The Dead Milkmen: “Big Lizard in my Backyard”

One of the things that interests me most about this record is how my appreciation of it has changed over the years. When it was new and I was young, I responded best to the snottier tracks, the more in-your-face the better (“Takin’ Retards to the Zoo,” “Rastabilly,” “Tiny Town”). But now it’s the more subtle (well, by Dead Milkmen standards, anyway—nuance was never really their bag) songs that barely got a second listen from me in 1986 that hold my attention, especially “Serrated Edge,” with its bubbling bass line and references to Charles Nelson Reilly, and the swirling and trippy “Spit Sink,” for reasons that I still cannot quite determine. Go figure.

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