Sunday, 24 July 2011


Call me Gener. Some time ago, having little or no money in my purse on account of illegal downloading, and nothing particular to interest me in Ween, I thought I would set sail about a little and see the watery part of the world.

I learnt that there were three ships up for voyages - the Pequod, the Poop Ship Destroyer, and the Weezer Cruise. Hopping on board the Weezer, and looking around her for a moment, with its outdoor lido deck, inside theatre, hot tubs, casino, waterslide, and spa services, I decided this was the ship for me.

For several days after leaving Miami, nothing above hatches was seen of Captain Rivers. It was speculated that Rivers was in fact studying at Harvard, or that he was stranded on an island somewhere with the fat guy from Lost. The roadies regularly relieved each other at the watches, and for aught that could be seen to the contrary, they seemed to be the only commanders of the ship; only they sometimes issued from the dressing room with orders so sudden and peremptory, that after all it was plain they but commanded vicariously. Yes, their supreme lord and dictator was there, though hitherto unseen by any eyes not permitted to penetrate the now sacred retreat of the backstage area.

It was one of those grey and gloomy mornings, when with a fair wind the ship was rushing through the water with a vindictive sort of leaping and melancholy rapidity, like the sound of ‘Why Bother?’ from the Pinkerton album, that as I mounted the deck at the call of the afternoon soundcheck, so soon as I levelled my glance towards the lighting desk, foreboding shivers ran over me. Reality outran apprehension; Captain Rivers stood upon his quarterdeck.

He cut a grim figure. Hunched, pasty-faced with cheap haircut, and wearing a short-sleeved shirt and pair of think-rimmed spectacles. So powerfully did the whole grim aspect of Rivers affect me, that for the first few moments I hardly noted that his left leg was one and three quarter inches shorter than his right leg, and that this was compensated with a barbaric white heel. It had previously come to me that this white heel had been fashioned from the polished ivory substitute of a vegan’s piano.

He advanced towards the main-mast with a hammer uplifted in one hand, and a gold disc in the other, and with a raised voice, exclaimed: “Whosoever of ye raises me a white-headed vegan with a wrinkled brow and a meek jaw; whosoever of ye raises me that white-headed vegan, with his sample-heavy disco music and wallet bulging with advertisement royalties, whosoever of ye raises me that same white vegan, he shall have this gold disc, my boys!”
“Huzza! Huzza!” cried The Antlers, Yuck, and even Boom Bip, as they hailed the act of nailing the gold disc to the mast.
All this while, the members of Sebadoh had looked on with even more intense interest and surprise than the rest, and at the mention of the wrinkled brow and sample-heavy disco music they had started as if each was separately touched by some specific recollection.
“Captain Rivers,” said Lou Barlow, “that white vegan must be the same that some call Moby.”
“Moby?” shouted Rivers. “Do you know the white vegan then, Lou?”
“Was it not Moby that you encountered at the Reading Festival ‘96 where he trod on thy spectacles and swallowed thy talent?”
“Aye, Barlow; aye my hearties all round; it was Moby that brought me to this dead music that I now churn out. Aye, aye,” he shouted with a terrific, loud, animal sob; “Aye, aye! And I’ll chase him round Glastonbury, and round Lollapalooza, and round Primavera, and round Leeds Festival’s hellish flames before I give him up. And this is what you have shipped for, men! To chase that white vegan over all sides of earth, till he spouts anaemic blood to an inoffensive, ambient synth soundtrack. What say ye, men? I think ye do look brave.”
“Aye, aye!” shouted the roadies and the security crew, running closer to the excited old dweeb, “A sharp eye for the white vegan; a sharp lance for Moby!”
“God bless ye,” he seemed to half sob and half shout, recalling his vocal take on track 6 of Maladroit. “God bless ye, men, But what’s this long face about, Mr. Barlow; wilt thou not chase the white vegan? Art not game for Moby?”
“I am game for his meek jaw, and for the jaws of Death too, Captain Rivers, if it fairly comes in the way of the business we follow; but I came here to promote the Bakesale reissue and peddle some t-shirts, not to hunt a popular ‘90s dance artist to appease the vengeance of a popular ‘90s nerd-rocker. How much will thy vengeance yield thee even if thou gettest it, Captain Rivers? Moby already sold himself to every prospective buyer, around the time of Play.”
“Marketers? Hoot! My vengeance will fetch a great premium, here!”
“He smites his chest,” whispered Jason Loewenstein, “what’s that for? Methinks it rings most vast, but hollow.”
“Vengeance on a dumb brute!” cried Lou Barlow, “that simply swallowed thy talent from blindest instinct! Madness! To be enraged with a dumb thing, Captain Rivers, seems blasphemous.”
“Talk not to me of blasphemy, man, Moby may have admitted to a fascination with the Gospels and a belief in the teachings of Christ, but I would strike the sun if it insulted me. Drink, ye Weezer cruisers! Drink and swear, ye men. Death to Moby! God hunt us all if we do not hunt Moby to his death!” Cans of beer were lifted and quaffed to cries and maledictions against the white vegan, while Paul Sprangers from Free Energy started a sarcastic rendition of ‘We Are All Made of Stars’. Barlow paled, and turned, and shivered, and retreated to his cabin to capture his despondent feelings on a 4-track tape. Another round of beers was dispersed; and Rivers retired within his dressing room.
“Huh?” asked J. Mascis.
“Dunno,” replied the guy out of Wavves, who in searching after his missing drummers, only found another bong.

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