Greatest Song At This Moment - Monster Magnet's "Negasonic Teenage Warhead"




Dedicated to those songs that I can't stop playing, humming, or thinking about; the 4+ minutes you fall head-over-heels in love with. Past instances have included Weezer's "El Scorcho," Ronnie & The Daytona's "Little G.T.O.", and Tender Box's "Spectacular Spider-man Theme."

There are many perfectly acceptable reasons not to own a single album from a band. Taste counts, naturally, so that's why I don't have any Willie Nelson. Some bands seem to exist best on the radio, therefore Lynyrd Skynyrd will likely never enjoy a home in my collection. There are bands that exist best in movie soundtracks and beer commercials, while others are so incredibly and all-encompassing popular there's no reason to ever play their songs in your home--if a major American city exists that does not have some fashion of "Breakfast with the Beatles" every Sunday, I'd like to hear about it. College could put you off a band, having heard Vs. so many times you don't care to ever explore the memory again, and then sometimes the fans of a band are enough to keep Phish away from your stereo. I have personal problems and strong emotional reactions to the music of U2, Coldplay, Springsteen and many others that have kept those incredibly popular acts away from my house. I, like all of you, just buy what I like, so why in the name of holy Hades would I not own any Monster Magnet?

There's much to love in "Negasonic Teenage Warhead" for the struggling, closeted metal fan. I am not a metal fan by definition, dress code or full playlist disclosure. I am, however, a lover of those who love metal, and that clearly describes Monster Magnet. What's especially wonderful about the Mag's style is how unapologetically METAL it feels. It's like Use Your Illusion never happened, never showed the cracks in the popular metal world's force field. Magnet's music completely believes in itself, and that confidence is all it takes for me to play it over and over. The song fulfills the promise of its ridiculous title and weird, dizzying guitar noise opening, and as you bang along to that "Yeah YEAAAAAAH!" portion, you get the feeling that if Monster Magnet had caught on big, Soundgarden would have breathed a sigh of relief, thinking, "Finally. Now we can just be metal full time."

Understand that it's not that I don't enjoy bands like The Darkness. It's just that I'd prefer to be rocked out without any smirking. Metal has always been held synonymous with "dumbness," and to be fair much of metal is pretty dumb. But the music is also dumb in a elemental, de-evolutionary kind of way. It's dumb in the way that a bear hunting for food is dumb. Deep down, our bones long to feel certain vibrations which produce certain emotions and responses, and for some reason, "smart" lyrics cloud the clout of big drums, screams and power chords. Sometimes I don't want to think for 4 minutes, I just want to yell. And other times I don't want to think or yell for 4 minutes, but I want someone to do it for me. And during these times, if I also happen to want a lot of feedback behind the yelling along with phrases like "Oh, baby, I'm lazy/Oh, baby, introduce me to God!" then it's "Negasonic" to the rescue.

This track represents that great mix of faux-scary imagery and psychedelia that Hendrix perfected. I like to call it "Sci-Fi Blues." It's that kind of "I'm a big man" bragging that deals less with scoring on women (though that's certainly not forgotten) and more with chopping down mountains with the edge of your hand and creating yourself a world today (presumably all in an effort to score with women). Very far from realism, but it's believable and engaging. It's entertaining and imaginative. And the images they concoct loop in my brain with an unwavering steadiness. It demands repetition, and perhaps that's why I do not feel compelled to add more Magnet to my collection. When it comes to playability, the few songs I do have--"Negasonic" especially--are far from dry. Magnet played their way into failure. I'm better for it.

Here's the link to the YouTube video with a disabled Embed feature--is there something I don't understand?

Monster Magnet
MySpace

Posted:
Greatest Song At This Moment - Monster Magnet's "Negasonic Teenage Warhead"