Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 442

Today's song is...

Can't Keep Johnny Down

This song has withstood the true test. I listened to it god knows how many times in succession while watching the contest videos and did not get sick of it. I think it's the incredibly catchy melody. The song has a hook that just gets in you and it's not just that you can't get it out; you don't want to get it out. I love the opening keyboard riff and the modified accordion part. And the drums are just killer. Plus the line "They can't know what's in here" resonates with me every time. It's kind of an angry song but it's also kind of a sympathetic sad song. Set to a peppy pop melody like the best TMBG tunes are. I already feel like this song has been in the catalog for years even though it's only been eight months or so. It's just that classic TMBG sound.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 441

Today's song is...


Let's take a poll. When listening to State Songs how many of you let this track play out all the way to the end before turning it off? Anybody? Or do you get bored with the ever fading marching band and give up a couple minutes in? I've always wondered if that band knew they were on this recording or if Linnell had just stuck a mic out the window while they were passing.

Also, the lyrics on the State Songs EP version are nearly completely different from the actual album aren't they? I had never listened to them back to back before to notice how different they were. I think I like the ones about ladies falling out of trees better. But I like Linnell's instrumental introduction better on the album, so they are both good.

P.S. I've been listening to the song while I wrote this and there are still minutes of street noise left. It just goes on and on.

Song of the Day - Day 440

Today's song is...


He is our hero! This, to me, is the quintessential "band fooling around in the studio during some down time and putting together something silly that they decide to release on the album to amuse people" track. It's the only explanation. My favorite quote about the song came from an interview with Linnell from '94 I believe when he was talking about how fans always wanted them to play obscure songs when they played live but there was just no way they could ever play a song like Spider live. Which is entertaining since they have since performed it dozens of times. I think he underestimated their talents :-)

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 439

Today's song is...

How Now Dark Cloud? 

I can't believe Flans was ever considering titling this song Lazy Eye. It couldn't be anything but what it is. The lyrics in this song are really interesting. The rhythmic pattern of them is really pleasing to the ear. I haven't figured out what they mean. I just like the way the words sound together. Especially the chorus. I think I need to put some more time into figuring out the meaning of the song. Or maybe it will just be one I just sit back and enjoy and don't think about too much.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 438

Today's song is...


I didn't even realize that this piece of music had a name until today. It is appropriate. It does sort of have a tone of impending doom. Which may or may not be accurate depending on how well the Spin the Dial segment segment goes. There are some fantastic ones and some frighteningly bad ones among my live show collection, though all are entertaining. Someday it would be cool if all the little pieces of intro music the band has used were recorded and released on an EP or something. Never gonna happen but it would be cool.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 437

Today's song is...

My Man

Every now and then when I listen to this song I am struck with just how pretty it is. It is just a pretty song. There is so much going on musically and it all blends together really well and the electronic elements really compliment the live instruments. I am really fond of the programmed tune that plays over the verses and how it contrasts with the piano. And it's got bongos. And it you've been paying attention you'll know I have a fondness for bongos. Plus, the lyrics are so very John Linnell. A song about a guy talking to his body about its paralysis? It does not get much more John Linnell than that, unless maybe you tossed some skulls or unusual vocabulary words. And I really appreciate the simile he's got going between paralysis and the mooring in the ocean. I get that. Good analogy. Pretty song.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 436

Today's song is...

(She Was A) Hotel Detective

Hello, saxophone! If you're a sax fan this has got to be one of the strongest entries in the band's repertoire. It's just a great sax riff. And the guitar part isn't bad either. Plus I love the percussion at the beginning. But I'll be totally honest and say I've never been a huge fan of the vocal. I'm a little turned off by the songs where Flans sounds like he's screaming the lyrics. Vocally, I actually greatly prefer the version sans parenthesis. But never the less, this song is still on my bucket list of songs I would like to hear live someday. Especially if Linnell breaks out the sax again.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 435

Today's song is...

The Songs Of The 50 States

This is one of my favorite State Songs and it's not even about a specific state. It's like the theme song for the album. I love how self referential it is. And I love the frenetic pace at which the lyrics proceed. And musically it is a lot more traditional than some of the other tracks on the album, though it does have the nice guest appearance by the bass clarinet. It does not come as a great surprise to me that some of my favorite State Songs are the ones that were basically recorded by the members of TMBG minus Flans, ie. this one and West Virginia. Not that I don't love some of the others. I think my musical ear just likes what it is familiar with and this feels familiar. It also feels like something children would sing at camp.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 434

Today's song is...

I Just Found Out What Everybody Knows

There is an element of this song that sounds like the theme song to a cheesy late 70s/early 80s movie. Except the tone of the lyrics doesn't quite fit that theme. This isn't my favorite Mono Puff song by any means. But it is musically interesting and as with most Mono Puff tracks, great bass.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 433

Today's song is...


Another of my favorite venue songs. I love this one, first because it's funny and second, because I can so imagine these thoughts actually going through Linnell's head before a show. "Do I have time to shower before we hit the stage? I am so tired, and no one is going to care if I just fall asleep with my clothes on on the bus. But I have to write this venue song first. Oh, wait. I think I just did." I also like the way he says Astoria to make it rhyme with gay. So sad this club is gone and the song with never again be reprised.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 432

Today's song is...

Lefty Loosey

I like the percussion on this song with the sticks just clicking away rather than actual drum banging. One of the things I have always appreciated about the Dunkin Donuts songs is the humor in them created from everyday situations. They all have a "ha ha, I can totally related to that" element to them. Which is probably what makes it a successful marketing campaign. And a collection of pretty fun little songs.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 431

Today's song is...

Coke Radio Ad

Confession: Very early in the life of SOTD this track came up in the random search and I didn't know what it was, didn't realize I had it on my computer and wasn't sure it counted as a song. At some point after that I found it, realized it did count after all and I've been waiting for it to come around again ever since. It's an interesting track with all those little song snippets. Maybe it's just me but there are several of them that sound like other familiar TMBG related songs (and not just the bit of Poison Flowers). There is a couple of seconds that sound like part of Number Three. If it were a song about Coke that is.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 430

Today's song is...

Mr. Correct

We never did 100% confirm what this song is but I am sticking with the assessment that it is Daily Show bumper music in which case I went to see this movie just to catch a 2 second snippet of a TMBG song I could have heard on TV. But it was OK because the movie was good and it had a lot of guys in fedoras and I love guys in hats.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 429

Today's song is...

No One Knows My Plan

"Everybody conga, I'm not fucking kidding." Anybody who has ever heard those words and been carried off through a crowd with their hands on the hips of a stranger knows the magic of this song. And even if you haven't, you can probably still appreciate what a great song it is, with that peppy horn part driving through the whole song. The flow of the lyrics is fantastic too, with words falling together over the tune. This is one of those songs where, for me, it almost doesn't matter what the lyrics are saying because the words just sound so good with the music. In short, this is a great song. Hopefully you enjoyed your conga and your new view of the stage.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 428

Today's song is...

Nick Rocks ID

Another barely a song. But I am fond of this video clip. It's beautifully awkward.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 427

Today's song is...

They'll Need A Crane

I would have sworn I had already done Crane as SOTD but my list tells me no. This is a beautiful song. A beautiful, punch you in the gut sad song. I am convinced that at some point in everyones life the lyric "I'm just tired and I don't love you anymore" becomes the most profound thing you have ever heard. Lyrically, Linnell tapped into emotions in this song that strike a chord whether you have felt them yourself or not. And set it to a deceptively cheerful melody so the sadness doesn't completely crush you.

And then they went and made that awesome video with Linnell dancing in a most adorable fashion and everything was beautiful and nothing hurt.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 426

Today's song is...


I really kind of want to see this place that is so wonderful that Linnell wants to blind himself and see it forever and model his living room after it. It must be super swanky. Either that or the entire song is really ironic.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 425

Today's song is...

Read A Book

This is one of those songs where it seems like the lyrics were written just to have something to go along with the melody and thus they are kind of silly and non-sensical. And I love them. I can totally picture Flans asking Linnell what the speed of light is, because of course he would know. And him getting all pissy because he was busy with something else. Heehee. And all set to some seriously grungy guitar. With a killer drum and bass bridge thrown in too. Good song, boys. Good song.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 424

Today's song is...

You're Watching...

The randomizer seems to be on a "random Dial-A-Song jingles" kick. I like this one though. It's much more of a complete song than a lot of the others. And I like the bom-ba-bum rhythm of it. And it kind of tickles me that it's "you're watching" when in fact you are listening. Heehee.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 423

Today's song is...

Welcome To The World

My recording of this "barely counts as a song" song is so faint I can barely hear the song. But I like the xylophone playing or whatever it is all the same.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 422

Today's song is...

Absolutely Bill's Mood

I never know quite what to make of this song. There are some things I quite like about it. The bridge in particular for some reason. I like the way all the unusual elements come together in the bulk of the song. But the guitar part, I find terribly creepy. Which might be the point.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 421

Today's song is...

Roy G. Biv

I really love this song musically, most especially what is going on with the drums and bass at the very beginning where Flans is singing "R is for red, O is for Orange" etc, that also reprises later. The song itself is cute but the music really rocks. Just listen to those drums! Sometimes I wish the people who frown on the children's music would just take a good hard listen to songs like this and hear what a good song it is, whether because of or despite the fact that it is about a magical elf. Who lives inside a rainbow. Because where else would you find a magical elf?

Monday, January 9, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 420

Today's song is...

Return To The Planet Of The Apes

The best part of this song is the part about the toffee cape that some would call tan. That just makes me snicker. Otherwise it falls somewhere in the middle if I were ranking Ape songs. But that bit gets me every time.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 419

Today's song is...

Now That You're One Of Us

This is more of a reprise of the other song the band wrote for Return to Neverland than a separate unique song and I debated having it count but it does have a different title. Unfortunately, that doesn't mean I have anything new to say about it that I didn't already say about the other song.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 418

Today's song is...

Rhythm Section Want Ad

Love this song. Love everything about this song. The rapid fire lyrics, fantastic drum machine, fun accordion break, just everything. The frenetic pace can't help but make you tap your feet and it's one of those songs where being able to sing all the lines at the proper speeds is the mark of a truly dedicated fan. Plus, "laugh hard, it's a long way to the bank" is just a great line.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 417

Today's song is...


What exactly is an octofish? That is what I want to know. I am quite a fan of the music in this song. It's kind of trippy which goes along with the '70s Free to Be You and Me vibe on the song. Has anyone else ever noticed how the keyboard at the beginning vibrates between channels as it resonates so that if you listen with headphones on it sounds like the sound is passing rapidly back and forth through your head? It's a little disconcerting. But cool. Now I would like everyone to submit a drawing of what they think an octofish looks like and have it on my desk before the end of the day. :-)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 416

Today's song is...


A lot of the songs from People Are Wrong! remind me of songs from Hair and none of them quite so much as this one for obvious reasons. Have I mentioned yet how much I wish I could have seen this show?

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 415

Today's song is...

Santa's Beard

I don't love this one. I'm not sure why. It's just never been a favorite. I do like the bass or synth bass or whatever it is. And I just realized that I always mis-hear the line about "cheatin' songs" as "cheatin' side". I think I even realized at some point what the right lyric was and then continued to mis-hear it anyway.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 414

Today's song is...

Doom Doom

I can't listen to this song without snickering a little. Particularly the bit about the bomb in your hair. It just amuses me. The voices definitely help. Have you guys played with one of those Figit toys that are so popular this year? Their slightly creepy electronic voices remind me of the Doppelgängers of They. But without the added humor of knowing it's the Johns behind them. Which is a big contributor to why I find this funny.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Song of the Day - Day 413

Today's song is...

Withered Hope

Second day in a row with one of my favorite songs. And it's another one where I really love the whole musical package. Just such fantastic sonics. And I am completely obsessed with the keyboard riff. It's in my top five TMBG musical phrases. This is also a song that actually manages to exceed the recording when played live and their aren't many that do. But when the band careens through it full speed with the horns blaring and the keyboard pounding and the bass thumping and the guitars wailing it is a transcendent experience for me and often a highlight of the show.

Song of the Day - Day 412

Today's song is...

See The Constellation

One of my favorites. Such a good rhythm. This is a song that sonically blows my mind. I can't single out any one part I particularly love because what I really love is all those parts blended together. It's just such a well constructed song. And one of my favorite TMBG memories is hearing this live for the first time at LPR when the entire front of the audience started going "hey, hey" on cue at the beginning of the song with no prompting what so ever. It was one of those incredible moments where I really felt down to my core the rush of that shared love for the band from a whole room full of fans.