Yeah, cranky ol’ critical me sez “Blow me, Speidi.”
I never thought I’d hear any music that makes the Aqua song “Barbie Girl” and the Gummibär tune “I Am Your Gummi Bear” sound like the Beach Boys’ “God Only Knows” and the Beatles’ “In My Life,” respectively, but I think I’ve finally found a whole album where every cut achieves that lofty objective. It’s called Superficial, and it’s just been released by famewhoring plastic-surgery addict and wannabe popstar Heidi Montag via — according to Apple’s iTunes service — the once-respectable Warner Music Group.
What’s great about listening to and reviewing this record via Apple’s iTunes page is that the songs are only 15 or 20 seconds long, which is to say that I cheated and didn’t listen to the entire album in real time. That would take too long, and life is short, and I’m already giving it much more consideration than it merits just by sitting here typing this. And besides, there are thousands of other albums I could be listening to where I wouldn’t be thinking, “This is 45 or 60 minutes of my life that I will never get back, ever.” With the appropriately titled Superfacial, it is all I think about. So the song snippets are all I need for various reasons, and wouldn’t it be true that Montag and her equally famewhoring Svengali husband, the Jack O’Lantern-headed Spencer Pratt, exercised great care in selecting precisely the correct and most representative song fragments to use to sell this self-basting wonder of the large poultry sciences? I am utterly convinced of that, and thusly in the rightness of my approach.
Let’s start by stating that if the wags at The Onion were trying deliberately to concoct the absolute worst dance-pop album in the history of civilization — human, subhuman or bivalve — I’d like to think they’d have fallen far short of whatever mark Team Speidi set with Superbukkake, a collection of 12 numbers that Montag compared favorably against Michael Jackson’s Thriller in a recent interview. This magnum opus of turboshopping narcissism and malevolent-machine bubblegum swill has emerged straight from some demented auto-tuned cartoon-music hell to reptilian-buttrape your sorry-ass brains but good, and I am certain that I could find plenty of authorities in the scientific community who would warn any being, sentient or otherwise, away from listening to this thing in its entirety, lest they incur severe brain damage and even death. So I’m kinda taking one for the team here.
Appreciate that, motherfuckers.
And now for the particulars. Superfishoil opens with “Look How I’m Doing,” from what I can glean, the first of many perky fuck-yous directed toward former beaus and other “haters.” Something about “Now it’s you who’s sweating and it’s me who’s not concerned.” And then “Look at me how I’m doing” yadda yadda, followed by a robotically percussive “ha ha ha ha” — ripped off from “All Your Base Are Belong to Us” — that, well, I don’t want to invoke any Godwin’s Law nonsense, but there’s a certain Nazi girlfriend vibe at work on this.
It’s followed by “Turn Ya Head,” which posits that “I’m the bitch that you don’t wanna miss, so turn ya head” blah blah meow, something about “aint nothin’ like a show” and, uh, well, fuck, it’s already gettin’ pretty fuckin’ grim between my ears with this aural projectile vomiting, oy vey, crimony. Something about “exhibition,” and I’m sure Spencer Prattfall is seeing dollar signs, imagining he’ll be collecting royalties from every stripper joint in the country, but this pensive jam’s a surefire boner softboiler so I’mina betcha the guids that run some of them poonjoints will be saying no-go with that robot beatweeny shit.
Song three, “Fanatic,” rides on the same satanic dingleberry of a nyah-nyah-nyah melodic arpeggio that seems to infect most of these faux-Scandinavian cybergum doglogs, and apparently it’s the “hit.” “I want you so bad that my hands start to sweat,” robo-Heidi mewls, to which I say, well, at least they’ll be lubricated for the jacking, y’know?
The title cut follows. After a gratuitous and non-sequiturial reference to “breakfast” over Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea-style sonar bloops, Nyarlathobarbie oozes the multi-tracked chorus like a freshly lanced carbuncle, something along the lines of “You say I’m superficial, some call me a bitch, you’re just mad because I’m sexeh, famous and rich, I fuck the latest fashions and I set the latest trends, they say I’m all conceited because they really wanna be me, they say I’m superficial because I’ve got money ….” Ahem. Fuck you, Spiedi. No, wait: Blow me. No, I’m sorry. Just fucking die. Go away. Eat shit. Swallow a stew of dog vomit, termites, rusty nails and scabs from Courtney Love’s snatch, Tila Tequila’s bleached bunghole and Kevin Federline’s dick. Whatever. Just shut the fuck up already.
Next up is the only “explicit” track on Superpooper, “More Is More.” I suppose this is supposed to be some Minnie Mouse “crunk” shit over the robo-crepitation that’s the hallmark of this sonic butt-butter, but it wanks as hard as anything that’s preceded it. “More is more on the dance floor, it’s fucking dance swill, more is more in my arsehole, it’s fucking fuck my fucking fuck,” or something like that, before making a dumbass reference to a “Jack and Coke.” If I were a representative of either Jack Daniel’s or Coca-Cola, I’d be on Team Speidi with the cease-and-desist orders post haste, as no smart corporation wants this kind of negative association.
It’s hard to think that “One More Drink” only marks the halfway point through this graveyard of doomed popular culture, that this miasma of bleeping hellchirp will continue for another six “songs.” This one’s apparently about getting too fucked up in the clubs: “One more drink and I think that I’ll be in love,” Bar-belial drools in Doubly. “I’m getting lost in this liquid high … high … high … high,” and if you’re this bint’s bartender, please toss in a roofie or two — followed by a bouncer with a meathook straight to the goddamn Dumpster. Sorry, but I’m fighting back a vicious wave of impending chunder, and this writing’s not coming easy.
Annie Ross should fucking sue Spiedi for appropriating the song title “Twisted,” which on Superswill isn’t the wonderful hairpin-turn ride on the shrink’s couch made famous by Lambert, Hendricks & Ross — and, later, Joni Mitchell — but instead the same bogus Max Martin junk and Britney-in-a-blender outtakes we’ve been subjected to for this album’s first half. There’s a line about “you want to strangle me” here that, although I am extremely dead-set against violence toward women, children, pets, men and anything else, in the context of this album’s existence it may not be such a bad idea. The “you’re twisted” chorus is the closest thing this album comes to any kind of a “soaring” melody, but the Society for Twisted and Otherwise Perverse and Rabidly Omnisexual People Who Will Do It With Anybody or Thing, Even a Hand Cranked Tonka Truck Cement Mixer Packed With Warmed Liver Bits From the Butcher Shop should sue this bitch for maligning such a good word.
“Hey Boy” sputters along on an assembly-line aerobic jizzercize vibe before Heidi Ho downshifts her vocoder into more trash-talking to random Ed Hardy-wearing douchebaggery: “I don’t wanna be wit’ you, watch this, I’m quittin’ your scene, before you even know, you’re on the D-list, watch me, gettin’ treated like a queen ….” But this ain’t the Rodeo Drive version of The Dozens; it’s more like the time when my daughter was six and got all butthurt at some friends and pouted while making a list: “You’re not coming to my birthday party, and you’re not coming to my birthday party, and you’ll be really really sorry.” But my daughter grew up to be beautiful and smart and level-headed and not insane, while Spiedi quite apparently has stayed mired in early grade-school emotional conundrums.
Golden showers are what came to mind upon hearing the next track, “My Parade,” a loping digital dungheap that Speidi must think is some kind of empowerment anthem for entitled rich celebrity bitches and their dickwhistle svengali colon-nodule hubbies to go shopping and clubbing without being bothered: “Hoi polloi, you suck, but give us your money anyway and worship us, because we are worthy and you quite clearly are not.” “I won’t let you rain on my parade,” Metal Machine Minnie Mouse mews. Beg to differ, Barbiezonker; I’m inviting anyone who’s reading this blog to join me in Beverly Hills or Bel Air or wherever youse vile pieces of subhuman excrement go shopping, and we’ll stage the world’s largest golden shower party, and we’ll even line up some of those stand’n’pee funnel thingees for any ladies who’d like to join us, along with whoever in the science world would like to measure exactly how much piss it will take to drown or otherwise obliterate you, Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt.
Fuck. Three tracks left to go. I’m not sure I have it in me. Oh, well; time to hold my nose and dig in: “Blackout” is what I want to do right now, but duty calls. More ersatz IKEA-meatball disco, with a variation on the old one-six-four-five progression. Since it’s probably the least offensive track on this record so far, the idiots who made this shit buried it toward the end of side two so no one would notice.
Gag. I can do this. “I wanna let my hair down if that’s all right, if that’s OK. I’ll be a blonde tonight” …. Ah, shit. I bet this “I’ll Do It” pantsload ends up on the hit parade of whoever’s squaring away the playlists to fuck with future terra-ists at tomorrow’s Abu Ghraibs and Guantanamos, because that recurring descending synth line is surefire fucking torture when juxtaposed against Minnie Maus’ voice. This shit could be really harmful in the wrong hands. Harmful in any hands. It’s fucked up. So’s my head from subjecting myself to this android jism, and I’m only listening to excerpts. (Which illuminates the major drawback of my only-listen-to-excerpts approach: Apparently this song contains the line “eat my panties off me,” which was not apparent on the Apple iTunes page for this album; one wonders what other fucked-up lyrical constructs I missed.)
Ah, fuck it. At least here’s the last cut, “Love It or Leave It.” I’m reasonably sure that Speidi are right-wing Winky McFuckmepump-, I mean, Palin-worshiping tools, so I was hoping that this would really up the “sieg heil” factor with this record, but as is characteristic of this particular plastic audio-animatronic construct, it’s a big fucking disappointment. I thought we were in for some fucking jingoistic flag-waving bullshit here, but no: Speidi nicked craigslist for the lyrics instead. “Independent woman with massive beef curtains seeks short-term relationship with erect penis of large barnyard animal onstage in Tijuana, you bring the pharmaceuticals,” the Speidi vocorder intones, and I have wood — not because this record has stimulated any tumescence in me at all but because I’m fucking done with this chore and I can do something else.
And it isn’t because I am a hater. No, it’s because I care about music. I write and play music, good music, and I’m too goddamn broke to go into the studio and record one measly EP, much less an entire album. And market it? Forget it. But let’s leave me out of this. I’m pissed off because I can walk down the street in Midtown Sacramento or probably any other city in America, and in a half-hour randomly round up two-dozen genuinely talented musicians whose contributions to the popular-music canon will never see the light of day. And that, my friends, is a goddamn tragedy.
In fact, there’s so much good music being made, and yet these assholes get some kind of deal with Warner Music Group (fuck you, Edgar Bronfman, Jr., and fuck you Lyor Cohen, too, for killing what’s left of the music business with this vile piece of shit), and this plastic-surgery casualty and future Jocelyn Wildenstein monstrosity is on the cover of People magazine, and people are interviewing her about her “album,” and someone is promoting it, and you know these fucks are going to be on the revived corpse of The Tonight Show With Lanternjaw McDoritoshill the first week NBC begins airing that weeknightly colostomy bag.
Now, I’m not advocating that everyone involved with the making and marketing of this grim shithole of an album get the kind of punishment meted out in certain parts of the world to thieves and moral reprobates with big ugly scimitars and other sharp knives, or via ravenously hungry jungle beasts in coliseums filled with drunken yobbos in Tapout, Affliction and Ed Hardy shirts, but if something like that were to happen, I would understand and, to be brutally honest, I would not be terribly upset about it.
So Heidi and Spencer, fuck you for foisting this shit. Seriously: Fuck you. —Jackson Griffith