I Shit In the Woods
Descendents - Two Things At Once (SST Records, 1987)
Descendents - Myage
Descendents - I'm Not A Loser
Descendents - I'm Not A Punk
Descendents - Bikeage
Descendents - Hope
Descendents - Mr Bass
Is there a greater message of intent on record than the first ten seconds of 'Myage'? No there isn't. Its stubborn "fuck you" of a bassline smacks you in the face before the razor wire guitar and shotgun drums coming in to finish the job. And to think that bass riff was not only my first
to Descendents but the whole LA punk scene in general; the fertile swamp that would spit out the tar encrusted forms of Black Flag, X... actually why am I firing these off? Just go to Strange Reaction; they have the required two week US punk rock course for a bargain price of $199.99.
I could describe to you every song I've put up for you but it'd ultimately be a waste as (a) you have to hear the rumbling rhythm section to believe them, (b) the lyrics are arcane with Milo brilliantly shouting why he wants to be abear so that he can smell his paramour's "muff", calling jocks "buttfucks" who think life is too tough when daddy won't buy them a new Porsche, and just generally mouthing off that both possesses a bratty chewing gum tongue (sample lyric: "Parents/Why won't they shut up/Parents/They're so fucked up") and a sharp as a safety pin intellect. I'll just say that "Hope" is heartbreakingly beautiful that, after consumption of a barrel of exotic "watermelon sweet" dark rum at the reception, will be played at my post-wedding disco and that "Mr Bass" is so stupid that you can't help but grin imagining it emanating from the fish lips of those irritating Billy Bass.
A quick warning though. I own 'Two Things At Once' which is essentially the classic hardcore of 'Milo Goes To College' (five songs are off that release) and the EP 'Bonus Fat' (just "Mr Bass"). It cost me a bomb but I'd heard all of "Milo..." so thought that it'd be worth it. "My Dad Sucks" and "Mr Bass" (and possible "Hey Hey" if I'm being generous and mildly deaf) are the only half decent tracks off the EP with two efforts under twenty seconds and three awful efforts squirted out before the band's legendary singer, Milo Aukerman, joined. Forget "Bonus Fat" as it'll just give you heartburn... and the clap. However, later efforts by the band, especially 'Everything Sucks' and 'Enjoy!', are well worth checking out if only for the "Hope" retreads, "Wendy" and the majestic "I'm the One".
Apologies, yet again, for the absence of golden nuggets masquerading as music commentary by a man who can barely the play a note (although I do know the entire guitar solos to 'Show Me The Way' by Peter Frampton and 'Bus Stop' by The Hollies). Have been rather busy with the Womad Festival, a review of which is coming when I can be bothered but don't hold your breath as I only saw three bands, my lovely Mum's birthday celebrations, seeing my lovely lady for the first time in three weeks and starting a two week tenure researching NGOs. Phew!
Buy - Descendents - Milo Goes to College
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