Wednesday, June 30, 2021

June Songs

So that was June. It was sunny. It was rainy. I stayed home. I went away. I went to work. Just for one day. Just for one day.

Everyone watched the football, even Mrs. Bhagpuss. Everyone except me. I listened to the cricket.I read old books I'd read before. It felt like they were new. I couldn't stop. I didn't want to.

There were new games. They came bite sized. They tasted good. Now I'm waiting. Waiting for them to come back. Bigger. Next month. The month after that.

But those are other months. This month was June. And now it's over.

Shall we have some songs? 

May Songs - The May Song - The Gathering - Predictably, perhaps, songs referencing the month of May have a tendency towards the bucolic. This one reminds me of what Bjork might sound like if she decided to front a prog-metal band, which I wouldn't it past her to do some day. Not really my cup of dandelion tea but the best I could come up with after five minutes of half-hearted clicking.

Heal Me! - Holy Touch - Foxy Shazam - I'm not about to own this, either, although it's a hell of a lot more fun than the last one. There must be about a million songs with the words "Heal me" buried somewhere in the lyrics but none of them has a video like this, or at least I hope not. Seriously, where to even start? The entire comment thread is people pointing out who Foxy Shazam either look or sound like which seems to me to be missing some key points, like they're called Foxy Shazam for starters, and they have a guy who does high kicks and knee slides but he's playing trumpet! Yes, okay, they are Queen, but you can't have everything.

Elteria Adventures: First Impressions (or You Can't Get The Staff) - Lost My Touch - The Church - Okay, that's uncomfortably close to the mark. It might be a new low even by my lax standards. I don't think I've ever used the same title twice in the same month before, much less without even realizing I'd done it. I even noted down the same song both times in the draft and added a link to the same YouTube clip each time, and I still didn't notice anything odd about it until now. 

Hmm... maybe I could claim the first was a clever set-up for the second a couple of weeks later. No, wait, that would mean I'd have had to be able to see into the future. That staff wasn't even in the game when I wrote the first one. Not sure anyone's going to buy that... Okay, how about the other way round, then? That works. So, I came up with the second title as a riff on the first. Plausible! And clever, too. People might even think I knew what I was doing. 

Tell you what. Let's say that's how it happened, why don't we? And while we're at it, let's pretend this whole reveal is part of some meta-ironic, postmodern internet joke. You know, like Poppy. Wow! I'm on fire this month!

Summer Fever - Weekends and Bleak Days (aka Hot Summer) - The Young Knives - There was a time I really liked the Young Knives. They reminded me of XTC. (They reminded everyone of XTC. I imagine they even remind XTC of XTC) They wrote smart, clever songs with smart, clever words and smart, clever tunes and they made smart, clever videos to explain what the smart, clever songs were all about, in case you weren't as smart and clever as them. I thought they'd split up. They haven't. They sound different now. I'm not sure I like them any more.

There are two "official" videos for Weekends and Bleak Days on YouTube. The one I didn't use is better or it would be if you could see it.  It's so blurry it's not worth watching. I just remember what it used to look like. I didn't even need to use that Young Knives track anyway. I probably shouldn't have. There are at least two songs called Summer Fever and it's always better to have my title and the song's title the same.

I could have used Doe Hatfield which is nice but I should have used BETS, which is more than nice. So I'm going to. Because it's my blog and I can.

Well, that's messed up my nice video/text structure, hasn't it? Never mind. Carry on as if nothing happened.

With The Crows: Crowfall - First Impressions - Girls Dead Monster - This is where it gets weird. (You mean it wasn't already?). I was so happy with this one. I'd found the perfect title for the post and the band had a wonderful name... except it seems they don't really exist. As far as I can piece it together, Girls Dead Monster is the name of a fictional band in an anime that may or may not be called Angel Beats. Even after I read the entry on them at Fandom I didn't entirely understand what was going on. 

And anyway, if they aren't real then who is that up there on stage? It would appear to be a JPop star called LiSa, performing here as Yui, a character from Angel Beats. As for the band, you tell me. I'm too old for all this. (Yeah, you'd think...).

Say It Loud - Skillet - This is a nice enough pop-punk groove. I'm glad I found it, not least because for a moment there I thought I was going to have to go with James Brown and that would have been not right in so many ways.

Start Over - Beyoncé - I feel painfully uneducated when it comes to Beyoncé. I also feel like it's too late to do much about it. The moment has passed. Okay, that's no excuse, is it? I guess I better get on it, then.

Why Am I Here? - Longlost x Bonjr - Anyone know what genre or sub-genre or sub-sub-genre this is? I could hear more.

Boost Me Up - Alright Then - Nemaska Community - I had no idea what the Nemaska Community might be when I caught this in a lyric search, I just knew it was really good when I listened to it. There was no information on the YouTube page at all, except for a phrase, N'we Jinan Eeyou Istchee. Google translate didn't even try. It said it was English and gave up.

Yeah, well, it's not English. I imagine you guessed that. It's Cree. Google did better with Nemaska, "a small Cree community located on the shores of Lake Champion, in Quebec, Canada" as it says on their website. It looks like an amazingly beautiful place and the people seem immensely welcoming, especially given the history they've had. How hiphop fits into the picture is less clear but I'm happy it does.

Bullet Time - Opal - To quote Angel Corpus Christi "What you gonna do? Stab a bullet?" Nope. I'm gonna catch one. Watch me.

Burning Down The House - Prom Queen - Super Young Adult - 26 views on YT. Talking Heads, eleven million. Let's not go the obvious route. This is fresh and warped and wonderful. I just wish there was a video. I want to know what they look like.

Movin' Too Fast - Artful Dodger - This, I am reliably informed, is a UK Garage Classic. Good to know. I always wondered what one of those would sound like.

Big Production Thing - Square Biz - Teena Marie - Direct line of descent? Kinda feels it, doesn't it? Life moves in clades, as Bruce Stirling used to say.

Always Nothing Much To Say - Thumb - Dinosaur Jr. As someone with taste and style observes in the YT comments, "a structured and beautiful musical car crash." This should be everything I don't like about grunge. It's formless, tuneless, whiny and self-indulgent. But it's J. Mascis so it's all of that and magical, too. He transcends the form. 

Try Anything Twice - Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby (Standing in the Shadows?) - the Rolling Stones - I thought I'd been so clever when I came up with this title. Then I searched the lyric and found other people had been just as clever long before me. Gomez, for one, the Rolling Stones and...

... freakin' Lou Reed for cri-ipes sake! It's not like I haven't listened to both of those a hundred times, literally. I guess my subconscious was paying more attention than I was.

Layers And Players - Layers - NF - Do I have anything to say about this? Y'know, I think I don't. 

Ridin' SOLO - Hinds - OMG! So louche! It lopes like a wolf! Video of the month for the colors alone. Gotta be my favorite Hinds tune, by which of course I mean it's the one I heard last. Oops! Now it's Trippy Gum. I just played that as I was writing this. Who wouldn't? But that was when they were Deers so it doesn't count. I kinda wish they never changed their name, though.

It Might Not Now But It Will Be Later - Wading Through A Ventilator - The Soft Boys - Stands up pretty well although I never noticed how proggy it gets in the middle for a minute, there. They were always a bit Pink Floyd on sulphate, to be fair. I saw them live in Cambridge, probably 1979. They were a hairy bunch as I recall but fast as you like. Robyn Hitchcock went on to be... Robyn Hitchcock. Kimberley Rew won Eurovision with Katrina and the Waves. Careerist!

Speed Dating - Drew Barrymore Movie Marathon - Help She Can't Swim -There's some tough competition for best band name and best song title this month and no mistake. They have that jazz band falling down a lift shaft sound down pat, don't they? Very New York No Wave. Then there's this other one I found by them (It wasn't hard. The suggestion algorithm put it right there in front of me. I can't take all the credit.) where they could be Elastica for all of a minute and fifty-six seconds. That's not long, is it? We've got time for that.

Talk amongst yourselves. I just have to type something in this space to stop the videos running together. Is it "amongst" or "among", anyway? I never know...

Call Me By My Name - A Soft Place To Land - Kathleen Edwards - There are a couple of live versions of this on YouTube and they're very different. I actually prefer the studio take, which feels softer. This is quite abrasive. Goes with all that red. Then again, I could have gone with Chesney Hawke's The One and Only so everything's relative.

You Can Get The Staff - Lost My Touch - The Church - Hang on, this sounds familiar...

Another Frequency - Evergreen  - Slut -This is gorgeous. Sounds like a whole bunch of stuff I like. Bit of Wire in there, some Dream Academy, a little Rialto. Actually, quite a lot of Rialto. I'm in two minds about the name. I mean, it is good but you can see how it would be problematic. Just seems like one of those names you'd end up changing and issuing an apology about five years later. Been a few of those recently. Not going to be a problem for these guys, though. They split up years ago.

Go Your Own Way - Fleetwood Mac - Seriously? Fleetwood Mac?? There was a time when I'd have had to make that sign to ward off the evil eye if I even heard the opening notes of a Mac track. We all mellow with age, I guess. I quite like some of the hits, now. So long as I don't have to hear them very often. I'm blessed if I'm going to have them in a full video on this blog all the same. The Bleachers' cover is relentlessly jolly, which is about as inappropriate a take on the lyric as you could possibly imagine. It's Jack Antonoff singing, too, so I'm pretty sure he knows, although I very much doubt the audience does. Or cares.

Unrealistic Expectations - Jason I Clark - There are a couple of songs that use this as a title. I like this one better but it's not a deep pool. Hell, here's the other. It's by Bo. Make up your own mind. I'm not even sure myself, now.

This Day's Portion - Service - The Fall - I'm sure about this, though. From what's probably my favorite Fall album, The Infotainment Scam. This has a fantastic lyric and some wonderful samples. Mark sounds so calm, too. He sounds pretty chill on the whole album. Maybe he was in a good place for once.

And that concludes the infotainment for another month. Just two more of these to go. Honestly? I'll be glad to get there, now.

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