I heard the news this past Monday. Frankly, it was just about every post on my Facebook’s newsfeed for that afternoon, so how could I not have heard it? Wes Craven, one of the many gods of the horror genre, has passed away.

Wes Craven was most well known for A Nightmare on Elm Street. Or at least the first two. I can’t remember if he had anything to do with the other five, but I vaguely remember him commenting something along the lines of everything past 2 sucked. Which could be said of a lot of horror franchises, but I digress.

Nightmare on Elm Street is hands down one of my favorites in the slasher subgenre of horror. Fuck Jason, Freddy was always the man. Even if he was a bit of a cartoon character towards the end.

Wes Craven was responsible for other classics. Most of which have been remade, and suck in comparison to the original. Some of which include The Hills Have Eyes, Last House on the Left, and the Scream series just to name a few.

True, not everything the man gave us was gold. There was Dracula 2000: a movie whose only redeemable quality was the fact it had “Bloodline” by Slayer in the soundtrack. But like I always say, even the greats make a flub every now and then.

It’s a sad state of affairs knowing that horror has lost one of its greats. And knowing the closest thing to a modern horror writing genius is either a guy with a fascination for stapling mouths to butts, or a bunch of random suits cranking out nothing but halfassed ghosty-ghoul flicks that wished they were Paranormal Activity, and it only makes it worse. In fact, I hated Paranormal Activity when everybody else liked it!

You will be missed, Mr. Craven.

Every now and then, I look at songs that I put on my SISOH list for one reason or another, and find myself wondering why I included them. Probably because I hated them a lot more in the past than I do now. Probably because the amount of radio play was significantly higher than it is now. Or maybe the damn song just grew on me. Either way, I tend to retire songs from this list just as often as I add them, and once again, it’s time to honor the ones that somehow found their way off the list.



1. Tonic’s “If You Can Only See”

Tonic was one of those bands that was all over the god damn place back in 1998 or so, but nowadays, the only reason I even know the band exists in the first place is that my mom still likes to pull out that album of theirs every now and then. And come to think of it, I think the only reason I hated Tonic as much as I did back then was because my mom liked them. It was a lot more understandable back then, considering I was about thirteen or fourteen or so, but here in 2015, I’m finding my mom and I have a lot more in common when it comes to taste in music. I joke about refusing to like Red Sun Rising because my mom decided to like them, but that’s really all it is anymore. I’m not one of those elitist indiefags who hates a band for having more than three people in the audience.

Listening to this song for the first time since middle school, and I mean really listening to it, it’s honestly not bad. I’ve definitely heard a lot worse. Really, the only criticism I can come up with off the top of my head is that these guys were pretty much the product of their time. But boy was it a time.


2. Pop Evil’s “Beautiful”

Long time readers of this blog know I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with Pop Evil. For every “Last Man Standing”, there’s a “Boss’ Daughter”. For every “Deal with the Devil”, there’s a “Torn to Pieces”. And for a while, “Beautiful” was looking like something I was going to shit all over.

To make a long-winded rant short, it struck me as another contribution to the “I Was Born This Way” fad Lady Gaga started back in… I want to say 2010? Either way, this Pop Evil tune struck me as being on the pandering side. They wrote “Boss’ Daughter” on the album that came before this one, after all. They’re clearly not beneath appealing to trends, fads, and/or the lowest common denominator.

However, a pretty generous amount of time has passed, and honestly, I don’t hate this song as much now. It kind of helps that “Footsteps” is now the one getting played on loop (although that song isn’t bad either). I don’t know why this song grew on me, but it did.


3. Shinedown’s “Cut the Cord”

Long time readers know that I’ve actually gotten around to inducting this one. Those same readers probably noticed said induction disappeared completely from the blog.

The first reason was that one of my big nagging points was disproven recently. Shinedown actually did come up with a better name for the album than “Five”. I forget what they went with, but I remember thinking it was a lot better.

Also… What can I say? This one also grew on me. The induction of this song is actually one of the times I decided to backtrack, reevaluate my opinion, and after deciding I liked this song, I decided to remove the induction.

Sure, it’s kind of quirky, but it ended up being the most appealing part of the song in the end.


4. DMX

Really, name a song. It doesn’t even matter anymore. A decade and a half later, I can say that songs like “X Gon’ Give It to Ya” don’t even bother me anymore. In fact, I might even go as far as to say DMX was probably the last halfway decent rapper in the genre.

And I’d probably have forgotten all about the guy if Rick and Morty didn’t feature his song as the montage music in a beatdown sequence. It’s no “Get Shwifty”, but a decade later, I’ll take it.


I figure including DMX as a whole will account for the fact this list is pretty short this go around. So there.

As much as I’d like to come up with a clever ending, I have to confess I’ve been sick since Friday. I’ve only just now been up and about under my own power. So I’ll end here.

Oh… My… God. I literally can’t remember the last time I hated a song this much. As much as I bitched about “I Miss the Misery” by Halestorm, at least the concept was listenable. Hell, rewrite the lyrics to something a little less doormatish, and it’d be a great song. This, on the other hand… I… Wow.

I’m not sure if the singer is Mozella, or if that’s the name of the entire group, but for the sake of convenience, and because I have no desire to research shit I hate, I’m just going to assume the former.

I honestly can’t decide if Mozella is a six-year-old boy, or a sixty-year-old woman. Either way, the voice alone is like nails on a fucking chalkboard for me.

Then we get to the actual song. Dear god, the song! I always joke about some songs giving me a serious case of diabetes, but I’m seriously convinced that’s what this song’s goal is.

And yes, I know full well that I’m a metalhead at heart, and the cult of metal is built entirely around hatred and the desire to murder everyone on Earth. I know full well I’m probably the last person on Earth who should be griping about a song that doesn’t even play on his favorite stations.

Except this sucky song has long since transcended radio, and has apparently become the new jingle associated with MacDonalds. Splice in the “I’m Lovin’ it” jingle performed by a bunch of people fucking whistling of all things, and there you go. I’ll admit, I like MacDonalds’ fries every now and then (especially after Windies went and fucked theirs up), but aside from that, I’ve never liked the whole “I’m Lovin’ it” jingle. The fact it’s lasted this long is actually kind of impressive. But I digress.

The fact it’s on a commercial means it plays on EVERYTHING. Radio stations, TV, those skippable ads on Youtube… Okay, maybe not the last one so much, but still, it transcends your typical music genre that can be avoided by not listening to alternative stations anymore.

My god, when did alternative get so bad? I still remember when emo was the big thing in the alternative scene, and I used to think that emo was as bad as it was going to get. Between all the hipsterfags calling themselves “indie” and trying way too hard to be Jack White or The Flaming Lips (both of whom suck out loud anyway), and songs like this, though, I got to say, Simple Plan is really starting to sound pretty listenable by comparison now. How could this happen to me?

I’ll try not to go into any rants, considering I have work in, like, thirty minutes, but yeah, this song… You know, saying it sucks is pretty much an insult to about eighty percent of the songs I’ve put on here. I need a new word for this particular case. 5 Finger Death Punch sucks, but even at their worst, I can still finish out the song. Here, I… I just can’t do it. Not without searching for the nearest icepick, anyway.

This might actualy come as a shock to some of you… And for once, I don’t mean this as a joke. Honestly, I don’t hate Rev Theory. If nothing else, I believe Rev Theory is a solid act, and their music is listenable at worst, and pretty catchy at best.

Even the song I’m covering right now isn’t really all that bad, considering the subject matter. Yeah, it’s a bit “Bad Girlfriend” esque, but compared to a lot of the crap I’ve covered on this blog, it’s a little more subtle. Not a whole lot more subtle, but a little. That, or I’ve finally been desensatised. I’ll believe either one.

The only real problem I have with this song is the insane amount of airplay it gets. Even now, some six years after this album has made its rounds, this is probably their most overplayed song ever. As far as Kansas City radio is concerned lately, it’s the only song they’ve ever written. I’d make an overplaying AC/DC joke here, but man, it isn’t even worth the effort anymore. I am so unbelievably sick of AC/DC thanks to Kansas City, even you don’t think it’s funny anymore.

It’s bad enough Rev Theory’s entire catalogue has been abridged to one song. It’s bad enough that song happens to be their attempt at appealing to the lowest common denominator, or something fairly close to it. Add on the fact that these guys have totally written better songs than this, and it’s just irritating to think about.

I’d much rather hear “Justice”, or “Wicked Wonderland”. Even if those were the only good songs off their second album. I’d rather hear “Far From Over”. I’d rather see what their latest album has to offer. Did they put anything out this year? Fuck if I know. We’re still living in god damn 2009. And aside from George W. Bush finally getting the boot, there is nothing you should be proud of when it comes to 2009. The WII lost its momentum by 2009, the recession was at its worst in 2009, and on a personal note, I quit one of the cushiest jobs I ever had because the back room manager and I hated each other so much.

It’s stuff like this that gets me on these nostalgia rants. Nobody knows how to look forward anymore: we only look back at stuff we had when we were kids. Shit like this is why we’re going to get a fucking Point Break remake this Christmas. It’s why they’re eventually going to remake Big Trouble in Little China. It’s why the most popular cartoon on TV is a fucking 1980’s pony show for seven-year-old girls! And it’s why new material seems to go to the wayside out here so the radio can keep playing shit from the 80s, despite the fact they’re not an 80’s station.

I know the recession has made life suck significantly more.than it did ten years ago. I know Barack Obama turned out not to be 3quite as game changing as he made you believe (frankly you should’ve seen that coming). But that’s no reason to live in the past. You accomplish nothing by living in the past. Except give Happy Maddison the belief a movie like Pixols will actually work.

You know, I’m pretty sure I was talking about something else earlier. Oh well.

the album art for Weird Al's "Mandatory Fun"

I was originally going to do a track-by-track review of this, but I find I don’t really have the patience for those lately. Let alone trying to distinguish how a parody grade differs from a song grade like I did the last couple times I talked about Weird Al on here. Not to mention my computer kept locking up for some reason earlier this afternoon, so fuck it.

It also kind of works against the traditional two-grades system that this album only really has four or five legit parodies, and everything else is a style parody. Don’t quote me on this, but I’m pretty sure that’s the fewest parodies ever featured on a Weird Al album!

It’s safe to say that some parodies are definitely funnier than others. Songs like “Sports Song” and “Tacky” are hilarious, where as songs like “Mission Statement”… In the case of “Mission Statement” at least, I feel like there was effort here, and it was actually not half bad, but the joke kind of falls flat after a while. Not to mention “Word Crimes” only serves to remind me of how lousy I am at this whole spellchecking my blog thing. Shit, man, if more people actually read this thing, maybe I’d make more of an effort.

Of course, there’s the obligatory polka medley. I may not be familiar with everything featured, but it’s always a crowd pleaser.

Also, we have the other, more fifty-fifty tradition of the extremely long song. Sometimes, this song is hilarious from start to finish, and you never really stop and think about how it took about ten minutes to get to the end. IE, Albuquerque. Other times, the song starts out great, but the horse ends up dead somewhere around the three minute mark. IE, “Genius in France”. Sadly, the final track of the album fits in the latter. Though honestly, “Genius in France” was actually worse. Even when the horse was dead, I felt like the momentum from all the forward movement carried the ride a little further. Or something. I don’t know.

All and all, “Mandatory Fun” is a solid Weird Al album. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I recommend it to everyone who’s interested. Some tracks are definitely funnier than others, but really, that’s just the nature of comedy in general.

OVERALL GRADE: B+

I don’t usually cover this genre, but when I do, it’s because the level of suck transcends the bounds of its genre. Also, I’ve been hearing it on a local car commercial, and suddenly have this wild urge to head on over there and fucking suicide bomb it.

This has got to be the single most annoying song I’ve heard all year. And that includes the current 5 Finger Deathpunch song they’re currently piledriving into the ground. At the listeners’ requests, no less, but I digress on that mess.

I know I’m supposed to listen to the song from start to finish, and criticize it in great detail on lyrical gripes, stylistic conflicts, and all that other professional mumbo-jumbo. Frankly, though, I can’t see my way past the first thirty seconds. And believe me, I tried. Oh lord, for the sake of this review, I tried.

That… Saxophone? Riff that more or less dominates the entire song gets to be like nails on a chalkboard in a real hurry. Add on the fact the chorus is essentially some chick repeating over and over again “I’m worth it” gives me reason to believe that the exact opposite is true. On top of the fact it’s repeated to the point I want to kick my fucking radio like the superbowl were on the line, the late Tywin Lannister said it best when he said: “The more you tell people you’re the king, the less they believe you.” Replace KING with WORTH IT, and you see where I’m going with that.

The fact I call this a song is way too generous. It’s ironic that it’s the music for a couple comercials I’ve seen (local or otherwise), because this is less of a song, and more of a jingle. Except instead of wanting to buy a car, or an iPAD, or whatever the commercial happens to be advertising, the more I want to yank my ears off and eat them. Kind of like how the latest batch of anti-smoking PSAs make me want to suddenly take up smoking. Seriously, I’ve been looking into it and everything. I hear pretty good things about Pall Malls.

Beonse is clearly the one who got this latest trend in pop music going. You don’t need an intriguing instrumental, you don’t need good lyrics… Hell, you barely need lyrics altogether! All you need is a chorus that you can repeat over and over again for four straight minutes. And if Beonse didn’t get that trend started, Flo Rida probably did. And if Flo Rida didn’t start that trend… Well, I have no idea who did it, because by default, I tend to avoid the pop genre.

I’d go on, but right now, I need to talk my brain out of shooting itself after trying to listen to this “song”, and trying to come up with more than six paragraphs of “FUCK YOU” for a halfway adequate article.

Psychostick has been one of my favorite bands for a really long time now. One critic I’ve read recently commented that they’re one of those situations where if you get the joke, you’re going to love them, but if you don’t get the joke, they’re going to be the bane of your existence. That same critic would later refer to Heaven Shall Burn’s “Valhalla” as the worst cover of Amon Amarth ever, forgetting entirely that “Valhalla” was a Blind Guardian song, so take that however you might. All I know is I clearly got the joke, and somehow, it’s managed to remain funny.

In 2014, the gods of “humorcore” set out to build their own home studio. This was also the time when stuff like Indiegogo and Kickstarter had taken off like rockets, which wasn’t without controversy (I still know people who complain about how bad an idea Kickstarter is), but ultimately, Psychostick got more than enough, and accomplished their goal. As a reward for our donations, Psychostick… Covered “Reading Rainbow”. And trust me, only a band like Psychostick could get away with something like that.

The then went into their brand new home studio, and gave us “Psychostick IV: Revenge of the Vengeance”. Often shortened to simply “Revenge of the Vengeance”, it’s another track full of heavy metal humor that continues the legacy.

Naturally, I couldn’t get my hands on a copy fast enough. Eventually I did, and I made it my personal goal for that weekend to memorize the album from start to finish. I probably didn’t succeed all that much, but I got the basics.

Of course, I could talk about it, or we could just listen to it and make dumb comments to dumb music. Sort of like that Putipie guy they featured on South Park, only without the Swedish accent. Spin that album!

ALBUM ART: A-

the album art for "Psychostick IV: Revenge of the Vengeance"

TRACK LIST

1. Revenge of the Vengeance
GRADE: N/A
We open with a faux movie trailer that showcases just how dumb things are going to get. Featuring such gems as “Nobody kills my drummer but ME!”. Probably not the most original sketch in the history of comedy, but whatever, it gets the job done.

2. Obey the Beard
GRADE: A+
The first single off the album. Perhaps it’s a little personal bias, being a bearded man myself, but it’s not hard to see why they went with this one. Admittedly, the word beard will be run into the ground for you by the time the song reaches the wedding, but it’s still amusing. Particularly the subtle callback to “BEER!”. It’s loud, it’s heavy, it’s about beards, shut up and take my money.

3. President Rhino
GRADE: B+
I’m pretty sure rhino is what tea party republicans call people they don’t think are republican enough to be republicans. Or maybe that’s rino I’m thinking of. In any case, after the circus that was this year’s opening debate in the republican party, I’d much rather have a rhino for president. Oh yeah, the song is amusing as well. You can see the stampede sequence coming a mile away, but it still cracked me up for some reason.

4. H Flat
5. So Heavy
GRADE: A
I combine the two tracks because “H Flat” leads right into “So Heavy”. Wikipedia insists this is a parody of “Deathcore” (whatever the fuck that is), but it honestly strikes me as more of a parody of the djent genre that’s popular right now. Stuff like Meshuggah, Train Arrival, After the Burial, Animals as Leaders, etc. Either way, this song still cracks me up.

6. Dogs Like Songs
GRADE: B
If I understand the story correctly, they never really intended on this track going anywhere. It was mostly a track they wrote to see if everything in their new studio worked properly. This track had its fifteen minutes of viral fame on Youtube a year ago, and it even got featured on RightThisMinute: yet another TV show in a long line of TV shows dedicated to putting the internet on television. I loved this song in video form, and having had a dog for most of my life, I can guarantee there’s truth in this song. As a song all by itself, it kind of loses its funny, but the fact it even made it on here is aactually impressive. These thing struck me as a B-side for life.

7. Super Legit Teaser #2 Explode
GRADE: N/A
A trailer in the middle of an album? Okay.

8. Quack Kills
GRADE: D+
Well I’ll give them an A for effort. Sadly, this is one I didn’t really find all that funny. I know they were trying, but it really doesn’t make me laugh, and it doesn’t really hold my attention.

9. Blue Screen
GRADE: A-
Clearly the ballad of the album. As a person who very reluctantly uses Windows (if I had the eye sight for it, I’d be using the chromebook right about now), I’m very familiar with this situation. I find it interesting this is the one time they censore the F-word. This song, even if it isn’t the funniest thing ever, has a real brain worm quality to it, and I’ve found myself singing it in the trucks trying to distract my brain from the monotony of unloading.

10. NSFW
GRADE: F
I’m seriously the last person on Earth who should be complaining about profanity, but really? And I thought The Angry Nintendo Nerd burnt me out on the F-word for a long time. I suppose I should be marveling at the fact they’re able to play classical music on metal instruments, sew it all together so expertly, and even got Bill Manspeaker from Green Jelly to do a guest spot, but frankly, I zone out in boredom by the time it gets to said Bill Manspeaker spot.

11. Dangerzone
GRADE: B+
Speaking of cover tunes only Psychostick could probably get away with… I’ve learned over the years you can make anything metal if you try hard enough. Even a song Kenny Loggins wrote that got featured in the single gayest movie ever. I don’t care what anybody says, Top Gun was fucking gay. Not the worst movie I’ve ever seen, but definitely among the gayest.

12. New to the Neighborhood
GRADE: N/A
Wow, we’re really getting all the milage we can out of Bill Manspeaker, aren’t we? Fortunately for these guys, I’m familiar with Green Jelly as well, so I get references like “snaky”. No matter how much I wish I didn’t.

13. Loathe Thy Neighbor
GRADE: B+
I’ve honestly never had this sort of problem with neighbors. Then again, up until that old lady next door moved in, I’d always lived in a neighborhood where everyone pretty much kept to themselves. They all ended up being nice guys, but they didn’t really have any motivation to meet the other neighbors. Either way, this song is still pretty amusing.

14. Awesome
GRADE: C+
It’s amusing enough, I guess. In terms of making a list of things that’s totally awesome isn’t really all that original (especially in this day and age), but they have some amusing stuff in there. IE, monster trucks that mow your lawn. Lord knows I’d want one.

15. Choking Hazard
GRADE: A
They literally took that hoking hazard sign you see in some restaurants, and made a metal song out of it. Now that, right there, is awesome.

16. Fight to the Death
GRADE: A-
It almost seems to pick up directly where “Choking Hazard” left off. At least when you consider both songs started because of pizza. In this case, it’s a fight to the death to see who gets the last slice. In typical Psychostick fashion, it only gets stupider from there.

17. Bruce Campbell
GRADE: A+
The fact it’s about Bruce Motherfucking Campbell is all the reason on earth to award bonus points. The fact it ends up being the most stalkery song in the history of stalker songs (eat your heart out, Sting) doesn’t hurt, either. It’s hands down the single catchiest song on the album.

18. Trick or Treat
GRADE: N/A
Just when you thought the Bill Manspeaker cameo was done…

19. Dimensional Time Portal
20. The Power of Metal Compells You
GRADE: N/A
The skit to end all skits. Join Psychostick as they try to close a dimensional time portal, fight off a horde of haunted panties, and all before the U.S. army nukes the city! How this didn’t end up being an actual movie… Well probably because it’s as stupid as it sounds, but hey, if they can make fucking Bullet to the Head, anything’s possible!

21. Outtakes IV: The Outtakening
GRADE: N/A
It wouldn’t be a Psychostick album if they didn’t share their blooper reel. Though I have to say, this time around was kind of a disappointment. Blooper reels, overall, are what they are. I just kind of hoped for more bloopers, and less auditions and comments from Roarb’s girlfriend sort of moments.

OVERALL GRADE: B+

It’s a pretty beefy track list, but that’s nothing especially new. Frankly, I’m just glad there aren’t any hidden tracks where you have to fast forward through twenty minutes of dead silence or something. All and all, it’s not the best album they’ve ever put out, but it’s far from bad. Definitely worth picking up if you’re a fan.

Needless to say, if you’ve read this blog, you know how I feel about this nostalgia generation. That being said, a lot of my gripes with the whole hipsterfag “old is the new new” nonsense has more to do with entertainment. When it comes to food and drink, on the other hand, I like to think I’m a lot more merciful. Especially when it comes to this.

A can of Surge that might or might not be sideways.

If you never heard of Surge, Odds are you’ve either been living under a rock, or you weren’t a kid between 1996 and 2000. Originally a Swedish soda, Surge ultimately became Coke’s answer to Pepsi’s super caffeinated Mountain Dew. Also, this was back when Mountain Dew only had two flavors as opposed to the fucking rainbow it has now, but that’s a gushfest for another day.

Caffeine is, in all honesty, the only vice I really have. I’ve never smoked, I never did any illegal substances, I don’t gamble, and all the prostitutes work in the Missouri side of KC (as far as I know and care). Not to mention most prostitutes are out of my price range anyway, but I digress. I have had a generous share of alcohol in my time, but aside from hard cider, and Stiegl’s grapefruit rattler, I ended up hating a lot of what I tried. I guess video games are starting to find their way into the addiction category, but anymore, I just don’t have the attention span for a lot of what gaming has to offer. Gone are the days when I could sit down, start a game of Mortal Kombat at 6:00 PM, and finally get tired enough to call it quits somewhere around 3:00 in the morning.

Caffeine, however, is my one true vice. As much as I love energy drinks, though, getting more than two or three in one shopping trip is way out of my price range. As a result, I tend to stick with soda. More often than not, I tend to stick to Pepsi products, but back when Surge was around, I definitely made an exception.

Unfortunately, my enjoyment of this green caffeinated ilixir came at a price. Apparently, there was a rumor going around that Surge caused “testicular shrinkage”, and the fact I drank it as often as I did contributed to a generous amount of teasing in middle school. Then again, anybody who had a Surge can got teased, so it wasn’t exactly exclusive like the gay jokes, the teasing over my fandom of professional wrestling, my fear of wasps… Yeah, I’m genuinely impressed I ended up being friends with some of those assholes. Considering where I went for middle school, I guess it was ultimately a classic case of what The Boondocks calls “negrosynthesis”: the act of forming a group of friends on the grounds that even though you all hate each other, you all hate everyone else around you even more. Except I’m pretty sure we need a new word for that, because at best, only one of us was black, but I digress.

Those rumors, coupled with lackluster sales towards the end (I guess), led to the downfall of Surge. And there was much wailing and nashing of teeth. Until now.

Surge is back, and now it comes in sixteen ounce cans: the size standard for any given energy drink.

The only real downside to this epic comeback, though, is that you can only get it on Amazon. And if you want it cheap, you have to join Amazon Prime. I honestly don’t know why I’ve resisted joining Amazon Prime, beyond the fact there’s got to be some sort of catch to getting all of these bargons and free shipping. Perhaps another monthly fee I can’t afford right now, or a fistful of spam I have to delete every time I tell gmail to put it in the spam folder, but for some reason it still gets through, or something. I don’t know, I just have no interest.

They do have some third party stores on there selling it through Amazon, but it’s a lot pricer. So I guess I’m going to have to saver this twenty-four pack a little more than I normally would. That’s what sucks about transportation taking up most of your weekly pay.

It’s inconvenient, but when the rare occurrence when I actually have sixty bucks (plus shipping) to spare comes around, I’m probably going to use it to indulge in my favorite 90s soda ever. I love this stuff, and it tastes exactly the same as I remember it tasting in 1998. Although like every soda ever, it doesn’t taste as good at room temperature. Yeah, I probably should’ve shown a little patience with that first can and let it refrigerate for a couple hours first. Either way, This is a nostalgia trip I can get behind.

Now if only they’d resurrect Mountain Dew Pitch Black…

I have to admit, when it comes to professional wrestling, Roddy Piper was a wee bit before my time. He did have that stint during the brand extention era where he managed… Somebody, and fuded with a one-legged wrestler and a guy who was totally not Hulk Hogan in a Captain America costume. However, I’m pretty sure even Roddy Piper himself would’ve loved to forget that angle ever happened.

Aside from that, and occasional guest appearances on modern day WWE, I had gotten acquainted with Hot Rod through DVDs and Youtube videos. This was the kind of guy who could read the phone book, and people would tune in every night to listen. Actual wrestling wise… I don’t remember the guy being particularly remarkable, but he was far from terrible. Maybe it’s just my experience, but he was definitely one of those 80s guys. You love to hear him talk, and you look at his wrestling style as a reminder of a simpler time. A time when hardcore was technically still a Japanese thing. A time when a fucking leg drop was considered a finisher move. A time when a guy could wear sequens and pink tights, and somehow be considered super duper straight and macho. The list goes on.

Piper’s Pit is a classic. Often replicated, but the copies were never successful. Although I admit to liking Chris Jericho’s Highlight Reel, even that one just didn’t have the same appeal in the longrun. Only a guy like Piper could ever hope to pull off something as insane as a talkshow in the middle of wrestling.

Sadly, those days are gone now. He’s chewing gum and kicking ass in heaven now. And if heaven works the way I think it does, the angels can rest easy knowing there’s an endless supply of gum.

the album art for Caustic Method's "The Virus"

I first heard of Caustic Method over on 98.9 The Rock’s The Pit: an hour-long block of metal hosted by Fritz. I’m thinking this Fritz is a different Fritz, because I remember a guy named Fritz who hosted 98.9’s afternoon block, and he didn’t sound anything like this guy. Also, I noticed a lot of the stuff I complained about back when Westward was hosting that block doesn’t seem to be a huge problem anymore. In fact, the only real problem I have with The Pit right now is that it’s such a short program! But I guess it’s on six nights a week, so I guess I can forgive that.

Anyway, I heard Caustic Method on The Pit, and I remembered actually liking it. I was going to put it in my Spotify collection… Oh yeah, Spotify apparently replaced Music Unlimitted on Playstation3 back in January. You probably already knew that if you have a Playstation3, but if you didn’t, yeah, I didn’t think it was important enough to mention here till now. Imagine how annoyed I was, knowing I had to rebuild my entire fucking MP3 collection, and learn the layout of Spotify, but that’s a rant for a different day.

I eventually decided to give the album a try. And I got to say, this band is really… Disappointing.

“The Virus”, the title track and album opener, is literally the only memorable song on the entire album. Partly because it’s as catchy as it is, but I’m pretty sure it has a lot more to do with the fact it’s the first song. All I know is literally every other song after that one sounds just like it. I suppose if you listen closely enough, you can distinguish differences between the songs, but when you’re putting it on as background noise while you work on something like I normally do, you’re not going to be paying that kind of attention. As a result, all of these songs sort of moosh together into an unrecognizable hodgepodge of vocals that sound like the guy’s in an aquarium, guitar riffs that assure me somebody really loves that one chord, and lyrics that practically require a lyric sheet to understand.

Admittedly, I’ve liked a lot of bands who are guilty of everything I criticize Caustic Method for. However, even those bands tend to have a little more variety in their sound than Caustic Method seems to. Barring that, the one song everything else sounds like is badass, and nostalgia has a nasty habit of earning instant bonus points sometimes.

Bottom line: this album kinda sucks. I honestly can’t recommend anything off of it. Not even the title track, which is clearly the magnum opus of the album.

OVERALL GRADE: D-