Thursday, June 11, 2009
The Ten Best:The Antidote:
It's time. Balls to the wall.
SNEAK #1. As with many of you probably, ennui crept up on me. I once vowed that I would never stop watching MTV. Until they stopped playing music and thought it was better programming to feature sluts and thugs boring us with their nonstop boring vuilgarity. The pioneering FM rock radio station I grew up with became a 'classic rock' station staffed by deejays older than me and locked in some time warp that still regarded the Beatles White Album as news. Rock and roll itself went away, replaced by whimpering New Age mama's boys who twanged their guitars in a state of continual miserable self-pity. I stopped listening altogether. I didn't realize the whole show was designed to put us to sleep so that we wouldn't notice we were being gelded by a pop culture that once proclaimed our vitality and now accompanies our slow transformation to sitzenpissers.
Think about it. Do you watch American Idol? Do you feel sorry for the runner-up whose sweet voice got lost in the gossip about his boy-meets-boy sex life? Yeah, well, I feel sorry for him too, but I'm getting tired of the fact that every pop star has some whining grievance against somebody that plays in the background of every performance and recording. Kanye West is unhappy about something? Do tell. Rihanna is back with her beater boyfriend? Green Day has another new album that sounds exactly like all their previous self-absorbed bleats? Usher is HOT and just possibly maybe heterosexual?? Michael Jackson is taking time out from recording his creepy new album ("Peter Pan was Racially Ambiguous too") to get his collapsing face sucked out through his pedophile ass and reinstalled with a Saudi-Arabian power washer. TMI. Some other Billboard chart topper is just out of rehab and singing about how his dread of uncontrolled carbon dioxide has mysteriously changed his sexual orientation to inflatable chickens made of genetically altered bamboo, one of which he is marrying in a $3 million ceremony in Jamaica. And Melissa Etheridge is doing boff-o business at county fairs all over the country behind her new double album about cunnilingus. [APPLAUSE.]
We've been had, ladies and gentlemen. They convinced us to stop listening to music. We lost the beat, the fire, the instinctive urge to leap off the couch and make that air guitar wail. The soap opera, the mediocrity, the tedium, the soporific mosquito-izing of the soundtrack of our lives (unless we committed the equally egregious sin of bunkering inside iPod ear buds that sealed us off from one another) withered our gonads away.
We need them now. The government is coming for us. They want to tell us what to do. About everything. And we're letting them do it. It's gotta stop.
The time has come for a hard rock revival. Yes, it's too much to hope that today's growling millennial nancy-boys will jump-start the music trend we need. But we have a secret weapon. YouTube and full-stereo computers. We can fight back. And if we fight long enough and loud enough at all hours of the day and night, it's just possible the teenage boys in high school will remember that ordinary citizens don't have to ask the government (or even snarky teenage girls) for permission to have testicles.
Yes. I know exactly what I'm saying. For the first time since the sixties, music can be politically meaningful again. Not with respect to issues. But with respect to
F R E E D O M ! ! !
Without further ado, the top ten hard rock videos of all time. (Yeah, go ahead and fight me about it. That's the whole point.) (And, yes, it's true I could have filled the whole list with one band. But I didn't) (Did you know I invented the double parenthetical?) (And now I've invented the quadruple parenthetical. Rock on!)
10. The Stones: "Out of Control"
Sorry. They have to be on the list. They're the Alpha and Omega of rock.
9. Pat Benatar: "Hit Me with your Best Shot."
She had that attitude. We need that attitude.
8. The Clash: "Straight to Hell"
Anger. We BETTER have it. Here's the studio version. It throbs with rage.
7. Joan Jett & the Blackhearts: "I Love Rock'n'Roll."
Is this really consistent with Obama's Rodney King message? No.
6. Patti Smith: "Because the Night"
Don't even start with me. There are "hetero" molls. Patti's one.
5. Aerosmith: "Dream On."
Mostly, "live" means "less." Exceptions: Mick and Stevie. And, yeah,
we wanted "Walk This Way," but it was blocked. Can you dream on?
4. Billy Idol: "Rebel Yell."
3. AC/DC: "Highway to Hell"
Scottish trash. We love'em.
2. Guns 'n' Roses: Sweet Child O' Mine
Slash Trash. If you can't get off the couch for this one, you're dead.
1. Stones: "Satisfaction" (1969)
I warned you. The Alpha and Omega. And I am NOT satisfied.
Have at it, kids. Welcome back to the fight for life. Who does Obama listen to? Not these guys. That's one for our side.
We'll close with a few that aren't on the list only because they're "blocked by request." You Got to Fight for your Right to Parteee. Plus this one. (Call them blogger earmarks. Yeah, that's the ticket.)
Do it, my children. Jump off the couch. Fight. Rock. Out. Bruce isn't the only one who was Born in the USA and is now spitting mad. He doesn't have a monopoly on rage.