Melvins, "Stop Moving to Florida" (Ipecac)
Like a grandfather who can still dunk a basketball, Melvins have beaten the odds and continue to slay at the young person's game of heavy metal and hard rock, as revealed on their latest album, Pinkus Abortion Technician. Linking up with Butthole Surfers bassist Jeff Pinkus and Redd Kross/OFF! bassist Steven McDonald keeps the Melvins on their toes and extrapolating wildly—see the improv freak-out that concludes their ludicrous cover of the Beatles' "I Want to Hold Your Hand." It's the sort of strong album that's rarely made by a rock group 35 years into their career.
“Stop Moving to Florida” stitches together the 1967 Jerry Ragovoy/Mort Shuman song “Stop”—a volcanic blues-rock composition that has also been recorded by Howard Tate, James Gang, Mike Bloomfield/Al Kooper/Stephen Stills (on Super Session), and Hugh Masekela—and Butthole Surfers’ absurdist, comedy-blues masterpiece “Moving to Florida,” off the 1985 EP Cream Corn from the Socket of Davis. It's a brilliant idea, and Melvins execute it with the swagger of dudes half their age.
For the "Stop" portion, Melvins absolutely wallop the monstrous riff, imbuing it with muscle-car-aficionado bluster, making for a supreme fight-and/or-fuck soundtrack. In the latter part of the track, King Buzzo channels Surfers vocalist Gibby Haynes with just the right amount of faithful, drunk-on-moonshine irreverence as he reels off lines like “I’m going to move down to Florida/And I’m gonna grind me a White Castle slider out of India’s sacred cow." I've unabashedly loved both of these songs for decades, so to hear them smashed together by learned metal masters like Melvins is a goddamn godsend.
The Melvins play Neumos tonight, Thurs July 19; the show is sold out.