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Bucky Fellini

The Dead Milkmen

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Album Review

A step up from the good but not great Eat Your Paisley, Bucky Fellini begins with a parody of the bandmember introductions from Sweet's "Ballroom Blitz" and raises another fun and funny stink. The most entertaining and ridiculous thing the band ever did takes deserved center stage — "Instant Club Hit (You'll Dance to Anything)." Consisting of drum machine fills, intentionally basic basslines and Rodney Anonymous' instantly recognizable sneer, it's a hilarious, all-too-knowing rip on '80s new wave / dance culture. With lines like "Oh, baby, look at you, don't you look like Siouxsie Sioux" and "'I met Andy Warhol at a really chic party/Blow it out your hair, dude, cuz you work at Hardee's!" it's hilarity personified (and bizarrely enough won them an appearance on an MTV dance show, where they encouraged a bout of stage diving). Nothing equals that song's sublime satire, but the Milkmen still stir things up with a touch more fire and sass than before. Naming a song "I Am the Walrus" that has absolutely nothing to do with the Beatles song proves that the jokers are in full effect. The goofy, country-tinged "Watching Scotty Die," features Joe Jack Talcum's surprisingly good Dobro playing. In honor of the album's Texas recording locale, some native sons are honored via covers. Daniel Johnston's "Rocketship" keeps its charm in a full-band arrangement, while the LeRoi Brothers' "Big Time Operator" gets an appropriate rave-up that also trashes Lone Star blowhards like Stevie Ray Vaughn and Charlie Sexton. Add in songs trashing Graceland and titles like "(Theme From) Blood Orgy of the Atomic Fern," and the result is another successful batch of silliness.

Biography

Formed: 1983 in Philadelphia, PA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

During their heyday in the late '80s, the Dead Milkmen led a crop of college-radio jokesters that also included Mojo Nixon, King Missile, and Too Much Joy, among others. Playing a basic, happily amateurish brand of punk-pop, the Milkmen skewered popular culture, indie trend-followers, and the intellectually challenged, while frequently indulging their taste for tastelessness. Critics alternately praised and dismissed the band as geeky, juvenile wiseasses — virtually every review seemed to contain...
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Bucky Fellini, The Dead Milkmen
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