Finding an angle to talk about the scum rock group Lickety Splitz can be vexing. Mired in perpetual obscurity, LS enjoyed limited international radio play and even more limited commercial success. Call them victims of the internet age, but don’t call them victims.
Gleaming and smoldering like a white lightning forest fire, Pops Johnson, Pinky Snow, a rotating supporting cast, and a Casio keyboard found themselves most comfortable in front of the bright lights of the tightest leather pants, the bustiest groupies, the frostiest Cold Ones, and the seediest neighborhood dive bars, before it was in fashion to frequent dive bars.
Historically drawing influence and inspiration from David Lee Roth-era 1980’s power metal to stark low fidelity, one is greeted with a softer but equally time-worn first opening twang of ‘Broke’ from the 1999 Modest Mouse compilation ‘Build Nothing Out of Something’.
'Broke' finds Lickety Splitz at their most genuinely introspective. The track opens with a sense of excitement from the return to the cigarette and Tecate stained studio after a long hangover. Pinky's slack jawed approach and signature production ethos for the authenticity thing is spot on. Pop's sober vocals sound almost apologetic as he wails 'Broke the glasses/ But I broke the ice/ Said I was an asshole/ But I paid the price'.
As with any LS release, the heaviest interpretation lies in Pinkys contribution(s). ‘Broke’ is currently available as a glimpse into what Pops and co. have been (or haven’t been) up to in the nearly 10 years since their last release ‘The Crack of the Godz’. The track appeared via a YouTube video as audio over multiple angles of a Pops Johnson painting from Pinky’s personal collection featuring Windows Movie Maker stock transitions and low quality cold, falling snowflakes.
Does the song choice show a shift in taste, maturity, or style?
Does the mental panic halfway through mean anything?
Can the Splitz still sell out arenas?
Are there any cold beers left?
The track winds down with a focused and abrupt guitar and drum onslaught as quickly as it appeared and none of those questions matter.
As Pops says in the opening seconds, ‘It’s like the old days’. And it is.