Tales From the Megaplex
Count Vaseline is about as punk rock as anything I’ve heard in ages. The Count tells his stories in short bursts of guitar skronk and attitude. The longest track on the album is just over 2 minutes long, with most being around a minute and a half. I appreciate that. It’s like the Minutemen getting to the point, saying what they needed to say and moving on to the next idea.
“Hail, Hail, John Cale” takes a definitive stance on who was the heart of the Velvet Underground. I don’t really think Lou Reed died wishing he were John Cale, but it’s fun hearing the case made. I like both Reed and Cale, but I’ve always been more partial to Cale’s solo work. I am amused by lines like “One was the unproclaimed Ayatollah of New York, the other from the Welsh valleys did hail.” There is also a great White Light/White Heat guitar freak out in the song. Not bad for a minute and a half.
“What is Your Name? Where Are You From? What Are You On?” Is a simple set up. The Count imagines Lawrence of Arabia on acid and Tom of Finland on ketamine. It’s simple, silly and it works. “Song For Tom” on the other hand is a tragic, cautionary tale. “Tom was a very good man but he died alone,” the Count sings. “Don’t forget to love your neighbor. Don’t forget to love yourself,” is the take away from Tom’s lonely passing. That’s pretty good advice.