PORTLAND, Ore. — Doom metal veterans Flaccid Obelisk is selling coupons for a full vehicle inspection with a complimentary oil change as exclusive merch items at their shows, excited metalheads and car owners confirm.
“We ran out of XXL cutoff shirts a quarter of the way into the tour, so we had to get creative,” said guitarist Phil “Battleaxe” Pruitt. “That’s when we realized, ‘Hey, we’re all mechanics! We all work at the same auto repair shop when we’re not touring, so let’s just bring our pain in the ass day job along.’ So, we melt our fans’ faces at night, and fix their car the next day. Besides, we don’t want to get rusty, you know.”
When word spread of Flaccid Obelisk’s third Pacific Northwest tour of the year and their sweet new merch deal, their audience size tripled.
“I saw their merch table on the venue’s Instagram and immediately got in line,” said fan Andrew Popilon. “I haven’t heard their music — I’m more of a Lin-Manuel Miranda guy myself — but I know a good deal when I see one. I’ve been driving a ‘96 Accord for the past 24 years, and it runs as well as you’d expect. $5 for a ticket to this crappy venue, for a $10 vehicle inspection with a complimentary oil change? Of course I’m gonna come to the show.”
Dr. Slovenia Rook, professor of Merchandising Accessories for Rock and Roll at Carnegie Mellon University, noted that it’s all too common for an unconventional piece of merch to pique the most interest.
“You see it all the time, especially when musicians are used to making money from working… shall we say, real jobs,” Dr. Rook said. “It’s hard to transition from something so fruitful to the harrowing plight of the road. Many of these heavy metal rockers are just looking for comfort. So they turn to what they know: which most of the time, is something involving automotive mechanics, HVAC repair, or pizza making.”
At press time, the band was working a bikini car wash in the parking lot for gas money home.