fRINGE Underground was started by me and a friend because we felt that no one had taste anymore. I mean, I understand people who fire on all cylinders all day long who want to shut down the engines and escape with a romance novel or slasher flick. But people were no longer seeing guilty pleasures as anything other than pure pleasure. Crap bands, lousy movies, unwatchable TV shows and boring books were rocketing to popularity because people simply didn’t want to think. Thanks to Coldplay, Adam Sandler, The King of Queens, and Oprah’s book club, people with no taste actually thought that simply because they liked what everyone else liked they were digesting quality.
So we started fRINGE to try and offer alternatives that never got any publicity–art films that died quiet deaths, artists that never sold a record, books that never got a fair shake. We wanted to at least be one voice in the wilderness crying out that you don’t have to listen to John Maher when there’s Elliott Smith, you don’t need to waste time seeing a Matrix sequel when there’s Wes Anderson, and while you were watching Everybody Loves Raymond quality shows like Freaks & Geeks were getting cancelled. And if you need Oprah Winfrey to pick your books for you, the only thing you should be reading is an eye chart.
(from Gothamist, Dec 2006)