What comes is better than what came before

Dear friends,

I've had December '05 as my desk calendar for some time. I think I might change it today but this also means I will have to transfer all the scribbled information I have on it to the new calendar and it's a mess. I'm a mess. Everything is a mess.

Truth is I need a vacation more than I can say. I got fragrant Valentine's roses in various colors on my desk and I'm off to Disneyworld on Saturday for one day and that is all lovely, but I think I need more than that. I need several weeks off somewhere different. Someplace that's not landlocked. Anyone with any suggestions, please pass them onto me.

I'm gonna let the Little Monkey pod do its random thing today but with commentary:

1. Hold on, I'm coming/Sam and Dave

When I was a kid, I bought Sam and Dave's Greatest Hits at the White Plains Woolsworth's on the strength of Soul Man (duh). This particular track must be one of my earliest lip synch favorites. I know, cute kid singing into hairbrush. Not really. I think it would look quite disconcerting to see a kid mouthing the "Reach out to ME for satisfaction gua-ran-teeed" part of this song. Which is why I guess children's music exists. Sigh.

2. If It's Water/The Evens

I have never heard this before. Ever, ever. I must have this because of Contributor Phil who wrote about them here on Soft Communication. I like this. The lady's got a flat affect type singing voice I find strangely fetching. And there's a nice repeated guitar part/groove that's sounds like walking hurriedly through gray streets in winter when you have to make an important cash drop-off. Ok, no one really does this 'cept in movies. But I pretend to do this all the time. To make a very boring walk though Gowanus more interesting, natch.

3. Image Change/Elastica

Truth be told I haven't listened to this album in a while. Last I heard, Justine Frischmann was hosting an architecture show on BBC and mentoring M.I.A on the side. I went to see Elastica live back in the day and it was such a GREAT concert. I remember thinking for a heavy browed woman with no make-up, wearing visibly dirty clothes, Frischmann exuded amazing sexual charisma, charisma that made her gender irrelevant. In that moment, I wished fervently that I had THAT, what she had. Yeah.

Back to the song...the vocals just started after an extended intro. Man, I love Wire and this has one of those double tracked dull intonations found in their later stuff. Not that Elastica and Wire are surprising sentence mates. Didn't they co-write a song on this album or something? As a bone throw settlement after the lawsuit for Connection/Line Up? I'm making shit up again, aren't I?

4. Fu-gee-la (Sly & Robbie mix)/The Fugees

Ha, this is hilarious. (Dances in chair) Right now, I really, really wish I still had my copy of Sly and Robbie present Taxi. That was good Saturday night music.

5. Zig Zag Wanderer/The Rogers Sisters

I might be totally off but weren't these ladies in a 90's indie band called Ruby Falls? Anyone who can confirm or deny*, gets the Covers Mix - part 2. I gotta hand it to these folks for covering Captain Beefheart and still making it sound like another entry into the post punk dance sweepstakes. No rip, I like to dance. Especially to guitars. And coincidentally, the guitars at the end sound very Cure circa Primary. Must find out what effect pedal that is. Sounds corrosive.

6. Human Nature/Michael Jackson

Eh. What? I like this song. If I could ice skate, like professionaly, I would do a routine to this song. With an outfit based on the Thriller jacket design.

7. She's So High/Blur

This songs sounds like falling in love. When your brain is on drugs. And you roll on grass. True story. Not mine.

8. Skttrbrain (Four Tet Remix)/Radiohead

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Four Tet remixes. The song is always stripped down to something breathable and organic. And my ears rejoice, because all of a sudden, a ton of hidden elements come to the foreground. Like in this case: the bell changes that signal the constant mind-shifts of this song's protagonist.

9. Angelene/PJ Harvey

I love crooning along to this song. Polly Jean Harvey infuses her story about a wanton woman and a looming Jesus figure with such a bruised yearning for grace. Listen to the song and try and follow her transition from verses/resigned to chorus/hopeful. Masterful.

Masterful? Oh my god, I'm such a fawner.

10. What She Said/The Smiths

"It took a tattooed boy from Birkenhead/To really, really open her eyes." This is the song that brings a knowing smile to all teens of the outsider persuasion.

11. Mannish Boy/Muddy Waters

I think my favorite moment in The Last Waltz is this performance. Namely, because I love watching the sheer freakin' delight in Robbie Robertson and Co's eyes as they back the man on this. They are so unbelievably psyched and that enthusiasm gets channeled into their rendition. Watch 'em scream. Ain't that a man.

12. I Found a Reason/Yo La Tengo

This is definitely a Valentine's Day week song. And Ira Kaplan sings this cover with closed eyes sincerity. A little rock 'n' roll prayer never hurt no one.

Love, D

Songs to seek: Hold On, I'm Coming/Sam and Dave, If It's Water/The Evens, Image Change/Elastica, Fu-gee-la (Sly & Robbie Mix)/The Fugees, Zig Zag Wanderer/The Rogers Sisters, Human Nature/Michael Jackson, She's So High/Blur, Skttrbrain (Four Tet Remix)/Radiohead, Angelene/PJ Harvey, What She Said/The Smiths, Mannish Boy/Muddy Waters, I Found a Reason/Yo La Tengo

* Not Contributor Tina 'cause she won last time. Sorry T! You're way too on the ball (that's a good thing, ya know.)

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Blogger Mike said...

Jen Rogers was most definitely in Ruby Falls. Don't remember if the other Rogers sister was.

5:23 PM, February 17, 2006  
Blogger d said...

thanks! you win yourself a soft comm covers mix, part deux.

I have to find my half cocked soundtrack booklet & double check if there was another rogers involved...

5:28 PM, February 17, 2006  
Blogger Jenny said...

D, I envy you for having seen Elastica when they were still intact. They are one of the many bands I've wanted to see live but never got a chance. Elastica's s/t my absolute favorite in 8th grade, and The Menace soph year of college. You're right, Justine is smokin'.

Have you heard the SWV (Sisters with Voices) remix of Human Nature from the early 90s?

And not to be confused with the original, I was reminded of Madonna's Human Nature, one of my favorites by her, especially b/c of her GREAT closing whisper, "Would it sound better if I were a man / I'm not sorry / I'm not your bitch don't hang your shit on me!!!"

11:05 PM, February 19, 2006  
Blogger liz o. said...

Oh, man, when I was in high school, I scrawled "I smoke because I'm hoping for an early death/And I need to cling to something" on my binder. So Moz-o-riffic that song is.

I am also envious that you saw Elastica. I never had the chance to do that and it bothers me deeply.

6:25 PM, February 20, 2006  
Blogger d said...

jenny p: yeah, I remember the swv version. I never cared for them. I thought they were all melisma & fingernails & no finesse. & time has proved me right.

liz o: so did I! but it was in white-out. (a: are we not lame?, b) we are smiths fans)

both ladies: I saw them twice. the first time, I didn't know them at all, I just knew connection 'cause they ripped off 3 girl rhumba & I figured that was cool. better than ripping off bon jovi or something. the show made me get their album immediately. second time was on the famous money losing lollapalooza with sonic youth/pavement/hole & beck. I think they'd lost annie at that point. justine was wearing the same clothes from the first show.

11:00 AM, February 21, 2006  

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