(what are you lookin’ at?)

Today being Friday, I figured I’d keep things a little light and pay props to one of the good guys.

My buddy Jeff over at jefitoblog has long been a source for great music and humor (some of it intentional, some of it not so much, I’m looking at you Steelheart).

Perhaps best known for his Complete Idiot’s Guides on a plethora of artists ranging from Randy Newman to Adam Ant and beyond, I have long enjoyed his talents for making even artists I know or care nothing about interesting.

The greatest honor of my life (aside from having my nuts cupped at the DMV by Bea Arthur, long story) came when Jeff requested that I write a Complete Idiot’s Guide to Cheap Trick. It went on to become the most-read Complete Idiot’s Guide of all-time!

At my house, at least.

But what a lot of people don’t know is that I’ve written a lot of other Complete Idiot’s Guides that Jeff didn’t publish, the bastard. Today, I declassify two of them for your reading pleasure.

Please note: there will be no mp3’s to sample, and no links to buy the CD’s…you’re welcome.

COMPLETE IDIOT’S GUIDE TO DANIEL POWTER


Daniel Powter
self-titled
Warner Bros.(2006)

I admit to liking “Bad Day” for about five minutes back when it was a UK hit. A year later, American Idol and Top 40 radio successfully beat the song into the ground to the point that I change the station the moment I hear the opening piano line. The other nine songs on this album are as unnecessary and random as the items an embarrassed hubby uses as “checkout camouflage” for the tampons his wife sent him to pick up.


Daniel Powter
self-titled – Special Edition
Warner Bros. (2007)

I shit you not. I looked up the definition of “superfluous” in the dictionary. There were no words, just a picture of this CD.

COMPLETE IDIOT’S GUIDE TO ENUFF Z’NUFF


Enuff Z’nuff
self-titled
(Atco) 1989

The hair metal bandwagon was already full of more hangers on than it could hold, but these Chicago boys dove head-first into the Revlon and landed on MTV with not one, but two tie-dyed technicolor yawns that, perhaps more than anything, sealed their fate as Hair Metal Also-Rans™. I remember reading an interview where one of the members of the band described their music as a mix of Beatle-esque psychedelia and early Queen. I stopped reading at that point because it was apparent that he had obviously been listening to a completely different Enuff Z’nuff album than the one Atlantic had pressed up.


Enuff Z’nuff
Strength
(Atco) 1991

I remember this album actually getting some good reviews, or, more accurately, I remember people who liked the band telling me it got good reviews. Why they felt the need to drag the critics into it, I don’t know. Enuff z’nuff fans, perhaps more so than fans of most other hair metal bands, seem overly driven to prove how fucking artistic this band was/is. Whatever artistry there might have been is smothered by a relentless by-the-numbers late 80’s production that shows complete disrespect for nuance or subtlety. I considered giving it another spin, but the snare sound had already set off enough car alarms for one day.


Enuff Z’nuff
Animals With Human Intelligence
Arista (1992)

Clive Davis reportedly courted the band because he was convinced that singer Donnie Vie was the future of rock & roll. It’s true, just ask him (Donnie, that is). The third time was not the charm, though


Enuff Z’nuff
1985
Big Deal (1994)

Collection of pre-Atco demos that tried real hard to portray them as power pop heroes. Didn’t fly high at all, Michelle.


Enuff Z’nuff
Tweaked
Mayhem (1995)

Okay, whoever keeps giving these guys money to put out new records, cut it out.


Enuff Z’nuff
Peach Fuzz
BD (1996)

I’m serious, cock jockey.


Enuff Z’nuff
Seven
Mayhem (1997)

Aw, fucking hell…


Enuff Z’nuff
Live
Mayhem (1998)

Fucking hell with crowd noise.


Enuff Z’nuff
Paraphernalia
Spitfire (1999)

Seriously, who the fuck in that band can even spell “paraphernalia” much less say it?

Enuff Z’nuff
10
Pony Canyon [Japan] (2000)

America drops another bomb on the Japanese.


Enuff Z’nuff
Welcome To Blue Island
Dreamcatcher (2002)

A merciful two-year break between albums.

Jeebus, can’t these guys take a page out of the Tom Sholz playbook and chill the fuck out for a decade or three?


Enuff Z’nuff
? (seriously, that’s the title)
Perris (2004)

?! …

Postscript: In all fairness, Chip Z’nuff is a nice guy who deserves any success he’s managed to attain. He just has the unfortunate honor of being froever connected to the mess that is Donnie Vie and, thus, the saga of Enuff Z’nuff continues begrudgingly, no end in sight.

While Donnie drifts around Hollywood, his wife paying the rent, Chip is hitting the tour circuit this summer with Adler’s Appetite (featuring GNR drummer Stephen Adler) and a Poison tribute band. I’m serious.

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