks, oversize hats and stripey leggings. But peel off the wrapping, hit the stereo, and what you get is a bizarre collage of funk-laden Jane’s Addiction meets Guns N’ Roses. A rock funk/punk opera that begs further investigation.
Appearances can be deceptive and beneath the clown-cum-ragga exterior, Funhouse have got their shit together music-wise. “Preacher (Down In A Hole)” is pure hard rock turned on it’s head, with Chris Hazard’s vocal style giving the impression of a man possessed of several personalities, as he switches with ease from slurred maniac to high soaring blues-boy. “One Funhouse,” though, verges on cheeky rip-off of Guns N’ Roses’ “Out Ta Get Me,” eventually saved by a brass section and excellent frantic lead guitar break from Marc Vachon.
Of course, no self-respecting rock album would be without it’s sex ‘n’ schmaltz content, and Funhouse aren’t about to rock the boat. So it’s down to the drum-heavy sleaze of “Christina In Chains,” to provide the rumpy-pumpy, while “One More Time For Love, provides the rock ballad to prepare your Kleenex for.
Overall, the good humour and musical expertise of Funhouse pisses all over the chest-wigged posturing of their contemporaries, and “Generation Generator” is the perfect vehicle to provide the urine.”
Metal Hammer Magazine November 6-November 18 1990
Written By Mark Day
“Blasphemous gargoyles in clown’s clothing, Funhouse could be a younger Motley Crue or Guns N’ Roses if they’d O.D.ed on LSD rather than heroin. Equally their band mascot, “Alfee The Clown,” could be Ronald McDonald after someone spike his large diet Coke with hallucinogenics.
A garish collision between Axl-ised LA “rawk” and the more mindbending joys of Jane’s Addiction, Funhouse duck, weave and dive round a collection of tracks which remain resolutely below the waistline thanks to the immoral intentions of the throbbing rhythm section.
The opening track “The Preacher,” is a real monster, psycho rant of the first order. At the other extreme “One More Time For Love” is a kooky, weird kind of love song.
With only three tracks on side one and three live tracks tagged onto the end of side two, it’s a rather lopsided and incomplete album, but it’s easily the best thing to be spat out of LA in recent times.”
Raw Magazine Date Unknown
Written By Chris Marlowe
“At first glance, Funhouse look like just another band from LA. You know the type; reasonably good looking, great logo, wacky clothing, tattoos and long hair. So it takes real effort to give the debut album the attentive time it needs to start stabbing in it’s little hooked talons.
On first listening the visual assumptions seem accurate, since echoes of similar Heavy Metal/muscular Funk groups are easy to hear (even through slightly wooly production). There’s an undercurrent of individualism, however, which enough to earn it another play.
Diverse elements start becoming apparent soon enough. For example, how did the tacky horn sounds and guitar-hero solo get in the anthemic Rocker like “One Funhouse?” How does “Rock & Roses” manage to sound like Kiss playing a Rockabilly riff? How can a group intelligent enough to write the memorably ominous “Preacher (Down In A Hole)” be dumb enough to resort to the cliched, trivial sexism of “Christine In Chains?” And why are three tracks recorded live?
Not all of it works all the time (as on the dismissable, almost-balladry of “One More Time For Love”), but it comes together often enough to be intriguing.”
Metal Forces Magazine Number 57 December 1990
Written By Kelv Hellraiser
“I can’t believe that this is the same Funhouse that once housed Jamie, former Actress drummer that I used to rave on about nearly seven years ago; Funhouse was a Sunset Strip glam outfit, I have many a flyer to prove it.
These days vocalist Chris Hazard is all dread-locked out a la Perry Farrel from Jane’s Addiction. The Jane’s Addiction comparison doesn’t end there though, monstrous epic “Preacher (Down In The Hole)” hits off with Cat’s funky grunge bass attack as Mr. Hazard’s gritty vocal intro makes Axl Rose sound like the Nelson twins and thus develops into a hybrid of Motley Crue/Guns N’ Roses mixed with Jane’s Addiction style weirdness. Chris Hazard sings the immortal lines, “Don’t you know Jesus died on the cross for your saviour and people burn crosses everyday.” It’s definitely a funk grunge classic, hear and believe.
“Y.R.S.” hits off like Rush, all technical riffs, and changes into a more straight down the line rocker with Vince Neil style vocals supplied by Chris Hazard. It’s raw and ballsy and it’s this factor that sets Funhouse apart from the rest. “One Funhouse” is a party style anthem with Godz style horns to boot.
“Self-Denial” is a slightly psychedelic in approach with a nice mid-section bass blowout from Johnny Crash clone Cat. “One More Time For Love” is about as commercial as Funhouse get, it’s poppy but not in an A.O.R. way. “Generation Generator,” the title cut sounds like Motorhead fronted by Vince Neil, whilst album closer “Christine In Chains,” is more a leaning to the band’s early sleazy roots.
Funhouse are a lot more individual than most of the recent major label signings and together with Second Self they’re gonna spearhead a major grunge funk invasion.