I’d like to close out the punk run of this series of posts with an appropriately short, nasty, and abrasive little entry.
When The Septic Bobs keeled over, it was only after crapping in the pumpkin-orange punchbowl with “Halloween 666.” That album was the sixth (not the six hundred sixty-sixth) in a series of Frankenstein-and-Wolfman-celebrating albums, that came out almost every year between 1995 and 200x.* This final emission was the top of the heap in every sense – which is not to say that it was particularly great. But I had finely honed all the things I liked about the previous Halloween albums, and used them to do some stabbin’. In your EAR. Which is quite painful.
One thing I always enjoyed about writing a Halloween song was using a traditional theme as a metaphor for something else. Hence “Frankenstein” from the first album was a metaphor for transforming the self through rebuilding; five albums later, with “Halloween 666,” I had a songs about wearing masks and haunted houses that were really about self-loathing and failed marriages. (God, I suck.) Writing songs like this is what we call being a mature artist. But then again, I also had wading pool-deep tunes like the one about Johnny Unitas returning as a zombie to win a playoff game, even though that would most assuredly violate one or another NFL rule. Probably something from this section. That song was called “Zombie Unitas,” in case you were wondering, and the obvious had escaped you thanks to your stupid, stupid mind.
(Oh, you insulting alien bastards! We will defeat your Plan 9 yet!)
Also in the wading pool part of the complex was this song, which played a big role in why I “disbanded” the Bobs. This really is everything I wanted to say and do, boiled down to one minute and three seconds of pseudo-tuneful hollering and sneering. Others might expect the “ultimate” Septic Bobs song to accomplish more – to be AMBITIOUS in some way, to have a chorus or a guitar solo or some kind of emotional resonance or thematic depth. But no – in fact, fuck no – it’s really quite the opposite. It was only by stripping away all those things that I could really get to the core (“heart” is too nice of a word) of what punk rock meant to me. No choruses, no guitar solos, no resonance and no depth; instead, a slightly heaping minute of screaming about torturing a girlfriend to death.** But in a catchy way.
Before we get to the song, I want to present the context. This is “Re-animator,” my favorite horror movie. It’s based on a series of Lovecraft stories, and I should mention that “Halloween 666” opens with two songs in a row about Lovecraftian subjects.
(By the way, I LOVE the narrator for this trailer. I wonder if he cried himself to sleep while clutching his trailer narration cash the night after recording this? He sounds mostly unengaged, with subdued shades of morally offended.)
Not only that, the cover art (crappily and hastily drawn by yours truly) renders a scene from “Re-animator” in cartoon monster form. Here’s my “art” – enjoy the crapulence:
And to provide the musical context (we were talking about music, weren’t we? I kinda forgot), here’s NOFX playing a very energetic and snotty version of “Linoleum” live:
So – punk [NOFX] + horror movies [Re-animator] =
And here, for your moral edification, are the lyrics:
Beat your head in with a bat, I will
I wanna be that kind of guy,
the kind of guy you can rely upon
Just ask me what you want
Now ram it up your cunt? Oh god
that’s fuckin gross, but if you say to
I’ll do anything but enslave you
unless you really insist
Maybe it’s time that I…
pistol-whipped your precious skull
into oblivion, and all
your screamin won’t mean shit to me
with tweezers, and pliers
Oh my love, it’s so divine
I’m glad you’re mine
For our next entry, Diane, we’ll be moving past punk rock and torture, and onward to the greener and mellower pastures of adulthood. In other words, we’ll be leaving behind the youth music and getting into adult contempo crap. Thanks for bearing with me thus far, old-timer.
* Brutal honesty time: all the years that have happened since I graduated from college are a total blur. “Halloween 666” was recorded in either 2001 or 2002… I think.
** Looking back at it now, this could easily be perceived as a horribly misogynistic song. All I can say is this: if you don’t see the irony and think I meant any of this seriously, you’re probably not my target demographic anyway. So… shrug.
+ Hysterectomy, Wikipedia tells us, means “surgical removal of the uterus.” In this context, we’re doing it with tweezers and pliers. I like to think about that; it’s neat.