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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

POKE POKE, POKE YOUR EYES OUT

John Addams, AKA John Law, frontman for the sadly disbanded X's, and current TV personality was a fairly normal, albeit very funny, high school pal, then during the course of the summer break before our senior year, he found Punk Rock. Not the accepted Punk of the Ramones or the Clash, but serious west-coast Hardcore. John showed up for senior year a changed man, at least in appearance, and in focus. O'Neill was a backwater of American culture in the early eighties. Nobody, well almost nobody, listened to New Wave or Punk. The popular bands were the Police, Led Zepplin, and Genesis, and then there was Metal for the few and proud headbangers. John was a harbinger of the alternative, way ahead of the curve, and he blazed a trail that year that had a great effect on at least Milkyum and myself.

Black Flag and the Circle Jerks were among John's discoveries, but one band, one album, stood head and shoulders above the rest, the Angry Samoans was the band, and 'Back From Samoa' was the record.




'You Stupid Jerk' was the first song John played for me, and I was dumbfounded. At 28 seconds, it was the shortest song I'd ever heard, and within those 28 seconds 'You Stupid Jerk' made it's point, directly, succinctly, perfectly.

"You stupid jerk
I can't take it no more
Your face makes me want to puke
And your mother's a whore
Aaaaaah, you stupid jerk!"

I was transformed. I had to have more. I believe Milkyum and I both went out and bought the record immediately.

'The Ballad of Jerry Curlan' was another favorite. Alternating between a slow quiet section, and a loud fast barrage, 'The Ballad of Jerry Curlan' paints an unlovely portrait of whoever Jerry Curlan is/was.

"Sleeps with midgets, drives a Ferrari and sucks assholes!
Sucks black assholes, is a shithead!"

Apparently he's also a toilet drinking queer.

Probably the finest moment on this brilliant record is 'Light's Out'. A great bouncy tom-tom heavy drum beat propels this corner stone of the Hardcore ethic.


"There's nothing more you can leave behind
So forget about seeing, get into your mind
Everything looks better when the world is black
Grab a fork, make the first attack

Lights out!
Poke poke, poke your eyes out
Lights out!
Put a pen in your hand, poke your eyes out

I can't see too well, what's it all about?
Well I dunno man, did you poke your eyes out?
Sure thing, I did it today, startin' to get hip to the lights out way

Lights out!
Poke poke, poke your eyes out
Lights out!"


'They Saved Hitler's Cock', 'Steak Knife', 'My Old Man's a Fatso', and 'The Todd Killings' are some of the remaining highlights on this landmark record. I know, at least, that it was singular in it's influence on me, as it inspired me to start writing songs.


Milkyum sporting Angry Samoans garb circa 2008

Comments:
I remember that record well. Mathdudew brought it home and it got heavy rotation. He might have picked it up from you or Milkyum.
 
And Ted and the gang called themselves the "ROAD CREW"!!!Still to this day my favorite MOTORHEAD song. And we're still all "cruisin' down the highway, just a fantasy of open space..." ROCK!!!!
 
Ladies and Gents, I believe we just witnessed a drive by from John Law himself.

And yes we are....
 
I found it on CD again... The quality of the recording is much better than most from that time... very clearly defined instruments and vocals... a bit treble-y
 
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