8) Infiltrate Destroy Rebuild - cKy

It's tough to talk about a band like cKy without going into a long explanation involving the band AND the videos, discussing how Bam Margera isn't a member of the band (but his brother Jess is). The tones are completely different. The CKY videos, while a blatant precursor to Jackass have an air of farcical anarchy, while the band and it's music are meticulously performed and arranged, straddling the line between alternative catchiness and the brutality of metal. Their first hit, "96 Quite Bitter Beings" (yeah, that song with the music video with the jackass guys doing dumb shit in shopping carts) is a great indicator of this.

But times change, and bands evolve. The influence of the videos shrank a bit, with the band wanting to stand on their own a bit more. Let the music do the talking, you might say. Keep in mind, this is right around the beginning of what was then called "Jack FM"- formats stopped existing at radio. Lots of stations played lots of different things before. There was easy listening. There were rock stations. They took requests. Jack FM changed everything. Now a computer program ran stations. There were no DJs. No one answered phones. The music industry was changing again. Bands couldn't get airplay. That's where "Infiltrate Destroy Rebuild" comes in. They had the idea that they switch from an indie label to a major (Volcom to Island/Def Jam), destroy the music industry (!), and then rebuild it using their own philosophies.


It sounded cool, though, and it was sure as shit better than constantly having to hear 3 Doors Down, and Saliva, and Nickelback, and that goddamned Lifehouse fucking bullshit fucking song, and fucking UGH. Musically, the album is a bit all over the place. The first track, "Escape from Hellview", is actually a sequel to "96QBB", following a citizen of the eponymous town in their quest to avoid a serial killer and escape the town. I mean, it's basically a knock off of "A Nightmare on Elm Street". But it sounds fucking cool. Up next, "Flesh into Gear". It's on this one that the album kinda takes a poppier turn- well, as poppy as a song called "Flesh into Gear" could be. It also is the first time the band uses a Moog, which then shows up a few more times on the album. It's not until "Attached at the Hip" that the really takes off.

It's a rollercoaster from there. Pop songs ("Plastic Plan"), sludge-metal ("Shock & Terror", "Inhuman Creation Station"), even the prerequisite ballad ("Close Yet Far", which even has a "Boy, touring sucks" live montage video)- there's a little bit of everything. It just sounds so interesting. I don't know how they tune their guitars, or what equipment they use (they famously won't tell), but sounds fucking rad.

This album, strangely enough, occupies the same musical space as Beck's "Sea Change". Hell, it even came out the same day. Where "Sea Change" was the depression surrounding the end of that relationship, "IDR" was the anger and frustration. Plus, it just sounded so cool that I wanted to hear it everywhere I could. In the car. At home. At work at the record store. I even had my first mp3 player around then (actually, a portable cd player that could read mp3 discs), and would just wander around Kent State in the afternoon, listening to it beginning to end, over and over. I saw them countless times live at Peabody's (the new one, not the old one, unfortunately. God, I miss that place). I remember once, the guitar player, Chad, thought I was throwing bottles at him (which, obviously, I was not. It was the guy next to me, that douchebag), and had me removed from the building. Forcibly. Something strange happened, though. As soon as I hit the fresh, cold Cleveland air, an arm pulled me back. Chad, realizing he had the wrong guy tossed, jumped off stage, ran through the sold out crowd, and personally pulled me back in. I thought he was gonna beat the hell out of me, truth be told, but he just patted me on the back, said "Sorry, man. Wrong dude" and ran back to the stage as the security threw the asshole ock out into the air I had just occupied. That's a good enough story, but what happened after the show was even cooler. The guys in the band always hang out after- they love their fans (as long as they don't throw shit, I guess), and while hanging out, Chad grabbed me and we had a few laughs about the whole thing while he shared a few swigs from his bottle of Jack. Shit- that was the first time I had Jack. Maybe that's why I can't stop drinking it now. Thanks a lot, CIG. My liver hates you. I love the fucking album regardless.