Red Hot Chili Peppers Shock Rock the Cock Sock

red hot chilli peppers

 

 

 

 

 

For me, The Red Hot Chili Peppers will always be known as Cocks in Socks. I saw the above picture in my formative years and as well as being taken aback by how small their cocks were, it left the impression that this was music made by a bunch of limp dicks.

Whenever I have accidentally been subjected to their music, and believe me it is not by choice, I am struck by how tuneless, turgid and self-indulgent it is: the sound of a band so full of egos that they vie with each other to see who can gain most attention. There is Kiedis, keen to remove his shirt at the first available moment to bare a torso that is clearly beginning to run to flab and display tattoos that even Popeye the Sailor Man would think twice about. And if Kiedis is going to take his top off, well then Flea (what an appropriate name for such an irritant!) will perform stark, bollock naked with only the bass to cover his modesty. Take it from me, Flea, a ukulele would more than suffice. I imagine the constant gurning he displays on stage is the result of his balls getting trapped in his guitar as he hops around like a rabbit in the final stages of myxomatosis.

If you can get beyond the visual impression, then there is the ‘music’ to consider. If your idea of music is Level 42’s Mark King suddenly discovering metal while John Frusciante channels Hendrix played in the style of Steve Howe and Kiedis yelps any old doggerel tunelessly over the top, then this is the band you deserve. Just as coma victims are sometimes awoken by hearing their favourite band played to them, in total more people have been put into comas through the sheer boredom of having to listen to a Cocks In Socks’ song.They would appear to have two types of song, fast and slow, or tuneless and turgid as I choose to view them. In their heads, the fast ones sound like a heavenly cross between James Brown and Jimi Hendrix, a mating of George Clinton and Jimmy Page. To the rest of us they sound like the ungodly, mongrel breed of Gordon Brown and Jimmy Osmond, the alien spawn of Bill Clinton and Elaine Paige. With their slow songs designed to show how deep and sensitive they are, here they imagine themselves to be Marvin Gaye duetting with Billie Holiday, Ornette Coleman jamming with Miles Davis. In fact, it is the caterwauling of Marvin Hagler doing karaoke with Billie Piper, the cacophony of  grunting as the coalman carry his sack for miles.

Cocks in Socks have crafted lyrics that match the music perfectly. In ‘Around The World’ Kiedis sings,”I know I know for sure.” And what is it he knows for sure? The next line tells us: “Ding, dang, dong, dong, deng, deng, dong, dong, ding, dang.” I am assuming it has something to do with his cock again as in the same song he says, “Bonafide ride /Step aside my johnson / Yes I could / In the woods of Wisconsin.” In ‘Road Trippin’ (a hideous title as it stands), Kiedis informs us, “In Big Sur we take some time to linger on / We three hunky dories got our snakefinger on.” I have been to Big Sur and if I had ever seen the three hunky dories (Mr Bowie, we can begin your therapy on Tuesday) getting their snakefinger on, I would have phoned the local cops. But my own personal favourite (and I hope you will forgive my indulgence at posting the whole lyric) is ‘Pea’, presumably a reference to the peabrain that conceived it: I am a little pea /I love the sky the trees /I’m a teeny tiny little ant /Checking out this and that /I am nothing /So you have nothing to hide / And I’m a pacifist /So I can fuck your shit up /Oh yeah I’m small / Fuck you asshole /You homophobic redneck dick /You’re big and tough and macho / You can kick my ass /So fucking what”. As Cocks In Socks sing in ‘The Power of Equality: “People in pain / I do not dig it”.

Their lyrical pomposity is matched by their delusions of grandeur. If they are not cavorting naked on stage like a geriatric version of ‘Hair’, they seem to believe Spinal Tap is something to be emulated. Playing at Woodstock ’94, the band came on stage wearing  light bulbs, stuck on to  chrome metallic suits, which were so large they made it virtually impossible for them to play their instruments. With music as bloated as their egos and as withered as their cocks, The Red Hot Chili Peppers need to put a sock in it rather than over it.

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