Friday, August 31, 2007

Logo #38: Mental Abuse

From a review of "Streets of Filth," the 1984 LP by New Jersey hardcore band Mental Abuse: "Thuddy, mid-rangey hardcore from a band of mental defectives (singer Sid Sludge was autistic) and outlaw bikers controlled by a shady manager with very deep pockets and a bizarre notion that the band could be a commercial success. A Mental Abuse movie exists." The album, with tracks like "Gimme Death," "Sock Woman," and "Security Guard," was heralded by this cartoon version of the lead singer. Sid sings: "The logo was done by Tommy "Gunn" O'Brien, a fan following the band around Dover NJ around 1983-84. I think he based the picture from the living-Sid Sludge who had a mohawk for a while. I think he has more teeth, though! Tommy silk-screened shirts and did flyers with the "Screaming Guy" just as the "Streets of Filth" record got released. Tommy was famous for wearing his black trenchcoat around the Showplace in Dover. He goes by Toxic Tommy now." Back then, like the one-legged lead singer from Texas punks Legionaire's Disease, someone like Sid would have been a curiosity at best and a misunderstood exile at worst. These days, people with whatever we're using as a euphemism for compromised mental state are lauded as "outsider artists" and celebrated beyond death - because, after all, the living death of nostalgia culture is forever.

Somewhat unrelatedly, Claire Forlani is twilight incarnate.

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