My Brain Hurts

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My Brain Hurts is the 3rd LP released by Screeching Weasel. The album was released in 1991 by Lookout! Records. It was the group's first record since reuniting after their 1989 split, the first to feature drummer Dan Panic, the first to feature Dan Schafer both playing guitar and performing under the Danny Vapid stage name, the only album featuring Dave Naked, and their first release on Lookout! Records. My Brain Hurts remains one of the band's most popular and influential records.

Details

  • Format: LP/CS/CD
  • Label: Lookout! Records. Subsequently reissued by Asian Man Records and Recess Records
  • Studio: Art of Ears, San Francisco, CA
  • Recording Dates: July 2,3,8 & 9, 1991
  • Year: 1991. Subsequently reissued in 2005 (Asian Man) and 2009 (Recess)
  • Availability: In Print (digital)

Tracks

1. Making You Cry (Weasel)

2. Slogans (Weasel)

3. Guest List (Weasel/Vapid)

4. Veronica Hates Me (Weasel)

5. I Can See Clearly Now (Johnny Nash)

6. Cindy's On Methadone (Weasel)

7. The Science Of Myth (Weasel)

8. What We Hate (Weasel)

9. Teenage Freakshow (Weasel/Vapid)

10. Kamala's Too Nice (Weasel/Vapid)

11. Don't Turn Out The Lights (Weasel)

12. Fathead (Weasel/Vapid/Jughead)

13. I Wanna Be With You Tonight (Weasel)

14. My Brain Hurts (Weasel)

Credits

  • Engineer - Andy Ernst
  • Producer - Andy Ernst & Lawrence Livermore
  • Executive Producer - Al Sobrante

Notes

  • Remastered by Mass Giorgini and reissued on CD in 2005 by Asian Man Records. The reissue has the same cover photo but the band name and title are written in different font. Also includes liner notes from Joe King (of the Queers), Ben Weasel, Jughead, and Danny Vapid.
  • Reissued on vinyl in 2009 by Recess Records with new cover art drawn by Cristy Road.
  • On the Lookout! Records CD version, Dan Panic is simply credited as "Danny". On the Lookout! LP version, Jughead is credited as "John Jughead".
  • Producer Lawrence Livermore was the co-founder of Lookout Records, which he ran from 1987 until 1996.
  • Executive Producer Al Sobrante (born John Kiffmeyer) was a member of the band Isocracy and was also the original drummer for Green Day.
  • The title of "Veronica Hates Me" was a dig at Jim Ellison of the Chicago-based power-pop band Material Issue, who had scored a hit in 1991 with the song "Valerie Loves Me". The band had long harbored a grudge against Jim, who had been the booker at Batteries Not Included and had allegedly stiffed Screeching Weasel on payment at some shows in the band's early days.
  • An early version of "Fathead" appears on the band's 1989 EP, Punkhouse.
  • An early version of "Kamala's Too Nice" appears on the What Are You Pointing At? compilation released by Very Small Records in 1989. The song is a reference to Kamala Parks, a prominent member of Berkeley, CA/East Bay punk scene.
  • Both Danny Vapid and Jughead have cited "What We Hate" as one of their favorite songs on the album.
  • The band was later commissioned to re-record "Cindy's On Methadone" for a movie soundtrack, but song was changed to "Shirley's On Methadone" to fit the movie. The movie ended up never being released.
  • "I Can See Clearly Now" appears in the 2009 movie "Jennifer's Body".
  • "Teenage Freak Show" has its roots in a song called "Teenage Peepshow", written by Danny Vapid for a short-lived project he had with a couple friends prior to Screeching Weasel's 1991 reunion.
  • The songs "I Wanna Be A Homosexual", "She's Giving Me The Creeps", and the Patsy Cline cover "I Fall To Pieces" were also record at same sessions as My Brain Hurts but were released on the Pervo-Devo 7" EP on Shred of Dignity Records (later called Outpunk Records). There was some controversy over this. Both Ben and Jughead have stated that Lawrence Livermore nearly canceled SW's deal with Lookout over the song "I Wanna Be A Homosexual". The book "Punk USA: The Rise And Fall of Lookout Records" claims that part of the band's agreement with the label was to include "I Wanna Be A Homosexual" on "My Brain Hurts" but this is incorrect. Following the release of that book, Ben issued a statement with several criticisms of its contents (he declined to be interviewed for it) and blamed the inaccuracy about "Homosexual" on Jughead (who was interviewed) and stated the reason that the band did the EP with Shred of Dignity in the first place was that the band's inability to get a commitment from Lookout Records (the agreement, according to Ben, did not come until well into the mixing sessions for the album). Jughead denied telling the author the song was originally promised to Lookout and his quote in the book about this subject ("We promised the song to [Shred of Dignity], it wasn't left off as claimed") seems to support this. Lawrence Livermore, in his book "How To Ru(i)n a Record Label", states that he thought "I Wanna Be A Homosexual" too important of a song to be relegated to a limited 7" release and assumed the track would be included on the CD version of the album as a bonus track (CDs were still new to the punk scene at that time and CD bonus tracks were a common practice). However, Matt Wobensmith from Shred of Dignity immediately informed Lawrence that he had no interest in having anything to do with Lookout and rebuffed any suggestion Lawrence made about releasing the song on both records. Ben's version is that Lawrence harassed Matt in an attempt to get him to give up the song and by the time he proposed including the song on both records (which Ben was not in favor of doing, anyway) Matt was in no mood to cooperate.
  • Keyboards on the album were performed by Ben Weasel.
  • Lawrence Livermore wanted "The Science of Myth" to be the first song on the record.
  • Ben Weasel and Danny Vapid performed the entire My Brain Hurts album at two shows at Reggie's Rock Club in Chicago in August of 2008. A resulting live album, released as a Ben Weasel solo record called The Brain That Wouldn't Die, appeared on Asian Man Records the following year, although the songs "I Can See Clearly Now" and "Fathead" were omitted and replaced with two other Screeching Weasel tunes, "Cool Kids" and "This Ain't Hawaii", respectively.

Links

My Brain Hurts @ Discogs

John Jughead Pierson discusses his memories of "My Brain Hurts"