BiTrektual, by Aurelio Voltaire
Suggested by Stuart Legg
As I’ve mentioned previously, at best I’m SciFi-adjacent.
It’s not that I dislike the genre. Far from it. Star Trek and Star Wars are good fun. I simply can’t muster the requisite passion that the fandoms demand. I enjoy other science fiction properties more, namely Firefly and Red Dwarf, and I like Doctor Who a little too much. My other interests overlap these brands sufficiently for the tropes and memes to flow through me, so I’m no cultural wasteland: I’ll never win SciFi Mastermind, but I shake along with the nerdy massive.
The fact that I love Red Dwarf, the clearest merging of comedy and SciFi around, should bode well for this album. BiTrektual, it seems, is a parody album that lampoons both Star Trek and Star Wars, with a hat-tip to Doctor Who too. Aurelio Voltaire is a master of Dark Cabaret, whatever that is, and this is his ninth album so there’s some definite sticking power here. I’m hoping for wonderful wit and belly laughs galore.
The track list gives me a pause, with the song title Poopin’ in the Enterprise. A name like that points to humour with the broadest brush, from folk who’ll proclaim that there’s nothing funnier than a fart. The rest seem innocuous enough, so let’s set phasers for fun, and boldly go!
The first song, BiTrektual, is decent. The premise is that Star Trek and Star Wars fans should stop their fandom bickering and become, well, bitrektual, a play on bisexual. Fans of both shows, if you will. Musically, the cabaret roots are front and centre, and lyrically it has high spots, although it does shoehorn the conceit a little too firmly at times: “Oh come on, let’s not fight! It’s so unintellectual. / Let’s put our cares aside and be BiTrektual!”
Unfortunately, after a reasonable start, things go downhill very quickly. The reason? For some unfathomable reason, every single song is hugely preoccupied with sex. And not even good sex. We’re talking “non-consensual bumming, sticking your cock in a tribble, Worf has ridges on his tackle, shag the Tardis because it’s bigger on the inside, I became Jabba the Hut’s sexual plaything” sex.
It’s ugly, and crass, and cheap, and unless you’re thirteen, it’s not funny in the slightest.
I found the whole album exhausting. Line after line talking about willies and bums and whores and sluts and being horny and lube, plastered with an admittedly well-researched SciFi sheen. It’s all “his thrusters will explode in your wormhole,” and “his multi-phasing torpedo will penetrate your rift,” and “my Klingon bitches have got three tits” and “I was hit over the head by ol’ Han Solo / I’d never have guessed that pirate was a homo.” Utterly, utterly wretched.
The thing that irks me most is that there’s so much stuff ripe for parody in Star Trek and Star Wars. This could have been exceptional. The two songs that avoid innuendo (mostly), my standout The USS Make Shit Up and Expendable, look at the genre’s pseudo-science and redshirt / stormtrooper weaknesses in fine and fun style. But the rest? Appalling.
I can’t score this crap any higher than 3/10. I’m all for the general premise, but it’s just not funny. As such, it fails the prime directive and boldly goes into the bin.