Monday, 6 October 2008

Full Fat To Go

This may well be available elsewhere out there in Blog-Land, which does kind of go against my own manifesto for this site.
But as it is one of my all time favourite pieces of post-punk music, my blog would not really be 'mine' if omitted.

And who knows! I may be able to introduce this wonderful recording to those who may have never encountered it.
Coz if you haven't, and you like post-punk, post-hardcore, industrial or sludge, then boy, do you need this in your life.

Undoubtedly the greatest of all Jello Biafra's collaborative projects - and he's collaborated with many - the delivery, lyrics and music create such a wonderfully compatible mix, the band is akin to that old couple who still walk hand in hand down the street: sublime soul-mates; the manifestation of a perfect marriage.

If it were any other genre, this band would be considered a Supergroup. All the members were associated with outfits considered to be by many the best in their class: the Dead Kennedys, Ministry, Revolting Cocks, 1,000 Homo DJs, Nine Inch Nails, and that's without mentioning the dozens of other side-projects and collaborations each of the members were and still are associated with.

And the expectancy and apprehension associated with this fusion of greats definitely lived up to all expectations.
Not only do we hear Biafra's superbly savage and satirical witticisms totally enhanced by the brilliance of the music; but the e.p. moves from hardcore/industrial ('The Power of Lard'), to thugish post-punk ('Hellfudge'), into what I believe is the conception and birth of Sludge metal ('Time to Melt').

'The Power of Lard' is both rousing and anthemic. A call to arms for those who find the clinging, turgid, stodgy mentality of bourgeois mainstream life comparable to atherosclerosis or coronary heart disease.

'The Power of Lard' is Asprin for the ears. Warfarin in sound.
Statins for the soul!

Play it very, very loud. You'll get it.

'Hellfudge' is a return to one of Biafra's favourite targets: hypocrisy and corruption associated with evangelical Christianity, especially the television version.

The song could be seen as an attack on one preacher in particular; that being Jimmy Swaggart; and although not mentioned in the track, the sex scandal at the heart of the song; the line 'All rock music is pornography', which is a direct quote from Swaggart; and the final clue, just in case you're not convinced comes with the lines:

'There's a whole Lotta Shakin' goin' on in here
But don't tell my cousin OK?
Yeeh!
Great Balls o' Fire'.

And if you haven't made the connection yet, Jimmy Swaggart was indeed first cousin of 'The Killer', or to quote the man himself, and I always love a bit of tmesis: 'Jerry Lee Motherfucking Lewis'.

What appears on the flip side is something entirely different.
Not something that one can easily attribute to the Kennedys, Ministry or Rev' Co'.

None of those bands had previously been associated with anything quite like 'Time to Melt'; a thirty-one minute grinding piece of sludge metal, which as stated earlier: I really do believe is a track that is the first of its kind; a track that inspired and gave birth to a whole new genre.

I know the Melvins (and possibly a few other U.S. bands that could be mentioned) were around and active at this time (The Power of Lard was released in 89), but nobody else was sounding as sludgy and dirty as this; and certainly not for thirty-one minutes.
And check out some of that dissonant feedback Jourgensen creates as the track progresses.
It sounds like an encroaching army of chattering demonic insects.

Reading through the lyrics of 'Time to Melt' now, also reminds me that there's nothing original to be found within the lyrics of the new waves of emo and screamo bands.
Biafra's words could readily be used in any number of band's 'new releases'.

Except one may become very aware of a sudden change in quality, right?

Lard - The Power of Lard (1989)

Tracks:
The Power of Lard
Hellfudge
Time to Melt

Ripped from vinyl @ 256kbs

This product is totally endorsed by me.
So if you ain't got it:
get it here

It'll change your life forever, and hey, it never did me no harm.
Grrr!

1 comment:

Psycho Cat said...

Another great "oldie" I had forgotten about. Thanks! Also, I have nno idea what happened to the digital meltdown network. I can only imagine that the lack of activity rendered the project not worth Zero_II's time.? He hasn't let me know anything, though I continue to post over at the digital meltdown blog. He has done some recent posts there, so we know he is still around. Perhaps he will post an update as too the fate of the project.? You can contact me anytime at: longboardsteratgmaildotcom.