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Digital Underground – Sex Packets (1990)

July 4, 2016

Windsor

Prologue
Artist #1: Pantera
Artist #2: Frank Black
Artist #3: Sleater-Kinney
Artist #4: Nas
Artist #5: Digital Underground

[Album 462/1001]

Sometimes, it’s nice to read a book without reading the jacket.

Or listen to an album without reading the sleeve.

On my recent 1200+km drive, that’s precisely how I was introduced to this Digital Underground (DU) debut (and DU for that matter).

There were some puzzling moments:220px-Sex_Packets

Apparently, DU was playing a show with the Who AND the Clash? (Gutfest ’89)

What’s the deal with these ‘Packets’ they keep referencing?

How much longer is this drive?

.

A simple wikipedia search would have revealed that Sex Packets:

is a concept album about “G.S.R.A.” (Genetic Suppression Relief Antidotes), a pharmaceutical substance that is produced in the form of a large glowing pill about the size of a quarter, which comes in a condom-sized package and is allegedly developed by the government to provide its intended users such as astronauts with a satisfying sexual experience in situations where the normal attainment of such experiences would be counter-productive to the mission at hand.

And upon reading that, the album makes much more sense!

Though in a way, it was nice to be uninformed & confused while listening, as it was a welcome audio distraction through some long, uneventful highway stretches.

While the fictional “pharmaceutical substance” is not yet available at every corner pharmacy, the opening track, The Humpty Dance, has since been sampled in over 50 other songs.

As per usual, I have a soft spot for self-deprecation (“They say I’m ugly but it just don’t faze me”) and I appreciate DU’s complete commitment to the concept album format.

I suppose overall, the Ace Ventura quote springs to mind, “Fiction can be fun, but I find the reference section a little more enlightening.

Making Sex Packets a diverting, unique listen.

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From → 1990s

18 Comments
  1. I love this one – really fun, really funny LP. ‘Freaks of the Industry’ is an all-time classic for me. I was actually at Gutfest ’89, I have the T-shirt and everything. True story.

    • I wish I was at that fictional concert, especially on the Miles Davis night!

      • Fictional gigs are always the best. I was there when Wyld Stallyns played the Grand Canton too.

  2. Never heard o’ this one, Geoff. Sounds kinda like something De La Soul would produce, so that’s gotta be a good thing.

    • It’s probably one that you have to be in the right space to hear – considering my listening context of driving solo, giving me something to think about while doing so, it worked!

  3. Zack permalink

    My nose is big, just like a pickle.
    I just heard the Weird Al track where he turns The Humpty Dance into a polka. I like that better.

  4. I’m with J. on this one. I knew Humpty Dance, of course, but never sought out an album. It must really be something, though, if it’s actually on the 1001…

    • I don’t know if I’ll seek out beyond this, but this works as a change of pace, something where I can’t think of anything really comparable!

  5. Wowzers Dude! Every post has something different Geoff! What a drive dude! Are u still driving and postimg blogs at gas stops!!??
    Hahahaha
    Drop by Tbay!

    • haha, thanks Deke! It was a strange experience, having 12 hours or so of uninterrupted control of the stereo, no kids music!
      As long as they’ve fixed that bridge, Tbay here I come!

  6. On the road to Windsor and back, to the Gas Stations sell those sex packets? I ask only for information.

  7. Sounds interesting, I’ve never heard of this.

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