Tuesday, August 23, 2011

51. L7, "Wargasm" (1992)


L7 really gets it going on the Bricks Are Heavy album and this where it starts, a seething rant whose full intent is clear from the neologism of its title forward. It's January 1991 and all the glory is in front of us. Looking over my list, I guess there's still one song ahead that could be called antiwar, so maybe this isn't technically my favorite of all, but it does put me back in the times, the glorious Iraq War, the good Iraq War, and I think the bristling contempt of it is just right, sounded furiously from inside a noisy maelstrom and drowned out almost perfectly. You can just barely hear it if you turn your head right. The big attack is a real feature, of course—guitars at the ready, ho! Throbbing—they've sure got the sense for metal. But I guess you have to call this is grunge, because it's also deeply sarcastic like punk-rock and gets political about things and impolite and biting when it does so: "Tie a yellow ribbon 'round the amputee / Masturbate watch it on TV / Crocodile tears for the refugee / Wargasm, wargasm one, two, three." Guitar solo. "The Pentagon know how to turn us on," etc. Then one of them starts shrieking like a Yoko Ono sample is introduced. Howzat? Yet it fits perfectly, really works. Never sounded better, in fact. Caterwauling away, with this big bottom going on under it. Spittin' it out, in roaring waves. There's another song on that album that I love for all the menace in its first line and the way it's bitten off: "My diet pill has just worn off." They can be really funny, but here they're just pissed and somehow, the two combine into inspired lines and attitudes and a whale of a fucking time.


  1. She doesn't start 'shrieking' like Yoko Ono - that's a sample of Yoko One live in the 70's. Great album.