This is a special request for Parrotline. Some AM gold that when you catch yourself listening to the words as it comes on the super oldies (nowadays) station and you first think they are happy songs, and then you realize WHAT THE **** are they singing about? Nuclear winter? Murdered girlfriend? Seriously, you actually have to try not to drive into some sort of embankment or off a cliff. The first is the Zager and Evans classic “In the Year 2525” where they catalog man and womankind’s deathspiral into the future. Especially discomforting are the jumps of thousands of years, certainly up to 8510, I mean, you are expecting 8585 based on the previous verses, but then only 8510- oh yeah, God is deciding whether to wipe the slate clean. Hopefully the delightful Snag will fill out the commentary on these tracks in comments. This is the new Parrotline theme song. Nice!
In the Year 2525-Zager and Evans
So here’s another version, a You Tube especiale- the anime/video game version. As if the song couldn’t get any creepier, they do it here.
Here is another one that goes right for the jugular, it’s as if a cult is slaughtering you neighborhood while pounding special K and X. Do not listen to this while driving or drunk, if you are prone to melancholy or have recently been kicked to the curb or lost a loved one to a meteorite strike.
Seasons in the Sun-Terry Jacks
We continue with an East-West connection with this very special Seasons in the Sun by a group that I am not familiar with. I think they are called the Chumpwagon Specials, but I am also certain that they are not appreciating the subtleties of the Terry Jacks original. Also, I’m impressed by the casual cartwheeling done by suit boy #3, because those are some white suits and it could have been a Stainfighter™ situation with all that grass. Be that as it may, it most certainly is a Freshmaker™ situation.
So Pop MF Renaissance of his like-named blog, is off to see SoM tonight. These Goths were kind of the epitome of Goth- songs dripping with cold drama, never as hard as you imagined when you heard the term Goth- maybe you were thinking Visigoth? More morose than mopey, I love these guys. This is my fave Sisters tune here, relentless drum machine, heavy sounding ominous Andrew Eldritch being all obscure about something, the vid is awesome of course in I have to say going towards cheese way, but if you think of the time it is basically perfect. Normally this song segues into “Mother Russia” but you just get “Dominion” here. I have this off their A Slight Case of Overbombing comp, and I recommend it as a nice taste of their ouevre. Have fun at the show tonight, cobag, even though you saw them last month!
First things first, the name of the band. It isn’t really possible that this English girl group might be talking about devices used to transfer liquids, is it? I mean, I love pipettes – especially the P20 ones. I’m guessing, though, that they thought it would be a cute little variation on pipes (the voice kind), but all feminized and cutesy. Doesn’t matter. Points for a good band name.
Just watch the video, which can be found here. In fairness, I found this track through our nemeses at doucheforkmedia, and their review of the track is pretty good. So read that instead of whatever inanity I come up with. But it’s all about the chorus. Holy sh*t, it’s good. It’s what would happen if the Go! Team worked on Unchained Melody. And better. The wall of sound™ is so good. Pinko should like this track, although I don’t know if the ’80s-obsessed kind will care for it. It’s new music for an older time.
This song was already my favorite Echobelly song, from their X-album “On”- second? third? Seitz and I have had this discussion, but I forget. Less jaunty, more spacey, wall of soundish, and it’s about getting hypnotherapy so she could bring herself to eat meat again. I’m totally gonna sick that guy on Pop Ren. “Hey, Pop, he’s gonna make you think you’re a chicken” Pop: “COOL!” Pinko: “heh, heh, give him the full meat treatment, Mysterio!” Anyhoo, the video is actually also amazing, and perfectly matches the theme of the song. This is our recap to Seitz video week. I hope you enjoy it. Seriously, this one is really good.
Wanting to have more freedom after stints in Throwing Muses and co-founding the Breeders with Kim Deal, Tanya Donelly founded Belly and became an MTV fave with “Feed the Tree”. That kind of pigeonholed their successful first album, which really is underrated. I remember a particularly good Homicide:Life on the Street featuring “Full Moon, Empty Heart” from their debut Star. Their followup King did not fare well even though it got the full push, covers of Rolling Stone, probably Spin too. This is the second single, which I thought should be the first, and the video director has the same problem selling the band that everyone else had. They were a really good indie pop band, but they wanted to package Tanya as Cutesy McAdorablepants, and she is that, but it doesn’t really work for this song, where they effectively creep you out with some crazy bod-mod surgery and spooky hospital stuff only to have band shots where Cuddlebuggle Snugglypants is doing a super cute little dance. Anyway, more videos for Seitz. If the Nutter Butter weren’t running Windows 95, he would be all over this video.
Fait Accompli was the lead single in the US from Curve’s debut Doppelganger. Having followed some more original and adventurous EPs, some were turned off by the monochrom feel of this album and it’s essentially 8 versions of one song and two additional songs. I will give them that description, but it’s one of those albums that sounds so good, that you don’t mind that they all sound of a certain kind a la a Strokes CD, or say Jesus and Mary Chain. Here’s Trouser Press for more on the band. My faves from this album are “Think and Act” “Ice That Melts the Tips” “Fait Accompli” and the next video “Clipped” and I agree with Trouser that the follow up, Cuckoo was their masterpiece. The band, mostly a duo, were known for both their production and the aesthetics of their lead singer, Toni Halliday. The female guitarist in this clip joined Echobelly after this album.
So here is “Clipped”, while this song appeared on Doppelganger, it was from the earlier Cherry EP and can be found on the US EP Comp Pubic Fruit. I prefer their other two EPs, Galaxy and Frozen, but get the compilation.
I was trying to find “Superblaster” from Cuckoo, but couldn’t locate it. So for more Seitz fun, here’s Superblast! by Lush for comparison. They seem a little tame, but I like the riff (more when Stereolab does it).
We’re going to start with a video Seitz already talked about here, but we’ll actually show it to you. This is not our fave Lush song, in fact it is the one that led us to believe Lush was super boring. I think we saw them do this on Dennis Miller, maye Letterman. Lush for us got more interesting later on, with their mean break-up album, but we always liked more shoegazey or more dance oriented than Lush (MBV or Curve). We’re saving the big guns for later in the week, but Seitzo is going to be very happy with our finds.
Today we are about the Beach Boys. The Beach boys have been cool in indie dork circles for awhile, well very select Beach Boy songs. There is nothing we can say really on top of the millions of words said about the following Sunkist commercial. That’s what this song was when Three Bulls! was growing up, but it was also the number 1 reason why we liked Sunkist. This is the place we wanted to go- somewhere inside this song- for those that hate the Beach Boys, please just listen to the inside of this song. There is so much there. Watch the boys sell the impossible lip sync in this clip, watch poor Carl rock his bass and then sound like an altar boy. Mike Love- (is that Mike Love?) dutifully plays the theremin, who wouldn’t want one of those? Good Vibrations.
This clip is a cover of a traditional Jamaican tune, and everybody knows it, but sometimes people don’t think it is the Beach Boys. I want to point out the irony of this reverse Beatles “Beach Boys visit” England clip, and how forced it is, how soulless and dead-eyed Mike Love looks (that’s how you look when you are soulless and dead eyed). He the cobag in the cap. He’s about as evil as you get, and that being said, I still think his douchey vocals are right for this track. Here we go, Sloop John B.
Surf’s Up- in one of the original recorded versions, from the legendary Smile sessions:
But here is the killer, it needs to grow on you, and this live version doesn’t have the initial hook that the recorded one does, but stick with it because by the end you realize that it is actually amazing, white-bread beach boys and all. This is just crazy, crazy Brian Wilson on piano at his house with an early version of Surf’s Up.
I don’t care that this song references a band or playing an instrument. This song is awesome. Just slick enough production to make it perfect for a Bruckheimer movie or maybe the orgy scene in some CSI episode right before the sexually exploitative snuff film that is the heart of that show, because there is something scuzzy underneath this song, but it is just a mood, the band marches on above it all. Here’s a taste:
another alone on an everyday night
I think in the morning I think I’ll be alright
watching the blood flow
no wonder I dont know why
theres a woman in the mirror in a firey state
she motions to me I start pulling away
she’s lifting her dress up
all the way up
oh don’t look surprised
We’ll add that this video kind of fits. A little bit slick like the production on this 2004 song, but tasteful.
Here we have the point we started to make last month. Morrissey as disingenuous, genius, chamelonesque cipher to the extreme. The first video is from what we’ll call it middle period-solo, the second single from Your Arsenal, “Tomorrow”. Here he plays his Mr. 50s, slightly sinister, thuggy vibe, yet still sinuous and feline but the song is of course the first person desperate quest for human contact even if emotionally deceitful. So here the song is the one you sadly and pathetically sing along with in your head, as if he is giving voice to your feelings, but his appearance in the video is “disinterested Manc fashion plate”. I think this is a great song, primarily because of the driving yet wandering guitar and the classic Ronson production- he glams it up a little.
And here we have perhaps one of his more sensitive and damning tracks, “November Spawned a Monster”, which I have on early singles comp Bona Drag (which I consider the Morrissey high point- try to argue) about a troubled and sickly girl- he clearly sounds as if he has a soul and the song is spot on. An absolute gem, but he’s singing about someone else, as if he empathizes with their situation, which he must to some extent, as he gets the feelinds just right. But the video is a classic- of Beavis and Butthead. What the hell is he doing here? He’s f***ing with his audience. Mr. Celibate chooses his most sensitive song, one where he leaves his usual fake first person mantle by the wayside and unleashes a broadside at self-centered pity, to play with his audience by traipsing around the desert in stereotypical Teh Gay dancing. Is he turning the song into an analogy about homosexuality, is he daring people to make assertions? He’s humping a rock. He is 100% calculatedly screwing with you. I swear to God, one day Mr. PETA’s gonna eat a burger in a video. A juicy bacon burger. I just don’t trust the guy, and I love him, I really do. He is a pop mastermind, and a true celebrity oddity.