Classic Singles #47: The Driving Stupid – Horror Asparagus Stories / The Reality of (Air) Fried Borsk (1966)

“You stand on the table, the rugs creep up the legs, Tiny green lobsters, throw spider’s eggs…”

DrivingS_labelI suppose this is really a novelty record, albeit a very good one. The Driving Stupid were another band who appeared on the infamous Pebbles Volume 3: The Acid Gallery compilation. The track listing on the back of the album cover had two songs listed (both sides of the single), and given the intriguing titles I am sure I am not the only person who was disappointed on playing the record to find that only one of them actually appeared on the vinyl, ‘Horror Asparagus Stories’ being inexplicably omitted. Indeed, I had to wait quite a few years before I heard that missing song.

‘Horror Asparagus Stories’ is a primitive but up-tempo garage number, with an incredibly basic nursery rhyme style guitar break and nonsense lyrics that describe the singer’s family in many and varied bizarre ways. I do like the way that the key words are hammered home in call and response fashion by the rest of the group yelling them out at the end of each line. The song is also short enough not to outstay its welcome (well, I think so!).

‘Horror Asparagus Stories’

The flip has more nonsense lyrics, quite trippy in fact, shouted in manic fashion over a loose I’m A Man style guitar riff.

‘The Reality of (Air) Fried Borsk’

The Driving Stupid’s sole 45 came out in September 1966 on the KR label. The band was formed by college friends from New Jersey but the single was recorded in Albuquerque, New Mexico, while they were on their way to Los Angeles to find fame and fortune. In the event they did manage to secure a record deal and record an album’s worth of material but this was never released at the time. By the end of 1966 the band had disintegrated, with most of the members going back to college.

Reissues: Both sides of the single are included on Sundazed’s retrospective Horror Asparagus Stories, which includes the unreleased material mentioned above. You can also find ‘Horror Asparagus Stories’ on Garage Beat ’66 Volume 4 and Acid Dreams Epitaph, and the flip is of course on Pebbles Volume 3.

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