Daly, Mike – Time Flies When You Are In A Coma-The Wisdom Of The Metal Gods (Book Review)

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Reviewed: December 2010
Released: 2008, Plume
Rating: 2.0/5
Reviewer: JP


Looks great but the clever joke is poorly executed..

I’m pretty much a sucker for books about Metal. I grabbed this book without really looking at it, it was inexpensive but in retrospect I could have lived without it. The title ‘Time Flies When You Are In A Coma’ was a phrase heard on at the tail end of a W.A.S.P. B-side, called Douche Bag Blues, a comedy track from the INSIDE THE ELECTRIC CIRCUS sessions. The obscure reference to one of my favorite bands caught my eye, so I bought the book.

TIME FLIES is a comedy/coffee table type book. As a book it is OK. Nice full colour, nice glossy paper, handy-pocket size for traveling, it’s well put together and well designed. There is a humourous intro and funny forward as well.

The concept is that the author has collected quotes from the lyrics of Metal artists, added a corresponding picture of that artist and linking it all together into some kind of Metal philosophy. It’s kind of a joke self-help book for Metalheads. The book is divided into four sections, ‘Meditations’, Zen Questions’, Daily Affirmations’ and ‘Words Of Wisdom’. Each section has some quotes that loosely correspond to the chapter theme and the related photo. The photos are pretty much all publicity shots like the kind you might have seen in Hit Parader or Circus magazine in 1989 all shot by the mighty Mark Weiss.

I’m not thrilled with TIME FLIES. It’s supposed to be funny and to a degree it is kinda funny in concept, but the execution is poor. For example there is a quote from a Warrant (US) song from a later-era album but the photo is from the CHERRY PIE era. Many of the photos don’t match the era of the quote.
Often, the quotes don’t really have anything to do with the chapter headings. In the chapter called ‘Meditations’ there is a quote by Quiet Riot, ‘Wanna kiss your lips, not the ones on your face’. What has that got to do with Meditations? In the section ‘Zen Questions’ a quote by Ratt asks, “Lift your skirt Lady, high in the night. I’m just what you need, why don’t you give it a try?” There’s nothing really ‘Zen’ about crotch-level lyrics no matter how fun they may be.

The author also has a web-site that adds more quotes periodically. The whole book takes a slightly funny concept and beats it into the ground. TIME FLIES is more of a brief, bright, retro, pop-culture look at 80’s metal and it’s mildly amusing at best. The rating standard for this web-site applies perfectly for this book so how is this for a wise quote? “Time Flies has it’s moments but not worth buying or owning.”

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Technical Details:
Format Reviewed:
Publisher: Plume
Pages: 140