Canadian Mistaken

This record proves once and for all that the 80s sucked everywhere, even in Canada. Actually, there's not much difference between Canada and the country I live in just to it's south, except they're probably better than us in a lot of ways. They've got better health care, and they're not a bunch of war pig fucks. Other than that, we're aboot the same. haha, I made a funny Canada joke.

But seriously, the 80s pretty much sucked, didn't they? Sure, I'm old and by the time all popular music sounded as though it were recorded on the moon, I was like, "Where's the fuckin' Who, man? Where's Led Zeppelin?". At the time, truly great 80s rock like the Replacements, REM, The Smiths and Sonic Youth escaped me because I was too busy bitchin' and moanin' to open my ears to new music. Finally by about the mid-80s I was so sick of the 60s and 70s, I forced myself to check into some new music, and thank goodness I did. So while it's unfair to say "the 80s sucked" when there were bands like Black Flag and Hüsker Dü out there, there was an inordinate amount of bad music that permeated daily life. It got so bad that by 1987, '88, I felt like something had to give, and it finally did.

This record falls right into that late 80s "wtf is going wrong here?" category. It's the ultimate pay-off product of one of those radio station talent search contest thingies, where local (Toronto in this case) bands clamor for big buck studio time in the futile hope that this could be their big break. Ten bands made it on to this platter, and the inner sleeve lists about 40 "finalists" that didn't quite make it, but at least we get to laugh at their band names (Big Huge People, Cyan, They're Electric Kids, Unexplored Ether) twenty years later.

:: Nobody And The Clones - Give A Massage ::

And so out of the 10 bands on the record, I've selected 3 tracks, and unfortunately not because they're so good you simply must hear them. No, you see I'm still bent on proving my point that the 80s sucked, and here's why: The first track by Nobody and The Clones is just kind of a big "huh?". I'll bet many of those 40 bands that didn't make it felt much better once they heard this ode to rubbin' it in and rubbin' in on.

:: Stiletto Fetish - Penthouse B ::

With "Penthouse B" by Stiletto Fetish, we begin to recognize a pattern that may explain the criteria used in selecting the tracks that made it onto this album: Morality. In the Clones' "Give A Massage" we're told we don't need no drugs, bad sex or things that give us hangovers as long as we're willing to give, which is better than receiving anyway. Stiletto Fetish don't want to do no lines, and they don't spread for bread. I wonder if they'd like a nice massage? Utimately, I'm beginning to wonder if Nancy Reagan had the same effect north of the border as she did here.

:: Heimlich Maneuver - In My Head ::

"In My Head" by Heimlich Maneuver is the closest thing to straight ahead rock on this CFNY FM 102 local talent sampler, and it proves that the 80s were not all bad. Just mostly.

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Tuesday, September 12, 2006 8:29:00 PM

Are you kidding me? The 80s were the greatest era of music ever; especially the obscure 80s    

Friday, October 27, 2006 12:18:00 PM

I have, not a word of a lie, been looking for Penthouse B ever since I first heard it on campus radio back in 1990 or so.

Never, ever, even had a sniff of it (er, so to speak). If not for a friend who also knew of it, I would have consigned it as an imaginary echo.

And here it is. Exactly as I remember it.

Good god, thanks.

Now, I need another 16 year quest.    

Sunday, January 21, 2007 7:21:00 PM

i just listened to heimlich maneuver's track three times in a row. it's really amazing how parts of that song (especially the vocals) are incredibly similar to many, many songs by canadian band 54-40. weird. great that they're originally from the hammer (hamilton - the armpit of ontario), too. they certainly weren't a reasonable follow-up to simply saucer or teenage head.

thanks for sharing!    

Wednesday, May 28, 2008 9:02:00 PM

Just stumbled on this page. Glad to see that my band (Heimlich Maneuver) fell into the "not all bad" category. Too funny.

For more Heimlich Maneuver "not all bad" tracks, check out:    

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