Friday, October 14, 2022

Do You Feel Lucky?

Since I have nothing in particular I care to write about today and it's probably time for another music post (Well, it's been a week...) I think I'm going to roll the dice and let fate, in the shape of File Explorer's handy "Random" function, decide. This really is russian roulette for my credibility (Always assuming I ever had any.). 

I'm going to use my older, bigger music folder rather than my current one because it has far more songs in it that I've never posted before. I'm going to keep rolling until I have enough to fill a post and I'm going to use whatever comes up, unless I can remember having used it before or I think it's too boring to subject anyone else to. Neither personal embarassment nor considerations of good taste will be deemed sufficient reason for exclusion.

The folder in question has nearly four thousand songs in it and I was using it from about 2012 until early 2019. There's a ton of stuff in there I've completely forgotten about and almost certainly some things I wish I'd never downloaded. Let's give it a spin...

And what a great way to start! The magnificent Shampoo doing Trouble, their signature number and biggest hit. Yep, they did have more than one. I remember seeing this on Top of the Pops back in the mid-90s (It was 1994, apparently.) Can't say I remember the execrable Malcolm McLaren introducing it, although at this remove he does add a certain je ne sais quoi. Creepiness, mostly.

Shampoo went on to become archetypally big in Japan, surely to no-one's surprise. Historically, they sit somewhat uncomfortably, bang-slap in the middle of the Britpop era, singing about girl power a couple of years too late to be riot grrls, a couple too soon to be Spice. I've always loved 'em.

OMG! What the hell is this? It's The Distillers with the extremely weirdly-named The Young Crazed Peeling. I have no memory of ever seeing or hearing this before. It's very loud, isn't it? And shouty. Goes well with the last one, in an in your face kind of way, too. I wonder what made me think I'd want to hear it again? I mean, I quite like it but you'd have thought once would be enough.

Skipping over several picks that either I've already used or which aren't on YouTube any more, we come to this little gem. It's "a mock-up band doing a phony "cover" of The Darling Buds' song "Sure Thing."". Made as a college project, the audio is the Darling Buds' original with what's presumably a college band vamping while the singer lip-synchs. 

I love the Darling Buds. They had a string of low-key, poppy hits in the late 'eighties and turned up occasionally, doing them on Saturday morning kids TV shows, but I saw them at least three times in basement clubs and live they had a sound as hard as granite. Weirdly, if you put "Darling Buds" into YouTube now, most of the results are for Dr. Teijinder Bhatti's "popular hair transplant clinic" in Mumbai or for another, unrelated band of the earnest, acoustic persuasion. Band-naming is such a minefield.

Motor Girl by Gaijin. Hmm. This must come from when I was truffle-hunting through the Indonesian and South-East Asian indie scene, which is huge but largely invisible outside the region. Judging by the comments, I'm guessing this lot are from the Phillipines. Once again, I have to question why I thought it was worth downloading. It's nice enough and all but I don't think I'd have been missing out if I'd never heard it again.

Ah, I do remember these guys, although not the song. It's Chimera by O Children, who've been here before with the much more memorable Dead Disco Dancer. I do enjoy a nice slice of goth from time to time, the colder and bloodier the better. This is a bit mannered compared to some of their other, more unhinged material, but it's fine in its way.

And this justifies the entire post! If you only watch one video here today, make sure it's this one: Out On The Street by Space Waltz. I must have found it either when I went virtual crate-diving in the Australian/New Zealand corner of YouTube or, more likely, when I was educating myself about Jobriath, something I belatedly got around to doing about ten years ago. 

There was a spate of Ziggy Stardust clones around the time Bowie finally broke through but surely none of them had the cut-glass tones of Space Waltz's Alistair Riddell. He makes Bowie himself sound like a brickie. Somewhat unbelievably, Out On The Street went to #1 in New Zealand back in 1974.

Take A Ride - TOYBLOÏD. Wow! That rocks! I think they're French but their name has an umlaut and they sing in English so who really knows? Well, anyone who can be bothered to take ten seconds to check, I suppose, which rules me out. I was dithering over whether I wanted to post this one when it started but it really builds and there's a fantastic one-note guitar solo about half-way in. 

A couple more and we're done, I think. I'll tell you one thing I've learned from doing this today, though. If you see a video on YouTube you think you might want to watch again, seriously, download it. Don't assume it'll be there next time you look. I've already had to skip several picks because the videos aren't on YouTube any more. I might start putting some of them back up if I have a moment, although I guess that could be asking for trouble...

I've definitely featured The Goon Sax before but I don't recall posting this particular track, Sweaty Hands. They split up earlier this summer, sadly, something of a surprise given they seemed to be building up quite a buzz. They were all still in school when they formed the band so maybe it's just as well. Mrs. Bhagpuss and I were talking the other day about how weird it would be to be in one of those bands that meets at school or college and then goes on to play together for fifty years. No wonder so many bands end up not speaking to each other.

And finally...

A reminder that novelty isn't everything. Sometimes you have to touch base with the classics. One of the all-time great music videos, too. Smalltown Boy by Bronski Beat but you didn't need me to tell you that.

There was a while when a few people I knew liked to tell me I looked like one of Bronski Beat. Not Jimmy Somerville, obviously. I can kind of see it although not really.

This has been fun - for me, anyway. It's also been highly instructive to see how many things I've downloaded aren't on YouTube any more but also just how many more I had to leave out because I've included them in previous posts. I passed on a couple that didn't look like they'd be a lot of fun for anyone else although given that I thought it was worth packing them away for safekeeping in the first place, I guess I should have more trust in my own judgment. 

I don't, though. Future me always shakes his head at past me. Then again, what do either of them know? Present me is the only one that matters.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Wider Two Column Modification courtesy of The Blogger Guide