Shortbus, written and directed by Hedwig And The Angry Incher John Cameron Mitchell, had finally heated up my male box. The film explores relationships of gays, straights, and curious voyeurs in the New York City underground.
We follow a couples therapist named Sophia on a journey to a polymorphous hideaway, the Shortbus. While she wanders around the sea of penetration like a timid kitten she bumps into Ceth, with a C, who asks if his hair looks ok. Sophia says "yeah its fine." Ceth shoots a snapshot of his profile with his mobile, checks the footage, and with an overt annoyance says "thanks" before shuffling his hand through those messy locks as he walks away with my heart in his pocket. I am no longer paying attention to the film, I only want more of him.
After Ceth leaves the flesh fiesta with a couple of boys for an "all-American" three-way, we hear the beginnings of a stunning pop ballad, as it lightly glistens off the lips of singer/songwriter/actor Jay Brannan. As Ceth/Brannan sits in his blue Polo t-shirt with collar way up high and strums "Soda Shop" on that acoustic guitar, I found myself dying. The quiet yodel of his "shoo-bee-doo-waps" constricted my oxygen flow. And when he screws up on camera, Cameron Mitchell lets the spontaneity spin its course, as Brannan gathers composure and finishes to lick me unconscious.
This kid had me swooning like a poodle skirt wearing black and white 1950s teen, uncontrollably grasping for the mouth of Jerry Lee Lewis. I had to desperately abstain from licking the screen of my television as I wished it were him.
Quickly I became psychotic for this new charmer. Shock greeted me when the image of Jay Brannan, decked out like a thug life gang-banging Enimem rip-off show stared back at me from his album sleeve. Oh no, I thought, where has my pretty boy gone? The face resembled everything but aura of the gorgeous guilty party responsible for those dreamboat songs that I want to sail towards the end of time on.
Unmastered, the four-song teaser from Jay Brannan, is a rough appetizer of a great meal to come. These nappy home recordings give Brannan's warm croon some juxtaposed grit and weight for a product similar to The Mountain Goats with far superior glamour. Brannan pulls you into the moment with him, forcing your willing body to either make out or melt down. With hearty, sometimes bitchy lyrics that bridge the gender gap this aspiring pin-up boy only needs a nurturing label to help fan this crotch scalding wave of heat. Like Morrissey or Stipe, Jay Brannan is a delicacy for everyone, and if sanctified by folk enthusiasts worldwide, could blast to universal throb status within the next year.
"Soda Shop" MP3
"Soda Shop" video