Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Rhythm Of The Rain

It is, though. Raining, I mean. Right now. Outside. Hasn't for so long I forgot what it looked like. Not really. 

Oh, wait... We didn't have the video yet, did we? My bad. (Do people still say "My bad"? I doubt it.)

 It's Raining - Superorganism feat. Stephen Malkmus & Dylan Cartlidge

So, when I came back from work, after I'd eaten, I logged in and checked my feeds and this was right at the top. They have an album coming so it shouldn't have been a surprise but it was. A really nice one.

Stephen Malkmus is from Pavement of course. I never really got Pavement. I remember being at a friend's house when the first album was out and the friend putting it on and me listening to it and liking it but thinking it sounded so very... easy. I said, out loud, "We could make this album." and I meant it literally. 

A year or two later that friend and I and some other friends did make not an album but a song and by that I can tell you we very definitely could not have made the first Pavement album but the point was I felt like we could have and that's why I never really got Pavement or, I guess, why they were such a big deal.

After I watched it (It's great, isn't it?) I had an idea. I knew I had to do a post and I hadn't thought of anything yet. I'd been playing around with an idea for a series of posts where I go downstairs into my room with a thousand vinyl albums in it and pull three at random then choose one of them and write a post about it. I wouldn't like to risk it on just a single random pull. I might get something I wouldn't want to cop to owning, which is why three.(Do people still say "cop to"? I doubt it.)

I wasn't about to do that now. Needs some prep. What I could do though would be to put "rain" into the search field in my big folder of downloaded songs and do a post about rainy day music with whatever came up. I tried it and got eight results, which seemed like enough until I looked at what they were.

The really good ones (The Rain, the Park and Other Things, Rainy Days and Mondays) I was pretty sure I'd used in previous posts. It's at the point now where I have no great confidence I can remember what songs or videos I've posted and what I haven't. I wish I'd had some coherent plan from the beginning, some way to record the ones I'd used, but of course I had no such thing. All I can do now is try to remember (Poor chance.) or put the title into the search field and hope.

Not that it matters all that much. If I can't be sure I doubt anyone else is going to notice. And it's not as if everyone's going to have read every post or listened to every track. Maybe repeating stuff is actually a good idea. I mean, that's how music radio works. 

The other songs, though, the ones I couldn't even remember hearing before, when I listened to them again, some of them turned out to be... not so good. Here, judge for yourself. Try I Like Rain by the Jean Paul Sartre Experience. No? Me neither. How about Shape of the Rain by Riley, Riley, Wood and Wagget? What are they, a law firm? And it's not even a song, just the title of an album. Not one I'd want to listen to, either, although it seems I thought differently five years ago.

As a plan for a post it all seemed to be coming apart. Then I watched this. I warn you now, it's disturbing.

Here Comes The Rain - Foetus

The charmingly-named Foetus is the oft-used nom de tune of one J.G. Thirlwell. He's been recording under variants of the Foetus brand since the early nineteen-eighties. He used to crop up regularly on John Peel's radio show, a forum where it was quite difficult to make yourself stand out through sheer unpleasantness simply because of the depth of competition. Foetus managed it well enough. I remember a couple of the band names he used back then and I don't plan on including either of them here.

Sonically, this one's actually quite tuneful for him and the video is excellent, if you like that kind of thing, which I do, when I'm in the mood. It's not that bad, honestly. If you're not confident, I'll allow a spoiler. It feels like something really terrible is going to happen all the way through but it never does. Not really.

At this point I was beginning to feel a little more confident. I only really needed a couple more solid tunes to make a post. It's not like it had to be epic. Just a midweek music post to keep the numbers up.

Rainy Day - Susan Christie

This one I was positive I'd featured before but search says no and it's convenient for me to choose to believe it. It's also utterly gorgeous and a perfect palate-cleanser after the last one. There's a curious summary of what it is and how it came to be at the top of the YouTube page. Apparently it's a "psychedelic take on Country standards... backed by a Folk-Funk rhythm section" that's somehow "similar to modern trip-hop." I'm not sure I can hear all that in this one track but it's utterly lovely all the same.

Not, however, as lovely as the next one, which was one of my most exciting finds back in 2019. 

11.11 :an original song in a car when it's raining - Tate McRae

Tate McRae uploaded this to her YouTube channel on 21 June 2019. I happened across it just a few weeks later on 13 August 2019, which is when I downloaded it. I'm as certain as I can be at this remove that at the time it had very, very few views. A handful. I loved it then and I still do. I thought I was pretty darn clever for having found it.

A few months later, on 20 October 2019, Tate posted a song called One Day. As her Wikipedia entry puts it, the song "went viral" (Do people still say "Went viral"? I doubt it.). Off the back of that she ended up signing to RCA, having "an international hit" with a song called You Broke Me First and pretty much carried on up from there. 

As I write this, One Day has 38 million views on YouTube. You Broke Me First, the official video, has 145 million. Or if you prefer you can watch her doing it live on Jimmy Kimmel like three milion people have or at MTV EMA (whatever the heck that is...) along with a bunch of dancers, where you'll be in good company - seven million of you.

The original video, the one I still think of as "that girl singing into her phone in a car", has almost seven and a half million views. It'd be nice to say I always knew she'd make it but what I actually thought was more like "I'm really glad I found this. I'm so clever at finding songs no-one else will ever know about!"

What a maroon. (Yeah, no-one says that any more...)

It's still her best song though. 

And I do know a good song when I hear one.

So there.


  1. You led with Superorganism's It's Raining only a day after I was listening to Supertramp's It's Raining Again after not listening to that album for a decade or more. Nice.

    Idk if Britain even still remembers Supertramp. I feel like America barely does, in spite of their famous Breakfast here.

    1. Somewhat unpredictably, given I don't think I have ever even mentioned them before, I saw Supertramp live, once. It was in the 1970s, just after they released the Crime of the Century album, so around 1974, right at the end of my prog rock phase. I would have been about 15-16.

      I really loved that album then although I never bought or even liked anything else I heard by them. I'm not sure what I'd think of it now - must be forty years or more since I last listened to it. I rememember the gig very well, though. They had two support acts. Bottom of the bill was Chris de Burgh, he of "Lady in Red" fame. At the time he was a relatively unknown singer-songwriter. He wasn't very good. I rememember him doing a long supposedly comic number that was activbely embarrassing.

      Second on the bill were folk-rock veterans Gallagher and Lyle. I can't recall much about their set other than that they had a drummer who pulled such ludicrous faces the whole time it was impossible to look at anything else. We were in hysterics watching him.

      Supertramp themselves sounded exactly like the record, something I've never really appreciated in a live performance. It was a dullish gig on the whole and probably contributed to me not really paying any attention to anything the band did after.

      And to answer your implied question, I think it's pretty safe to say virtually no-one over here remembers them now, either.


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