The Dandy Warhols – “STYGGO”
The acronymic (yes, I did just use that word) meaning of this song title is becoming my mantra: Some Things You Gotta Get Over. And especially during this time of crazed election crap-assery, I’ve been searching for something to latch onto or breathe through or what have you. More than that, though, this tune—the second single from the Dandy Warhols Distortland out on April 8—has the perfect blend of incite and calm. The Dandy Warhols caught me with just that kind of two-facedness back in 1995 when I thought, hey they’re just a bunch of hippies from Portland, but then their music hit me like a torpedo out of the tube running straight’n’hot. I got sunk for sure.
On “STYGGO” a Reed-walk-on-the-wild-side chorus of “do-do-do”s weaves in and out of lyrical wisdom like “Everybody’s sailing on the ship that they sell ya, High ho, it’s all the things they don’t tell ya,” and it’s nothing short of toe-tapping riot material. Not because the beat’s going to incite you given Courtney, Zia, Peter and Brent’s steady as she goes undercurrent, or even that Courtney’s vocals are going to scream you into submission. No, it’s all a quiet and powerful storm. The way you can’t stop humming it until it’s inside of you and you don’t understand exactly why you’re putting on that “feel the Bern” t-shirt and shaggy white wig while heading out of the house to make some noise about making things right—even if some things you gotta get over.
The low-fi yet crisp quality comes courtesy of Distortland being recorded in Courtney’s basement on an 80s cassette recorder, then taken into the studio and finished by Jim Lowe whose worked with Taylor Swift and Beyoncé. This, to me, just points out how world’s can collide without any need for snob-shit-ery (take that, Schoolhouse Rock). Or, as Courtney puts it, this release is “organized like a pop record but still has the sonic garbage in there.” Having made it through almost four years since the last Dandy Warhols album (The Machine) tis been worth the wait. And they’re on the road! I say yippity-do-da. But I’m a gonna let Courtney have the last word here:
“The world is full of corporate billionaire scumbags who pollute the Earth, kill wildlife, cause cancer, secretly running nations into the ground, and the moronic masses who just agree with their mindless slogans and will never fight the good fight to help to stop them until finally the last blistered blind three armed mutant dregs of humanity eat each other’s putrid flesh in mankind’s final nauseating death throes…
High ho, some things you gotta get over.”