Farts Are Jazz To Assholes is a song by Dillinger Four that was recorded and released exclusively on the Short Music For Short People, a compilation album which was put out by Fat Wreck Chords that featured one-hundred-one punk rock bands back in 1999. All though it clocks at a mere thirty-three seconds, which is a little long for a compilation where the song length limit was supposed to be thirty seconds, Farts Are Jazz To Assholes can be looked at in a few respects as the very model of Dillinger Fours unique brand of pop-punk.
At the time this comp came out Dillinger Four was relatively unknown to the ever growing punk rock scene, being a small band from Minneapolis, Minnesota. Midwestern Songs Of The Americas, the bands debut full-length album that was released on Hopeless Records a year earlier in 1998, was a mind-blowing work of post-modern, unconventional pop-punk, that sadly didn't catch on. With it's blend of ultra-low fidelity recording techniques, mix of sampled records galore, and complete lack of songs about girls, it was easy for many to push aside Dillinger Four as a band too focused on drunken politics and moving punk rock to a more artistic level.
However, one man, along with legions in D4's growing fanbase, did not over look the bands abilities: Fat Mike, of NOFX fame. Fat Mike made the call personally, as he did with the other bands, and asked the band to be on the new compilation he was working on. Fat Mike would later make another personal call a few years later when he asked Dillinger Four to join his growing army of bands on his Fat Wreck Chords label, where they would release their third full-length Situationist Comedy.
But back to the song at hand. Farts Are Jazz To Assholes starts over in the same vein as another one of their songs, "Honey, I shit the hot tub.", with just a simple click-click-click-click on the closed hit hat of Monkey Hustle. From there the briefest moment of lo-fi, distorted guitar, ALA Midwestern Songs, is heard before Paddy's turbo-low bass kicks in, along with some proper punk rock drumming.
Erik Funk, the most soprano sounding of the group, begins to lay down his vocal track. Back during this time in Dillinger Four's career it seemed like Paddy and Billy were doing most of the vocals, with their lower, raspier sounding voices. It wasn't until Versus God that Erik really started taking over the wheel for the speeding lyrical car. In this way, Farts Are Jazz To Assholes could almost be looked as a foreshadowing of things to come, but to say that would be over analyzing.
After what could be considered the verse of the song the band goes into what could be considered the bridge. As usual they kick it down a notch and become a little bit more tame, which is a very characteristic thing of the band. If you didn't suspect a powerful, melodic chorus coming up then you just don't know this band, because they're about to hit you with it. During this aforementioned chorus we do get to see, or rather hear, a little bit of good ol' Billy belting out his part, which is a refreshing break from Erik voices, as it can get a little annoying after a while. A reprisal of Midwestern Songs feedback, screeching guitar beeps brings the end to Jazz Are Farts To Assholes, and Spread takes on the comp from there.
The sound is right on as far as Dillinger Four goes, giving an excellent portrayal of their musical standards, but one thing is lacking, and that's in the literary department of things. Farts Are Jazz To Assholes keeps with the typical, absurd, St. Patrick christened song title, but it lacks the overly political lyrics that nearly all Dillinger Four songs sport. Perhaps in order to keep people interested they didn't throw down all of their archaic ideology into this opus. See, look...
I kind of feel I've lost the words and the reasons,
I sit at home, drinking by myself,
I get a headache from the things I believe in,
The simple truths can be so absolute.
I'll take my chances on the morning paper,
A little bit of twitching and a workout maybe.
I've got nothing to say, it's not the first time,
I don't care, so do your worst cuz,
I've got nothing to say, got nothing to say.
Short Music For Short People booklet
Lyrics included legally through the 33% rule.