I can tell you exactly what the problem is. The problem is that Gibby
Haynes has gotten old, and that his formula has worn teeth. In
the '80s, nothing came within even an arm's reach of the terrorizing,
panic-inducing, horror show that was a Butthole Surfers album.
Filled with random noise, occasionally coherent gems of rock know-how,
and a shitload of stuff that simply should never have been born, a
Surfer's album was a challenging, aural assault that tested, pushed
and occasionally destroyed the boundaries of music. Depending on who
you ask, the beginning of the end sounded with either Pioughd
or Independent Worm Saloon, the first of two albums for Capitol
Records. IWS followed the old formula pretty closely, but its
only real crime was its accessibility, and the fact that it was obvious
they were actually trying to create something within a "music"
paradigm. (Although, "Clean It Up" was decidedly not within
that vein.) Electric Larryland was also halfway decent with
artistic experiments like "Let's Talk About Cars", or tunes
like "Pepper" and "Cough Syrup" that exhibited
pop-sensibility, but those were things they'd done before, and shouldn't
have come as a surprise to anyone, even if the percentages of noise
to music were "off." Weird Revolution basically saw
it all come to an end, composed of tracks that sounded like castoffs
from the two prior albums and arriving years too late.
Elements of "Let's Talk About Cars" are resurrected in
the understated "Stop Foolin'", but most of the tracks here
are a kind of un-challenging, un-abrasive milquetoast rock that offers
nothing to Surfers fans who came to if not love, at least appreciate
their mastery for uneasy ambient noise. "I Need Some Help"
exhibits some of the spacey, psychedelia found in Hayne's side project
with Johnny Depp, "P", notably the track "Scrapings
from Ring", and while it isn't what most consider to be the hallmark
of a Surfers' album, it has that jammy weirdness perfected in Hairway
"Redneck Sex." Really, what is there to say about this?
A subject so pedestrian and banal that it pains me to hear it come
from the mouth of someone, who at one time, might have been the
strangest, scariest man in the world. Perhaps we are seeing the
repressed accountant come out, a thought more terrifying than any
creep in one's cellar.
5. Stop Foolin'
9. I Need Some Help
10. Dream Machine
11. Redneck Sex
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