Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: One man’s Meat Puppets is another man’s Poison

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  • nzlemming, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    We’re talking about disco – if that’s not a musical genre all about smothering the most innocuous lyric in sexual innuendo (the gayer the better) what the hell is?

    Thank you Craig. Everything sounds better with BMG. Funny about Venus Hum is that here her voice is awesome, yet I'm not fussed on her original music. Seems too atonal for me.

    And I guess that's why I was never much into punk. Too many three chord screamers with no musicality. I can look back and see how useful it was to break the 70's monotony (coincidentally, about the point where record companies became more concerned with "moving product" than making music) but at the time, I thought the form was awful and full of posers, onstage and off. If what you're after is anarchy, why are you cutting a record deal with any label? You're surely just fitting in the system rather than overthrowing it. Anyway.

    If I went to gigs (rarely - I don't do crowds very well and never have), it was to RnB, jazz, the folk club (wish we'd had a decent blues club in Welly that I'd known about) and that was what I listened to at home. Plus, classical, Gregorian chant, chorale, the aforementioned JMJ and the others (precursors of ambient and trance, in my mind), Broadway musicals, even Lloyd Webber for a time.

    Punk and early rap were about the only forms I didn't get into, though I remember hearing Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five and thinking woh! what's this? But 'gangsta rap' put me off the genre as a whole, and I've only peeked back at the edges with some of the local stuff, like Kapisi and Che Fu.

    Totally <3 country, even the old crappy Hank Williams I era stuff - it is what it is, and as necessary to the development of the alt.country genre as Malcolm McLaren (now, THERE'S a tosser) was to New Wave.

    This thread has set me thinking as well, and the thing that pisses me off most about music discussions in general is how people measure your 'coolness' by what the majority listens to. Took me years to own up in public to enjoying ABBA and certain disco tunes, to realise that really I don't give a fuck what other people think of my musical tastes, that I refuse to allow others the power to judge me. Which is easier said than done.

    The reason we have so many genres of music is that we all have different tastes. Most of the Friday stuff that people post here does nothing for me but, like Jackie's brother's mixes, every so often there's something that makes me go "Hmmm!".

    I still don't like the Pixies, though, Sacha.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 1874 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to SteveH,

    Here's how it might have gone

    crikey

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16472 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to nzlemming,

    something that makes me go "Hmmm!"

    what more can we ask for?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16472 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg, in reply to JacksonP,

    and the thread hasn't been RickRoll'd.

    I still think Barney gave us the best Rick-moves I've seen since about 1988 last month at the NO gig.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3203 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard, in reply to Lilith __,

    I’d put Bowie’s Heroes (particularly side 2) in the same basically-ambient New Wave category.

    Wow. Berlin-era Bowie is definitely a shameful lacuna in my music education.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1039 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard,

    Since the original post is about musical torture, I feel that I have to share two tracks that I genuinely love, yet have to admit that I shouldn't have inflicted them upon others.

    When this album came out, I drunkenly tried putting this on the stereo at a friend's party. It never got more than a few bars in before someone would roughly yank it off the turntable and put something like Dire Straits on. I finally gave up when the disc got covered in Miami Wine Cooler.

    This is much more recent and much less minimalist. Potent earworm juice. I have tried to introduce my colleagues to this on several occasions, but I think they're about to take out a restraining order on me.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1039 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    I can look back and see how useful it was to break the 70's monotony (coincidentally, about the point where record companies became more concerned with "moving product" than making music)

    I'd probably place that point at more like the 1920s. :)

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to JacksonP,

    I think I've said too much.

    I think you said it all.
    That's me in the corner,
    Losing my lack of a coat...

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4659 posts Report Reply

  • JacksonP,

    Yeah, this is the point where I admit to liking R.E.M also, innit? Early stuff of course, but I don’t mind the album before last either.

    I still think Barney gave us the best Rick-moves I’ve seen since about 1988 last month at the NO gig.

    No one Ricks like this Rick though.

    Also, since we had Sylvester…

    Auckland • Since Mar 2011 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    The Cars

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1491 posts Report Reply

  • JacksonP, in reply to Hebe,

    Do you remember these ones from Wellington? I'm unsure about it now; then it was great

    I do, albeit vaguely. They obviously liked Simon Gallup circa Faith.

    Nice version this.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2011 • 2119 posts Report Reply

  • TracyMac, in reply to Ngaire BookieMonster,

    Thank you for trying to bring us back down to first principles. Perhaps we need a separate 80s nostalgia thread?

    And, dear old Heart. They were awesome musicians, really stuck it up those who said "rock is for men", but dear lord, how tedious I found their stuff.

    It also reminds me of What's Up by 4 Non Blondes, which I am not even going to post a link for. If you're a dyke who was reasonably social, and lived in a flat with other lesbians, and had a partner who was into this kind of emo rock, there was no escaping the frigging song in '93. The rest of the album - which no-one seemed to play - was actually quite good with some bluesy-styled moments.

    But to continue the merge of 80s and crap - and my use-case against all those trolls on YouTube who say "80's music was all AWESOME and music today is all CRAP" - I present darling Tiffany. Complete with boofy acid-washed denim jacket with shoulder pads. Which looked naff even then.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 466 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __,

    OK, the mention of Miami Wine Cooler finally broke down the last of my inhibitions in sharing this piece of full-strength early-80s nostalgia:

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3415 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark, in reply to Lilith __,

    Oh Lilith – fantastic! Thanks so much for sharing that. I’ve forgotten what a wondrous thing Coconut Rough were. My friend Carol and I had a special dance for that one. We still do it on the odd occasion, all these years later.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle, in reply to nzlemming,

    old crappy Hank Williams I era

    This phrase. I do not understand it. Is it English? :p

    I also reckon 'I Think We're Alone Now', Tiffany's naffness aside, is kind of a bitchin' song.

    And OMG so hot. Tumbling to the ground! Beating hearts! Underage sexual activity!

    Busta mooves..

    You want it, you got it.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3628 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to TracyMac,

    And, dear old Heart. They were awesome musicians, really stuck it up those who said “rock is for men”, but dear lord, how tedious I found their stuff.

    One of those bands whose records I’ll never own but am happy to acknowledge. I taped ‘Magic Man’ off the radio (more of that in the next comment) as a teenager and I though that was pretty cool. More recently, I liked the way they told Sarah Palin to fuck off and stop using ‘Barracuda’.

    It also reminds me of What’s Up by 4 Non Blondes, which I am not even going to post a link for. If you’re a dyke who was reasonably social, and lived in a flat with other lesbians, and had a partner who was into this kind of emo rock, there was no escaping the frigging song in ‘93. The rest of the album – which no-one seemed to play – was actually quite good with some bluesy-styled moments.

    Wasn’t it ’What’s Going On’? The singer, Linda Perry, went on to become a serious force in pop songwriting and producing, most notably through her work for Pink. And although I would be happy to never hear that damn song again, she’s pretty cool.

    But to continue the merge of 80s and crap – and my use-case against all those trolls on YouTube who say “80’s music was all AWESOME and music today is all CRAP” – I present darling Tiffany. Complete with boofy acid-washed denim jacket with shoulder pads. Which looked naff even then.

    Good pop song. No problems with it. Great parody too:

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18703 posts Report Reply

  • philipmatthews,

    Magic Man by Heart? I always thought it was put to very good use by Sofia Coppola in THE VIRGIN SUICIDES:

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2007 • 642 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    It has dawned on me through this thread what a big influence listening to (and taping) Casey Kasem's American Top 40 was on my musical education.

    Sometimes it took me some strange places -- Kansas' 'Dust In the Wind', ffs -- but it was also the first place I heard Patti Smith's 'Because the Night', which provoked an immediate OMIGOD WTF IS THAT I NEED MORE OF THAT response.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18703 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand, in reply to Jackie Clark,

    Talking of coconuts, Kid Creole and the Coconuts were interesting back then, for 5 or 10 minutes. Saw them live in a Long Island club.

    What a monster you have created here, Russell. Getting close to 10,000 views.

    Accessing it on the iPad means I am spared all the video clips.

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2285 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    As an aside, I was wondering if the feature I wrote for The Press Dusty find reveals how glitz of Hollywood seduced Kiwis appeared in any other Fairfax rags this weekend (other than the Waikato Times)

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2285 posts Report Reply

  • philipmatthews, in reply to Geoff Lealand,

    I can find out for you, Geoff, next time I'm at Press HQ.

    I also listened avidly -- nerdishly -- to Casey Kasam on whatever Christchurch AM station played it in the late 70s; I still have a love/hate relationship with the soporific, dreamy sound of 70s rock filtered through a cheap radio (10cc, Steely Dan, Fleetwood Mac, Eagles).

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2007 • 642 posts Report Reply

  • Hebe, in reply to Russell Brown,

    It has dawned on me through this thread what a big influence listening to (and taping) Casey Kasem's American Top 40 was on my musical education.

    I thought the very same think last night. Sunday afternoons, in a bedroom with my real world on the raydio. You heard Patti Smith on there?

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2571 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Danielle,

    You want it, you got it

    yuss

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16472 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Tom Beard,

    Miami Wine Cooler

    hammered

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16472 posts Report Reply

  • TracyMac, in reply to Russell Brown,

    What's going on? is just the chorus hook. The song title - and the wanky "irony" of it really got on my tits as well - is What's Up. Linda Perry IS cool, particularly in her latter career. Just THAT song, feh.

    As for Heart and Ann and Nancy Wilson, again, very very very cool people. The music doesn't ring my bell at all - not much on Aerosmith, Van Halen et al either.

    As for I Think We're Alone Now, no problems at all with actual song. It was the creepy version in shrill Tiffany-voice that ground my gears. As did the "wholesome Christian girl" bollocks for her "brand".

    I like the parody. :-)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 466 posts Report Reply

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