Monthly Archive for June, 2006

Twilight Zone-Golden Earring

For some reason I think Blue Girl would sing this in the car. First of all this song sounds much more new wave than I remember. Second of all, the video is awesome. Third of all, I had no idea what “uncensored” meant in relation to this video. This is a slab of 80s pop rock, cheesy because of its era, but relatively uncheesy when you compare it to its neighbors. Plus, you just kind of give in to it towards the end, because if it comes on the radio, odds are if the old school and today’s R and B station is playing the latter and can’t bail you out with the Daz Band or “Flashlight” or “Give it To Me, Baby” you’re gonna be listening to it. And then it is in your head.

Twilight Zone-Golden Earring

Teen Age Riot-Sonic Youth

I had the ol’ 12 inch of this one, so it is a similar edit, it doesn’t have the thoughtful instrumental intro. Ignore the kind of scenester-esque NY-sCene feel to the vid, these indie kings always made the music they wanted to play. You can hear exactly why the metallos etc. hated SY. The detuned guitars. This song is straight-ahead for them, but like fingernails on a blackbaord to noodly proggos. I love love this song. Ignore the video, just listen. It has a certain confidence and directness. Four minutes of art punk pop. In a way, listening to the words, it is like a rocking “Kids On Holiday” by Animal Collective. What I mean to say it has a certain nostaligic feel for me.

Lloyd, I’m Ready to Be Heartbroken-Camera Obscura

These Scottish retro-popsters have been accused of swimming in Belle and Sebastian’s wake, and this tune from their latest Let’s Get Out of This Country, might fit the bill. Where I feel B and S falls short these days is that their songs to me almost seem to follow the incredibly derivative and arch production. It is as if they have stopped working in the retro medium and have gone on to complete caricature. This is not to say that they don’t do it very very well. “Hey Lloyd..” by Camera Obscura has that caricature feel, but most of the rest of the album falls on the good side of the line, point being I still believe in her voice. I feel the emotions are still conveyed, not destroyed by the oh so quaint horns, or jaunty sixties flute. To me, Camera Obscura plays their songs while working in a particular style, rather than only existing for the propagation of that style. My current fave is “Come Back Margaret” on the new album. I predict Shingles will play “Come Back Margaret” at least twice in a row if he were to play it once.

Lloyd, I’m Ready to Be Heartbroken-Camera Obscura

And here is a bonus, from their last Underachievers Please Try Harder

Keep It Clean-Camera Obscura

Cowgirl-Underworld

The simplicity and conservative nature of the “time lapse for techno” approach by this You Tube DIYer actually works for the throwback techno epic “Cowgirl”. Always an old fave, probably considered cheesy due to the fact it was on the Hackers soundtrack. Good song for a jog and the vid gives you that going to the planetarium in high school for Laser Floyd feel. The old hat of it all actually works. Thing is you can actually kind of dance to the song without needing either tranquilizers for some 300 bpm song, or its so damn boring you need to be Xed out of your gourd to stay awake.

We Got to Get Out of This Place-The Animals

He could have easily played Mr. Evil Sexual Predator with that voice, but instead he goes for the grim reaper on this one, then the ray of sunshine amidst the desperation. Why were The Animals not hugerer? I really wanted “Its My Life”, but the ol’ You Tube search engine is emunificent in its largesse. Just got 50 Sailor Moon/Bon Jovi vids. Something about certain Animals hits are just jaw-droppingly good, and others are just meh. This one is amazing.

Islands – Where There’s A Will There’s a Whalebone

Islands are one of those crazy Canadian collectives that emerged from the ashes of The Unicorns. Yes, those Unicorns of the endless hooks and the total disregard for a chorus. Islands manifests itself as even more inventive, diverse, and fun. The songs vary greatly, from the calypso influenced to drawn-out Arcade Fire-esque movements. Where There’s a Will is like no other track on Return To The Sea. It starts off sounding like a typical Unicorns track, but then something happens about halfway through, and it dissolves into a wild dance party. The best I could provide is a poor-quality recording of them performing live (in Toronto of course!!!!), but the rapping on the recorded version is so fast and smooth and fits beautifully with the increasingly elaborate accompaniment. It reminds me a little of Beta Band’s Won, but that’s only because of how surpising and effective the rapping actually is. I’m not sure that PP would really love Islands through and through, but I’m sure it’s way up Fulsome’s alley.

Where There’s A Will There’s A Whalebone

Awful-Hole

I am ready to take the heat on this one. I think this song is the moment where Courtney Love was on the fence between being a sad cartoon and an actual person. All the bad things were already there and you could argue that she was destined to her sad fate from the beginning, maybe it was the drugs, maybe it was the attention, the suicide, it doesn’t matter really. In this song there was the appearance that it could go another way. And I will just come out and say it. This is a really good song.


Awful-Hole

Tantalized-The Church

I don’t love Australia’s The Church, mostly because I just can’t get into the vocal stylings of Steve Kilbey. It either seems too arch, or not quite musical enough. The guitar is always tasteful and elegant, though, but their American breakthrough Starfish always used to kind of bug me, I think I felt it was boring. I liked the lead single (“Metropolis”) from their next album Gold Afternoon Fix, although I’d be hard-pressed to say why. Today’s song is earlier than either of those two albums, and one of the few Church songs I know where the bands just seems to let go and be completely committed to straight ahead directness. “Tantalized” still has all the Church-y stylings but is very up-tempo, and sounds more like a hybrid between The Church, Echo and the Bunnymen and early U2. The studio version layers horns onto the live stuff you can watch below and the song is a stunner. The sound is a little muddy on this You Tube version, but you can see the band just having a great time, and condering how it was probably recorded, it is a great version.

Tantalized (live)-The Church

Small Rooms-Papas Fritas

Sunshiney power dork awesome pop from this Massachusetts threesome. Hyperactive Sesame Streetness without being too derivative like Architecture in Helsinki or some such. This from their Helioself album, which is one of those really rat-a-tat albums with about 18 2.2 minute songs. Short, sweet, catchy, sunny and unavailable for you to listen or see right now, so I give you the killer single from that same album, “Hey Hey You Say.” Forgive the one guy for his Napoleon Dynamiteness. He got to be in a band playing fun happy songs while you moped, drank, sent an embarassing and unfortunate e-mail to that one girl/guy and eventually passed out. Cobag.

Hey Hey You Say-Papas Fritas

Skin Deep/No More Heroes-The Stranglers

Double shot today from the Stranglers, an English band flitting between New Wave, Punk and a little Goth. The first number I find hypnotic for some reason. The simplicity of the keyboard along with the very specific sound they use, paired with the confident, matter of fact vocals somehow just grabs me. I really like the song. The second number is an earlier and bigger hit for them from the late 70s. You can hear the punkish sneer, but the vocals are too smart and too jokey for straight punk and the music points straight at New Wave.

Skin Deep-The Stranglers

No More Heroes-The Stranglers

I Hear You Calling-Gob

Harmless little Canadian pop-punk ditty. I picture annie-a blasting it while she screens Shoelimpy’s calls (spiderwebs, baby!). And dancing about the place. Anyway, in the vid, the zombies get theirs.

i’ve seen you now about the fourth time baby
but you know that i’ve got nothing to say
its so charming to look on your face but your eyes
inviting something i just can’t do now i’ve been around
about you hood i’m looking for you just to shine some light
on my day feels like ages since i’ve been out your way
i’ve been caught up with handful of new sensation

i hear you calling calling for me out in the night but it’s all
bad and i know that

i’ve seen you now about the fifth time baby
but you know that i’ve got nothing to say
its so charming to look on your face but your eyes
inviting something i just can’t do now i’ve been around
about you hood i’m looking for you just to shine some light
on my day feels like ages since i’ve been out your way
i’ve been caught up with handful of new sensation

i hear you calling, calling for me out in the night
but it’s all bad and i know that (x’s 5)


I Hear You Calling-GOB