"Drugs Drugs Drugs"
OVERVIEW: If you didn’t already know, Tonetta is a musician. He doesn’t just hit a button on a programmer and sing over top of it. That guitar is all him, and he’s better than anyone would expect a person who usually dances in his videos to be. “Drugs Drugs Drugs” is one of Tonetta’s straight up rock songs, and it’s better than almost anything on modern rock radio today.
MUSIC: Fuzz rock. This song is a link between the old 80’s hair metal days and the new lo-fi indie scene that’s popped up in the last couple years, with bands like Wavves, Neon Indian, and No Age. This song would fit right in with those younger bands, but it actually has too many hooks. It’s too catchy for the cool kids.
LYRICS: At first glance this isn’t the most subtle song. Tonetta sings about hitting the crack pipe, doing blow and smoking pot. He’s “Happy, feeling free,” when on these drugs, and they have not, thus far, lead him to insanity.
So fine, this is a fuck you to the war on drugs, right? Maybe not. The fuzzy recording, while sounding awesome, obscures some of the lyrics. However, we can hear him say “I need a fix.” Now if you need a fix, then you aren’t exactly free. You’re a slave to your addiction. Let’s go back to the “Happy, feeling free” line. He’s feeling free when on drugs, but that doesn’t mean he’s literally free. Tonetta doesn’t spell out the song’s message, another reason to warrant multiple listens.
PERFORMANCE: Rock God. His guitar is very 80’s, and he shreds like he’s in a video with Tawney Kitaen. This is a pre-grunge performance, back when it was ok to show off while playing an insane solo. I’d be very interested to see Tonetta rock out as one of his feminine characters.
COSTUME: Beat Generation author William S. Burroughs (above) was known for wearing suits. Not cool suits either, suits that intentionally made him look like a “square.” His reasoning was that if he didn’t look like a gay hipster drug addict, which he was, then he could “pass” in the real world.
Tonetta does the same thing here, wearing stereotypical rock clothes - leather pants, open black shirt, bandanna - which hide his true rock ‘n roll superfreak self. Show this video to a metalhead friend and get their reaction, then show “Yummy Yummy Pizza” and ask again.
(note: “Yummy Yummy Pizza” coming later this week)
LOCATION: Unknown. The neon matte and black backdrop obscure any clues to his location.
RATING: This is one of my new favorite Tonetta tracks. It’s instantly memorable and shows a lesser known side of his musical interests. The video doesn’t push any boundaries, but that’s ok. 5/5