Cooked on Phonics (a pun of the literacy program Hooked on Phonics) is the debut studio album by Canadian musician Devin Townsend, originally released under the fictional band name Punky Brüster. It was released on Townsend's label, HevyDevy Records, on March 19, 1996. It is a metal/punk rock parodic concept album written by Townsend, telling the story of a fictitious death metal band from south-central Poland called Cryptic Coroner that sells out their metal look and sound to become a commercial punk rock band called Punky Brüster. The band's name is a pun on the '80s U.S. television series Punky Brewster.
This album started as a piss-take on the whole Green Day, Rancid era of 'pop-punk' that was popular at this time. It began as a joke between myself and Kev from Lawnmower Deth, (who was teching for The Wildhearts then) and began with the song 'Fake Punk'. When I got back to Vancouver, I jammed it out with Adrian, who contributed some cool lyrical ideas and voices… (of which he was never properly credited for…if it gets re-released he will be). Squid also played bass on a few songs and it took essentially a week in a friend’s basement to record. At one point, Century Media wanted to release it, but that fell through and we've only released it on the web. There's talk of making it public at which point we will revisit the art etc. I mixed it with Blair Calibaba at Mushroom studios. Adrian at this point had joined Frontline Assembly and went on tour, so I enlisted my friend Bob Wagner to finish the drums. Fun record, the first 'concept album' I suppose I made (about a fictional metal band that changes their direction to make money). Was a spur of the moment idea that ended up being completed…(a trait of mine I admit I'm rather proud of).
All words and music written by Devin Townsend.
- "Recipe for Bait" (7:26)
- "Fake Punk" (2:21)
- "EZ$$" (4:13)
- "Metal Dilemma" (3:32)
- "Oats Peas Beans & Barley" (1:49)
- "Wallet Chain" (3:25)
- "Heinous Anus" (1:43)
- "Heavy Metal Mama" (4:47)
- "Crusty's at the Ivanhoe" (6:23)
- "Picture of Myself" (6:43)
- "The Girls Next Door" (4:28)
- "Larry's O" (6:06)
- "Metal Heads Are Punk Rockers" (3:06)
The first edition groups the first two bonus songs on the end of "Picture of Myself" into one 15-minute track, with "Metal Heads Are Punk Rockers" denoted as a Japanese bonus track. It also has a different cover.
Each member of the project is credited under two aliases, the first as a Punky Brüster member, and the second as a Cryptic Coroner member.
- Devin Townsend:
- Dr. Skinny – main vocals, guitar
- Lord Stenchlor – Brutal sword of Baphomet's greasy spoon
- John Randahl Harder:
- Squid Vicious – bass, vocals
- Jokor, King of the Orcs – Battering old containers of poop strewn from the bowels of pure nasty Hell
- Adrian White:
- Dances with Chickens – drums, hysteria
- Underwator – Rotting corpse sucker from the world beyond the one before the last one
Additional vocalists and musicians
- Chris Valagao (E. Val Mescal) – vocals on "Oats Peas Beans & Barley"; total uncleanliness
- Jed Simon (Ace Longback) – background vocals, skulking, hot pants rocker baby
- Byron Stroud (Stoolie B. Flames) – vocals; textures; club owners; moocher of gear
- Bob Wagner (Velvet Kevorkian) – who did nothing, but has a honkin' name
- Chief Dontsmoken – bad hair; foreign guy; sleepless anarchy
- Pete of Shit – old gay punk dude; baby onions; chauffeur to the stars
- Surrey Wagner – drums when DWC was out conquering Gauls in Norway
- Diananator – groupie extrordinaire
- HevyDevy Records. "Punky Brüster: Cooked on Phonics."