Certain states of consciousness cannot be achieved without aid. In order to slip down particular rabbit holes one must be lubricated and loosened up appropriately, the stiffness of everyday civility and conformity broken up and abandoned. Maine-based Coke Weed is just the sort of body warming, brain vibrating grease to get one through these portals of perception. A gentle force but an unmistakable one, Coke Weed hum with the late night charm of Velvet Underground at their tipsy, croony best, floating along like a modern day answer to It’s A Beautiful Day’s eponymous 1969 debut and Jefferson Airplane’s Surrealistic Pillow (or perhaps a stoned counterpart to Belle & Sebastian’s Tigermilk) on their new offering Nice Dreams (released April 17). However, these are no re-creationists. Coke Weed taps into the buzzed, possibility strewn, almighty vibe that powered that fruitful era, moving with the same off-kilter gait, nothing too carefully drawn yet always possessed of a together internal logic that makes for a happily enveloping experience where magpies twist in the wind as one navigates peckerwood speed traps and generally tries to handle their shit good.
We figured these folks might have a few things floating around in their skulls, so we invited band founder Milan McAlevey to tackle our philosophical five.
- What’s the first thing that springs to mind when you see the word “God”?
- I’d like to say I think of an eternal love that is the framework of the universe, but actually what first sprang to mind was like some pre-Biblical badassery, like Sumerian gods fighting a Cthulhu or something crazy like that. Put some ancient astronauts in the mix…
- Which has the better cosmology, Star Wars or Star Trek? Why?
- Well, I don’t think anyone in the band knows the first thing about Star Trek. I mean, I know Spock is a Vulcan, but that’s about it. The original three Star Wars movies resonated with me when I was a kid. As far as the cosmology, well, I know George Lucas was into Joseph Campbell’s Hero With A Thousand Faces paradigm, and that book was big for me in high school and college. So definitely Star Wars, but it’s not like we’re the guys on How I Met Your Mother, who are way into Star Wars. And really I guess I prefer How I Met Your Mother to either of those shows.
- Name one album that has spiritual resonance for you.
- Nico’s Chelsea Girls. She was a person definitely at the mercy of her human foibles and yet the album is transcendent in its extreme melancholy. Her performances are technically “flawed” but actually virtuosic in her mastery of her cracked inner world. She was completely courageous in her honest self-assessment. It’s meaningful to know that her troubled soul could create a perfect document of life on earth. Believe it or not, I think that record may even have a sense of humor buried in all that sorrow. Maybe it’s the Dylan song.
- Woody Allen once said, “I don’t know the question but sex is definitely the answer.” So, what’s the question?
- Um, not sure about this one. Maybe we can go on the record as prudes? That could be an exclusive: Coke Weed are prudes. We certainly can’t touch Woody Allen in the world-class pervert department, not yet anyway. Sex pops up in our lyrics, but mostly sex of the fiasco variety, that is, failure to launch scenarios. Talking about weird sex stuff is never not hilarious, so that could be the question: “What is the funniest thing to talk about?”
- You can have a dinner party with any three people throughout human history. Who do you invite, what’s on the menu and what intoxicant do you share for dessert?
- This one was the easiest to answer: Cleopatra, Helen of Troy, and Lady Sybil from Downton Abbey. Some weird ancient Roman foods like Persian honey and stuffed dormouse. Nectar and fine wines, oysters – exciting foods, you know? And for desert we would have quaaludes.