Buzz Osborne of Melvins talks ‘bands that blew it’

Posted by on January 7, 2014

buzz-osborneToday Melvins frontman Buzz Osborne made a hypothetical mix tape of bands he used to like. In a column for The AV Club called “I Made You a Mixtape,” the theme Osborne chooses is “bands that were good, but blew it.” The 21st Melvins album, Tres Cabrones, just came out a few months ago, and they haven’t blown it yet. But for a handful of reasons, the bands on his tape have.

In a best case scenario, some of the bands on Osborne’s list blew it because they aren’t together any more. Isis is one of those bands, He picks “Hall of the Dead,” from their last album Wavering Radiant, as an example. Osbourne thinks that any band at the top of their game that abruptly quits are “totally and completely ridiculous.” The Cows are another band Osbourne liked that blew it by breaking up.

Drugs and alcohol play into the reasons a lot of other bands on Osborne’s list “blew it.” The Rolling Stones are one of them. He picks “Bitch” as the song that’s on there, saying that their last good album, Some Girls, is 35 years old. Jimi Hendrix’s death also warranted him a spot on the list. When it was argued that drugs might have helped make Hendrix artistic, Osborne shoots that down immediately. “There’s not a problem in the world you can’t make bigger by drinking a fifth of whiskey,” he says. “If it worked the other way, they would market it as ‘problem solving whiskey.'” The Replacements and Husker Du are another pair of bands that got worse over time saying Husker Du turned into “a bad version of R.E.M.’ and the Replacements’ Let It Be and Pleased To Meet Me “interchangeable garbage.” 

Of course, he also talks about Metallica. Picking “Whiplash” as the song that he liked, he compares them to Raven and Venom combined with Judas Priest initially.

 I would like to take the band on that back cover of the Kill ’Em All album—I would like to take those guys and put them in a time machine and run them forward and make them sit through Some Kind Of Monster and say, “Guys! Do not let this happen!” You know what I mean? How could they not be appalled? They go from a song called “Whiplash” to a psychiatrist in the studio for $10,000 a week. Metal up your ass, indeed.

He circles back to Some Kind of Monster when talking about The Who, saying that Lars Ulrich’s dad stated that Load sucked, stating the movie is like This is Spinal Tap, but the band isn’t in on it.

You can read Osborne’s whole list here.

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