Monday, February 9, 2009

Dueling Singles

Sloppy Seconds were neighbours to Screeching Weasel geographically (Illinois and Indiana), musically (R-A-M-O-N-E-S), and chronologically (both issued more marginal releases in 1987 followed by a pivotal back-to-basics pop-punk L.P'.s in 1989).

I suspect Screeching Weasel’s “I Wanna be a Homosexual”, written in response to Sloppy Seconds’ “I Don’t Wanna be a Homosexual” at the behest of queer film maker Bruce La Bruce, is now more famous than the song that inspired it. I hate choosing betwixt two smart n' catchy rockers but the edge goes to Sloppy Seconds for the self-mocking subtext ("Why did I write this song?") and another of their sticky choruses that you don’t want to sing out loud, depending on your social circle.

Ben Weasel, however, gets the best line out of either song (“It’s the straight in straight edge, that make me want to drink a beer”) so no disrespect is intended and, depending on who's close by, Screeching Weasel's hook may win in the choruses-to-sing-under-your-breath department anyway.

While Sloppy Second's 1989 album, Destroyed, has surely been re-issued with yet more bonus tracks, posting this long-out-of-print single shouldn’t step on anyone’s toes. The B-side is an otherwise unavailable acoustic version of “Human Waste”. The electric version is fine but as parody of a rock ballad, with a wistfulness beneath the sneering("I Left my heart in San Francisco and my brain in Los Angeles/My heart just made me bitter and my brain just made me dangerous"), it’s in its full glory in stripped-down form. Just about every other track by the band remains in print - so buy some friggin' music!

Download I Don’t Wanna be a Homosexual

Just to keep things balanced, here's the full Pervo-Devo single from 1991, which, as well as "I Wanna Be a Homosexual", has one standard issue Weasel Rant plus a cover of Harlan Howard's, "I Fall to Pieces" (made famous by Patsy Cline), which the boys do their level best to These tracks are available on the entertaining hodge-podge entitled Kill the Musicians, which is available here.

Download Pervo Devo

And just in case you wanted to hear what Metallica sounded like interpreted by some self-professed mid-western junk rockers, here's Sloppy Second's version of "Hit the Lights".


  1. Thanks for reposting the Sloppy Seconds single. I've got the 7", but with no USB turntable, i had no way to get it onto my computer. And while mixtapes may be all the rage with irony-loving hipsters, i make playlists.

  2. Hey you're not dissing Irony Loving Hipsters are ya?

    (Though I'm sure the I.L.H.'s would diss S.S.)

  3. Cheers for this Jeffen. I've never heard the Sloppy Seconds before.

  4. Longy

    Always glad to introduce another person to their royal Sloppiness.



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