Friday, July 22, 2011

The J. Geils Band - "Love Stinks"

Love Stinks - Love Stinks

(Debuted April 12, 1980, Peaked #38, 12 Weeks on the Chart)

Although it was barely a Top 40 hit during its original single release, "Love Stinks" is still remembered today thanks to a great scene in The Wedding Singer, where Adam Sandler decides to use it to serenade a happy couple after getting jilted by his own fiancee. In a sense, the song was much different than the soul and blues-based material they released in the 1970s, but at the same time pointed to new directions they would later explore with Freeze Frame a year and a half later.

As you can guess by its title, "Love Stinks" isn't exactly a love song. Its main guitar riff was really simple and direct, its lyrics rife with sarcasm and delivered with all of the subtlety of a sledge hammer. It's really an infectious piece of pop, even if it's an ode to love gone horribly wrong.

I absolutely love the video for the song (which appears below). Despite being filmed in the immediate pre-MTV era, it suited the burgeoning genre well with its sense of humor. I was showing this to my young daughter recently and even she got a kick out of the way Steven Jo Bladd played drums with a fish, as well as the part where the bride and groom are wearing gas masks.

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