I went over to Columbus punk outfit Yuze Boys’ north campus house early last week. They were in the middle of recording their demo which will be released on Athens’ punk label, “Gnarly As I Wannabe.” We sat down, and somehow landed on the subject of sex in automobiles. I just thought we were just building rapport. Yuze Boys’ drummer Winston Hightower divulged that he “had sex in a soccer mom’s van.” It wasn’t with a soccer mom. I did not find out if Winston’s sexual partner played soccer or perhaps had a sibling who did. Perhaps that makes me a bad reporter. Bassist Kyle Bergamo likes to have sex up against the wall. Anyway. This conversation led to pertinent info: Yuze Boys formed because Nervosas’ Jeffrey Kleinman was living behind Cafe Bourbon Street in his van. He was having sex in the aforementioned van, stealing wi-fi to watch King of the Hill, and “getting work done.” Kleinman quipped that “he has a big van.” Bourbon Street is near their East Oakland home where the other three Yuze Boys live. Front man Alex Mussawir (Goners) said “Jeff get over here.” Eventually, Jeff moved into Winston’s, Alex’s and bass player Kyle Bergamo’s (Making Friends) home and they started a band. The conversation moved various directions from dietary habits to the uses of social networks. Jeff is vegan. Winston doesn’t use Facebook because he got into too many arguments. Winston’s current logic on that matter is: “Fuck people. I don’t really care.” The conversation segued into the fact that both Alex’s mom, and the bulk of Kleinman’s family attended the last Yuze Boys show the prior weekend. Kleinman’s father passed away of a scarring lung condition called pulmonary fibrosis recently. The Yuze Boys show was the day after his father’s funeral so his family attended as a form of bonding catharsis. Kleinman recounted his father’s last days in a hospital while taking a drag off a smoke. “I married him to his current wife in the hospital bed because I am an ordained minister. I got to watch the Brown’s lose with him. And I got to marry him to his wife.” His dad passed away that night. Kleinman’s father has been married three other times. Kleinman wears the wedding ring from his dad’s marriage to his mother around his neck on a string. This is an object he inherited after his dad’s funeral. The funeral wasn’t so bad he said. “I didn’t get very upset at his funeral. Or when I went to see his body before they cremated him. None of that was really upsetting to me because I had already seen the worst possible thing you could watch: To watch your father die.” After an hour more of conversation, Alex, and Jeff recorded vocals and guitar over the music their rhythm section laid down earlier that day. Alex is also a writer who has toured on the national Alt-Lit circuit doing readings. It was interesting to hear the songs sang without the music. Short internal monologues dealing with post-relationship cynicism, miserable existence, sex, boredom and unflattering observations abound. After the band recorded, Kleinman gave himself a couple homemade tattoos. One of his dad’s name. R.I.P. Lee.

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