STNNNG's Chris Besinger will make poetry fun tonight at Grumpy's

Pants-doffer and STNNNG frontman Chris Besinger is releasing a book of selected lyrics and poetry (what's the difference?), titled The Usual Beast, tonight at the Washington Avenue Grumpy's and kinda out of nowhere.

They have never included a lyric sheet with Besinger's fractured narratives and satiric caterwauls, indecipherable as they sometimes are (unless you spent a lot of time figuring out what the hell Napalm Death or whoever were screaming), feeling it would unnecessarily cleft the whole of the band. "It seems like the words are tied into the music really closely, so I was a little sketchy at first doing the book - it's hard to divorce the words from the songs themselves. But for some people it's hard to understand what I'm ranting about." I said I thought songs like "Grand Island, Neb." would hold up fine under the comb of print. "There are a few songs that I didn't put in just because they just don't look good. When I finally looked at them printed I thought 'nobody's going to be interested in seeing how many times I say yeah.'" Which is fair.

It began not that long ago, in March, when an old writing compatriot of Besinger's named Spencer Keralis emailed, asking him to select and compile a book of his work for his revived Laughing Mouse publishing house (who began with a short story collection called Junior High Year-Book that both were part of in 2002, now reprinted). "I had to transcribe them and go back and figure out what some of the words were. I realized I don't have a master list anywhere for all the lyrics for these songs, so I had to go back and create that."

Now, some odd art and hot presses later, so soon, the goddamn thing is ready to move. There were only 100 copies pressed in this first run, which you'll be able to get tonight at Grumpy's, at Laughing Mouse's website, on Modern Radio's website (not yet though), shows, and as always: "the trunks of our cars."

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