The Worst Album Titles Ever


Cristy: How come you get to start?

W: Go ahead.

C: Hands down: Bust a Nut, by Tesla. I'm mortified that I even know of its existence.

W: Cristy! Such language! That is foul. That belongs on the axis of awful. One of them.

C: The worst ones I can think of are totally male-centric, like Meaty, Beaty, Big and Bouncy; It’s Hard; Pork Soda; or Kid Rock's predictable, obvious Cocky.

W: Ew. The penis joke genre. Bless Its Pointed Little Head. I can't think of any female rockers who have used that trope, can you?

C: Hole's Pretty on the Inside? L7's Smell the Magic? 

W: Let Them Eat Pussy!

C: Hooray for Boobies.

W: Not exactly an improvement.

C: Take off Your Pants and Jacket!

W: What?

C: Don't you get it?

W: [pause] (groan)

C: (cue Beavis and Butthead laugh)

W: Okay. I am about to undo most of the work I've done defending Captain Beefheart to you, Cristy, but in the service of this discussion and in the interest of full disclosure I must reveal that the 1970 follow-up to 1969’s Trout Mask Replica was Lick My Decals Off, Baby.

Gross.C: Oh God.

W: A God’s Golfball production.

C: That makes me think of AC/DC albums like Ballbreaker. At least I think that’s an AC/DC album. It sounds right. I mean, isn’t all their material about balls?

W: You know, for a band whose name implies bisexuality, ovaries are underrepresented in their song material. Sheesh.

C: True dat.

W: Even without the adolescent double-entendres, I dislike bad useless jokes. To wit: You Can Tune a Piano But You Can't Tuna Fish.

C: OU812. Or how about Melon Collie and the Infinite Sadness?

W: That’s forced. Some bad album titles seem like follow-throughs on bad band names. eg Cultasaurus Erectus. Were Blue Öyster Cult the first band to use unnecessary umlauts, apparently to make their music seem Teutonic? That album title feels like a failed attempt to make the band name seem like less of a mistake. They’re trying to cover up the fact that they gave their band a bad name. Guys, start over.

C: Dookie.

W: I hate album titles I can never remember, especially if I like the music. For example, The Ben Fold Five’s Unauthorized Biography of Rheinhold Messner, a character who doesn’t even appear in any of the songs. And Marc Bolan was good at that. It seems like the period of his career when he enjoyed the most success was when he stuck to two-word album titles. But before that time there was My People Were Fair and had Sky in Their Hair, But Now They’re Content to Wear Stars on Their Brows. Or Prophets, Seers and Sages, Angels of the Ages. And after came Zinc Alloy and the Hidden Riders of Tomorrow. Before a fatal car crash cut off the title prematurely. Tragic, taken before time.

C: Those are almost as pretentious as The Six Wives of Henry VIII. Or how about the Police? Zenyatta de Blanc? Regatta Mondatta? Synchronicity D'Amour?

W: Well, two are French, two are literary, and one is gobbledygook. How about weird food? Goats Head Soup, anyone? Or Brain Salad Surgery: is that a dish or a procedure?

C: Some kid I went to high school with wrote a song called “Dead Baby Pie.”

W: I’m glad he wasn't able to scrape an album together.

C: You know what album title I absolutely loathe? Ass by Badfinger. Think of other power-pop titles. They're sunny and inviting, like 100% Fun (Matthew Sweet), #1 Record (Big Star), Wonderful Life (The Tories), Utopia Parkway (Fountains of Wayne). I could go on. I would've expected an album title like Ass from Sammy Hagar, but not Badfinger. Come the hell on, guys.

W:Only a truly, indubitable masterpiece of an album can get away with a bad title and even justify it. Like Pet Sounds. Or Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Heart's Club Band. You know how tired I get of trying to spell "Sergeant"?

And what are “Disraeli Gears?”

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