My Top 1000 Songs #524: Split Myself In Two
This Meat Puppets song is NOT my favorite Meat Puppets song. Nor is it remotely representative of what I love about the Meat Puppets. But somehow its reckless sense of sheer chaos long had a hold over me. And heaven knows we all need some sheer chaos now and then.
I discovered the band's 1984 sophomore album, Meat Puppets II, early in my college radio days. It was a weird spin on the jangle pop I loved, R.E.M. and the like, infusing it with rustic Americana and a bit of Neil Young. The album was also a radical departure from their debut, which was noisy hardcore thrash that, at least for me, verged on the unlistenable.
Yet the song that first caught my attention on the record, "Split Myself In Two," was an outlier that sounded more like their prior LP, yet given a bit more of a traditional rock structure (but just barely). It's loud and fast and messy and feels like it's totally going to fall apart before the song ends. While I enjoy the more melodic sun-drenched country-rockish vibe of the balance of the record (which would characterize much of their later work), I just keep returning to the frenzied "Split," waiting for the wheels to come off.