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Get on the Bus
As reported last week in this space, Lushbox recently disbanded, leaving its unreleased EP, I Hate this Bus (which includes the track "Stephen on the Short Bus"), stranded in limbo. However, those looking for a release this fall with "bus" in its title won't be disappointed, as the Lawrence-based Short Bus Kids are set to unveil their latest effort. The Kids' Split, a dual effort with Lawrence's John Brown's Kids, is scheduled for release this fall, and the group, which has been together in various incarnations since 1993, might release some previous studio projects as well. In the meantime, the Kids will continue their tradition of pirate-flag waving, jumping-box driven live shows with a gig at Gee on August 18 and a tentative date at the Granada on August 26.
To clear up a few questions that might have arisen from the previous sentence, the "jumping box" is a 35-year-old wooden box that was discovered in guitarist Mike Yuk's grandmother's closet. "We don't know where it came from," he says. "It has some name on it that no one in my entire family has heard of." Still, not wanting a perfectly good box to go to waste, the Kids haul it into the center of the frenzied mosh pit during each show, and fans can showcase their aerial acrobatics by getting a running start, leaping onto the box, and then soaring majestically off of it. The pirate flag flies because of the group's association with the Pirate Punk House at 14th and Kentucky, where Yuk currently resides. And finally, to clear up the "who are the Short Bus Kids?" inquiry, the group includes members of such defunct Kansas City punk bands as Or Die Trying, Madd Scientists, and Blue Jesus. Currently fronted by charismatic singer AnDIY, whose name is spelled to pay tribute to the do-it-yourself ethic, the Kids play thrashy, sometimes funky tunes with such titles as "Corporate Amerikkka Still Sux a Phatty, But We Have a Jumping Box," "I Got My Shoes at the Mall," and "Martha Stewart's Cuttin' Cheese" in between cranking out high-velocity covers of songs by such hardcore pioneers as Minor Threat and Charles Bronson.
The Kids were on hiatus last fall as Yuk attended classes at Middle Tennessee State, but upon his return he felt inspired by the fledgling scene. "I noticed a lot more kids getting involved," he says. "They were putting on better shows and becoming more organized, and it was a lot more fun to come back to something like that." Yuk is staying in town, but drummer Bill Kill heads off to school in Wisconsin in the fall, which might lead the band to take a temporary break from gigging or welcome some new Kids into the playpen. All are welcome, as long as they can stand by the Kids' proclaimed anti-capitalism, "anti-punx" agenda, which leads to sharp lyrical barbs directed at elitist scenesters and mosh-pit bullies. "Everyone has a different reason for being in the Short Bus Kids, and all of us listen to different kinds of music," Yuk explains. "But when we all play together, it's just a lot of fun."