Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Eddie Spaghetti: "The Value of Nothing" (album review)

Disclaimer: I am a huge Supersuckers fan and have been since I was a teenager.  I've seen them live about a dozen times and nobody, and I mean nobody, puts on a better show.  Keep that in mind while I review The Value of Nothing, the forthcoming album from frontman Eddie Spaghetti.  This record (out June 18th), is his fourth solo collection.

It won't surprise you that The Value of Nothing is a collection of country, punk, and good ol' rock n' roll songs complete with a biting sense of humour.  The title track provides the hard-chugging country number, while "If Anyone's Got The Balls" is the slick, catchy rocker.

The highest octane tracks are the rockabilly-infused "Fuckin' With My Head", which also checks off the 'playful song filled with gratuitous cussing' box, and the meth polka "People Are Shit".

The most outside the box song is "I've Got A Secret".  It starts with a Leonard Cohen-esque baritone, but quickly develops an I-keep-bodies-in-my-basement creepiness.

Lyrics are a crucial part to any Spaghetti/Supersuckers effort.  The best on this album come on "Empty", a ditty about the black vacuum that fills the void left by Eddie's absent soul.

What is missing from the record is an instant classic.  There's no "Born With a Tail", "Pretty Fucked Up", or "Killer Weed" on here.  The closest is "Waste of Time", a humourous ode to laziness, set to an Outlaw Country arrangement an boasting an infectious chorus.

The album concludes with a re-working of the Supersuckers' track "When I Go, I'm Gone".  We've heard these crossovers between Eddie's solo material and the band songs before ("Sleepy Vampire", "Killer Weed"), this time it's moving from the rock of the band to a slower-paced, more introspective solo cut.

Fans will meet the album with mixed emotions that have nothing to do with the quality of the songs.  We're excited to get a new album from Eddie, but we're also a bit disappointed because we know that this record means we're still a ways away from that long-awaited Supersuckers disc that we've been craving.  The Value of Nothing should act as an amuse-bouche, just making us salivate more for the main course.

The Supersuckers play Lee's Palace in Toronto on June 13th.

Best tracks: "Waste of Time", "People Are Shit"

Track listing for The Value of Nothing:
  • The Value of Nothing
  • Empty
  • If Anyone's Got the Balls
  • Waste of Time
  • You Get To Be My Age
  • Fuckin' With My Head
  • People Are Shit
  • I've Got a Secret
  • When I Go, I'm Gone

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