Monday, May 18, 2009

music, r.i.p.

Kid Rock’s “All Summer Long” (U.S. release date: April 25, 2008) is the worst song of all time.

You’ve all heard it, even if you haven’t. I’ll attach it here, ‘case you’re feeling particularly masochistic:

What Kid basically does is weld together (is that redundant?) two snoozers, Warren Zevon’s “Werewolves of London” and Lynyrd Skynyrd’s omnipresent “Sweet Home Alabama,” passing off the end result as an original creation. Both riffs are shamelessly plagiarized, but not in a cool, schizophrenic, Beastie Boys/Girl Talk sorta way (sampled briefly, and for a singular desired effect); rather, Kid milks these tunes ‘til the udders chap and crack, offering up nothing from his own teat.

Having stolen his backing music, Kid half-talks/half-sings for a few minutes about women, beer, and youthful debauchery, pausing only for gutless guitar solos and keyboard plunkeries that are exact facsimiles (again…redundant?) of every solo ever.

The resulting mashup represents The Death Of All That Is Well And Good, musically speaking.

Though Kid is the foulest, most odiferous dingleberry (slang. a small clot of dung, as clinging to the hindquarters of an animal) in this great tragedy, a few others deserve mention:

1) Mike E. Clark.

Clark, who co-produced the track, was the wanker who suggested “Werewolves” and “Alabama”--two of the most stale, overplayed songs on classic rock radio--as viable mash options. Wikipedia, Mike Elwood’s one-stop research destination (sue me), tells me Clark’s also produced nine studio albums for the Insane Clown Posse, which is kinda hilarious. Recession casualty Blender (whose print edition is, as of April 2009, defunct) once rated Insane Clown Posse the Worst Band Of All Time. Now, it’d be easy for me to take a shot at Clark for producing the WBOAT, but that’d be lazy, reprehensible blogging on my end, seeing as I’ve never really listened to the Insane Clown Posse. Therefore, I won't hold that against him. Mike E. Clark--ICP or no ICP--is still a jerk, though, for contributing to “All Summer Long” and encouraging such destructive, irresponsible mashupping.

2) The Listening Public.

“All Summer Long” went #1 in a number of countries, which just goes to show that people will listen to A-N-Y-T-H-I-N-G. Seriously, Public, are you really this easy to please? Have you no standards? If this is “good,” what’s “bad?” Where’s the line? Do you not have one? And don’t FOR A SECOND tell me you “like everything,” because you do not. That ain’t human. When we stop discriminating between shite art and real art, the world begins to die, one brain cell at a time.

3) Kid Rock’s High School English Teachers.

Try these lyrics on for size: “And we were trying different things/We were smoking funny things.” Is it legal to rhyme ‘things’ with ‘things?’ Or how ‘bout this: “She was seventeen/And she was more than in-between.” Understand? Me neither.

4) Anthony DeCurtis.

DeCurtis, a contributing editor at Rolling Stone magazine, wrote a review. Here’s his incisive analysis of this seminal, genre-defining track:

(Kid) Rock shows his wistful side, too. "All Summer Long" takes its inspiration from "Night Moves," by Bob Seger (Kid's Michigan idol), mashing up the piano lick from "Werewolves of London" with bits of "Sweet Home Alabama" for a story of sexual awakening. It's stirring stuff.

Stirring stuff? I challenge you, Mr. DeCurtis, to identify even one (1) element of this song that is aurally or intellectually “stirring” on ANY level. Call it listenable, call it harmless, call it light, call it a “feel-good summer track” (ack), but do NOT call it "stirring." Shame on you.

Sorry for being so curmudgeony and embittered, but I’m forced to listen to this damn song every day at Paragon. Perhaps, given this new bit of information, you might forgive me? Paragon’s all about the Top 40. All the time. I hear Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face” literally once an hour. Seeing as I’ve been on the clock for 240 hours since my hiring…


Brandon Christol said...

That's great stuff. I've never understood the appeal of Kid Rock. Doesn't he have a little person in his employ or something? I have nothing against little people, except when it comes to them being employed by musicians for the purpose of stage entertainment.

Also, I just read (on Wikipedia, of course) that Kid Rock has been nominated for five Grammy Awards (I hope and pray that he has failed to win any) and that his music apparently fuses rap, heavy metal, blues rock, southern rock, funk and country music. Seriously?

Dave said...

Well, shit Sherlock, I guess the true stankness of this track caused your quite delayed reaction, which is understandable. Me, I just gawped at the sheer unoriginal awfulness of it--sure, there were mashup type tracks which were good because they took song A and song B and made a new-feeling hybrid "song C" somehow, but this was far from that. A good definition of sentimentality I heard was "being emotional about emotions" and that's the brassy, tawdry truth of this thing...nothing succeeding like the success of lazy radio program directors and the MTV devil-machine. Better a good late rant than never.

Lucas Cometto said...

I'm assuming you were probably going for tongue-in-cheek hyperbole but I wouldn't call it the worst song of all time - though I do agree, it is wretched. I think that illustrious award goes to either The Offspring's "Pretty Fly for a White Guy" or Crazy Town's "Butterfly" - especially the latter when factoring in the music video.

By the way, the Kid Rock video shows a huge confederate flag as stage backdrop for his live show. Has he forgotten that he is from Michigan?!

Cary said...

Only thing I remember about the one time I heard this song was that I was driving. Thus, I was in Kansas. I had no idea it was Kid Rock until now. I believe this song falls squarely into the category of "Butt Rock"