Wrong Hole – 2012

Pleasence Records

Stupidity is one of the most underrated qualities in art but it’s one that Nick Flanagan understands the value of. The former Brutal Knights frontman never shied away from a dumb idea in his previous band and his work as a standup comedian is imbecilic in the best possible way blending painful puns with wry self-effacing delivery. Still his practices of comedy and punk have never worked hand in hand quite like they do on 2012 the debut album from Flanagan’s new band Wrong Hole.

One need look no further than the album’s artwork to truly understand the commitment to idiocy. The album’s title is a reference to when the group (rounded out by Quest for Fire’s Andrew Moszynski and Teenanger’s Jon Schouten) formed though it was clearly chosen so the group could lift Rush’s 2112 album art. If that seems like a strange reference wait until you see the back cover where the three-piece has re-created electro-house duo Crystal Castles 2008 self-titled debut for no good reason whatsoever (two members of Wrong Hole share one oversized leather jacket and pair of jeans making it all the weirder).

Throw on the record and it’s packed with remarkably fun punk hardcore and garage anthems built on distorted guitars drum machines and synths. Opener “What is a Car?” is a fist-pumper with Flanagan adopting a faux-Lemmy Kilmister vocal shred as he literally asks “what the fuck is a car?” with the qualifier “did I mention I have a low IQ?” Then there’s “I Wanna Be a Grandparent” with lines like “I can’t wait to have kids cuz kids can’t wait to have kids” and “Dick don’t work so I am sad.”

The 20-minute release is packed with aggressive party jams and if you ignore Flanagan it just sounds like another rad mid-fi punk band. Factor in the lunatic’s lyrics however and 2012 is blissfully brainless offering ideas and messages so stupid that they just might save humanity. In fact the only complaint I have is that Wrong Hole didn’t include a lyric sheet. Otherwise this is idiot perfection.