By Benjamin Leatherman
By Glenn BurnSilver
By Glenn BurnSilver
By Troy Farah
By Roger Calamaio
By Mark Deming
By Glenn BurnSilver
By Brian Palmer
No One Cares, Frank Sinatra (1957)
Chilling, Thrilling Sounds of the Haunted House (1964)
70's Hits: Great Hits of the Decade, Volume 1, original artists
Let's Be Together Today, Mister Rogers (date unknown)
Thriller, Michael Jackson (1982)
Six Feet Deep, Gravediggaz (1994)
That a man can score as many broads as Sinatra and still not be happy. That a story can be told simply by providing sounds and letting one's imagination fill in the blanks. Hey, that's not so scary!
"You Light Up My Life," "The Candy Man" and "Daddy Don't You Walk So Fast" all on one album--that's not petrifying enough for you?
That a man could remove all outward traces of aggression, rage and desire from his psyche just so he can be around kids.
Ditto, but scratch off that bit about desire.
Bruthas in the 'hood are choppin' and reapin'. Daaaaamn!
Unsettling Cover Art
The World's Greatest Saloon Singer sits at a bar unrecognized while swinging lovers--who probably screw to his records--swirl around him, oblivious to his pain.
This cover sports a haunted house at a tilted angle to show that things are not right with the world. Yikes.
On a mournful, black background in yellow lettering are ten of the ghastliest song titles ever committed to magnetic tape. Everything in this picture, from Mister Rogers' teeth to the backdrop, is the same putrid tan color as his sweater.
Michael's nose and chin on this cover are no longer living skin tissue! Prince Rakeem has gold fangs with "RZA" stamped on them, which makes his mouth look like some kind of evil typewriter.
In "Why Try to Change Me Now?", Frank goes for a walk to the corner and ends up in Spain! The most unexplainable thing is that millions of kids bought a damn sound-effects album!
Four of these ten wretched songs spent a combined 20 weeks at the top of the charts. Talk about mysterious!
In "What Do You Do," Mister Rogers allows that "a girl can be someday a lady, and a boy can be someday a man." What about RuPaul?
Michael insists that Billie Jean is not his lover, yet a baby exists bearing his likeness. Last time that happened was in a manger.
Who actually does Prince Rakeem's teeth--a dentist, a jeweler or an engraver?!
In "None but the Lonely Heart," Frank sings, "My senses feel a burning fire devour me." Work of the devil--or that cheap dago red?
Debby Boone claimed "You Light Up My Life" reflected how she felt about the Lord. So what was that bit about "it can't be wrong if it feels right"? Oh, no, Debby! You hung your cross upside down!
In "The Clown in Me," Fred sounds like the next John Wayne Gacy: "Sometimes I'm happy with myself and put the clown up on the shelf/It's only when I feel let down I might be scared into a clown." In the title track, Michael not only raises the dead but gets near-dead Vincent Price to speak in jive tongues!
In "Nowhere to Run," Prince Rakeem complains about having the devil hanging from his testicles. In "Diary of a Madman," the Grym Reaper insists he's been possessed since he was semen. "They took a sonogram and saw that I had demons."
The first album cover on which Frank is shown wearing a hat indoors. Horror, thy name is pattern baldness!
Chilling, Thrilling displays the first-ever parental-advisory label: "Not intended for impressionable children from 3 to 8."
The scariest thing about this first collection of sludge is that it led to a second! Unless there's a Jonathan Richman album we don't know about, this is the first album to have a song about a chair manufacturer ("I'm the Man Who Manufactures").
"The (Doggone) Girl Is Mine" was the first time most fans heard Michael speak since his voice changed. Remember this horror-filled exchange with Paul McCartney: "Paul, I think I told you, I'm a lover, not a fighter"? Eek!!
"1-800-Suicide" is the first song to combine hip-hop with handy suicide suggestions--19 of 'em! Even Final Exit never recommended that you "act like Richard Pryor, set your balls on fire!" Spooky Sexual Practices
Sex? Frank's so despondent here that not even a swinging session with Mr. Hand will get the little Frankie to stand at attention.
Play "Screams and Groans," then "Drips and Splashes," and draw your own conclusion.
Exile wants to "Kiss You All Over," Bobby Vinton's singing Polish love songs and the Bellamy Brothers say "Let Your Love Flow." But if it's orgasms you want, "The Candy Man" has a shit load of chocolate.
On the title track, Fred Rogers admits he gets bored when he's alone. "There's only so much you can do by yourself with a ball, a doll and a sword." Hide the toy chest!
On "P.Y.T.," the pretty young thing Jackson's making overtures to sounds suspiciously like a chipmunk. What would Bubbles the chimp say?
Crack is no Afro-disiac. At best, you're "schemin' on a blowjob" from a fellow basehead. Like the man says, "Yo!! I'm better off with my hand!"
Ugly Parting Wish
Francis Albert's living hell--an outstanding bar tab and no one to buy him another round.
The album closes with "Things in Space." But where are the Martian monsters? They're in your house! Run! Run!
May we never live through the Seventies again. Ugly wish, indeed. The last track, "Peace and Quiet," is a plea from Mister Rogers for more of the same. Like his neighborhood isn't already an aboveground crypt!
Imagine the diabolical laughter spewing from Brooke Shields when Michael whimpered "You Are the Lady of My Life" to her. Toe-curling!
We're all gonna die--but some of us gonna get pushed into an oncoming subway train!