Rocko's Not Feeling Well
Reviewed by Greg Beets, Fri., June 5, 2015
Punk rock wasn't built to age gracefully. Yesterday's sneering contrarian is one shaken fist away from becoming tomorrow's cranky old man. Leave it to Austin's venerable Pocket Fishrmen to negotiate a third way by putting prurient lyrical wit and stunt-car guitar solos in service of a studio suite about the demise awaiting us all. Like a modern-day Borscht Belt emcee kvetching about sciatica, vocalist Brant Bingamon weaves the tale of Rocko, a sadsack protagonist beset by real and imagined maladies ranging from anal fistulas to narcissistic personality disorder. The truly infectious "Brain Tapeworm" plays like a pharmaceutical ad from the future, while "Colonoscopy" captures all the mortal fear and schoolyard hilarity the procedure engenders. There's an odd dignity to these middle-aged men making musical hay of weak streams and dry holes. In a world where maturity's rewards find the Fonz hawking reverse mortgages, maintenance of questionable character may ultimately summon the last laugh.