A Bad Career Move?


Did you hear Stone Temple Pilots have a new singer? That seems like a pretty dangerous position to me. Kinda like being a fisherman in the Gulf of Alaska, fronting a band with Pat Smear on guitar or serving in the Trump administration. I gotta hand it to Jeff Gutt, it takes some balls to step into a position held by two people who have died recently.

All joking aside though, I do think the new track sounds great and wish STP the best of luck. They definitely deserve it as they’ve been through a lot and weathered more than their fair share of bad luck.

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The Descendents at House of Blues


17 November 2017

House of Blues; Cleveland, OH

Public Squares, Frank Iero and the Patience, The Descendents

The best news I’ve gotten this year was that the Descendents would be on tour and be stopping in Cleveland. These guys have been my favorite band for a few years and I keep hoping to make it to a concert, but I’ve only seen them playing at Riot Fest and my budget doesn’t allow me to go to Chicago for a long weekend.

I haven’t been to a show in about a year, so it was time to get to one. Music is best experienced live, but there’s that damn job thing that keeps me from going to shows every night… and also provides me with money to buy concert tickets.

The night began with Public Squares, a trio from somewhere not of this earth. I’m a sucker for extraterrestrial bands in matching outfits who tell us the only reason the rest of the universe hasn’t destroyed us is that we gave them rock and roll. Is there a way to not love that? If there is I haven’t discovered it.

Their music is great too. It’s your basic punk rock, which is exactly what I was hoping to hear. Things did sound a little too classic rock for my taste by the end of their set, but I’m still looking forward to checking out their album. They’re the best local band I’ve seen in quite a while.

I’ve gone on record about my dislike of emo music many times so it should come as no surprise I’m not a fan of Frank Iero and the Patience. I tried to give them a chance, but when I saw the long hair and incense burning on stage I had a feeling it wasn’t for me. On the bright side, I’ve finally realized what I dislike about the genre: it’s too serious. I can’t help but think that this might not have been the best group to open for a band who has written so many songs about farts.^

The lady friend wanted to head to the balcony for the Descendents to get away from the crowd, so we made our way up. I like checking out bands from a different vantage point, but the balcony at House of Blues isn’t the greatest. You have to pay more than double to get a seat and since I’m too cheap for that we were back in the standing room only section. I’m happy to say we still managed to get a good view.

They opened with “Everything Sux” and “Hope.” Both great tunes, but it took Milo Aukerman a minute to warm up. After the first few songs the band was the well oiled machine I expected. I was a little surprised Milo is such a great frontman. I suppose I should be, he’s been doing it for longer than I’ve been alive. But I’ve heard him described as an ‘Uber nerd” and didn’t see anything to make me think anything else (especially the Camelbak he wore). When my girlfriend said “He looks like a college professor” I had to reply “I think he is.”*

I believe I pointed out in my review of Cool To Be You that the Descendents are the least cool band I’ve ever come across and that’s just as apparent live. Not that they don’t rock, but they definitely resemble the caricatures from the cover of the Live Plus One album. Except for Bassist Karl Alvarez who’s hair has moved from his head to his face and turned gray, making him look like a punk rock Tommy Chong. Caveman Bill Stevenson is the only drummer I’ve ever heard a crowd chant for. With good reason, he’s the main songwriter and quite a few of those great songs we heard sprang from his head.

Cover illustration for the Descendents’ “Live Plus One” album by Chris Shary

I was surprised to recognize so many of the songs they played. It wasn’t until I started researching this post that I realized I own 7/9 of their full-length albums. I’d love to just post the entire setlist because it contained so many great tunes. “Clean Sheets,” “Silly Girl,” “Pervert,” “Suburban Home,” “When I Grow Up,” “Weinershnitzel/No All” and about a million more. Most tracks came from the new Hypercaffium Spazzinate and I Don’t Want To Grow Up.   

The biggest highlights were the resistance anthem “Who We Are” which I wasn’t familiar with, but I’m pretty sure I like better than anything off the most recent album, and Milo running into the crowd for “Thank You.” There were definitely a few ecstatic fans that got to sing that chorus with him on the floor. I managed to get in the pit for the encores and do a bit of slam dancing for “I’m the One” and “Bikeage.” It was a good thing I took my girlfriend to the balcony. I forgot how intense those punk rock pits can get.

Of course, there were a few songs I was disappointed to not have heard, but I’m guessing just about every attendee could say the same thing. When you have as massive a catalog as these guys there’s going to be a few that don’t make the final cut. If I had it my way I’d just go see them the next day and hopefully they’d play “Cool To Be You” at that show.

 

^As always I say this with the caveat that they were playing to a much larger and more interested audience than I’ve ever entertained.

*He was an adjunct professor at the University of Deleware. I can’t help but wonder what his lectures were like.

 

 

Are You Lost 21


I like to think it’s because I’m a great writer that people are coming to read my thoughts on music and politics.Of course, what’s really happening is that people are typing crazy shit into Google and somehow ending up here. After reading

Of course, what really happens is people type crazy shit into Google and somehow end up here. After reading Lebrain’s posts about what search terms lead to his site I thought it would be fun to share what leads people to The Audible Stew.


does donald trump suck donkey dick – literally or figuratively? Come on, he’s not David Cameron!

amorosa sucks donald trump dick – I don’t know who Amorosa is, but it bothers me how much this sound like the title of a porn video.

was david desolas book on alice in chains accurate – Go ask Alice.

young nudist mypornsnap

mypornsnap foto teen

sexy female slipknot fan porn – That’s a really strange and specific fetish.

juggalo sexy girl – Notice that it’s singular. There is only one.

“called glueleg”

what is it like to have sex with axl rose? – I hope like hell I never learn the answer to this question.

http://www.oldpicz.com/young-and-nude-brigitte-bardot-rare-photos/

એજલ – According to Google translate this is from the Gujarati language and means ‘Algal.’ Unfortunately, there is no Google app that can tell me what that has to do with the Audible Stew.

スティービーニックス – Not Sure what language this is, but it’s nice to know that a desire to hear Stevie Nicks’ lovely voice transcends language barriers. Or maybe it’s the desire to see her topless.

 

Rammstein “Sehnsucht”


(22 Aug 1997, Slash)

Today is the 500th anniversary of the beginning of the protestant reformation. It has now been half a millennium since Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of the church of Wittenburg.

What does this have to do with anything?
I was reading the Economist¹ and it said: “To Luther music was a divinely inspired weapon against the devil.”

That struck me as somewhat odd, having listened to the music of such artists as Glenn Danzig, Ghost and Luther’s countrymen Rammstein.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Rammstein. But they’re about as far from “A Mighty Fortress is Our God” as it’s possible to get. I love heavy industrial music and these guys are up there with the best of them. Not only do they have brutal, punishing thrash-metal guitar riffs driving the songs and great danceable beats, but this album features some of the best keyboard work I’ve ever heard. Some of the sounds had to have been placed in a time capsule because I swear they came straight from the eighties but they don’t sound dated.

And singing in German just goes to help establish their heavy metal bona fides. Is there any better language for metal than German? I love the language because no matter what you say it sounds like you’re really, really angry. The coolest thing about listening to singing in another language is being able to focus on the melody instead of the message. And from what I’ve heard, the message in most Rammstein songs is horrible.

I’m embarrassed to say the first time I’ve listened to this entire album was for this review. I still remember seeing the terrifying video for “Du Hast” which I think is still they’re biggest hit in the US, but I enjoy other tracks just as much. “Engel” has a whistled intro that makes me think of that other German metal band, The Scorpions. “Klavier” is notable as being the lone ballad on the album. Most of the other tracks blend into each other, but they all have those great vocals, driving riffs and beautiful keys.

This might not be the kind of music Luther was talking about when he used the term “divinely inspired,” but it’s not as evil as other bands Germans like… such as David Hasselhoff.

 

¹.  Anonymous. “Nailed it.” The Economist. 7 January 2017: 45. Print

 

Insane Clown Posse “The Great Milenko”


(12 August 1997 Psychopathic/Island)

I hold several very unpopular opinions. There are issues that I find myself on the unpopular side of with just about everyone. My enjoyment of the Insane Clown Posse is probably the most unpopular view I take.

Everyone is entitled to their guilty pleasures, but I probably go too far with this one.

The strange thing is that I enjoy ICP for the same exact reason most people hate them: they are completely ridiculous. I’ve always enjoyed the shock rock of Marilyn Manson and Alice Cooper, but ICP are on another level. Whereas Marilyn Manson presents himself as a very intelligent social satirist, ICP dress up like scary clowns and rap about things that are impossible to take seriously.

Which is kind of a shame because they do touch on some important topics. Death, morality, rape, police brutality and greed. Of course, this album also features the lyrics:

“What is a juggalo?
A dead body
Well, he ain’t really dead, but he ain’t like
Anybody that you’ve ever met before
He’ll eat monopoly and shit out connect four

What is a jug..?
What the fuck? Connect four?
Man that shit is whack
Don’t worry about my shit
Just rap motherfucker”

But isn’t the purpose of shock rock to knock us out of our comfort zones? Maybe.

I’ve come across some hardcore juggalos who don’t care much for The Great Milenko because it’s the album casual fans like me tend to go for. This is an album that blends rock and hip-hop in a way that would become extremely popular over the ensuing years. They didn’t shy away from the standard rap practice of having guest musicians all over the album, but the inclusion of Sex Pistol Steve Jones on “Piggie Pie” and Slash on “Halls of Illusion” entices me in the way a Kanye appearance never would. I just found out that it’s Alice Cooper’s voice on the awesome introduction.

I enjoy the music on the album more than other hip-hop. I find a lot of that genre to be too simplistic and beat-oriented for my taste. There are tracks without a lot of stuff going on, but many of them have great guitar riffs or other strange instrumentation. I love the keyboard melody on “The Neden Game.”

I’m more embarrassed to say I’m a fan of ICP than any other guilty pleasure I have. With good reason I think, have you ever seen their fans? They tend to ruin the whole experience by taking it way too seriously. I probably just like them because they make me laugh. I have the juvenile sense of humor that led to belly laughs when I read the headline “Hubble just spotted something massive coming out of Uranus”

It’s hard to shower a group like the Insane Clown Posse with praise. When you come down to it they’re ridiculous, juvenile, misogynistic and impossible to take seriously; just like Donald Trump.

 

 

Marilyn Manson Can Suck His Own Dick


You sicko. Why the hell would you click on that link?

I’ll tell you why: You’ve fallen victim to a great marketing scheme.

This post isn’t actually about Manson’s ability to perform autofellatio. I agree with the idea that someone wouldn’t do it themselves when they could get others to do? But some people are into some strange shit. Remember rule 43: If it exists there’s a fetish for it (and probably half a dozen websites dedicated to this fetish).

Some quick internet research tells me that about 1 percent of males can physically contact their penises with their mouths but only about 0.2 – 0.3 percent can actually perform the act.* I’ve heard Ron Jeremy can do it and has on film, but I’m not looking for that.** I don’t want to make any assumptions about the pale emperor’s length, flexibility or sexual desires (that’s not of my business and this is a free country), but damn that was a great marketing idea.

Sex sells. Even oral sex sells. Even oral sex with yourself sells.

Where did the rumor even begin? You have to wonder if there was a meeting at Interscope records and someone said, “What if we start a rumor you removed a few ribs to suck yourself off?” I imagine a bunch of guys in business suits sitting around a conference table nodding.

This was the 90s equivalent of Ozzy biting the heads off those doves. Or biting the head off that bat. Or snorting that line of army ants. Or pissing on the Alamo.

I think Marilyn Manson realizes there really is no such thing as bad publicity. You would think something like this would prevent people from running out and buying a record, and I’m sure it did stop some, but ultimately a lot of people bought Marilyn Manson albums.^ Even Michael Jackson continued to sell records while being charged with child molestation. He’s the artist on the top-selling album of all time. Being in the news just means people are thinking about you, and they may be thinking, “You know, Thriller was an awesome album.”

This principle used to not extend to politics. Ed Muskie dropped his bid for the Democratic Presidential Nomination amid rumors he was taking an exotic drug. 1972 vice presidential nominee, Thomas Eagleton’s history of mental illness and electroconvulsive therapy is thought to have played a part in George McGovern’s loss. ^*

Of course, this has changed in the past few years. After all, Donald Trump was elected president.

Have you figured out why I didn’t title this post “The Marketing Genius of Marilyn Manson?” Would you have clicked if that was the title?

 


* Although roughly 99.9999856 percent have tried.

**I’ve looked up some weird shit for this site, but I’m drawing a line right there.

^ I own several

^* Of course, Muskie served as Secretary of State under Jimmy Carter for a brief time and Eagleton won re-election to the Senate.

Parents Say The Darndest Things


One of the many, many horrible things about Facebook it that it gives your parents the ability to embarrass you in front of the whole world. I’m often reminded of that feeling when my mom would holler out “I love you” while dropping me off at school for all my friends to hear, only now she does it on the worldwide web.

Every now and again we’ll have an interesting conversation.

Here’s a snip of one where we’re discussing Tragedy: All Metal Tribute To The BeeGees & Beyond.

 

 

Has Anyone Else Noticed…


…A shift in the modern rock radio format?

It seems like when I tune in lately I hear a lot more of Everlast’s “What It’s Like”, Beck’s “Loser” and Nine Inch Nails’ “Closer.” I also hear a lot less Three Days Grace, Shinedown, Breaking Benjamin and other middle-of-the-road modern rock.

I’m not complaining. This is a huge improvement. I actually didn’t listen to much rock radio for a few years. I couldn’t get reception in my car and the morning show sucked, so I switched to a local mix station.

Plus there was that time I almost overdosed on “Kashmir.”

Days of the New S/T (Yellow)


(3 June 1997, Outpost/Geffen)

I started getting into music at a really inopportune time.

The genre of rock that first appealed to me was grunge. I’ve written about the profound effect Soundgarden’s “Black Hole Sun” had on me and it was truly life changing. Before that, I listened to whatever my parents handed down to me. After that, I was eager to set out on my own.

So why was it a horrible time? By the time I heard that song, Kurt Cobain was already gone. Soundgarden broke up just a few years later. Alice in Chains never officially broke up, but they went into hibernation shortly after my conversion. Pearl Jam is the only grunge band who continually released new music, but they put a lot of effort into remaining obscure.

It was almost like I discovered something I really loved and as soon as I did it was stolen from me by the Backstreet Boys and Spice Girls.

When I first heard Days of the New it was a breath of fresh air. There was finally something for me to get excited about. An unwashed, detuned, yarling ray of sunshine.

They never really dominated the airwaves, but “Touch, Peel and Stand” has become a rock radio staple. I’m even hearing that track on the local non-profit station. “Shelf in the Room” still pops up occasionally, but “The Down Town” seems to have faded into the ether.

I always loved how hard this album rocked. You wouldn’t expect a tune like “Freak” from a band with acoustic guitars. It’s a dumb gimmick, but it really helped to create a unique sound and establish a place on the map.

A lot of the other stuff is more experimental. “Face of the Earth” and “Solitude” are a bit too droning for me to get it down off the shelf very often. A few are good, but not really groundbreaking. The highlight for many tracks is the lead guitar work of Todd Whitener.

I was always a much bigger fan of their second album, which I found much more interesting.

Unfortunately, by the third album they were all out of tricks and produced a lackluster effort I didn’t buy. I think this will conclude my Days of the New series, but it won’t be the last time I load these albums on my MP3 player.