Thursday, May 31, 2012
I heard today's song on the radio yesterday and thought:
"I like that. I'd like it on the blog so other people can like it, too. Or they may not like it. Never mind. Beat music from the Sixties isn't to everyone's taste. So there's no guarantee that whoever listens to is going to think it's as groovy as I do. But that's OK. You can't expect everyone to like what you put on the blog. And another thing: Why are you having this silly internal conversation?"
Ray Brown And The Whispers - "(Ain't It) Strange" (1966)
And here's the original:
The Uniques - "Strange" (1966)
I'd like to state for the record* that I think "The Uniques" is a great name for a 1960s band.
(*Pun unfortunately intended.)
Wednesday, May 30, 2012
My friend Stonefish (Hi, Stoney!) recently posted on his blog a couple of songs by a band called Fools For Rowan.
One of the songs starts like this:
Fools For Rowan - "It's Alright" (2009) (excerpt 1)
Speaking of psychedelic-neo-baroque-power-pop, I recently received the CD of The Corner Laughers' Poppy Seeds in the mail. (It arrived here in Australia only a couple of weeks after I bought it. Thanks, band! I like it when you give musicians money and they give you music.)
To celebrate*, here's one reason I bought the little critter:
(Beware: If you're allergic to "twee", you may want to visit a different blog today.)
The Corner Laughers - "Twice The Luck" (2012)
Oh, I've just discovered that in a lovely bit of happenstance Powerpopaholic has posted a review of Poppy Seeds (and scored it 9 out of 10 – Woohoo!).
(*I was going to say "commemorate", but that might be too official a word to use just to play a song on a blog.)
Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Today's Song of the day is the rather splendid "Prince Of Thieves" by Skeleton Staff. Its rhythm is based on this:
Skeleton Staff - "Prince Of Thieves" (2011) (excerpt)
It's been aaaaages since I played you a Skeleton Staff song.
Time to rectify:
Skeleton Staff - "Prince Of Thieves" (2011)
Incidentally – and this doesn't have much to do with anything interesting – I was a bit late with today's post because of a mishap that prevented me from having access to the Internet for a while. The modem cable broke yesterday so I had to nip off to a shop and get a new cable. (It may or may not have been pet-rabbit-related. I didn't see the cable break, so I can't really blame the rabbit. Unless it was the rabbit.*)
(*Even if it was, I can't be angry at Alice. I mean, look at her:
How can I be angry at that?)
Monday, May 28, 2012
There I was, enjoying my Sunday (Note to self: It's not just your Sunday, Peter – it's everyone else's, too) when I suddenly realised: "Gah! I don't have a song for the blog on Monday! Quick! Think of a song! And stop using exclamation marks!"
Here's the first thing that came into my head:
Raspberries - "Play On" (1974)
Sunday, May 27, 2012
You know, sometimes I think I don't have enough Herb Alpert in my life:
Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass - "A Taste Of Honey" (1965)
Saturday, May 26, 2012
Here's another Australian song introduced to me by an American blog. (Hi, Aaron!)
Today's song is by a band called The Bowers, and they're from Melbourne. They have a new album out called Odds Or Evens.
Although the album didn't much for me (I'm not a huge fan of garage-y rock), I did like this track:
The Bowers - "Going To Love Me Now" (2012)
If you want to hear the whole album, here 'tis:
Triple J Unearthed
Odds Or Evens review at Mess & Noise
By the way, I know of another album called Odds Or Evens. It's by jazz fusion guitarist Mike Stern. I have it (and like it). Did you want to hear a bit of Mike Stern's Odds Or Evens? No? Are you sure? Really? Well, I'll play it anyway. You ever know...
Mike Stern - "Odds Or Evens" (1991)
Friday, May 25, 2012
I haven't played you a song by The Wellingtons in quite a while. I don't know what I was (not) thinking, omitting some prime Australian power pop on an Australian power pop blog.
OK, I'll play you a song from their latest album, In Transit. But which one? They're all worth playing. Hmm.
(Note to self: Pick a song, Peter, any song. Stop holding people up. They've come here to listen to some decent music, and they can't because you're taking too long deciding which song to play. JUST PICK ONE.)
Er, here's a song by The Wellingtons:
The Wellingtons - "Your Love Keeps Bringing Me Down" (2011)
Thursday, May 24, 2012
I know I played you a song by the band-who-must-not-be-named only last week, but I have a huge urge to play you this track by them as well.
Of the two versions I'm presenting here today, I'd like to steer you in the direction of the live one. To explain why, I must warn you that I'm now going to go into Boring Bass Player mode...
I'm a bass player, and for me one of the best things about the live version of this song is the bass in the choruses. The band's bass player, Peter Gifford, doesn't do anything fancy – it's purely the sound that gets me excited. It's a sound that makes me go "Wow". (For anyone still reading this paragraph, the cavernous sound of that bass's bottom end is due to a chorus effect.)
Oh, and there's one other reason I love this song: the coda. (Or to use the technical term: "the bit at the end"). In the live version it starts at 3:33 (and in the studio, 3:46). I don't know what it's doing there at the end of the song, because it has absolutely nothing to do with what went before it, but I think it's a great piece of music. (I actually think that little coda is one of the best tunes this band ever wrote.) Maybe it was a stray piece of music they had and didn't want to waste, so they tacked it on the end of the song thinking: "We can put that there. Nobody will mind, will they?"
Evening Grease - "Cos He Must Go" (1985)
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
Here's another Facebook-conversation-inspired coincidence. And this one, like the earlier one, was initiated by Facebook
Scotty posted a song by Australian troubadour Tim Reid called "Love With You". When I heard it, one of the song's melodies reminded me of a melody in a song from a year before.
Let the coincidencing begin...
Tim Reid - "Love With You" (2003) (excerpt)
Starclock - "Yo Pussycat" (2002) (excerpt)
Considering the Starclock track has never been readily available anywhere (i.e. hardly anyone's heard it), I'm 93.219% sure that's a coincidence.
Here are the full versions:
Tim Reid - "Love With You" (2003)
Starclock - "Yo Pussycat" (2002)
If you're a) Australian, b) grew up listening to the radio in the 1970s, and c) reading this post, there's an exceedingly high chance that you're well aware of today's song. (And there's an even greater chance that this infernally catchy song is still stuck in your head after all these years.)
However, if you're not from the land of Australians then it's entirely possible that you've never heard this song – and that's the main reason I'm playing it here today.
Either way, please enjoy
Mi-Sex - "Computer Games" (1979)
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
Australian band Splurge recently made their album, The Cure For The Cure, available for free on their website (Thanks, guys!), and the band's largesse prompted this particular coincidence.
Track 3 on the album, the non-cheery "She's Not The One", begins like so:
Splurge - "She's Not The One" (2006) (excerpt)
And it reminds me of:
Paul Kelly & The Coloured Girls - "Somebody's Forgetting Somebody (Somebody's Letting Somebody Down)" (1987) (excerpt)
Here's Australian band Splurge who don't mind putting electric guitars to good use in a song about intemperance:
Splurge - "Too Much Is Not Enough" (2006)
By the way, Splurge have tizzied up their website and added an extremely pleasant bonus: they decided to make The Cure For The Cure, the album "Too Much Is Not Enough" appears on, available for free. (Or, putting it another way: Splurge would like you to have one of their albums.)
Now that's what I'd call A Mighty Good Thing. (But I think the band still calls it The Cure For The Cure*.)
(*Sorry. That was probably the worst** joke I've made on this blog. If I make another one I hope it's much better.)
(**No, that isn't the worst. This is.)
Monday, May 21, 2012
My friend Steve (Hi, Steve!) suggested this coincidence. Beware: it's extremely noticeable. (How noticeable? It's Jaw-Droppingly, Wide-Eyed-Disbelief-Grade Noticeable.)
I don't even need to play you excerpts of each song. You'll notice the, er, "similarities" in no time.
Let the jaw dropping begin...
Joan Jett & The Blackhearts - "Crimson And Clover" (1981)
A while ago I posted Slade's version of obscure Sixties track "Shape Of Things To Come". I posted it in response to an earlier post of that obscure Sixties song performed by someone else, and (sorry – I'll try not to make this paragraph as complicated as it's starting to sound) a commenter by the name of Murph (Hi, Murph!) mentioned the Slade version. I didn't know this (along with plenty of other things I don't know), and I found out that along with a studio version appearing on their second album, Play It Loud, it appears on Slade's Live At The BBC, a double album where the first disc contains recordings the band made for the BBC and the second disc is a concert recorded in 1972.
Anyway, I made Slade's Live At The BBC version of "Shape Of Things To Come" a Song of the day. (Oops. I mentioned that at the start of the previous paragraph. This post is becoming circular.)
But getting back to today's song...
As I listened to Live At The BBC (which I hadn't before) my predominant thought was: "No wonder people say Slade were a great live band." And then I remembered Robert Christgau's comment: "I judge a good rock and roll 'encyclopedia' by whether or not Slade is included."
For me, one of the standout tracks on the album was their version of Janis Joplin's "Move Over". It stood out because its main tune was so catchy. As soon as that melody went into my head it stayed there for the rest of the day. And that's why I'm playing it to you today – it's hooky as heck. (Or, to use an even ruder term: it's heckin' hooky.)
There are two versions of "Move Over" on Slade's Live At The BBC. I didn't know which one to choose for today's song because I think they're both magnificent, so I've gone for both.
Slade - "Move Over" (live at the BBC) (1972)
Slade - "Move Over Baby" (live at The Paris Theare, London, August 17, 1972)
Here's the studio version:
Slade - "Move Over" (1972)
Sunday, May 20, 2012
My friend Scotty (Hi, Scottarama!) spotted this one. He mentioned it on Facebook, and then I joined in on the conversation, and then a few other people joined in, and... well, now it's here.
East River Pipe - "Make A Deal With The City" (1993) (excerpt)
Thanks to the wonders of the Internet, I found out about a new Australian band on an American blog.
My daily visit to Absolute Powerpop (Hi, Steve!) resulted in reading a review of Always, a new* four-track EP by Perth band The Stanleys.
As an introductory "Hello, we're The Stanleys and we'd like you to get to know us with a song we're giving to you free of charge", here's the title track from the EP:
The Stanleys - "Always" (2012)
Buy Always at CD Baby
Triple J Unearthed
(*As opposed to old.)
Saturday, May 19, 2012
I was contacted by a rather productive chap by the name of Geoff Westen (Hi, Geoff!) who introduced me to three of his albums.
Each album was released under a different pseudonym, and each one exudes a different 'vibe'.
I have a feeling that Geoff likes the music of the 1980's a lot, because musically all three albums are firmly entrenched smack dab in the middle of the 80's. His music is very 80's. I mean, VERY 80's. (I can't stress just how 80's his music is.)
Despite generally loathing the music of the 80's (it's my least favourite decade in the entire history of Western Music), I had listened to all three albums. (I would be a bald-faced – and possibly bald-headed – liar if I said I listened to the three albums in their entirety, 'cos I didn't.)
This is the quickest overview I can offer about Geoff's 80's 'bands':
The one I didn't mind (I was going to say "the one I disliked the least", but that would sound insulting – like damning with faint praise), I gravitated towards Geoff's The Pigs album because it sounded predominantly like a mixture of Oingo Boingo, The Cars, and Devo in 1980 (yep, just that year).
Now to actually play you a song. Here's the opening track on The Pigs' album, Oink!:
The Pigs - "Saturday Night" (2011)
Before I finish this post (yes, I'm trying to make this a short one), I want to mention that one of Geoff's techno songs reminded me of three other songs. This is a bit of Geoff's track:
VIDIOTS - "Some Of You Girls" (2009) (excerpt)
And it reminds me of these:
Herbie Hancock - "Rockit" (1985) (excerpt)
Harold Faltermeyer - "Axel F" (1984) (excerpt)
Yello - "Oh Yeah" (1985) (excerpt)
Friday, May 18, 2012
This coincidence comes to you courtesy of Pitchfork's review of Field Music's ineffably splendid album, Tones Of Town.
(Pitchfork didn't find it ineffably spendid. They considered it only moderately splendid, and thought it a bit effable.)
The reviewer said this:
"The bracing first single "In Context", which is even more invigorating out of context, kicks off with a heavy drum loop that could practically have been sampled from Nelly Furtado's 'Maneater'."
Field Music - "In Context" (2006) (excerpt)
Thursday, May 17, 2012
After my rudeness yesterday, it's time to remind myself:
Pugwash - "It's Nice To Be Nice" (2005)
Addendum: I've been told by Pugwash's main chap Thomas Walsh (Hi, Thomas!) that Jollity, the album "It's Nice To Be Nice" comes from, and the album I thought was unavailable anywhere (see comments below), is actually available at 1969 Records.
Other official website
Wednesday, May 16, 2012
And one more from Steve. (I might start calling him Mr. Perceptive from now on.)
I must warn you in advance that I find one of the songs that will remain nameless (hint: it's the Kiss one) absolutely horrendous, and although I had to listen to it for the sake of this coincidence I'm very comfortable with the idea that I don't have to listen to it ever again.
(I know that the above paragraph broke the golden rule my mother has taught me to live by – that is, "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything" – but I thought
Kiss - "Every Time I Look At You" (1992) (excerpt)
It's been a while since I pestered you with a song from the astonishing power pop album that apparently no-one's ever heard of (Starclock's self-titled album from 2002).
I think it's time for another song from the album to prompt you to wonder, "Why haven't I heard this before?":
Starclock - "Girlfriend" (2002)
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Here's a band that gets me into trouble whenever I mention their name. So I'm not going to mention their name. I'll let the music do the talking:
Night-Time Unguent - "Fortunate Island" (1981)
Below is a live version, and I strongly urge you to watch the video. It gives you a pretty good idea of why they were my favourite band of the 1980's. Plus it has one of my all-time favourite filmed* moments in rock music. It occurs at 3:15 – but I must plead with you to watch the whole thing, as the low-key mid-section of the song builds and builds until that moment.
(*I think my all-time favourite is when Pete Townshend flies through the air in slow-motion as Roger Daltrey screams his lungs out in "Won't Get Fooled Again".)
Monday, May 14, 2012
A recent coincidence involving Duran Duran prompted my friend Steve (Hi, Steve!) to say this:
The verses in the Caesars' "Jerk It Out" are reminiscent of Duran Duran's "Girls On Film".
Caesars - "Jerk It Out" (2003) (excerpt)
Duran Duran - "Girls On Film" (1981) (excerpt)
About the only thing I can add to Steve's comment is: "Yes they are."
Here are the full versions:
Caesars - "Jerk It Out" (2003)
Duran Duran - "Girls On Film" (1981)
Oh, I just remembered: a couple of years ago the 21-year-old of the household (Hi, Celeste!), who is a huge Japanese rock music fan (and actually in Japan at the moment) played me a song by one of her favourite bands at the time that ripped off Duran Duran's "Hungry Like The Wolf" as blatantly as any rock band could, Japanese or otherwise. I'll ask the 21-year-old what it is and then play it for you. It's a doozy.
I want to make it up to you for yesterday's 10cc song (I can imagine you sitting there, with a thought bubble over your head, and the caption: "Yes, Peter, what were you thinking?"), so I'll play you two 10cc songs that I think are much more suitable for this blog. Hopefully that'll help compensate for yesterday's lapse.
10cc - "Silly Love" (1974)
Sunday, May 13, 2012
Well, I really wanted to play you a 10cc song today. But when it came to time to think of a track – one out of a hundred or so the band released that would show you why 10cc was one of my favourite bands in the Seventies – this is the first one I thought of:
10cc - "Iceberg" (1976)
Saturday, May 12, 2012
American two-girl power pop band Nushu has released a five-track EP of cover versions entitled Joystick. I know this because one half of the band (the Lisa half – Hi, Lisa!) told me via Facebook that Joystick is now available.
When I saw the track listing for the EP I noticed that I'd already played you one of its songs (a mighty fine cover of Phil Seymour's "Precious To Me") on this very blog (in July last year). So I'm not going to play you that today.
Instead, I'm going to play you what I think is a splendid cover of a splendid song:
Nushu - "My Best Friend's Girl" (2012)
Friday, May 11, 2012
My commenting friend Mr. Tanner (Hi, Mr. Tannerman!) sent me an email a couple of weeks ago. I forgot about it, then remembered it, then forgot it. I'm now at the stage where I've both remembered and done something about it (i.e., put it on the blog).
Mr. Tanner told me that when heard the chorus of a song from 1979 called "I Wanna Make It With You" by Monalisa and Terry Young, it reminded him of the chorus in Elvin Bishop's "Fooled Around And Fell In Love".
I must admit that although I don't think the two choruses are alarmingly similar (the kind that make you gasp and wonder if anyone's suing anyone else for plagiarism), I do think that musically they are in the general vicinity of each other:
Monalisa and Terry Young - "I Wanna Make It With You" (1979) (excerpt)
Now here's a theoretically rhetorical question for you (you don't have to answer it):
Is this song power pop?
Catcall - "The World is Ours" (2012)
Thursday, May 10, 2012
I woke up the other day with today's song stuck in my head, and it stayed there all day. I don't know why that specific song was the first thing I thought of when I woke up (I haven't heard it in years), but it was. At the end of the day I was relieved, thinking that the day was over, I'd have a nice sleep, and then wouldn't hear that song any more.
Unfortunately, two days later I woke up and there it was again. And there it stayed. In my head. All day.
This is the song that's currently haunting me:
R. B. Greaves - "Take A Letter Maria" (1969)
Wednesday, May 9, 2012
Today's coincidence may get a little messy (it involves at least four different artists), but I'll try to be as concise as I can.
A couple of weeks ago I heard Al Green's "I'm Still In Love With You" over at Popdose. At the 1:02 mark in the song there's a little riff played on the strings. This is it:
Al Green - "I'm Still In Love With You" (1972) (excerpt)