Wednesday, April 1, 2009

April Fools: Songs on the goofy side of rock and metal

In honor of April Fool's Day, I thought I'd take a look at some of those goofy songs that bands often throw on a CD just for giggles. Maybe you love them, maybe you hate them or maybe they're a guilty pleasure that you really don't want people to know you like. Here's a look at a few of my favorites. This list is by no stretch of the imagination comprehensive. It's done completely off the top of my head, and I'm sure I've missed even a few that I enjoy. Please feel free to add your own.

AC/DC, "Big Balls" (Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, 1976). This one's become such a classic that it hardly belongs on this list. I've never known anyone who didn't laugh at this (barely) double entendre goof.

Aerosmith, "Big Ten-Inch Record" (Toys in the Attic, 1975). As with the first one on the list, this tune that draws its humor from the pregnant pause is a classic. But I still love it, and I've got to get Aerosmith on here.

Annihilator, "Kraf Dinners" (Never, Neverland, 1990). Sandwiched between heavy subject matter like environmental responsibility and dark tunes about insanity is this fun ode to mac and cheese. Somehow, it works.

Anthrax, "Startin' Up a Posse" (Attack of the Killer Bs, 1991). Anthrax has a few tunes that could fit on this list, but none quite as good as this ditty about Tipper Gore and the PMRC that manages to work in a thrash version of the "Bonanza" theme.

Body Count, "KKK Bitch" (Body Count, 1992). Body Count often used humor to make serious points, but this tune poking fun at racists is way over the top.

Bruce Dickinson, "Dive, Dive, Dive" (Tattooed Millionaire, 1990). I'd always thought of Bruce Dickinson as very proper and dignified until this song, filled with bad maritime sex puns, and it's companion piece "Zulu Lulu" arrived on his first solo record.

Guns 'n' Roses, "I Used to Love Her" (G'n'R Lies, 1990). You can't go wrong with Guns 'n' Roses' three-chord tongue-in-cheek ballad about a relationship gone wrong.

Infectious Grooves, "You Lie and Yo Breath Stank" (The Plague that Makes Your Booty Move, 1991). I'm not sure that Infectious Grooves belongs here because so many of their songs were tongue-in-cheek. Lyrically, this one is pretty bad, but for some reason I still love it.

Nuclear Assault, "Poetic Justice" (Something Wicked, 1993). While the killer title track was the centerpiece of this record, the band's take on a famous song from "The Sound of Music" has certainly given me my share of snickers over the years.

Pride & Glory, "I Hate Your Guts" (Pride & Glory, 1994). Basically Zakk Wylde's answer to GnR's "I Used to Love You," it covers similar ground with a southern twang.

Scatterbrain, "Don't Call Me Dude" (Here Comes Trouble, 1990). Like Infectious Grooves, I'm not sure if Scatterbrain belongs here because humor was their norm. But I can't resist this ode to a guy down on his luck with some serious thrash licks to back up the humor.

Suicidal Tendencies, "Institutionalized" (Suicidal Tendencies, 1983). "All I wanted was a Pepsi."

Tesla, "Tommy's Down Home" (Five Man Acoustical Jam, 1990). Having grown up around people like the one portrayed in the song, this tune always brings a smile to my face.

Van Halen, "Happy Trails" (Diver Down, 1982). Van Halen has a few tunes to choose from as well, including "Big Bad Bill" from this same record, but for some reason I've always had a special connection with their cover of "Happy Trails." ... bombadida, bombadida ...

Wrathchild America, "I Ain't Drunk" (3-D, 1991). I spent many nights tipping a glass to this cover of Albert Collins' classic drinking song.

Dweezil Zappa, "I Want a Yacht" (Havin' a Bad Day, 1986). While I love his cover of his dad's "My Guitar Wants to Kill Your Mama," this tune featuring the screams of comedian Bobcat Godthwait is just too bizarre to not make the list.

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