Friday, August 13, 2004

Loverdolls Superstar

"In a scene of no values...Where climbing
to the top means climbing into bed...
Where drugs and cheap thrills fill the
date book...Where rock n' roll means
death and destruction... "

Lovedolls Superstar
SST, 1986

Lovedolls Superstar (the film) was Dave Markey's sequel to Desperate Teenage Lovedolls, both a sort of shoestring John Waters type venture minus the "Baltimore" wierdo/queer sensibilities and instead accented with spicy L.A. bad-girl-sass, tributes to Linda Blair's Born Innocent and the Zeitgeist of the "Just Say No" years.

The soundtrack for the 1st film is available on iTunes but this 2nd collection is strangely out of print and tapes of the actual movie are nigh impossible to find - hard to believe given some of the folks that played on it.

This is also more of a musical concept album than the a soundtrack. The McDonald Bros. of Redd Kross cover and write the Lovedolls songs and Greg Ginn & his labelmates provide pretty much the rest of the 16-song soundtrack... What there is musically of the "Lovedolls" is mostly actress Jennifer Schwartz competently doing the Runaways/Ramones deadpan sneer thing. The Lovedolls also receive backing from SWA (Schwartz's brother's band), Painted Willie and other SST luminaries: Meat Puppets, Gone, Lawndale(!) and Black Flag. Sonic Youth also stop in for a slightly uncharacterstic snotty "Hallowed Be Thy Name" - not their best but worth a spin. And...oh yeah, a Dead Kennedys song that is about as welcome as a PETA activist at a leather fetish show with their "One Way Ticket to Pluto"... whatever, I guess it was the price of getting Jello Biafra in the movie ...

Highlights include "Sunshine Day" - first snarky cover of that Brady Kids hit that I know of, "Atomic Jam" by Gone, a massive bonghit headrush of guitarzilla fuzz-distortion, "Darling She-la," Painted Willie's hawdcaw transvestite redux of Prince's "Darlin' Nicky." Of of the Lovedolls songs, I like the trashy "Beer and Ludes" that tells the sordid backstory of one of the Lovedolls ("by the time I was 14 I had seen it all/Bedknobs and Broomsticks and that's not all"). Moving down the scale a bit, Black Flag's "Kicking and Sticking" sounds like it was recorded in a tunnel and the Meat Puppet's "No Values" (originally by Black Flag) is a bit of a wigout though not unexpected of their stuff in that timeframe. The other two Gone tracks are pretty much background music in the key of H (fo' hippay) and the Lawndale track is kinda interesting in a Western Lounge lizard sorta way. There's also a hardcore parody - "Slam, Spit, Cut Your Hair, Kill Your Mom!" performed by Anarchy 6 (Redd Kross with Dave Markey on drums).

According to WeGotPower Films website, Lovedolls Superstar (the film) might be getting a re-release, presumably on DVD. Here's the 1986 trailer. About two -thirds of the way through you see Steve Mcdonald, a Crispin Glover look-alike ("I've only been here for five minutes, and you're only trying to teach me, hate, man, HATE, MAN

Here are the cuts:
Lovedolls Superstar (Redd Kross)
Hallowed Be Thy Name (Sonic Youth)

Notes/Links/Stupid Factoids:
  • Redd Kross website
  • Lyrics to Hallowed Be They Name
    • "Hallowed Be thy Name" was released as an apparently bootleg 7"
    • Originally performed by Alice Cooper
    • Played once live by Sonic Youth - never again says Thurston
    • Broadcast in Peel Session, 1986
  • No Values" by the Meat Puppets was originally recorded in 1981 in their LP recording session; It was written by Black Flag and appears on Jealous Again (1980)
  • Sky Saxon (Seeds) and Vicki Peterson (Bangles) also appeared on Lovedolls Superstar
  • Jeff and Steve McDonald appeared in Alison Anders Things Behind the Sun (2001) playing with J. Mascis in the lead character's rock and roll band.
  • Lead Lovedoll Jennifer Schwartz is the sister of Jordan Schwartz (SWA) and published We Got Power fanzine with the director of the film.

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