Posts Tagged ‘pop’

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Currently Residing in the Where Are They Now File: Go West

December 9, 2010

I bought a vinyl LP at the VV Boutique the other day: Go West. This sparked dim memories of seeing this album cover in record stores in the ’80s, but I don’t remember the music. Still, the LP cover grabbed my attention, because one guy looks like he wants to be scary and the other one looks like he has to go pee. (That’s the CD cover, because the LP cover wouldn’t fit in my scanner, duh).

Flipping it over, I learned their names were Cox and Drummie, so I had to buy it. Plus, it was fifty cents. There was a song by The Cult called Go West, but it wasn’t the same. Anyhow, after I framed the LP cover and added it to my wall of geekery, I had to resort to Google-Fu to learn more about this strange alternate universe version of Wham, and I came up with these:

Second LP: As was typical of British bands of this period, the boys evolved a harder, more edgy look. One is Cox. One is Drummie. I successfully avoided the urge to check Wikipedia to determine which is which.

“Greatest Hits.” It’s an EP. I didn’t check Wikipedia, so that might be made up.

Most recent photo: “We’re back together for our reunion tour, opening for Right Said Fred!”

  • Update: I did, finally, look at Wikipedia. Cox was the drummer, and Drummie was the guitarist, which is kind of like ZZ Top.
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New Kids On The Block: The Comeback

July 8, 2010

Their fans may have grown up, but the New Kids On The Block are still Hangin’ Tough.  From left, Joe, Donnie, Jon and new member Buster are hitting the road again, performing their hits and ducking thrown panties as they help revive the early 1990s.

“We had been doing different things,” says Donnie Wahlberg. “As you may know, I was an actor. But after a while people realized they had been mixing me up with my brother, and after The Happening, well, the work just wasn’t there anymore. So I returned to my first true love: Pizza Hut. They give me the weekends off to tour.”

With a new sound, a new look and a distinct lack of the one guy who looked kind of like an ape, the New Kids are coming soon to a shopping mall food court near you.

“We were really influenced by edgy new music like Nickelback,” says Jon Knight, the quiet one who never talks. “I would tell you more, but I’m the quiet one who never talks.”

Buster, the newest member of the band, wasn’t even born when the Kids had their heydey.

“I’m more into Cradle of Filth, Deicide, that sort of thing,” says Buster, who until recently was working as a bathhouse janitor, but has since quit to pursue his dream of making music full-time. “It’s my job to be the musical brains of the band, and also to spray off the whores after the show.”

The Spin Doctors have been booked as the opening act for the tour.

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Worst Music Video Ever of the Week: Obsession

November 11, 2009

I like this song, not that I can tell you why. It just has some kind of sweet beat, a poppy pulsation that has always appealed to me. There’s a rocky bit of guitar hiding in there, and the odd hint of good bassery. Despite the problems with the vocals, I thought this was a good pop song. And then I saw the video.

I wonder what those two singers think when they watch this now. Or were they even singers? They look like they don’t even understand what they’re lip-synching, and now that I think of it, Animotion later replaced its lead singers with two other people, one of whom was Pregnant Penny from Dirty Dancing, who was married to Richard Marx, and why I know this, I can’t say. Animotion was never famous for the vocals, and let’s leave it at that.

All of this is irrelevant. However good the song is, this video kills it. Roman centurions at the swimming pool? Court jester boots? Mullets? And let’s not forget the obligatory 80s closeup of stiff fingers jabbing at a Casio.

Did I mention I have the 12″ remix of this song? And Animotion is touring again, with its original lead singers? And I found a pair of neon green suspenders in my closet, right beside a can of mousse?

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Music Review: F*cking Around With Oasis

September 2, 2009

Wow, Movies You Should See was right:
some people DO look like they smell.

Please forgive the cuss word in the title today, folks. I don’t usually use foul language here at the Weather Station, but sometimes it just works. Anyway, I was thinking about Oasis this morning, because apparently the band has broken up, which I don’t care about. Like a lot of you, I didn’t even know Oasis was still around.

They had their day. In fact, you can look it up: it was in 1996, when Wonderwall became the band’s top-selling single. After that, I don’t know much about what happened, and I’m a music guy. Maybe some of you out there remain big Oasis fans, but really, I never got the buzz.

I do like Wonderwall, though. Great song, great lyric. It features one of the best drum performances of the 90s, and works on every level as a solid pop performance. Not a bad legacy, really; the bands of the 1990s tend to be remembered for one great song, and while sometimes it’s Glycerine or Lump or Pretty Fly For A White Guy, other times it’s Wonderwall. So there’s that.

But I find it fascinating that Wonderwall lives on as a subject of uncountable mashups. For those of you who don’t know what that is (in other words, my mother), a mashup is a DJ-created piece of music that takes two or more songs and merges them. They work best when the song choices are wickedly similar, but nobody ever noticed (like this one, my favourite). Sometimes they don’t work at all. But Wonderwall seems to be at the heart of a lot of them.

What does this say about the song? Is it deceptively simple? Or corny and unoriginal? A bit of both, I’d say. It’s easy to play on guitar, and it’s easy to sing. It’s easy to remember and hum. But it still has an emotional core that’s unique — in other words, it’s a solid pop song.

It also says that when it comes to mashups, a lot of people like fucking around with Oasis.