Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Reaping 40 years of Blue Oyster Cult

The first Blue Oyster Cult record came out 40 years ago. Holy shit. New York weirdos of the highest order, B.O.C. connected with metal fans by being dark and twisted more than by being outright heavy on every tune. B.O.C.s “Black and Blue” tour with the first Dio-era Black Sabbath lineup remains a high-water mark of 20th century civilization.

B.O.C. is still at it today with original members Eric Bloom and Buck Dharma on guitars and vocals, plus longtime members Jules Radino on drums and Richie Castellano on keys, and recent addition Kasim Sulton (of Utopia and Meat Loaf fame) on bass. B.O.C. plays Thursday, Oct. 25, at Showcase Live in Foxboro, MA, a few days ahead of a big 40th anniversary concerts in NYC on Oct. 28 and 30. On Nov. 6, Columbia Records drops a 16-disc box set of B.O.C.’s albums for the label plus a couple of discs of live tracks from the vaults.

In honor of B.O.C.’s 40th anniversary here’s a list in no particular order (but for “Astronomy” being the greatest of all B.O.C. songs) of the 40 best Blue Oyster Cult songs that are not “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” or “Godzilla”:

1) “Astronomy” - Like acid and oil on a madman’s face
2) “The Red and the Black”- Hornswoop me bungo pony on dogsled on ice
3) “Transmaniacon M.C.”- Pure nectar of antipathy
4) “See You in Black” - I’d make you feel like your husband’s dead
5) “Career of Evil” - I’ll be your surgeon, I’d like to pick your brain
6) “E.T.I.” - Three men in black said, “Don’t report this”
7) “Black Blade” - I just want to be a lover, not a red-eyed screaming ghoul
8) “Then Came the Last Days of May”- They say the West is nice this time of year
9) “R.U. Ready to Rock” - I only live to be born again
10) “The Vigil”- I have got a camera and an airtight alibi
11) “Old Gods Return”- Now is the time that water begins to burn
12) “Subhuman”- So ladies, fish, and gentlemen, here’s my angled dream
13) “Hot Rails to Hell”- The heat from below can burn your eyes out
14) “Flaming Telepaths”- Yes, I know the secrets of the iron and mind
15) “Lips in the Hills”- I’ve been stiffed by serpent’s soundless cries
16) “Buck’s Boogie”- It’s Buck. It boogies
17) “Burnin’ for You”- Time to play B-sides
18) “Golden Age of Leather”- Four and ninety studded horsemen closed the knot of honor
19) “Before the Kiss, a Redcap”- Their tongues extend, then retract
20) “Workshop of the Telescope”- Yes, I know a thing or two
21) “The Marshall Plan”- I ain’t playing no surf music, I’m gonna play some heavy music
22) “Death Valley Nights”- Snow is cold, but so is rain
23) “In Thee”- Aeroplanes make strangers of us all
24) “Harvest Moon”- I sense the darkness clearer
25) “Joan Crawford”- Their eyes have turned the color of frozen meat
26) “The Revenge of Vera Gemini”- You’re boned like a saint with the consciousness of a snake
27) “7 Screaming Diz-Busters”- Bury me behind the rose so they’ll not rile my grave
28) “Dominance and Submission”- In Times Square now people do the polka
29) “Perfect Water”- To drop my eyes like a bride and ride
30) “The Great Sun Jester”- I’m the joker of the universe, I’m what it’s all about
31) “Goin’ through the Motions”- For there’s no one to blame, just to pay
32) “Cities on Flame with Rock and Roll”- My ears will melt and then my eyes
33) “O.D.’d on Life Itself”- Life loves force, but force loves life
34) “This Ain’t the Summer of Love”- Things ain’t what they’re supposed to be
35) “Veteran of the Psychic Wars”- Wounds are all I’m made of
36) “I Am the One You Warned Me Of”- Just call me Desdinova
37) “M.E. 262”- They hung there dependent from the sky like some heavy metal fruit
38) “Take Me Away”- Release myself from earthly care
39) “Harvester of Eyes”- I’m the eyeman of TV with my ocular TB
40) “She’s as Beautiful as a Foot”- Don’t put your tongue on the bloody tooth mark place

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