Yo, this be Reuben. Been a while since I’ve done a Top Ten, eh? Ah well, they are pretty crappy, after all. But whatever, I need to write something to show my appreciation for funk metal legends Primus (the best thing to ever come out of San Francisco), who might still be in my top ten bands if I redid it.
They may not have charted incredibly at any stage of their career, but Primus have tasted a nice dose of commercial success and established a large and loyal fanbase of nutters, ranging from Noel Fielding to yours truly. It would have been impossible for them to not have established such a fanbase, though, because of the undeniable groove the band possesses, Les Claypool’s incredible bassitude and their terminally unique take to lyricism and song structures. Anywho, without further adieu, here’s my Top Ten Primus Songs;
10. Bob (Pork Soda)
A wondrously dark and ominous track, and one of Pork Soda‘s best with its fiddly guitar work and brooding drum beats as Claypool tells us a rather interesting story about his friend Bob. The sinister story-telling of this track is what sets it apart from other works by the band, as it takes a dark tale and throws it into a weird-ass but damn good progressive piece.
9. Electric Uncle Sam (Antipop)
Now this is a groove machine. Kicking off the hive of funkadelic awesomeness that is Antipop, Electric Uncle Sam is an energetic spike of heaviness, possessing an infectious hook and a potently obnoxious vocal performance from Les, while the power chords are well and truly out and rollin’, to make a perfect and memorable single for the record.
8. Puddin’ Taine (Brown Album)
Now we’re in truly zany territory, of course, as we delve into the deep and funky orifices of Brown Album. As a deep cut which was criminally not given a single release, Puddin’ Taine is one of the highlights of the weird and wonderful record. The main awesome-factor of the track is Larry LeLonde’s fantastic guitar work, which provides a constant groove alongside the brilliant-as-ever bass line, as well as giving an injection of heaviness and a couple of great solos.
7. Tommy the Cat (Sailing the Seas of Cheese)
For its bass, this song should be top, because the beastly playitude Les Claypool gifts us in this one is truly immense and unmatched by any. The story-telling, too, is absolute quality, as ol’ Les tells us the drugged up tale of Tommy the Cat. The only thing holding this music orgy back is that it perhaps ain’t as memorable as some of the songs above it, as with its mind-boggling song structure. But, if you want weird, you’ve got it. This track is the king of weird.
6. Harold of the Rocks (Frizzle Fry)
DUUUUDE, this is FUNK. You hearing that whammy guitar? Well, you’ve got that and a selection of heavitudinol riffs and all the cracked up vocal output from ol’ Les that you need, in this 6-minute guitar-bass off. The drums, too, are pretty dang masterful.
5. Frizzle Fry (Frizzle Fry)
You want atmosphere? You want wacky-backy? You want a progressive metal powerhouse? You got it! This track is probably the most undeservedly underappreciated one on this list, as its a winding one that builds to a buncha climaxes to die for — its a song that keeps on giving with its fantastic instrumentals, outlandish verses, eerie bridges and a hook that won’t be forgotten soon.
4. Lacquer Head (Antipop)
Apparently this is what you get when Fred Durst decides to produce a Primus song. Limp Bizkit may not exactly be a good band, in any way, but it turns out ol’ Dursty just had a good day working with these San Francisco rockers. Because, Lacquer Head is the heaviest song they ever wrote, and is an absolute mosh-provoker, along with being catchy as hell.
3. Wynona’s Big Brown Beaver (Tales from the Punchbowl)
Now this is weird and wonderful. I don’t wanna know what the hell they’re trying to say with these lyrics, but it sure ain’t friendly. Only surpassed by Tommy the Cat, the bass in this work emphasises that Les Claypool is the best bassist, and will never be beaten, because these licks are impossible. It may just be the music video speaking, but this song is simply unforgettable, and such a trip. Tell me they didn’t take drugs. Tell me!
2. My Name is Mud (Pork Soda)
Ohhh boi, we are now in truly classic territory. About the mouldiest bass line puts its boots on in this song, with the watery riff pounding as the heartbeat of the song. By Primus’ standards, My Name is Mud is a simple-un in terms of structure, but that is what makes it so memorable, as Les Claypool takes over your head with his freakilicious lyrics.
‘Ere be the Honourable Mentions:
Too Many Puppies (Frizzle Fry)
Here Come the Bastards (Sailing the Seas of Cheese)
DMV (Pork Soda)
The Toys Go Winding Down (Frizzle Fry)
Jerry Was a Race Car Driver (Sailing the Seas of Cheese)
Natural Joe (Antipop)
Sgt. Baker (Sailing the Seas of Cheese)
Southdown Pachyderm (Tales from the Punchbowl)
Candyman (Primus & the Chocolate Factory with the Fungi Ensemble)
1. Shake Hands With Beef (Brown Album)
This song is what shot Primus into legend for me, it couldn’t not top this list. It’s the first of their songs I ever heard, and I just fell in love with their eccentric take on metal from the very first bass note on this thing. As a riff alone, the one driving this song along is my favourite, out of any, as its absolutely infectious and I swear it grew on me as a fungus. Shake Hands With Beef is easy-listening, but still holds that wackiness I love from Primus, along with that great heaviness. It’s just got everything you’d want from the band. Listen to it, now!
In fact, I’d think it best if you just listen to all the songs on this list. You owe it to yourself. Go on!
And hey look, this is post #301! Ain’t that special.
Bringing redundant opinions for scrollers everywhere,