Mike Watt - Ball-Hog or Tugboat? (Cover Artwork)

Mike Watt

Ball-Hog or Tugboat? (1995)


Ah, Mike Watt. Perhaps one of the most under-rated punk bassists ever. When you ask people who the best punk bassist is, you can always rest assured that they will say Matt Freeman from Rancid. Well, that may be true to an extent, but Mike Watt deserves a lot of credit. The man is a great musical mind.

This album doesn't really touch his work with either the Minutemen or Firehose. There is no "Political Song for Michael Jackson to Sing" on here. Still, with a huge array of guests, this is a fun listen, and if you are patient, you can reap the rewards.

My favorite track on this disc is the one that got me to buy the album in the first place, and that would be "Piss-bottle Man". This is a great, irrestistably catchy song, featuring Evan Dando of the Lemonheads on vox. The other single that went to radio back in the day was the collaboration with Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder "Against The 70's". This is also a great track, putting Vedder in a musical context very unlike that of Pearl Jam. Other great tunes include the Frank Black collab. "Chinese Firedrill", "Drove Up from Pedro" with Carla Bozulich on vox, the J. Mascis guitar solo on "Maggot Brain" and Mike D.'s "E-ticket Ride".

The guest list on this disc is just stunning. I wont even mention them all, but aside from those mentioned in the previous paragraph, the guests include Flea, Dave Pirner (Soul Asylum), Kathleen Hanna (Bikini Kill), Henry Rollins, Dave Grol,Thurston Moore, Cris and Curt Kirkwood, and the list goes on and on. For the sake of just having something this cool, I suggest you pick this up. You won't be dissapointed.