Butthole Surfers - Hairway To Steven LP

$16.98

Label: Latino Bugger Veil

Our Review:

Few bands have managed as perfect an opening career salvo as Texas drug addled psychedelic noise rock weirdos the Butthole Surfers. Sure lots of bands have pulled off a perfect debut. And of those, a handful somehow avoided the sophomore slump, and even then, a few managed to make a third record as good as the first two, but by record four, we're talking a very select few. One of those rare bands would indeed be the Butthole Surfers. Their first four records are pretty much untouchable, their 1984 debut, Psychic… Powerless… Another Man's Sac, 1986's Rembrandt Pussyhorse, Locust Abortion Technician from 1987, and finally 1988's Hairway To Steven. Each a very different, very dementedly fucked up beast, but each a stunning milestone in knuckle dragging outsider psychedelic drug rock.

Hairway To Steven, was the group's last truly great record, and truly great it is. Worth the price of admission alone for the opener "Jimi", with its thick, buzzy guitar, killer twisted psychedelic leads, garbled processed vocals, and Paul Leary's guitar playing is like a Texas drug rock burn out Hendrix. There's also the classic "I Saw An X-Ray Of A Girl Passing Gas", which sounds a little like R.E.M. after a bad batch of meth. There's the stream of consciousness WTF weirdness of "John E. Smoke", with some of Gibby's best lyrics by far, and more of Leary's amazing guitar playing, and of course "Backass" which is another track that displays the band as maybe way more accomplished than they pretend not to be, turning in a moody psychedelic dirge that's hypnotic and hauntingly lovely. And like the other Butthole records, that's only the tip of the iceberg.