Saturday, October 12, 2013

Cake: Ample Melons

Cake has been a fairly consistent band, producing an album every two to three years; however, there was a gap of nearly seven years between Pressure Chief and Showroom of Compassion. The party line is that Cake spent the time separating from Columbia records and building their solar-powered studio in Sacramento, California. Few people, even die-hard fans, know that Cake actually recorded an album in the interim period, which was shelved because of its vile nature.

Between 2004 and 2011, the Cake lineup disintegrated. Drummer Todd Roper had already left the band to raise his children, and as time progressed, other members decided to focus on their families or side projects. By 2006, none of the original members actually remained in the band, although Vince DiFiore retained titular control of the group. In 2007, various studio musicians laid down vocal and instrumental tracks at Columbia Records studios in Los Angeles, believing they were, "providing working tracks for an album in progress." The songs included such gems as, "Hot Chocolate Mama", "I'm Gonna Jump on Your Trapdoor 'til It Falls In", and "Seed Spittin' Contest". Two Columbia producers, who were later brought up on charges of slander, collated these tracks into an album and presented it to Columbia executives as a Cake title.

With a rare dose of foresight, the Columbia brass condemned the album as crass, offensive, and something so shocking that "the only option was to sink it in the La Brea tar pits." Almost no one outside of Columbia, apart from Miley Cyrus, has actually heard these tracks, and as John McCrea and Gabe Nelson returned to the band's lineup, the album was quietly removed from the Columbia catalog.