Lipstick Traces

Trashman visits the best little escort service in Phoenix

Hagar the Horrible's vain macho-jive only solidified VH's permanent residency in the land of submediocrity. And now watch as witless wonder and ex-Extreme warbler Gary Cherone's poetic pretensions and vapid vocal pyrotechnics take bros Halen and accompanying fat bass guy to even lower ebbs.

Plenty of hairy-palmed noodling goes unrequited in the songs on VH III, which are really just Cherone's hammy Hagaresque screeches placed over the top of silly rock jams (and any idiot knows jam is for toast and the stuff found between one's toes). Nary a ditty chimes in under five minutes, save for two musical "interludes," and none has the staying power to remain head-logged longer than the song's elapsed time. And prolonging the monotony is the snooze-fest imagery littering self-indulgent lyrics like this homophobic couplet: "But what I do know I know feels only natural/I'm just a hound-toothed heterosexual."

Even an Eddie Van Halen-crooned number--his first on record--makes an unwanted appearance here, which could have the myth-buying masses frantically returning to the resale bins for those obsolete Hagar the Horrible Halen turds they traded in not too long ago.

Greatest Hits Live
(Columbia Records)
Well, if it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then is it a duck?

Uh, no. Well, yes. That is, if ya discount doe-eyed duck-voxed Steve Perry, white-trash heartthrob of yesteryear and current reunion-tour specialist who, along with the other millionaire zeroes who make up the reunited feces-faced Journey, is takin' his refuse and reselling it, only this time "live," and packaged in fourth-grade ding-ding-and-spam-sandwich-combo vomit cover art complete with the shameless stadium shot on the back with almighty purple smoke and heavenly lights with thousands of adoring fans, many of whom look just like my neighbors.

Journey fans were not my friends in school. Of course, I never had any friends in school 'cause the Ramones never sold more than 10 records anyway, and besides, my face was a mass of festering thingies which gave way to bigger purple horrors which had my pillow case stuck to my face on countless mornings, and nobody gives a flying fuckall about somebody who looks like that.

The jocks, cheerleaders, teachers, parents, computer dorks and Juniors driving BMWs all adored Journey, and I despised them all. Journey was the soundtrack to a long, slow, failed suicide where suburbia was prison and everybody became his old man and nobody understood the value and necessity of a well-timed FUCK YOU that could ruin your teen life.

Journey was deceit and romanticism at its most dangerous, where reality was masked by a wistful longing for the unattainable, where heart-tugging and chutzpah-marketing translated into vast financial holdings. And Journey got away with murder.

Journey symbolized the wretched suburbia of the '80s by placing wrong songs at the wrong time in the right place. The members had nothing and made bank by unloading it as something. And now they're fat, 50 and back. Joy.

Contact Bill Blake at his online address:

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