It's time for another 80s League crossover event and this month we're talking about our favorite 80s music videos! You know, the bygone days when stations like MTV and VH1 actually showed videos instead of endless strings of reality shows full of horrible people! Make sure to check back here later this week and I'll have the rest of the league's posts right here.
For my pick, you had to know this was coming. I've gone on record stating Transformers: the Movie is one of my favorite things ever in the entire world. There's not a single thing I dislike about the movie, even including its animation/continuity errors and my favorite Dinobot, Snarl, only showing up in two blink-and-you'll-miss-it scenes. As soon as the movie came out, I had to get the soundtrack, so I can listen to that awesome metal version of the theme song whenever I wanted to. But I was seven and had no idea how soundtracks worked, so when I looked up White Lion at Target, I could never find the Transformers theme. I was bummed out, so I recorded the song off the movie onto a tape, which my brother immediately copied over it. Young punk, I'll straighten him out yet.
Fast forward a decade and change, I go to Empire Records in New Orleans and searching through their CDs and I happen upon the soundtrack! I bought it that very minute, ignoring the fact that I didn't happen to own a CD player yet. Whatever, I'll buy one too. I listened to that soundtrack like crazy, which gave me a real appreciation for the rest of the songs on it. I was already a fan of Weird Al (Dare to be Stupid is still my favorite song of his), but I'd never heard of Inspector General (name changed from Kick Axe for the soundtrack) or this guy, Stan Bush. But his song "The Touch" rocked my fucking world! Imagine my surprise to find out it had a video playing on MTV this whole time.
And this video is the most 80s thing I've ever seen. Stan Bush, his feathered hair dancing around like crazy, riffing on his guitar while it blocks laser blasts and fires off electricity. It's amazing, watching him do his magic while scenes from the movie play in the background. There's so many awesome things happening behind him, like Devastator merging for the kill and Unicron's transformation.
I think it's a little weird that he's singing about kicking ass while Autobots are dying: "You're at your best when the going gets rough - you've been put to the test, but it's never enough!" plays right as Brawn is killed by a Megatron-wielding Starscream. Either way, it's impossible not to get pumped when the music drops to those few piano notes while Rodimus Prime opens the Matrix. The only thing I can think of more awesome than this video is seeing characters from the movie rocking out to it as well.
Ever since the movie, Stan Bush has become a massive icon in the Transformers fandom. Even better than that is Stan Bush has embraced us, appearing in the various Transformers movies and games since then and playing gigs at Transformers conventions (you can watch his concert form last years BotCon here). And yes, it absolutely sounds just as awesome these days and makes me giddy to hear it. Stan Bush, you sir definitely have the Touch!