Friday, December 21, 2007


As a psychotic music lover, I have no problems at all listening to particular songs or albums millions upon millions of times. In fact, when I find a new favorite album, I’ll tend to listen to it and nothing else.

When I first picked up Dream Theater’s "Scenes From a Memory," I listened to it (and it alone) for two weeks straight. Just recently, a friend burned me a copy of Coheed and Cambria’s "IV," which I listened to for about a week solid.

People usually call me on that when I start listing off the reasons why I hate, hate, fucking hate Christmas music.

First, because, honestly, how many times can you hear Frosty the Goddamn Snowman before you want to destroy everything you love? I can only handle about 1/16 of Frosty before I want to turn into Dexter Morgan.

Second, because (with a few exceptions) Christmas songs are either A) written for children (Frosty, Rudolph, any song about a judgmental, voyeuristic fat man) or B) written to glorify Jesus. Children’s music and church music are notoriously banal, boring, and insipid, written exclusively to be easily memorized and easily sung by large groups of people who, for the most part, wouldn’t know real music if it hit them in the head with a wrench.

Third, I just don’t understand the weird, seasonal attachment to Christmas music. Good music is good all the time, not just from November to New Years. So, unless you drive around in the middle of the summer listening to "Jingle Bells," don't tell me you like fucking Christmas music.

The only Christmas song I can dig on is "O Holy Night," because, if you disregard the meaning of the song, you’re left with an eerie, almost evil-sounding number with a beautiful chorus. I still sing it every time it comes on.

But, for people like me, there are Christmas songs available that really get you into the spirit of things...


This is sheer genius. A song about Santa Claus going batshit insane (probably because he heard "Rudolph" seventy-five too many times), tearing the North Pole to the ground, and slaying all the elves and reindeer.

I know a lot of people seem to have an irrational hatred of Weird Al (I’ve always loved the guy), but give the song a chance. It’s well done, "Christmas-y," and very funny.


"From his beard to his boots,
He was covered with ammo.
Like a big, fat, drunk,
Disgruntled Yuletide Rambo.
And he smiled as he said,
With a twinkle in his eye,
‘Merry Christmas to all!
Now you’re all gonna die!’"


Ahh, the Dan Band. Probably the most fun live show in the history of music and the only band on the planet who can get a room full of drunken guys to sing Wilson Phillips and songs from "Flashdance." I saw them last year and they opened the gig by showing the video for "Rock You Hard," and it damn-near brought the house down before the band even took the stage.


"Have a very merry motherfucking Christmas!"

"I’m gonna get naughty,
All over your body,
Come sit on Santa’s lap!"


Honestly, how could the best Christmas song of all time be anything else?

It’s got a mean-ass guitar riff, and some vintage Tap lyrics. It might even be my all-time favorite Tap song, right up there with "Bitch School" and "Sex Farm."


All of them. Although I’m a bit partial to...

"There’s someone up the chimney hole,
And Satan is his name!"

If anyone can think of other fucked up Christmas songs, please, do tell...

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


As some of you may know, the incomparable Penn Jillette (and the lovely and talented Michael Goudeau) had a brilliant, hilarious, and perpetually interesting radio show a while back. It ended abruptly in early March of this year but, (hopefully) as both Penn and Goudeau have claimed, shall return in some form sooner than we imagine (hopefully hopefully).

Periodically, I go on a "Penn Binge," where I run through the archives and listen to my favorite or random shows. Here are a few, with commentary...

I, myself, pray to the Dark Lord Satan every day (as all atheists should) that Penn Radio will come back RIGHT FUCKING NOW. Even though Satan has yet to come through, we can thank His Infernal Majesty for the existence of

I discovered the show (which was available almost every day on the Enter-Tubes) and got hooked immediately. Not only are Penn and Goudeau hilarious, skeptical, and gleefully blasphemous, but they have (i.e. "Had") one of the most free-wheeling, random, and surprising radio shows ever produced.

In any given show, they bounce from topic to topic (or bounce through various sub-topics), often with a light-hearted yet still scathingly realistic view of whatever is being discussed. But, no matter what happens, there is no Bull’s *clap* Hit present.

It’s damn-near impossible to pick out a "best" show; you’ll have to search through the archives to find your personal favorite. But it is possible (and easy) to pick a few great shows out of the hat and showcase them.

One of the best shows features a surprise guest in
Trey Parker, he of the ridiculously (and rightfully so) popular "South Park" TV show. There’s lots of insightful stuff about the show, not just including the technical side, but commenting on the satirist and activist nature of the writing. Because, if you haven’t realized it yet, "South Park," for all the surreal and over-the-top content, is, by far and away, one of the most important, topical, and intellectually noble shows ever produced.

Trey talking about the "Cartoon Wars" episode (with the "controversial" depiction of Muhammad), and the previous depiction of Muhammad in the "Super Best Friends" episode, is very, very awesome, as is the discussion of Isaac Hayes and the whole Scientology/"Trapped in the Closet" flap.

And they talk a bit of shit about Bill "King Media Whore" Donohue. Can’t go wrong with that. Should have been more, though, in my opinion. That guy is a douche amongst douches and deserves a full show where they talk about what a complete fucking prick he is.

Another great show is the one featuring Robert Lancaster, the much-needed mastermind behind
the best Sylvia Browne site on the web.

this show, Penn, Goudeau, and Lancaster dissect the Sylvia Browne phenomenon and proceed to tear it down through evidence. Of course, they touch on her "Greatest Misses," being Shawn Hornbeck, Opal Jennings, and the West Virginia miners saga. To sum it all up, Sylvia Browne is a disgusting bitch.

Finally, Penn dedicated every Tuesday to monkeys.


Because monkeys kick ass. They’re like humans, except they throw feces, hump each other, and, otherwise, act like humans.

Here is a
random "Monkey Tuesday!" with none other than the Man Himself, Gilbert Gottfried, and a great interview with Regis. (The Regis.) Is it just me or, is Regis as half-crazy as you can get?

(Da-da-da-da-dum! Da-da-da-da-dum!)

Oh, yeah, and they have
Randi in the studio...

One of the best radio shows ever recorded.

Dawkins on the horn...

A very close second to the Randi episode...