Incense and truculence

Every psychedelic record ever made, according to Lileks:

[T]he 60s aren’t seen as The Past; the 60s are a Timeless Vault of Cultural Touchstones, the apotheosis of Western Civ. Sigh. Well. One of the future Diners will take place in the 60s — don’t ask why, it’ll be explained — and I will use many of the gutbustingly dreadful “psychedelic” records I have collected. It’s obvious from Note One that everyone involved in the effort had so much THC in their system you could dry-cure their phlegm and get a buzz off the resin, but instead of having the loose happy ho-di-hi-dee-ho cheer of a Cab Calloway reefer number, the songs are soaked with Art and Importance and Meaning. You can imagine the band members sitting down to hash out (sorry) the overarching themes of the album, how it should like start with Total Chaos man because those are the times in which we live with like war from the sky, okay, and then we’ll have flutes because flutes are peaceful like doves and my old lady can play that part because she like studied flute, man, in high school. The lyrics are all the same: AND THE KING OF QUEENS SAID TO THE EARTH THE HIEROPHANT SHALL NOW GIVE BIRTH / THE HOODED PRIESTS IN CHAMBERED LAIRS LEERED DOWN UPON THE LADIES FAIR / NEWWWW DAAAAY DAWNNNING!

Five years later it was obsolete.

Which argues forcefully for less-portentous fare. Cue Betty, Veronica, Archie and Jughead Ron Dante and Toni Wine:

Sugar, ah honey honey
You are my candy girl
And you’ve got me wanting you.

Wasn’t a sugar cube, either.





1 comment

  1. Mister Snitch! »

    1 February 2007 · 11:59 am

    What’s charming about ‘bubble gum’ music is (a) that it didn’t pretend to be something it’s not, and (b) it didn’t require premedication to be appreciated.

    Cab Calloway, on the other hand, could replicate something of a ‘reefer-madness’ experience for anyone’s enjoyment. That’s quite different from requiring the audience to be very stoned – and very young. Only the very young and the very stoned can believe themselves to be the all-seeing saviors of the Universe. (This insight, BTW, is very handy for explaining about 90% of the comments at Daily Kos.)

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