SKY SAXON & THE SEEDS: Red Planet: CD

…i am really not a Seedsologist—i’ll cop to owning a copy of Web of Sound and, of course, familiarity with the hits (“Pushing Too Hard,” “No Escape,” etc.), but that’s pretty much it—so i surely hope i didn’t wind up getting assigned this record in the hopes that i had this vast wealth of information that i could just strew hither ‘n’ yon. I mean, i respect them ‘60s punk bands, and i even respect the ‘60s drug culture, and i especially respect a full-time cartoon nut like Sky Saxon, because, quite frankly, That Is What I Want To Be When I Grow Up—but, ultimately, although i was drooling and wearing a diaper for much of the portion of the ‘60s i was alive in, i was able to form some pretty strong opinions regarding the Popular Music Of The Time: Painted in broad strokes, my feeling always was “Bubblegum Good, Psychedelic Bad.” And, of course, i realize that these are the thoughts of an infant—but, then again, so what? I’m pretty sure i had a better-formed idea of what was “cool” or “uncool” at age three or four than most dopes i meet in the street will ever have in their entire adult lives. But, of course, i also realize that my utopian dream at age four (owning a jukebox and a lot of quarters so i could dance with my cousins all night to “Yummy Yummy Yummy” and “Bang-Shang-A-Lang”) doesn’t really work in a world where you have to beat people in the head just to be allowed to survive, so, uhhh… what’s my point? My point, i guess, is that i cannot be reasonably expected to be overly excited about a new Seeds album. Were this a new Ohio Express or Archies or Lancelot Link & The Evolution Revolution or Banana Splits record, i’d be fucking pissing my pants (note: i have been toilet trained in the interim). I am, as regards the late ‘60s, somewhat of a counter-revolutionary, and i maintain my right to this position by the fact that i actually remember a fair amount of data about the four years and four months i existed in that decade, so there. ANYWAY. About The Seeds, yes? How does this brain-purge involve The Seeds? Well, see, the thing about The Seeds is that they’ve obviously got the one foot in That Which Man Would Call The ‘60s Punk, which is advantageous and good. On the other hand—or, more correctly, foot—they’ve also got one foot in That Which Might Be Psychedelic, which can occasionally be problematic. Now, “psychedelic” music, to me, is great, in theory. If you have, say, The Byrds giving you this occasional lush sonic tapestry to enjoy, that’s cool. If you have, say, the Bees giving you total brain-rot like “Voices Green and Purple,” that’s cool too. However, you take a case like the Jefferson Airplane, on the other hand, and… well… generally not my bag, in a big way. By dint of relatively crude instrumentation and production (blast that Farfisa and yell! Fuck yes!), The Seeds sidestep an immediate chuck into The Pit Of Psychedelic Hell—but, yet, i can’t help but be edgy, feeling the band is eternally treading seductively on the periphery of a genre i do not and will not approve of. Realistically, anyone like three years older or younger than myself would probably have a totally different opinion on these matters, but that is pure speculation on my part. Very nice silkscreened cover art. I take back half those things i just said about your mothers! BEST SONG: “Let Her Sting” BEST SONG TITLE: “Let Her Sting,” although that seems grossly unfair FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: The Seeds’ keyboard player is now the guy from the Finks/Bomboras/etc… and the new bass player used to be in Decry?!??!??!??!?!?!!!

 –norb (Rogue)