Electro-glam act whose lead singer performed in undies. The Scissor Sisters are known in Europe for their live shows, Pink Floyd covers, and an underwear clad lead singer

By Nicholas Fonseca
July 30, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT

Five years ago, college student Jake Shears was wiggling his undies-clad butt for dollar-clutching horndogs in a New York City wormhole appropriately called I.C. Guys. Five weeks ago, his electro-glam quintet the Scissor Sisters — an earnestly campy crew whose outre costumes and sweeping pop songs recall early Elton John — was opening for the knight himself (a devoted fan) when Shears unintentionally gave an all-new peep show to 25,000 mystified English fogies. ”My trousers burst open and my d — -fell out,” sighs Shears, 24. ”So I walked over to my drum tech and had him stick a big piece of gaffer tape on my crotch. I had a total ”Velvet Goldmine” moment.”

Such over-the-top shenanigans are what make the Scissor Sisters so damn fun. They’ve built a devoted European following over the past year with dazzling live shows, and their just-released debut album mixes new wave, power pop, disco, and a bumping cover of Pink Floyd’s ”Comfortably Numb,” which recently hit the top of the British music charts. Their first Stateside single, ”Take Your Mama,” is a VH1 staple, and Shears hopes that the U.S. is finally ready for the Scissors’ genre-busting gems. ”The American music industry would have no clue what to do with us without somebody showing them,” says Shears. ”But I think we have a chance. My mom is hearing `Take Your Mama’ at the gym.” We.C. Success!