The Dirt

So Mötley Cruë made the movie of their story, and it’s on Netflix. It’s called The Dirt, and it is about the band’s life told through the voices of its members. This is standard modern narrative. You have a narrator or narrators who know more than the characters, and who know where the story ends up, cracking wise while moving the story along quickly. And, if you like naked women, eye poppingly. I spent all of watching The Dirt wishing I was sitting in my TV room with Steve Moyer, not because he admired the Cruë, but because he loved tales of rock ‘n’ roll life, and this is definitely that. I’m ambivalent. The scenes of debauchery are debauched, but are mostly offensive because the premise seems skewed. What is misogyny is played for the cutes. The naked ladies are jokes, at least until the lady leaves, at which point love is lost. Boo hoo, and boys are sad. This isn’t a sophisticated look at the way the world works, but the movie feels like a somewhat accurate look at the adolescent rock life, and the way it changes with rehab and maturity. It way underplays the tunes, which you would think a movie produced by the band would try to promote. But they’re all sober now, and maybe better understand their weird moment in rock history. Steve, how do you feel about this one? I watched the whole thing, even though Vince Neil looked like Wayne or Garth from Wayne’s World (I forget which one), which bothered me a lot. You may not have. No link to a Cruë song. I never paid attention to them, but I did watch their movie. Weird.

Parquet Courts, Wide Awake

Tom wrote about these guys from Texas living in Brooklyn nearly four years ago, and posted a pretty good song that I don’t remember hearing. This is the title track to Parquet Courts new album, which the Dean of Rock Critics gave an A and said: “Their aural gestalt will never be on a Stones-Ramones level, but those are the comparisons—in an appalling year when too many g-g-b-d types have chosen to gaze inward, I doubt we’ll hear a greater album.” I gather I’m immune to the irony. Or ironies.

Amuse Bouche: Pop Pandering

This little vid is so right on about how I feel about how Spirit in the Sky and that “I got a friend in Jesus” and other crap stuck in a pop song. Hardly spiritual like Beethoven or Eno or Grieg’s Piano Concerto in A Minor which don’t even have lyrics.

But, even more than reflecting Spirit in the Sky, this clip says so how we are as a stupid culture of sheep.

Bad Music: “The Bottom Ten”

My Frankie Avalon post sparked some responses and ideas, and I thought, “shit, maybe a list of the worst songs ever is kind of fun.” I realize Dave Berry set the precedent, but times change and we all have our likes and dislikes, so I am suggesting we assemble a “Bottom 10.”

That is, if the best ten songs ever are the Top 10, then logically the worst are going to be the Bottom 10 by default, right?

In his response, Steve asked if we did this, if there should be criteria, and while at first I dismissed that to myself, I did reconsider. As in does Macarena belong on the same list as The Last Kiss (J. Frank Wilson, not Pearl Jam) and does that belong on the same list as You Light Up My Life (brilliantly suggested by my wife Diane as I was listing mine) which is just flat out bad?

As in, do cheesey maudlin, wildly stupid and popular in the “pet rock” sense, and fucking awful deserve to be lumped together, or does each own its own genre? And, are there more, I wonder?

My idea is to get some simple parms, and publish lists and maybe even keep a spreadsheet to determine an actual readers worst.

It not only would be fun, but we might see some funny stuff tumble our of our collective.

Thoughts readers? Comment below, or hit me up at lawr@creativesports.com with thoughts under the subject “Remnants Bottom 10.” (Note that this is not new territory for the Renmants, who forged to the awful three years ago.)

And, to show my heart is in the wrong place, I leave you with this:

Bad Songs: Frankie Avalon, “Bobby Sox to Stockings”

My Spotify does a cool thing: gives little subset genre playlists of my main giant playlist so if I just want to sample some new wave and no Motown, both of which are on the bigger collection, I can hear just that.

The other day I felt nostalgic, so I put on list that includes Buddy Holly and Gene Vincent and Del Shannon. I am not sure how Spotify associated this horrible Frankie Avalon song with those great artists, but it did, and the song I had forgotten came back to haunt.

This “music” represents the absolute worst of what people imagine of those wonderful nostalgic 50’s, when mainstream radio sucked, racism was rote, and despite the separation of church and state, we were forced to eat fucking fishsticks at the school cafeteria every Friday.

Aside from being a joke, though, the intro to this song from American Bandstand is cool because you can see the Top 10 at the time behind Frankie and Dick Clark. Other than that, the only thing worse than those Friday fishsticks is this song.

Turbonegro Must Be Destroyed

Belated concert review from Monday, 6/27:

Everything started out well enough. I love Underground Arts. But I knew the Turbonegro set list had changed. You see, one of the greatest regrets of my life is having never seen the real Turbonegro with Hank Von Helvete. The last time I saw them (and the first time I saw them) a few years ago in New York, it was their comeback tour, with new singer Tony “The Duke Of Nothing” Sylvester. For that tour, they were more or less a Hank tribute band, playing all the household name Turbonegro hits. It wasn’t perfect, but it was pretty good.

Since then, Turbonegro has changed. Their new sound is way, way too poppy. The set list two Mondays ago was dominated by new stuff and Party Animals, my personal choice as the worst Hank Turbonegro album. And only one song from Ass Cobra, arguably the best hardcore album ever. That’s a toughie.

But nothing could prepare me for the very long encore. Each member of the band was introduced to an extended mostly-awful cover song. I remember Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting (the best), Van Halen’s Jump, and The Heat Is On (the worst – forget who does that and I’m not gonna go look either).

It was like a nightmare.

Finally, the band took a bow and left the stage to. . .I couldn’t make this up. . .We Built This City.

Typing this out, it seems like they were simply playing some over-the-top “let’s offend the audience as best we can” routine. If it was that, I’m really glad, but I don’t think so.

In any case, I’m completely through with Turbonegro until I have conclusive evidence things have gone back to semi-normal.

Here’s a video, of their latest crappy song that I posted a few weeks ago. You can see my fuzzy head in the bottom right corner, starting at about the 45 second mark.

Take The Coachella Challenge

Look at the 2016 Coachella lineup and tell me who you’d be interested in seeing. Feel free to tell others about bands they should be interested in seeing.

Here’s my list:

1) Guns ‘N’ Roses – I’m slightly curious.

2) The Damned – Not sure what The Damned is anymore, what kind of music they’re playing or what they represent.

There you have it. I’d happily pay $20 to see GnR in a Philly club if a friend asked me to go along. $15 for the same scenario with The Damned.

P.S. – I didn’t post any links or a nice Coachella picture because I don’t give a shit.