This summer has unexpectedly been the summer of my inner adolescent. Between the X-Men and Superman movies and reality metal shows like Supergroup on VH1 and, beginning tonight, Rock Star: Supernova (featuring ex-members of Motley Crüe, Metallica, and Guns n Roses!), pretty much everything that comprised my teenage universe has been neatly repackaged for me. And I’ve been eating it up like a bag of candy—65% enjoyment, 25% guilt, 10% illness.
As regular readers know, I’ve already gone on about X-Men, and I reveled in VH1’s “Metal Month” in May, plus a smattering of Axl Rose and other nerd pursuits here and there. In fact I was tempted to write about the car accident that is Supergroup (and the meta-car accident that is the Supergroup Post-Show—have you seen this? Immediately after the episode airs, the band spends thirty minutes summarizing it for you, in case Sebastian Bach’s desire to go running or Evan Seinfeld’s porny open marriage was too complex for you to understand), but I began to feel that maybe I was reveling in this shit a little too much. That 25% guilt was gaining steam.
With the debut of the second season of CBS’s Rock Star this week (which, to me, looks way more interesting than last year’s, which was a bit of a car accident itself), to extend the candy metaphor, I can’t help but love it but I’m getting really, really nauseous.
Coincidentally, I was chatting with an old high school friend of mine last week and we were reminiscing about the year we finally grew out of metal and, eagerly but clumsily, fell in love with punk and indie rock. Where the new Anthrax album just seemed tired, discovering an oddity like the Jesus Lizard was utter epiphany. Soon enough I was trading in Slayer for Slint. Likewise X-Men grew stale while existentialism grabbed firm hold of me; I boxed up my comics and devoured Camus instead.
Thirteen or so years later, I’m hovering around thirty and feeding my inner adolescent with all the nostalgia it can gorge itself on. But midway through this summer I feel my inner adolescent growing up, just as it did in the real time of the 1990s. Hopefully pop culture will grow up with me. Next season on Rock Star? Let’s see Duane Denison (Jesus Lizard) on guitar, Doug Scharin (Codeine, Rex) on drums, and Bob Weston (Shellac) on bass. Or better yet, remember the cryptic liner notes on Slint’s Spiderland?
interested female vocalists write
1864 douglas blvd. louisville, ky. 40205
Memo to CBS: you could be responsible for the final and ultimate realization of one of the unfulfilled rock prophesies of our era!
Okay, okay. I know a reformed Slint would not equal millions of viewers... let a boy dream. At the very least I'd like to see these nostalgia shows move into the grunge era. You could get a decent bit of mileage out of mixing up some members of Soundgarden, Faith No More, Smashing Pumpkins and, I don't know, Henry Rollins or Sean Lennon. Whatever. My inner adolescent has grown tired of headbanging and is ready to secede to the Alternative Nation.
But keep the comic book movies coming. I'm still a sucker for those.