My Most Influential CDs: Teenage Graffiti by the Pink Spiders

teenage

Glam rock never died. At least that’s what Matt Friction, Bob Ferrari and Jon Decious decided to prove to people in the mid 2000’s by bringing those elements everyone thought were dead into their own version of power pop and their 70’s/80’s fashion sense.

With most of my favorite CDs/bands, I can remember exactly where I was when I heard them, what I was doing when I first heard them and what song I heard first, but with the Pink Spiders all of that seems to have eluded me. It’s always troubled me a little because I take pride in loving my music and artists. I connect with music in a way that I cannot replicate with anything else in life thus far. However, over the years the Pink Spiders have stayed with me and continued to influence my life and my musical taste. So I’ve tried my best to think that’s what really matters, not remembering where I first heard them. So far, it’s held true.

One thing about the Pink Spiders that I will never forget is the first time I saw the music video for “Little Razorblade” and how wonderfully they blended awful 80’s style effects into a typical pop punk type video. They did everything they could to show that while their songs were catchy and unforgettable so was their band image. They sported black and pink gloves, black and pink guitar straps, pink scarfs, pink mic stands and neon pink t-shirts under their jackets. Trying to be a true modern version of a glam rock band worked in their favor as their music video for “Little Razorblade” got consistent play on Fuse and even landed them on Vans Warped Tour.

The singles on the CD aren’t what drew me to them however. “Little Razorblade”, “Soft Smoke”, “Hollywood Fix”, and “Modern Swinger”, which were on their debut album Hot Pink, were re-recorded for their second album for a cleaner and bigger sound from their low-fi predecessors. While all those songs will never fail to catch me, it was ultimately songs like “Hey Jane” that convinced me that the band had a lot more to offer than just radio hits. As what seems like a depressing song from a majority of the lyrics and the general vibe of it all actually ends up being quite uplifting with lines like “don’t let your life’s income determine your life’s outcome.”

To be honest, I may not listen to this CD as often as I should, but one song off this album gets constant play in my car, especially when I’m pissed off or speeding down the highway with some friends. “Easy Way Out” brings together everything I look for in a song meant to build your adrenaline. It has a guitar solo, a catchy hook and raspy lyrics with a heavy hitting chorus. It sounds like one of those songs you would hear during a house show some random kid decided to throw in their basement while their parents were away as an act of defiance.

The Pink Spiders have come and gone and come back again and with Matt Friction constantly working on new music for his numerous other bands, I don’t think their style will ever truly fade away, but this CD will always be Matt Friction’s greatest piece of work in my mind.

Here are my favorite tracks from the album:

“Modern Swinger”, “Hollywood Fix”, “Back To The Middle”, “Hey Jane”, “Easy Way Out” & “Secret Song”

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