REVIEWS

PEACHES
Fatherfucker [XL]

 

With a sample from Joan Jett's Bad Reputation, Peaches kicks off her second album, Fatherfucker, with this proclamation: "I don't give a damn about reputation." And, for effect, she screams, "I don't give a fuck. I don't give a fuck." The song continues with this mix of rage and glee and ends with her hyperventilating, "Fuck! Shit! Fuck! Shit!" Lest you're wondering, yes, I think it's an instant rock 'n' roll classic. Because if you go further back, the song's melody is also drawn from The Who's quintessential My Generation. The line "I don't give a damn about reputation" echoes melodically and meaningfully, My Generation's lyric: "People try to put us down."

So if Peaches has become iconic for college radio fans, it's because she's a generational signifier. She signifies a rage against hypocrisy. And Peaches is raging mostly against sexual hypocrisy. Hence Fatherfucker. It's Peaches' answer to the word "motherfucker," her claim for equality, for the female stake on male libido.

And the songs prove it. I U She is a paean to bisexuality while Back It Up, Boy is about a girl using a codpiece to penetrate her boyfriend. The title itself is featured on Shake Yer Dix with the teasing refrain, "Are the motherfuckers ready for the fatherfuckers... no?" Her sexual equality is also on Stuff Me Up when she advises, "Eat a big dick everyday. Eat a big clit everyday."

But Peaches is also a live wire when she rocks out. Rock 'n' Roll is almost like a frenzied electro rendition of Led Zeppelin, with John Bonham-styled drums and wrenching guitar chords. The album's centrepiece is a very funny duet with Iggy Pop on Kick It. Basically rapping against each other over a monster groove, Peaches says: "Some people don't like my crotch." Pop replies: "because it's got fuzzy fudge." Then Peaches counters, "But if you play Moses and me burning bush baby, and that is just what I've got."

Peaches, of course, puts Madonna to shame, and validates those of us who have never taken the latter seriously. Her electroclash is fiercely minimalist but with an extreme punk-rocking groove.

Fatherfucker is a strong follow-up to her debut, Teaches The Peaches (2000), and works up a sweat for those who are beginning to hear of her. As she says on Bag It, the final track, "You go extreme when you get with me, do you know what I mean?" - Philip Cheah


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