SLTM 261: I Said Hey
Topic: More than a Woman by the Bee Gees
Also Not Appearing on the Show: Warhorse – As Heaven Turns To Ash + I am Dying Reissue – Southern Lord Recordings– southernlord.com – I like that the vocals are down in the mix. Sounding almost off shore and a bit watery at times. Plus the vocals work. They are deep, goulish and heavy but not distorted & unintelligble like so many heavy bands. Reminds me at times of a bluesier slower, boozier COC. “Amber Vial” & “Every Flower Dies” are going to require a second listen. There is a lot there to digest and they maybe be the best tracks on the album. I want to convey their spirite correctly. Almost a cosmic blues but instead of a space cowboy floating around in full macho parade spreading his seed like some kind of Johnny Apple-Armstrong, he’s a long space hauler alone, miles from civilization. He’s dirty, hunger and a bit lonely but wise to the world’s fuck ups and how he came to exploit them.
Special Duties – english beat 1977 punk with rot gut spewed vocals. Can’t fault a band for sounding like a band they love. (I’ve since found out that this reissue of music that was released in 1977, so there you have it). Are you supposed to hate a band that loves the clash and sounds similar to them just cause they like their sound? They stretch out in a Clashian fashion on “No place for reason”. While it doesn’t make me want to go and listen to my Clash records it does add a nice change of pace from their more simple three chord structures. Your normal Pistols, DOA, Ramones riffs. “Up the U’s” sounds like a theme song to a british football sitcom about a family of modern hooligans, reminds me of the Monkees theme song. I did get a bit bored with these pep songs for the local football team. I’m sure they were good at the time in England, but they don’t mean much to me. I mean, it’s cool that the team made it to Wembley but who cares across the pond? Can be a bit repetitive at times, but then again this is punk. “London Town” calls to mind the spirit of the Pogues. Maybe its a drunk grouchy teeth spitting Shane MacGowan the singer is calling to mind or maybe it’s that “London You’re a Lady” filters all songs about London into a Pogues flask for me.
Them Bulls– There are those easy comparisons to Queens of the Stone age, hell even the press materials mention it. If you are going to sound like someone might as well use QOTSA as your bass line. Singer sounds like a cross between Homme and Chris Cornell. While listening to “Bandana, Carlos” my mind wandered a bit to comedy and ideas for the podcast, but I popped back in and wondered when I had started listening to QOTSA. I’m sure the band is getting tired of hearing that, so I’ll go off in another direction. Do you think that you could bill yourself as a cover band who plays original music? You could play like one or two covers, most bands do anyway, but you could do covers of the band people say you sound like. This way the audience would know going in the sound your working in but not the exact songs. I was going to go in another direction but these guys, as good as they are, really give me no choice. You know those commercials where they play a song that sounds similar to a popular song but just a bit off? You hear that Pixies like song during a commercial, but it’s not really them, they company just doesn’t want to pay for the song. Commercials call that a sound a like song. Just different enough not to get sued by the original owners of the material but so close you would swear it was them and you get an attachment to the new song. Is it intentional? I highly doubt that’s what Them Bulls are going for, they just happen to sound a lot like a good popular band. No harm really. For Me QOTSA is a great band, putting out exciting good music. These guys in Them Bulls might be a tribute sound a like band, but they are good too.
Super Whatevr– I should find the quavering voice in the first song off putting, but I like the guys voice. Very distinctive. “Oh my god, you are so messed up in the head and darling so am I”. Couldn’t have expressed it better. When you get to be my age and you’re happy and accepting of life and where you are in it, you sometimes miss that bittter, messed up, missing you feeling you have about the opposite sex. The Charming loser is what I call that part of me. Never without love, but incapable of sustaining it. This band brings that part of my personality, which I’m glad is gone but miss , out. Especially that first song. The mysthical person you loved so much but who you let go and regret doing so. Later in life you realize that it had to end because it was supposed to & that you over romanticized that whole thing. I like the choices made in “Common Cold”. The last song clearly shows the band has talent, because that talent shines through even though its just the singer, a ukelele and some female harmonies.
Bret Netson & Snakes – first song comes on like a Monster Magnet riff. But it’s more like something you would hear on the stereo of a rocket ship zooming through space. Suddenly you notice the ship is hurtling toward a debri field, and as the second song starts you realize that the ship almost has to hit some of the debri, despite the best efforts of the crew to avoid it. They’ve lost all engines, floating towards the inevitable crash with a decomishined satelitte. Wait, there looks to have been a sabetour on board, those enigines didn’t shut down because of the damage from the space debri. There is one crew member, in his cabin, penning a letter to death, trying to explain to his family his actions and last wishes. “Sharpening Knives” is an eleven minute explanation of what happened with the crew, coming from the data recorder found inside the now empty ship on it’s return home. We listen with the families as we learn how it all tumbled out of control, who was to blame and the last words of a doomed young man in his cabin.