When Your Heart's In The Air With Jesus...
:: Michael Elley - Highway To Jesus ::
You know what doesn't sound like gospel, country, and especially gospel country? The wholly unholy comingling of slap-bass and recorder. Our jaws dropped when we first heard this one. Y'see, most of this album is extremely unremarkable. Dull, even. Then you hear this, which starts out like a Dead Milkmen song, and very quickly breaks into the silliest proselytizing ever. This came out in 1980, which means Michael Elley probably hadn't heard any Dead Kennedys, and definitely hadn't heard The Minutemen. Hell, it's nearly 2006 and he probably still hasn't. Yet I hear all these quirky 80's punk sounds in this song. He comes precariously close to sounding like the Christian Jello Biafra. I can almost feel the presence of Mike Watt. A really uncool Mike Watt. I swear this could have been on one of those SST comps, if the lyrics had the complete opposite message. The title could stay, because Highway To Jesus already sounds smart-ass to me. In the SST version, there would be a pileup in the shape of a cross caused by a trucker named Judas, or the pickup of a hitchhiking young succubus. Or maybe Highway To Jesus would just be unsavory slang for part of the human body. But I digress. I digress on purpose, because there's nothing else to really talk about here. Well, except the real reason I bought this. This is why I bought this:
A fucking cowboy shooting a laser from his eye. On the back of a Gospel album. I figured that for that dollar I was spending, at the very least I'd have a picture of a cowboy shooting a laser out of his evil, pitch black, soulless eye. This is why the record album is so much better than the CD. Album sucks? Hey -- no biggie, you've got a picture of an optical-laser-shooting cowboy! I bet you don't.