Five Starcle Men (partially found noise music group discography; 1990-1997)
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Five Starcle Men were an electronic noise music group from the 1990s whose music consisted of heavily distorted and edited samples, dextromethorphan-fueled rambling, alien abduction testimonials, and circuit bent toys and other electronic gadgets.
The group was comprised primarily of two members, Luke McGowan and Glen Hobbs. After Hobbs' suicide in 1997, McGowan went on to be a professor of psychology at the California Institute of Technology.
Ever since the release of the posthumous digital compilation Gomba Reject Ward Japan, Five Starcle Men have been noted for being shrouded in mystery, with very little written about them beyond blogs and a brief mention in an article in the Village Voice. They had a Wikipedia page at one point, but it has deleted due to lack of notability, despite Gomba Reject Ward Japan having 27,000+ downloads on archive.org.
There are two official digital compilations released via the Japanese label Lost Frog Productions (including Gomba), along with an unofficial bootleg cassette tape compilation called The Five Starclemen. The second digital compilation is called Only Kids of Nothing Star. Both of them are available on archive.org.
|1992||ISTINT||First release under the Five Starcle Men name.||Found|
|1993||Briscle Discal||An owner of a copy of the tape has claimed it has either 49 or ~65 different tracks.||Partially Found (2)|
|1994||Briscle Discal 2||Lost|
|1995||R/Eject Ward||Luke allegedly confirmed its existence, and called it his favorite from their later years. Was made primarily by Glen.||Lost|
|1995||Scunibro||Only known vinyl release.||Found|
|1995||Beast 666||"Beast 666 Tapes" is also the name of a Japanese noise record label that seems to have worked with the band at some point.||Lost|
|Unknown||I Told You Human||Songs from the original release were included in a bootleg tape made by Rich Polysorbate 60, someone who had connections with the band for quite some time. The release is known to exist, but has not been uploaded anywhere.||Partially Found|
|Unknown||Dwck Jired||Songs from the original release were included in a bootleg tape made by Rich Polysorbate 60, someone who had connections with the band for quite some time. Though aside from that, not much evidence of the release's existence has been found.||Partially Found|
The band was also featured in the inaugural and presumably only issue of the zine Whump!, with some audio of the interview existing on the 7" bonus record that was included with the magazine. There was also a live album released on VHS, Live + Dead, which has been reuploaded to YouTube.
According to Luke in an email he doesn't wish to be shared publicly, a "crazed fan" stole most of the masters. This makes the complete recovery of their discography even harder, if not outright impossible.
For the longest time, the only Five Starcle Men material available were the aforementioned compilations and, eventually, Scunibro.
However, in late 2020, a musician who knew Five Starcle Men personally when they were active joined a Discord server dedicated to the band and posted flyers and pictures of cassettes he had in his possession. He promised to contact Luke to see if he could release them. Luke initially denied him permission, but eventually allowed him to upload small amounts of what he had. He uploaded the Sicicbral EP to Soundcloud alongside individual songs from Briscle Discal and a collaborative cassette with his own group, Bobeli. Later on in late June 2023, he also uploaded the ISTINT tape onto Soundcloud.
In early June 2023, the aforementioned musician also created a Bandcamp page and an Instagram page (both simply called "Five Starcle Men") for the purpose of archiving and posting any Five Starcle Men content that has been found. Although he had Luke's permission to create these pages, seeming excited to release and archive whatever could be salvaged and rediscovered, Luke later asked him to take down said pages, stating that he "doesn't want anything resembling 'official' FSM on these platforms." However, Luke allowed him to keep and use the Soundcloud page to upload any new findings, presumably since it long predates the Bandcamp/Instagram pages and there are old releases from other artists on it as well.
He also confirmed the rumor that Luke is compiling songs for what he calls a "mega-compilation" from the few masters he had left.
- Village Voice article mentioning Five Starcle Men. Retrieved Apr. 22, '21.
- This is not how WP:Notability works. The page could be restored if a reliable source that mentions Five Starcle Men is found.