If you frequent the same recesses of the internet, then you are familiar with the unrelenting Applebee’s jokes that flood my newsfeed at all times. “Applebee’s” is synonymous with suburban/white/bland/boring/depressing culture, and regardless of how good their… I don’t know, Fireball Whiskey Lemonade is, it’s not really a place that hip urban young folks should find themselves pining for. But some of them do, because it reminds them of home. This isn’t a personal elitist opinion; I truly dgaf about the food quality at Applebee’s, and I don’t mean to mock their steadfast clientele. In fact, if I were to end up in one I would probably enjoy myself immensely because I love restaurants that serve you your burger in a basket lined with monogrammed wax paper; they taste better that way. But regardless of food presentation, Applebee’s has become a pop culture punchline, which is enhanced by the fact that unlike other corporate restaurants (IHOP, Wendy’s, Burger King), their Twitter account isn’t funny. Not even remotely.
Now, Pennsylvania’s Spraynard have adopted the saddest of all eateries as a symbol of their own decaying sense of self-worth. The inaugural lines of “Applebee’s Bar” introduce the song’s protagonist as an outsider, someone who yearns to exist someplace far removed from manicured lawns and white picket fences, but is just another suburban kid having a hard time fitting in: “I am every person that you’ve ever ignored/ I am the flaming bag of dog shit on your porch/ Used to think I was a savior, a part of a cause/ Now see I am nothing, no nothing at all.” In this song, Applebee’s is a state of mind, a place that you try and fail to escape from because their cocktails are cheap and there’s no other bar in town. Noisey premiered the single today accompanied by a long feature in which the writer and the members of Spraynard go eat a meal at the restaurant, which you can read here. “Applebee’s Bar” is the first song off of the band’s forthcoming Jade Tree release, Mable; listen below.
Mable is out 7/10 via Jade Tree Records.