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Lunch tonight was: Carnitas, carnne asada and pollo tacos from the place by the Harley Davidson store. Washed down with a half litre Mexican coke!

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Alex V. Cook is an author, journalist and music critic living Baton Rouge, LA. His work has appeared in The Believer, The Oxford American, DownBeat, Paste Magazine, Hails and Horns and The Wire, and his first collection of essays Darkness, Racket and Twang: Essential Listening from the Fringes of Popular and Unpopular Culture was published by Side Cartel in 2006.

He is the music editor for, editor for Sweet Tooth, and a frequent contributor to 225 Magazine, OffBeat and Country Roads.

He is a founding contributor to the Badasses of Contemporary Composition blog.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Black Sabbath: Thank You and Fuck You

I find myself in need of some simplistic, brutal "fuck you" music right about now, for reasons that are too hopelessly tangled to uncoil, and while my hard drive is brimming with smouldering Norwegian death-howls, its the lost sons of Birmingham I turn to in this hour of need. Sabbath's menace was always found in the undercurrent, the blues-rock of the late Sixties slowed down to the speed of rubberneckers, analyzing a particularly grizzly car wreck. There are more blatant displays of the Desire for Anihilation out there, to be sure, (The Stooges "Search and Destroy" being the prime example) but the lazy whip crack of early Black Sabbath, flailing wildly at the dim future factory-infested England held before them does it for me in my dark hour of need.

Thanks, Ozzy, for all you've done for us: giving voice to that sick, empty pit in our young stomachs, for being a cartoon image of faux-Satanic menace in my formative years, giving the parents a little taste of danger when they were paying attention, and for ultimately winning in the end, growing past ones melodrama to show everyone that flowers bloom out of shit, that there is hope for all us damaged goods out there. Of all the TV dads we've tried to latch onto in the years, Ozzy is the most believable, attainable, and respectful out there. I would've paid closer attention back in jr. high and snuck off to Monsters of Rock like I wanted to had I known ol' Ozz would still come in handy 20 years down the road.

Black Sabbath - "Behind the Wall of Sleep"

and while I'm at it, here's a completely different impassioned "fuck me" bearing the same name by New Jersey's finest

The Smithereens - "Behind the Wall of Sleep"


Anonymous Venal said...

well said.


10:52 AM  

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