Those Luscious Jackson funk-grunge babes talk psychobabble and pornography

by Tania Branigan
Melody Maker
March 15, 1997

HONESTY
Jill Cunniff:
“‘Fever In, Fever Out’ is kind of a psychological album-about ‘the quest for self-knowledge’. It reflects the way I’ve developed as a person. There’s a lot about honesty on it, like ‘Why Do I Lie?’ I lie to make other people comfortable, or to cover myself, or to please people, or I say what I think they want to hear.”

THERAPY
Jill:
“I saw a therapist for two years, and then we fell out and I realised our relationship was very sick-she was controlling me. You have to be careful with therapists: sometimes they just reflect your relationships with everyone else.” Vivian Trimble: “Everyone in New York is in therapy, cos life there is so abnormal, so claustrophobic. They need it.” Kate Schellenbach: “Yeah, they desperately need someone to listen to them talk about themselves! So many people close to me have been to therapy that I almost fell like I’ve been myself. You can do computer therapy now: you type in answers and it responds with generic therapy questions like, ‘How did that make you feel?’, or ‘You seem very hostile.'”

ON THE COUCH
Kate:
“Porn is always just women with big tits and incredibly unattractive men with pot bellies.” Jill: “It’s shot on video now, not film, and all the values have gone. There are no scenarios left like there were in the Seventies. They were the best.”

MEN
Gabby Glaser:
“I go for a sense of humour-which is everyone’s favorite thing. Except for Jill, she goes for nice shoes. One time I was talking to this guy and Jill was screaming, ‘Gabby! No! He’s wearing white jazz shoes!'” Vivian: “I think men and women are more together at different times-and those times don’t coincide…but I do feel really bad for men, cos they have to ask women out. Although I did phone a guy before we left the States, as an experiment. The thing is, the people you are really attracted to just make you paralysed and stuttering.” Jill: “I’ve never asked a guy out, but I weasel my way into their lives. I don’t even know how I do it, it’s just like I’m desperate and maniacal enough.”

DREAMS
Vivian:
“Do you ever dream your teeth are crumbling in your mouth?” Kate: “Yeah, and I have dreams about playing drums, and all I have are chopsticks or pencils. And I dream that there are people in my room. One time I saw a ghost-or thought I did. It was a flying midget in a top hat, in my loft bed.”

FORMATIVE EXPERIENCES
Vivian:
“I was on holiday when I was four and I went to the toilet without locking the door. This woman came in, didn’t see me, and started sitting down. I thought I was gonna get squashed down the drain. At the last moment, I reached out and pinched her on the ass. She was totally freaked out!” Jill: “This kid in our building was really troubled-his dad used to beat him up. He’d steal my money, and then buy my brother and me toys. One day, he said I had a crush on him, and if I told my parents what he’d said, he’d tell another kid in the building I liked him. It seemed like torture. Looking back, I was probably on the verge of being sexually abused-he was psychologically trapping me into secrecy. Then my Dad told him to stay away.” Gabby: “I saw a lot of violence. This guy who owned a ceramics store on the block beat this homeless dude to a pulp. My mom was so mad she bought a chicken’s foot from the butcher, painted it black, and put it into one of his pots to scare him or something-I was all creeped out.” Kate: “That might be more traumatic than seeing the beating…I saw a building blow up when I was three-it was bombed. I was traumatised by fire after that, even candles.”

DEATH
Kate:
“Our generation has had to deal with death more than any other-except maybe the war generation-because of AIDS. I’ve had friends who’ve died or killed themselves because of it, and when you know your friends are gonna die before they’re 40…it’s heartbreaking.”

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