Gregor from Rochester, New York: Dear Sgt. Disco: Thought you might like to know that my dog's favorite band is Circus Devils. She listens with unflinching focus and is looking forward to the next record.
Dear Gregor: All circus devils albums contain messages in registers above the human threshold of hearing aimed at different animal species, including dogs. Your dog listens carefully because she is receiving instruction. In ancient Native American prophecy it speaks of an animal rebellion against man. This will come to pass, in some small part due to the band’s efforts. No expense was spared to add coded messages aimed at every conceivable species that might be in earshot of a circus devils song. There are messages for goats, crows, mice, wolverines, horses and mules, lynx, voles, coyote, mink, locust, rats, cats, and all the principal bat species among others. The day of reckoning is closer than you think. When your dog looks at you, and seems to be regarding you with satisfaction, remember that she is probably thinking of you as a large meal that she will one day enjoy with great relish.
Nash from Jalapa: Dear Sgt. Disco: What impact did the death of pop king (Michael Jackson) have on the circus devils?
Dear Nash: There was some concern about the orphaned chimp.
Git MacBob, Earl of Lunch from Frothchrist on the Green: Dear Sgt. Disco: You Yanks grazzle me to bits. I find the runner-the-mill American revolting and appetizing all at once. Such dundish dunderheads you Yanks, and yet such prodigies in the composition of airs. I never in my ding dong days heard a finer piece of music than the song titled NEW BOY. Great gads I fancy that song! From the moment it begins to the very merry cherry end, I squirm with delight. Don’t you count it a grimly gramly shame that it be your only good piece of writing? All your other bits go straight to the rubbish heap as far as I’m concerned. Now carry on and bring us more of the NEW BOY variety of bit.
Dear Git: I can see you’re a reasonable sort of chap. If you want to follow through with your complaint to the most sensible conclusion, you will simply stop listening to music altogether because nothing will ever be as good as NEW BOY. Not ever! OR … you could set your complaint aside and fill your entire Ipod with NEW BOY and go on your merry cherry way.
Felipe from Arroyo, Puerto Rico: Dear Sgt. Disco: I cannot stop saying, in a low monotone, "Hi, I'm Martha. How are you?" It's driving my family crazy because my name is not Martha! I tell them "it's just a song" but you and I know that's not the whole truth. So, who is this Martha? Is there really a Martha? To whom was Martha talking to when Martha said "Hi, I'm Martha. How are you?" I need to understand.
Dear Felipe: Martha is a neighbor lady who lives here across the street. She rarely comes outdoors. She talks all day on a toy telephone. "Hi, I'm Martha, how are you?" This is what Martha says on the toy telephone. The homunculus who lives with us likes to imitate people that he observes in the neighborhood. He went through a phase for a couple of weeks where he imitated Martha all day long and kept repeating those words - the same words you also can't stop repeating. When the phone rang in the house, he would rush to pick it up and say "Hi, I'm Martha, how are you?" He did this every time the phone rang. Most of the time the caller would hang up and I'd have a fit because we don't have caller ID. I missed some important calls during those two weeks. Not long ago, I was in the toy store out near the mall, and I saw a Fisher Price telephone. For some reason I felt the need to pick it up. I put the receiver to my ear and right away I heard the voice of an old lady say "Hi, I'm Martha, how are you?" I can tell you that I almost had an accident in my pants before I threw the toy phone away and ran out of the store.
Johnny Cake from Pennsylvania, USA: Dear Sgt. Disco: I like circus devils, but i was told it wasn't real. Is this true? My opinion of circus devils will depend on your answer.
Dear Johnny Cake: Everything is real. Your question is born of a mistaken thought . . . that something cannot be real. That's nonsensical. A thing cannot be something unless it's real. How else would you be able to talk about it? Unreal things cannot be spoken of, because they were never subject to human perception. Johnny, many people from all over the earth are reading your foolish remarks. You are a laughing stock!
Justin from Syracuse, New York: Dear Sgt. Disco: I was in my local independent record store and I saw one of your CDs with a little sticker on it saying "File under Circus Devils! Your CD was smack in the middle of the GBV section. I felt obligated to inform you. The store is called the Sound Garden. Their staff is weak. It should be pretty easy for Sgt. Disco to destroy them.
Dear Justin: Here we go, another instance of deluded individuals who insist that circus devils is not real. How many albums do they need to make before they get their own section in the record shops? Nine? Nineteen? Ninety-seven? Justin, don't look to me for help. I have become a born again Christian and have enrolled in Jerry Falwell's Liberty University with plans of starting my own ministry right here in Ohio. Outside of Akron in the town of Cuyahoga Falls, there is an enormous concrete pillar standing 500 feet tall -- originally planned to be the support structure for the so-called "Cathedral in the sky." It was planned to resemble the space needle in Seattle and the Skylon Tower in Niagara Falls. Never in the history of the world had a church been built up high in the clouds so close to heaven!
Sadly, the project was abandoned in the 1970s because the TV evangelist behind the project was not able to raise enough money to complete the construction. The Lord was indeed working in mysterious ways, because now the tower is mine! I am raising money right now to complete the church in the sky. Sgt. Disco's rotating cathedral in the sky will sport a full a service buffet, gift shop, bowling alley, shooting range, and disco, all inside a rotating domed saucer 500 feet above the ground! As they say, how cool is that? So you see Justin, I now have other fish to fry (in the Christian sense), and am no longer interested in whether or not a rock group has its own section in the record shops. It's time to take matters into your own hands.
Here's what you do. Cut out a plastic card or piece of cardboard with "Circus Devils" written on top and create your own Circus Devils section, nestled right between Christmas Candies and The Clap. Of course the clerks will undo your careful work, but if you keep going back and replacing the card and discs, they will eventually grow weary and give up. This is how change takes place in a society filled with complacent, lazy, snot-nosed record store clerks.
Matt from Havertown: Dear Sgt. Disco: I have listened to the album Gringo and I have enjoyed it so far. However, I am having a hard time looking for the concept of the album. So I was wondering if you would suggest how I can listen so I can find the concept.
Dear Matt: When it comes to a circus devils album, we suggest you go with impression over interpretation. However, Gringo is similar to The Harold Pig Memorial, in that the theme is biographical, or in the case of Gringo, sometimes autobiographical. While there is no linear narrative to follow, each song represents an episode or snapshot in the life of the character. You can think of the Gringo as a drifter who has one eye on redemption and the other eye on adventure and opportunity. His restless wanderings are an answer to a calling received by the soul. Hence his adventure is probably more spiritual than opportunistic, though he might not know it, or see it that way. Without a guide and without a mythology to steer his life by, he finds himself the hapless victim of forces beyond his control and of certain shady characters who take charge of his destiny.
It has been said by certain wise men that to find your path in life, you must first lose it. That’s all well and good, but certain lives are lost and forgotten because fate did not make arrangements in the person’s favor. Some of us abandon the journey like a spoiled brat who abandons a baseball game, when things don’t go our way. Others are driven on by a strange calling, and have no choice but to follow. These are the invisible heroes among us. And they don’t always reach their destiny. Should such lives be forgotten simply because they don’t offer inspiration or offer a tidy advertisement for the so called “path less traveled?” While it is convenient to forget the lives of such people, it is not proper to forget. Because in some sense, they represent each one of us, as we lose our way, drifting far from the guiding lights that illuminated our dreams in youth
Nash from Jalapa: Dear Sgt. Disco: Hello again guy! I am just returned from sea beach and full of energy. Big water is amazing. Thanks to God who created this element! I'm still online!!! This is really great.
Dear Nash: Why did you stop writing? We want to hear more about it.
Diane from Florida: Dear Sgt. Disco: Hey, what is your favourite Vampire movie?
Dear Diane: First of all, we wish to thank a female like yourself for writing to me. It’s a rare treat. To answer your question, the answer is NONE. I like werewolves! Sadly, we have waited some sixty years for Hollywood to give us a proper werewolf movie. The most recent effort (in 2010) wasn’t complete trash. But after 60 years, one could hope for much more. I am generally disappointed in Hollywood and its clowns who are responsible for the reams of insipid dreck offered up as entertainment. Here we are waiting 75 years for someone to finally do a good re-make of The Island of Doctor Moreau. There is no f-ing excuse.
Titmouse from Nazareth, Pennsylvania: Dear Sgt. Disco: Please give instructions how to get a girl. And please be specific!
Dear Titmouse: Girls respond best to a man who gives a theatrical performance to demonstrate how foolish he is on her account and how he simply must lavish her with attention and gifts. A man who acts this way will always enjoy the privilege of a girl's company. It doesn't matter if it's just an act. The girl will always believe it. Understand I'm referring to girls of high character. I assume you're not interested in a two-bit floozy who demands nothing and will accept any shmoe like you who comes along.
The performance aspect of courtship stems from our animal ancestry, where the male holds the responsibility of dazzling the female with physical feats or displays of plumage or a strong mating call. The female's responsibility is to choose among the collection of male specimens at her disposal. The problem with human males is their sense of entitlement. No such entitlement exists if you're after a woman of quality. You must work hard to be chosen, Titmouse! You must overcome your own weakness by pretending to be strong. The performance you do is up to you. A virile mating cry works more than you would think. Why do you think all those candy-ass singers get hordes of teenage girls to come to their concerts to scream and swoon and break into tears? A loud cry conveys a strong sub-conscious signal to the female brain that translates into the following words: "I am mighty! I will fight any beast that challenges me, and if needed I will sacrifice my body to protect the female!"
This is what many women are searching for, even if they refuse to acknowledge it. But in the end, most of them give up and go with the schmoe. So really, all you have to do is wait. But judging from your message, you are not a patient man. So go on and put yourself on display, and make a show of your imaginary masculine gifts. Make those females understand that they can do no better, even if they can't see how that is possible based upon your appearance.
Mark from Fairbanks, Alaska: Dear Sgt. Disco: I am doing some entertaining this weekend, and I wanted to serve some drinks. Could you please be so kind as to post your recipe for hot water wine? Any recommendations for drinking or serving it that I need to know about? What food should I serve with it?
Dear Mark: Hot water wine is made with sour grapes and hot water. Hot water wine is best served hot. We recommend drinking it with a TV dinner. One recipe we like a lot is simple to do, and your friends will love it. All you need is a bunch of TV dinners with freezer burn. In your kitchen sink, soak the frozen dinners in hot water wine for 20 minutes. Let sit for 5 minutes. Stir and serve.
Judas Vigilante from N. Ireland, United Kingdom: Dear Sgt. Disco: Do you think that after the circus devils' members have passed on, so to speak, to the next level, they will remain omnipresent and still write, record and release albums (perhaps on some kind of holographic disc not yet invented? . . . When and only when the due time comes. Wishing you continued superiority over all other bands.
Dear Judas: When the members of circus devils have passed on, no one here will hear from them again. And the same goes for you, and everything that breathes! But don't get discouraged by this news. In the higher dimensions where the spirit dwells in energy fields foreign to us here in the physical realm, things like music and sex will no longer be interesting . . . at least not in any form that we can recognize. So we will all leave such things behind until the time comes to re-incarnate. In that realm of higher energy fields, what we call experience will be many times removed from anything we are able to imagine here in the terrestrial plane. The creation and appreciation of Music, Literature and other forms of art is the proper work of all Earth-bound humans. But few artists would acknowledge a spiritual motivation for what they do, prejudiced as they are against all matters dealing with the eternal. But their own unconscious impressions of having had an origin in different planes of existence is what made them restless in the first place and drove them to create in order to manifest in the physical realm some small-scale analog of what might be called an “eternal reality.”
The first impulse of the artist is to temporarily escape the limited shell of their body through some form of transformation. You may also think of it as going into a trance. Getting lost in dimensions of imagination and dream can be thought of as soul journeys. Children do this every day when they play. At least this is true of children who know how to play. These days the instinct to transcend the self through play is no longer as common as it used to be, thanks to the constant distraction of video games and interactive screens of all sorts. Scientists don't yet understand the long-term effects of a childhood devoid of spontaneous play, because scientists are too distracted by interactive screens to pay attention to such things. <br>As the artists grows older, the trance abandons him. His art becomes craft, and the unconscious motivations of youth become buried under a load of mental debris gathered during many years of strictly earth-bound experience. Circus devils is trying to avoid this process of soul-petrification by remaining as children and playing the way they played as children. We play to keep ourselves close in spirit to that other world where we came from. Of course you can never discuss these matters in the company of others Judas, unless you enjoy being called a nut. So be wise, and keep these things to yourself.
Seth from Trumbell County, Ohio, USA: Dear Sgt. Disco: Thanks to circus devils for making the day tolerable. I have a story... turns out, northeast Ohio was given to settlers from New England as payment for fighting in the revolutionary war. I wonder if I ever fought for Tecumseh?
Dear Seth: There was a time when tribalism was the only sensible world view for us to embrace, because the survival of our people and our culture depended on self-defense against foreign invaders. If you are a white boy, then your remark about fighting for Tecumseh smacks of universalism. Congratulations to you! Universalism is the only sensible way to approach the pluralistic world of today, where isolationism is no longer possible. Universalism is the only path that leads to the survival of mankind. It doesn’t mean that you give up your traditions. It means that you don’t judge as evil everyone else who has different traditions. The destiny of all points of view apart from Universalism lies in endless bloodshed. Your offhand sentiment indicates a great leap in judgement that will contribute to the future survival of our world. Sadly, the definition of "a good American" is still rooted in tribal sentiments. Thanks to the handful of degenerate religious kooks who attacked New York in 2001, this outdated sentiment is still encouraged. The foreign invaders of today represent no culture, no tribe, and no people. They represent nothing but their own diseased minds. It's yet another example of how a small number of assholes can ruin the entire show for the rest of us. That is not to say that some countries don't have a genuine grievance to level against the United States and our policies. Remember that WE were once the foreign invaders, and not only here in North America.
Ciaran from Toronto, Canada: Dear Sgt. Disco: Who is answering these questions?
Dear Ciaran: The person who answers these questions is called Greg Fleer. He is not available for comment.
Hans Habcock from Brakel: Dear Sgt. Disco: A joke for all peoples! Who delivers puppies when the Vet isn't available? The mid woof. HAAAA!
Dear Hans: There is no reason to stop there.
Cory from Emerald, Pennsylvania: Dear Sgt. Disco: Circus Devils helped me get an "A"... I had a science fiction literature course in college. The professor, who had epilepsy, would tell us stories of hearing the woods and wind speak to him while letting his dogs out at night. I turned in a paper, which was late, and my multimedia accompaniments were some of the "instrumental" tracks from Ringworm Interiors that I thought he might enjoy. I undoubtedly got an "A". Thank you Circus Devils.
Dear Cory: The band is happy to be of service. I hope you get the A. But I don't recommend playing Ringworm Interiors to anyone who is prone to seizures of any kind.
Fvck from Fvck you: Dear Sgt. Disco: Why do you never fvcking answer my questions!?
Dear Fvck: I ignored all your questions before, but when I saw this one, I just had to answer it!
H-Dog from Alamogordo, New Mexico: Dear Sgt. Disco: Last night I had a dream that the Circus Devils were trying to help me locate my parents who I have not seen since 1993. A lot of the lyrics on Gringo make sense to me -- since I grew up in the American Southwest. "Arizona Blacktop Company" threw me. Very good album--thank you (it is chicken, it is eggs).
Jim from Kingsport, Tennessee: Dear Sgt. Disco: What does the song "I Razors" mean?
Dear Jim: Thank you for asking. Everything has a meaning. Never let anyone tell you otherwise! Not that we have to believe in those meanings. It's enough just to know they are there, even if hidden in a sub-conscious dimension. The song I Razors takes place in the future, about 37 years from now. During that troubled time, the Earth will be in a fury, doing all in its power to shake us off her skin, with earthquakes, typhoons, floods, tornadoes and electrical storms that will rain down lightning in torrents of death. I Razors will be a mind-altering, black market candy that will come in a container that looks like an old-time oil can, for those of you who remember the 1970s. The funny thing about I- Razors is that no two pieces are alike. And each piece has a soul (or so it says on the label). So when you eat it, that soul will share your headscape for a period of about 7 hours. And the more you eat, the more souls you will take in. Sometimes the souls in the candy don't get along, and sometimes they can't stand to be separated. Either way, it makes for an exciting time. Let me tell you, the kids will be going crazy for I Razors! In those troubled times, recreation of this sort will be very popular . . .anything to take their minds off the terrible things happening out of doors. The song is the band’s interpretation of an I Razor trip. Prominent religious figures will declare that I Razors are a one-way ticket to hell. We reserve judgement on that count.
Abu from Makon Bamenda: Dear Sgt. Disco: I'm the only one left in this world. Can someone please join me in this life? Or maybe death.
Dear Abu: We know exactly how you feel. Here's what you do. Walk to the nearest dairy stand and buy a big ice cream sundae with melted caramel and hot fudge and nuts. Place the sundae on the picnic table there at the dairy stand and stare at it. Don't eat it! Just stare at it. Now observe yourself staring at the sundae. Realize that this is how you appear in the eyes of others every day, all the time. Now your sundae is melted. Go back and buy a new one, and this time, ask for extra whipped cream and eat it with gusto. Now observe yourself eating the sundae. You will see the difference right away, and it will set you free.
Bloody Dick from New Jersey, USA: Dear Sgt. Disco: Please love and respect yourself. Saying every day "I love you" will make your life awesome! Try it, if you are ready for changes!
Dear Bloody Dick: How can we take some advice like this to heart from someone called Bloody Dick? Nonetheless what you say smacks of truth. We are systematically manipulated by the media into thinking that we are unworthy. You women out there know exactly what I'm talking about. We're just not good enough, are we girls? We don't measure up. Balderdash! We are all unique and marvelous beings, no matter how ugly and fat we are!
Travus from The Woods, Conneticut: Dear Sgt. Disco: Could you expound on where the album ATAXIA comes from and if there is an overall story/plot/concept?
Dear Travus: Thanks for your splendid question. I will tell you what it all means! Pay attention now, cause it won't happen again. Ataxia takes place in the future for the most part. This is not the future in a musical sense. It is the future as witnessed through the lens of the third eye, from the standpoint of the present moment. The trip begins with a self-recrimination arising in half-sleep - an acknowledgement of spiritual paralysis. As we all know, this sort of activity attracts the attention of entities who may decide to appear at the foot of your bed in the dead of night. But don't fear! These entities are in fact guides, like the ghost of Christmas future in the Dickens story. Either that, or they're demons who've come to steal your soul and leave you a shivering cipher. But that's a story for another album. The theme here is a private battle against the paralysis of spirit. This paralysis will become institutionalized in the future, through the establishment of a social milieu where the spirit has nothing left to do, and where fear and complacency rule over the mind on every level. In the future, the human spirit will be like a fish out of water, thrashing to no purpose until it weakens and falls still and quiet. It will be up to the individual to dive down into the dark waters and re-discover what was lost -- and put an end to the burden of guilt that would otherwise require a regimen of prescription drugs.
Think of Ataxia as an astral adventure, or lucid dream. The protagonist's discovery of a deep-seated guilt leads him to the conclusion that he has lost the path, betrayed his own spirit, and surrendered control to forces outside himself. While this kind of soul searching is a good thing, it means that right away he will find himself in a not-so-friendly- place. In this case, it's the future, and everyone there appears to be out of their minds, including himself (his future self). There is disorientation, terror and ecstacy, moments of deep dread, resignation, celebration, illumination, and finally, the protagonist re-visits his own childhood and re-discovers the seat of his identity and the natural stability it brings. You might think the adventure ends here, but no! This is where the paranoia sets in. Finding himself in a society where an invisible over-mind is in place, projected through the eyes of soldiers and civilians alike, the self-realized individual imagines himself to be a wanted target. Think of Franz Kafka's "the trial," only in this case the protagonist does not maintain his innocence. He knows he is guilty, even though he is unable to answer the question, "Guilty of what?"
Think of this guilt as the collective guilt of Western civilization, resulting from the repressed memory of our original identity or primitive soul, which we have abandoned or buried in exchange for a life of cheap comforts, superficial illusions and comfortable ignorance. Once having broken through the spiritual paralysis of his endemic guilt, the protagonist's victory is dampened by the discovery that he is truly alone. In the context of the future world, a realized individual -- for all intents and purposes -- will be a non-entity, of no interest to his or her neighbors as such, and not worth chasing down and neutralizing by any branch of authority. He will be the future's version of the invisible man. In fact, in the future, identity-swapping will be a form of recreation. In the context of such a world, what can be the value of a self-realized, integrated individual? As to what happens to such a person set adrift in a sea of masks is a story for another day.
There are a couple of flashbacks to the recent and distant past, but most of the action in Ataxia happens in a world yet to come. You may think to yourself, "Jeez, I don't want any part of that world!" Well too bad, because here it comes. It's not the place of a rock-and-roll combo like Circus Devils to give you instructions in negotiating that world. Our job is to gaze into the dark waters and report back to you what we see. If you don't like it, consider that when you get into a bath tub filled with scalding hot water, you have to dip your toes in first. The future is much the same. As the days tick by, we slowly become comfortable there, without remembering that it was bad for us in the first place. Our transformation into a smug people with insipid souls has been gradual, spanning centuries. Ataxia is a benign form of sudden immersion into the future. But for all of us, the slow immersion has already begun. You may think this is all doom and gloom. But with every new child born comes a new adventure, and another chance to preserve our birthright as cosmic beings whose lives span many dimensions. I hope this answers your question, Travus.
Matt from Upsalla, Sweden: Dear Sgt. Disco: Scandinavia is unaware of Circus Devils. How do I spread the gospel?
Dear Matt: This also applies to those of you in other foreign lands, including Los Angeles. Use spray paint or a paint brush, or a chisel, and write or scratch the words "Cirkus Devils er betydlig än ost? " (Circus Devils is greater than cheese?) on all clean surfaces that you encounter.
Josh from Biloxi, Mississippi: Dear Sgt. Disco: What does Circus Devils think of Life on other planets or planetoids?
Dear Josh: The Bible makes it clear that men from outer space visited our planet many ages ago, long before recorded history. They came in order to find out if it was true what they heard about Earth women. In those days our women were very small, covered in soft hair from top to toe, and resembled monkeys. Word got around the galaxy that Earth women were loose, and all you needed to win their favors was a small, shiny rock or a flower. Earth women were also easy to amuse, unlike the women on other planets, who demanded worship and lavish gifts in return for nothing. Sex tourism to planet Earth reached its peak in the year 1,200,402 BCE by our calendar. That may be a long time ago, Josh, but the reason we look the way we do and have such large brains is because we are the offspring of those space men, or "sons of heaven" as they were known to the ancients. But like many Earth fathers, they did not see fit to come around and visit us, or see to our welfare.
Remember Josh, those UFOs you see flying around today have nothing to do with our space ancestors. The UFOs are operated by artificial creatures which are organically grown robots who have no souls, and can live forever, as long as their ships don't crash and their bodies are not seized by the military, and put under the knife. The question for us is: Who is sending these artificial creatures to our dimension and our space, and for what purpose? Or have the robots outlived their creators, and continue to operate on their own? The answers are blowin' in the wind.