Think you’ll “Get Lucky” with those faux Durex Daft Punk condoms? What a laugh riot. While crazed fans will clench onto them in hopes of avoiding a night with the spank bank, Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo will be laughing their way to an actual bank. (Well, that is, if they’re actually real.) But you and I both know that’s not the first piece of rubbish to surface from any band’s camp. Not in a world where KISS exists, and especially not one where ravenous consumers are a dime a dozen.
Truth: Music fans are no different than the hulking masses that loiter next to Wal-Mart at 3 p.m. on the Monday before Thanksgiving. They have the same potential chaotic chutzpah as the idiots shooting people for a pair of LeBrons. And while our punk rock might say otherwise, we’re innate consumers, ready to feast upon whatever we can get and whenever it’s available. At the end of the night, no band manager needs to be Richard M. Schulze to get their band a quick buck or five.
That explains why those condoms exist (?) or why your next-door neighbor’s unemployed father hits Aspen every February with his tacky Rolling Stones skis in tow or how Gene Simmons continues to drink wine from the arteries of his newborn fans. Look, I get it, baby. I’m just as guilty as the poor sap waiting to order the Rammstein dildos. Fuck, slap on a Pearl Jam logo and woo-wee I’m sold.
Well, while that doesn’t exist (yet), we did find a few other items of note, the sort of purchases that would make your wallet literally jump out of your pocket, evolve into a cartoon character, and scream obscenities at you in disgust. Preferably in the mall. Or with Sinbad. You’ve stopped reading, haven’t you?
KISS Him Cologne
In an ideal world, nobody has ever wanted to smell like KISS. But, that utopia is galaxies away and worlds apart, leaving us, instead, at the mercy of carbon emissions and the not-so-subtle fragrances of Gene Simmons & Co. Back in 2006, the well-endowed bassist (at least in the mouth) unveiled the band’s unlikely (?) cash grab, and rockists haven’t smelled the same since. Here’s hoping the majority of Earth is allergic to one of the following: bergamot fir, balsam, black cumin, white pepper, moss, sandalwood, and anise. What’s even scarier? There’s a woman’s perfume, too. –Michael Roffman
Creep Factor: 7.3/10
Perfect for: The guy working multiple late-night shifts in need of a party.
Gift wrap? Hey, why not. Say it’s from Doctor Love while you’re at it.
The fact that something as ridiculous as a GWAR-themed barbecue sauce is maybe the least ridiculous thing GWAR has ever done speaks volumes as to how truly out of their intergalactic skulls the legendary comic metal outfit really is. But while it lacks the shock value of decapitating the president or conducting mock abortions onstage, the idea of marketing their own barbecue sauce is something you wouldn’t exactly put past them. Fuck, they’ve done everything else, so why not, right? –Ryan Bray
Creep Factor: 4/10
Perfect for: Anyone who likes it bloody… their steaks, that is. Sicko.
Gift wrap? And get the paper all burnt on the grill? Shit son.
Katy Perry panties
Somewhere in California the pitch went something like this to Ms. Perry: “Because, really, let’s face it. This is the closest any fan will ever get to your panties, am I right, KP?” At the time, she was either a.) on the phone with her then-husband Russell Brand, b.) still getting those braces removed, or c.) just nodding at everything to stave off the creepy suits. To play Devil’s advocate for a second, why wouldn’t the over-sexualized Perry sell something as over-sexualized as a pair of panties with her name on it? Here’s why: all the 12-year-olds yearning to be teenagers who flock to her shows anytime she’s in town. Yeah, put that wallet away. –Michael Roffman
Creep Factor: Depending on the scene, we could be talking a 14 out of 10.
Perfect for: Katy Perry
Gift wrap? “Just one more thing to take off, dude.” — Mulch, your dealer
OK Go’s Needing/Getting Air Fresheners
With the innumerable amount of artist cologne and perfume lines out there, you can smell like just about any rock star, diva, or rap mogul youd like. But whos looking out for your car? The boys from OK Go, apparently. The Needing/Getting Air Freshener four-pack comes in the following car-pleasing scents: Andy (cinnamon-scented), Damian (new car-scented), Dan (pine-scented), and Tim (pineapple-scented). Finally, your car can smell tropical, like Tim Nordwind! –Matt Melis
Creep Factor: 2… but a 10 if we find out that Tim Nordwind really does smell like pineapple.
Perfect for: The car that thinks pine trees look tacky.
Gift wrap? If you really think they won’t be surprised already.
Grimes’ pussy rings
Claire Boucher wasnt the first to stock her merch stands with items you thought were only sold at sex emporiums, but was quite possibly the first to offer one that pretty much serves no practical sexual purpose and therefore, the best. They come in multiple colors, because actual vaginal mood rings were too expensive to make apparently, so just collect them all! –Steven Arroyo
Creep Factor: On men? 10. On women? …10.
Perfect for: If youve been thinking lately that nobody pays enough attention to your fingers.
Gift wrap? …with Katy Perry’s merch panties.
Mother Love Bone dog collar
Your posters, decals, pins, patches, tees, and tats already tell us that you love grunge, and now your dog can, too! This 1-wide, black pooch collar comes in a stylish pattern featuring alternating Mother Love Bone logo and bulldog illustrations. Rover will be ready to rock like it’s 1990! –Matt Melis
Creep Factor: 3 if your dog wears it. 10 if you wear it.
Perfect for: The mutt who wants to feel like a Stardog Champion
Gift wrap? Your pooch isn’t gonna care either way. Your lover, on the other hand…
It’s hard to pinpoint when exactly Rivers Cuomo and Co. completely put the self-seriousness that marked their first two records behind them, but by the time they decided to tongue and cheekly jump in on the snuggie craze in 2009, the band had pretty much taken to just having fun with, well, everything, music or otherwise. The inexplicably popular blanketwear was thrown in with the purchase of the band’s 2009 effort Raditude, which I guess was supposed to be incentive to jump in with the worst record of the band’s career. The end results are debatable. –Ryan Bray
Creep Factor: 7.1/10
Perfect for: Your grandmother eagerly awaiting a proper follow-up to Pinkerton.
Gift wrap? Only in special Weezer-styled paper. Short answer: no.
I’m the type of runner that stares down a lot, so the last thing I need to gaze at is Noel friggin’ Gallagher. Still, to each their own. But hey, here’s a funny image: Could you imagine Gallagher himself selling you these shoes? Consider this a head start on that fairly unnecessary daydream. –Michael Roffman
Creep Factor: 3.7/10
Perfect for: Your Anglophile college pal who still thinks we’re a year or two away from America “getting” The Stone Roses.
Gift wrap? Bag it up, instead.
Mark Mulcahy’s bucket of Mezzotint honey
Its the old youll-catch-more-fans-with-honey ploy taken quite literally. About the only thing sweeter than Mark Mulcahys jangly pop confections is the Super-Premium Grade A honey harvested from his private apiary and made available via his Mezzotint label. Adding to the appeal of 64 ounces of bee-made goodness is a colorful paint can container, with the insider joke to Sell By 4.04. –Matt Melis
Creep Factor: 1/10… it’s just honey, honey
Perfect for: Someone who wants to slather two coats of honey on their toast using a paintbrush
Gift wrap? Too sticky.
Wilco’s Garrett popcorn tubs
Wilco’s sound has evolved quite a ways over the course of their 18-year career, but at their heart the band has always been drawn to homespun Americana. And really, what’s more American than a tin full of popcorn? That’s all I’ve got. Beyond that, your guess is as good as mine. –Ryan Bray
Creep Factor: 2/10
Perfect for: …snacking on while listening to the warm ’70s pop rock of Sky Blue Sky.
Gift wrap? Maybe fashion something out of one of Tweedy’s old nudie suits.
deadmau5’s cat headphones
Cats don’t like their owners, let alone music, but deadmau5 loves his kitty so much that he worked alongside frequent collaborator Joshua Davis to commission exclusive and highly expensive headphones for the feline kind. And while the average Zooey can’t afford its $1,000 asking price, celebrity furballs like Tardar Sauce and Snacks probably enjoy the effort. At the time of press, the DJ’s own Professor-Meowingtons could not be reached for meow. –Michael Roffman
Creep Factor: Zero, more like the cute factor.
Perfect for: turning that cat’s grumpy frown upside down.
Gift wrap? Our office cats love to claw at paper, so that’s a 10-4, Garfield.
The Flaming Lips’ Silver Trembling Fetus Ornament
It’s hard at this point to be thrown by anything The Flaming Lips do. Even when they push the envelope to sadistic places almost no one would dare tred, everything the band does is met with a charming “Those crazy Flaming Lips”-kind of acceptance. That’s because beneath the inane shock value and sheer insanity of a lot of what the band does, there’s always something beautiful at play. Take, for instance, their fetus-shaped Christmas tree ornament. Yeah, it’s kind of a fucked up idea, but it also looks shiny and pretty cool. –Ryan Bray
Creep Factor: A bold 9.5
Perfect for: Anyone with a sense of humor about that whole pro-choice/pro-life debate.
Gift wrap? A big plastic egg. Anyone?