The loveliest benefit of releasing The Fake Doom Years has been to reconnect with our dear friends and musical cohorts from that time. The messages and memories they sent us comprise our liner notes. - Jon & Deena
"I remember hearing the Cucumbers on vinyl before I met them. Their music was so fresh and original. It had wonderfully upbeat pop overtones with not a shred of self-consciousness. When Nels Johnson, my partner at Fake Doom introduced them to me, it became apparent that they were even more genuine then they sounded. The fun began for me as I watched Jon and Deena create and record a diverse group of substantive and well-crafted songs so spiritually well-rounded. Some of these would become Fake Doom Records first full length LP: “Who Betrays Me”.
As proud as I am to have been a part of this period of their creativity, I am even more pleased to have made friends with two of the most kind and honest people I have ever met.
And wow, those years where fun!"
-Steve Neighoff, Founder and President, Fake Doom Records
"I’ve played multiple instruments in multiple bands for many years. I’ve had the good fortune to work with many who’ve influenced my musical palette. However, the Cucumbers (Jon and Deena) have always stood head and shoulders above.
Jon and Deena have always stayed on the positive side of my early music business memories. We didn’t get wealthy recording and touring together, but they handled business in ways that are unfortunately 180 degrees opposite of how it was handled in other situations I found myself in. They set a standard of trust that I’ve always respected.
Musically, The Cucumbers are the only band that I’ve ever recorded with that actually captured the complete spirit of what they were about. ‘Who Betrays Me….’ is by far the best album I’ve ever recorded! Thanks Jon Deena & Yuergen."
-Brian Hardgroove, bass on "Who Betrays Me..." LP
"Being in a band and part owner of the band's label simultaneously can be big mistake. A lot depends on the local music scene and the people involved from each organization
--in this case the Northern New Jersey club circuit, the Cucumbers and Steve Neighoff and Tracey Miller, my partners in Fake Doom Records.
Fake Doom started as a way to sell a few singles by the NJ/NYC-based Delphobics. This was easier because the label and the band were both run by the same people. After I left the Delphobics, the other members of that band went on to form the Gyros--a rockabilly outfit also signed to Fake Doom along with the Whyos and Joe Burdette and the New West.
When I got back into joining a band and passed the audition to play bass for The Cucumbers, we all realized we had a lot to offer each other--despite the obvious dangers. Three vinyl records and a lot of college radio airplay later (not to mention good reviews in the Village Voice, New York Times and Rolling Stone) it seemed things were on the right track. Not to mention a fine time to be in The Cucumbers AND part of Fake Doom Records.
30 Years later and still no regrets. "
- Nels Johnson, Fake Doom Records, and bass on "Fresh Cucumbers"
“Did more for the reputation of New Jersey than the Boss himself. Did..... Peelable....Deena and Jon move right along”
-David Young, producer
"The Cukes needed a bass player and I borrowed a bass and passed the audition. They had gigs and were about to record "All Shook Up". And so began my association with Jon, Deena and Yuergen. We saw the country touring, recorded Albums in London, New York and New Jersey. We grew up together, had children together and ultimately still live within a few miles of each other. From the funky Sweater Factory in Jersey City where we rehearsed and shot the video for "All Shook Up" to Lincoln, Nebraska where we played with The Replacements, they were great years of our lives. They were huge influences on me personally and professionally. It was thru Deena's introductions that I got my start in the recording business where I stayed for 25 years. Thank you!"
-John Williams, bass on "All Shook Up" and on tour
I was fortunate to become The Cucumbers drummer around the time when their stars began to align. :) Little did I know that some 33 years later I would have the opportunity to write this in celebration of The Cucumbers' digital format release of their Fake Doom recordings. The records still sound great and Jon & Deena's tunes remain as fresh and original as ever. Here's a shout out to bassists Nels Johnson, Brian Hardgroove & John Williams and to Steve Neighoff & Tracey Miller of Fake Doom.
-Yuergen Renner, drummer
A little about ourselves
We are pleased to present the re-issue of The Fake Doom Years (1983-1986) by The Cucumbers.
Jon Fried & Deena Shoshkes started The Cucumbers and found a home in the 80's indie pop scene in Hoboken, NJ. Fake Doom Records presented the band's first "official" release in 1983.
For a thorough history of the band, please visit our BIO page.
Jon's been writing! Check out his fiction "here.
Follow his blog "Guides for the Unguidable."
Deena's been making albums. Check out her music.
Above is a video for "All Shook Up" directed by the fabulous Ily Huemer. Want to see more? Here's a playlist of videos we found from 1983 - 1986, and a playlist of the The Fake Doom Years.
Some Reviews of "The Fake Doom Years"
" If you love indie pop, then you’ll dig one of its local pioneers. If The Cucumbers’ biggest hit, “My Boyfriend,” doesn’t make you tap your toe, check your pulse," Bob Makin
"Great, classic, clever pop songs with a sense of humor, intellect, natural-ness, charm and heart," Robert Ross, PopDose.com
"The Fake Doom Years (1983-86) sounds so modern it's hard to believe it's 30 years old," BlowupRadio.com
"Still fresh... just pop this one on "repeat" and get moving," PostPunkMonk
"This remastered collection has never sounded better," LinearTrackingLives
"Fun and funky.... one of the best Hoboken bands of the era," Jay Lustig, NJArts.net
".. brilliantly crafted indie pop... crisp and fresh. It sounds as relevant now as it did when it was first released," YouDontKnowJersey.com
Photos and videos from our reunion show coming soon!