Momus, also spelled Momos, is the son of Nyx, goddess of night, and twin brother of Oizys, goddess of pain. The personification of mockery, blame, ridicule, scorn, raillery and stinging criticism, Momus did his job too well, and was expelled from Olympos.

"And again the goddess murky Nyx, though she lay with none, bare Momos." - Theogony 214-215

"But Momos (Blame) – let him go where Phthonos (Envy) dwells!” –Callimachus, Hymn II to Apollon 105

"According to an old legend, the first man was made by Zeus, the first bull by Poseidon, and the first house by Athene. On the completion of their labors, a dispute arose as to which had made the most perfect work. They agreed to appoint Momos as judge, and to abide by his decision. Momos, however, being very envious of the handicraft of each, found fault with all. He first blamed the work of Poseidon because he had not made the horns of the bull below his eyes, so he might better see where to strike. He then condemned the work of Zeus, because he had not placed the heart of man on the outside, that everyone might read the thoughts of the evil disposed and take precautions against the intended mischief. And, lastly, he inveighed against Athene because she had not contrived iron wheels in the foundation of her house, so its inhabitants might more easily remove if a neighbor proved unpleasant. Zeus, indignant at such inveterate faultfinding, drove him from his office of judge, and expelled him from the mansions of Olympos." -Aesop's Fables 59

Momus' siblings are: Cer, Thanatos, Hypnos, Oneiros, Moros, Nemesis, Oizys, Apate, Philotes, Geras, Eris, as well as the three Fates: Clotho, Laechisis, Atropos.

Back to the Family Tree of the Gods of Greek Mythology
Greek and Roman Mythology
An extremely bizarre, obscene and original musician from Scotland. Actually his one-man band is called Momus. The performer's name is Nick Currie. The music in his songs can be interesting but is mostly less than exciting electronica (sometimes fast, sometimes slow) played on computers and Moogs. The interesting part about his songs are the lyrics. His subject matter ranges all over, but some of his favorite topics are sex, his penis, women, and Japan. Some choice song titles are "The Penis Song," "My Pervert Doppleganger," and "Everyone I Have Ever Slept With." For a quick peek into his style I recommend "I Want You, But I Don't Need You" from Ping Pong. Just don't try and play it on the radio without listening to it first.

Possibly the most interesting concept album I've heard of is his Stars Forever release. He explains the idea on its last track- essentially he got in legal trouble for libel and had to raise some money. His novel idea was to write songs about people and put them on his next album in exchange for US$1000 each. People were selected after they submitted brief bios to him. Another half dozen songs on this album were contributed by people who wrote new lyrics to Momus's own karaoke music released on the previous album, Little Red Songbook. Having been given a reprise from writing about himself with Stars Forever, his new album Folktronic returns to his traditional font of material. In addition to the other 15 some-odd albums he's released about himself, he has also written songs for other indie artists such as Kahimi Karie.

I was lucky enough to catch him on tour recently at T. T. The Bear's in Cambridge, MA where he played to a crowd of less than a hundred (it's a small venue). He talks about his inability to become famous because of his "principled shamelessness" in "How to Get -And Stay- Famous" on Ping Pong. During his performance he had two laptops on the floor which he used to play his music off of while he sang the lyrics into a microphone.

Dressed in tight fitting brown pants, a large collared pastel shirt, a tight sweater, and his customary black eye patch he elaborated on his lyrics by dancing around the stage, gesticulating at the audience and at one point humping the microphone stand as it lay prone on the stage. Quite a performance, if you like that sort of thing.

Discography:
Not all of his albums are currently being pressed, so you may have to dig around for the old ones.
  • Folktronic (February, 2001, Le Grand Magistery)
  • Stars Forever (August, 1999)
  • Ping Pong (April, 1999) Personal favorite
  • Little Red Songbook (1999, Le Grand Magistery)
  • 20 Vodka Jellies (April, 1999, 1996)
  • Slender Sherbert: Classic Songs Revisited (January 1995, Cherry Red)
  • Philosophy of Momus (1995, Cherry Red) Never heard this one
  • Ultra Conformist: Live Whilst Out of Fashion (1992, El/ 1994, Cherry Red) Or this one
  • Voyager (1992)
  • Timelord (1993)
  • Hippopotamomus (1991)
  • Monsters of Love (1990)
  • Don't Stop The Night (1989) I'd never even heard of this one before I did this w/u
  • Tender Pervert (1988)
  • The Poison Boyfriend (1987)
  • Circus Maximus (1989, 1986, Cherry Red)
References:
http://www.demon.co.uk/momus/index3.html
http://www.cdnow.com

Mo"mus (?), n. [Gr. blame, ridicule, Momus.] Gr. Myth.

The god of mockery and censure.

 

© Webster 1913.

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