Andrew WK - ‘I Get Wet’ (Mercury)
19 Jan 2004
nose-bleedingly laughable; where is he now, we cry?; release - '01.
Ah, the Great Andrew WK Debate: sent to save the rock world from muso-shoegazer oblivion, or merely an over-hyped, post-modern piss-taker who probably can't even believe himself how everyone's fallen for him?
A record rarely leaves the listener physically tired, but 'I Get Wet' really is an exhausting experience. Each of these twelve tracks feels like a sledge-hammer blow to the back of the head and the album itself should probably come with some kind of health warning; certainly, it's not an easy task to stomach a full dosage of such gargantuan power-anthems in one sitting. Thus, truly, this is a test of endurance.
Some of 'I Get Wet' is impossible to take seriously - but isn't that the whole point? Take the manic hollering on 'Ready To Die', for example, whose key-lines, 'You'd better get ready to die/You'd better get ready to kill' really ought to be at least slightly unnerving, right? Well, the fact that these threatening sentiments appear to be backed by a tune bearing an uncanny resemblance to the 'Banana Splits' theme-tune takes the edge off things slightly.
But criticising Andrew WK's lack of subtlety or pretension is to miss the point entirely. He comes, quite simply, to rock. Hard. He succeeds. End of story... You know, sometimes it's better not to over-analyse these things.