Songs of the Week #4

July 11, 2009 § Leave a comment

So this week’s selection does not have a lot of variety as far as genre-hopping goes, but I attribute this to the intensity of listening I’ve been involved in. Sometimes when writing my own music I’ll be happy to just listen to someone’s song repeatedly for an hour or two.

“The Art of Love” by 1000 Mexicans– I don’t know anything about these guys to be honest, I found the single on takethepills.blogspot.com and it’s just really quirky and truly 80s indiepop sounding.

“Scandinavian Warfare” by Champagne Riot– This comes from the Shelflife Sampler posted on the label’s website, so I don’t feel bad posting it. It has a bit of a Human League feel, by that I mean the Human League songs that didn’t suck, but it’s also very contemporary sounding. I ordered the limited to 300 copies EP.

“Slip Away” by Metro Trinity– Apparently, a late 80s Manchester band that only put out one vinyl EP. I really love the earnestness of this song. I can’t think of any other way to put it, the hyper compressed acoustic guitar with the full vocals, but you can hear how the singer is putting on his best sneer and pushing the words out as hard and as precisely as he can. I love songs that tell stories, and this is a great example.

“Basement Band Song” by The Organ– Speaking of songs that tell stories, this is a song of lyrical genius. Katie Sketch says with her female version of Morrissey voice, “We should sit and pick our hands/I think you’re a genius/And when we make your hangnails bleed/You deserve a Ph.d” The sorely missed defunct Vancouver band were getting quite popular in the U.K. just before the break-up. I saw them play in London to a full crowd, and bought a 7″ in a HMV, which would be unheard of in the average HMV in Canada. They mostly stock top 40 and whatever Pitchfork pushes in the smaller HMV locations.

“Get a Knife Between Your Teeth” by McCarthy– A favourite band of mine, this is from their third and final album. McCarthy, for those who don’t know, featured Tim Gane whom later went on to form Stereolab and on the last album, Lætitia Sadier contributed some sparse vocals and keys, I think. McCarthy played aggressive, yet jangly songs, with overtly left-wing lyrics. The singer, Malcolm Eden, had a strangely immature sounding voice; it was very limited in range, yet the words were so impressed upon with an urgency that makes it so sincere, even when being satirical, that I can’t help but love it.

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I was also listening quite a lot to The Depreciation Guild’s “Dream About Me”, but it seemed in bad taste to post that song on here, because it’s a brand new single and you should just buy it.

Shameless self-promotion: having listened to these songs all week, I can’t help but wonder to what degree they influenced my writing. I posted a song I wrote a couple days ago on my myspace page called “Apocalypse, Please Sign the Release Form”, perhaps you hear the influence and maybe it sounds nothing like anything I listen to.

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