Artist: Alien Sex Fiend
Title: I Walk the Line
Format: 12" single
Catalogue Number: FLEP106
Year of Release: 1986
A1 I Walk The Line
A2 School's Out (Completely)
B1 Here She Comes
B2 Can't Stop Smoking
Sharing its name for years with a Johnny Cash song, and now an astonishingly average JC biopic, I Walk The Line marks, I think, the beginning of the transformation of ASF from semi-serious post-punk goth rockers to shouty Munsters-backing-band parody.
With it's original-Batman TV series twanging-guitar riff and nonsensical, but trying to be scary, lyrics, this is a single from a band long past taking themselves seriously. The main lyric, shouted obviously, is "I walk the line between good and evil". Which doesn't make you evil, does it? At the most, you're amoral, which has never been either scary or cool. It plods along in much the same fashion as I'm doing time... but leaves less of an impact.
Schools Out is a cover version. It's like Alice Cooper, only less so. To get a good feel for this version, take the original, and play it through a cheap analogue radio, in a cave.
Here She Comes features more of Nik Fiend's imitable vocal stylings, and way with words - "Here she comes, come come come here she comes". This is followed by "She's gone for good, here she comes" - make your mind up Nik! I don't know whether she's coming or going. But I don't really care either.
The final track is a little ray of comedy sunshine on an otherwise overcast day. A song about how Mr. Fiend himself fears the reaper, in the form of lung cancer. He "can't stop smoking, night and day, cancer's coming, it's on its way". There's drumming here that makes Meg White sound like John Betsch, and a hi-larious outro of the singer coughing up a storm. Great track.